Thanks. Got it. I don't know where Delacy campground is. I have only been to Silvertip and Ross Lake. Is it the horse riding one? Anyway, I figured it was high. I have tried in the past to go on the 1st only to find it roaring along. Doubt if a week will matter much but I can't wait any longer.
Was up there on Friday the 14th, caught 4 at Ross Lake, one nice 16 incher, then headed to the Skagit. It was moving fairly fast, if you don't have good river boots, it's treacherous. Caught a couple in about 30 min. but was slightly injured from crossing fast water and packed it in. I don't think there is a Strawbwerry entrance, it may be the horse riding area now.
I went to the Skagit on the second week of July. It was flowing fast, as expected. Crossed a few times with difficulty. Didn't even try at Strawberry Flats. But that will all be corrected with time as the level of flow declines. My concern is the difference in fishing between now and a few years ago. I and my buddies I fish with have noticed what seems to be less caught fish as well as smaller in size. I remember 30+ fish days and fish in the range of 18 inches for rainbow trout (even 20). There just does not seem to be the size of fish or the amount. I did catch 6, but expected more--despite the fast water. I saw a guy doing well with nymphs, but how well I don't really know--didn't talk to him. I am just wondering if others are seeing a decline in the number of fish caught as compared to other years. I don't know that I am doing anything different. I am willing to learn. But it would be nice to know the problem is just with me and not the river. Is Ross Lake being overfished? Is there a problem in spawning? The water still seems good and the flow is good. All my observations are anecdotal--I don't have any proof. So how about others opinions. Not just that you are catching alot of fish, but how you experience in the past, say, three years, compares with that of 3+ years.
I was just discussing this same topic with a good friend of mine as we were driving back into town from Hatheume today. I was commenting on the same observations as you have noted...less fish, definitely a lot smaller size average. I too remember catching many fish on the Skagit with minimal effort, and I used to catch at least one 18" every trip. The last time I fished the Skagit was probably three years ago, and the average sized fish that day was closer to 10", and the largest one I got was maybe 12" (probably not though). I've also had to resort to nymphing more often...and I'm not saying that dry fly fishing is necessarily "better", but I go to the Skagit specifically to catch fish on the dry fly, and the surface action hasn't been that great.
On a positive note, the Bull Trout seem to be making a comeback...and my last trip there I caught a bunch of nice bulls swinging large streamers with my 7wt.
Was on the Skagit on Friday, the 14th? I thought the river was a little high still and between the two of us we got only three fish-- biggest was 12" (maybe). Two were taken on minnow patterns at Strawberry and one on a dry at Nepopkopum(?). Even when the fishing is slow the Skagit is a beautiful place to fish!
Well I dont know what it was like in the "good old days" as I have only fished it the past 3 seasons. In my experience, I have found some pools seem to hold smaller fish then others. Last year we found a nice pool that we were getting 14-18" on average. I have found early in the season, nymphs and streamers seem to be more productive. When the water lowers. I have found dry flies to be more productive.One thing I know for sure, they are some of the nicest looking rainbows around 8)
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