Olympic Peninsula Steelhead

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Olympic Peninsula Steelhead Giant Winter Run Steelhead:
2017 summary; Our season experienced the coldest wettest winter steelhead fishing ever in my guiding career. More snowy days than the last ten years combined and obviously more rain than ever. We lost a total of 13 days in the 90 day season so we actually did quite well. Again fishing high water was a challenge but it was good for the fish and that matters most! The take away from 2017 was that the wild fish run appears to be in good shape and consistently entering the rivers from January through the end of April. A positive change from the dramatic peaks of run in March..

The wild steelhead fly fishing on the Olympic Peninsula is most often considered the best steelhead fishing in the entire nation. With the ever present El Diablo of wild winter steelhead many anglers say its WORLD CLASS FLY FISHING. Any date January through April can easily be the best day of steelhead fishing for the entire year. The area boasts not just one great steelhead river, but 6 all within an easy drive of Forks Washington.

The Olympic Peninsula is known for its giant wild winter Steelhead. Catches over 20 lbs. are common every season and the last few have brought the biggest fish I have seen in over twenty years of angling in the region. Join me on your next trip to find the always elusive and majestic wild steelhead of the Olympic Peninsula. We often fish double hand Skagit techniques as well as on the move from drift boats.

See below for an outline of fees, for more information or to book a trip feel free to give us a call at 253-307-3210 or Email Jeff@Brazdasflyfishing.com. We can answer any questions you may have about our Washington fly fishing guided trips or talk to you about availability. We look forward to hearing from you!

Fully Hosted steelhead packages @ ” Wild Duc Lodge”

Day Trips on the Olympic Peninsula 2 anglers

3 day 3 night – 5 day 6 night, call for quotes.

May-January $495 plus tax.
Feb-April $550 plus tax

Queets River ONP Steelhead Permit 271 additional charges apply
Day trips single angler  $450 plus tax.

• Day Trips Include: Lunch, shuttle, guide. Not included: Washington State fishing license, Washington State sales tax,travel and lodging; but we are happy to make recommendations.

• Queets River ONP Trip Includes: Lunch, guide, additional charges vary. Not included: travel, lodging and Washington State sales tax.

FULLY HOSTED PACKAGES: ” WILD DUC LODGE” Available January through April on the Olympic Peninsula. Give us a call we can accommodate groups up to 8 guests. Jeff at (253) 307-3210

• View/Download our Cancellation policy: Here

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My Philosophy on Steelhead Guiding:

The debate of what really constitutes fly fishing may never be resolved, some fly fishers fish only the dry; some go as far as attaching drift weights (i.e.; slinkies, pencil lead, etc.). Other anglers use corkies or flies to a simple running line, and strip cast it – somewhat like egg fishermen did, in the late 50′s called rolling shot. Although I do have fond memories of following grandpa around the river when he was egg fishing dirty water, with a glass fly rod & reel loaded with mono, and a stripping basket. However, I prefer the more conventional fly fishing methods some old and some new. As I see it, fly casting/fishing is about the line used as the weight to load the rod for casting. The weight attached – either sink tip, shooting head, split shot or weighted fly – is the means of reaching an appropriate depth, and or presentation.

If I had to fish one method for steelhead the rest of my life, I would chose to swing a double hand rod. I have caught steelhead every way possible and enjoyed every style, but for me the grab of a pissed off, aggressive steelhead of any size is the thing I live for. With over 20 years of fishing strictly the fly rod for steelhead, I can honestly say “consistently catching steelhead on the swing is only possible with perfect presentation.”

Presentation of the swung fly is as complicated as a drag-free drift, even more so since you must also reach a level of depth, that will put the fly within the strike zone and get it back. This matched with river and weather conditions, leaves us with a multitude of options. If you wish to load the boat, or camera, no matter what season, then indicator/float fishing is probably the way for you.

I personally believe a good nympher can be just as successful as bait when fly fishing. Given favorable weather conditions, and a good run of fish, the bug rod may even out shine the bait rod. More recently I have not fished many days for Olympic Peninsula steelhead when I haven’t tossed a bobber rod into fast water, with a couple of bugs and a split shot. It is not an easy thing to do, especially 3 or 4 days in a row. Now, you can make it easier, (i.e. light led, small bobbers) you will just catch less fish.

There are holding water spots that cannot be effectively fished on the swing. There are a lot of good lies between swinging runs. As much as I love the swing, I cannot pass up good steelhead water. The paraphrase I like to use is “its like going on a cruise and closing your eyes between ports” it really does not make any since IF you are out to actually try and catch them. This is where the nymphing rod has its place in the boat. As much as I wished it to be different, indicator (bobber) fishing is the single most effective way to catch steelhead with the fly rod.

As a guide, my philosophy is simple; I can put you on steelhead in a multitude of ways, you as a client, must catch a few to decide your preferred method. Once that is accomplished, I can then guide you specifically the way as you wish to angle. I would never suggest one method over the others since it should be based upon your personal preference.

If you are interested in setting up an Olympic Peninsula Steelhead adventure, call us at 253-307-3210 or email jeff@brazdasflyfishing.com. We also offer other great trips to other areas of Washington including: Methow River Steelhead, Methow River Trout, Klickitat River Steelhead, Yakima River Fly Fishing, and the Naches River Fly Fishing Trout trip. We look forward to hearing from you and fish always!

-Jeff Brazda