August 10, 2014

Baker Creek, OR -- July 28, 2014

I recently visited Oregon and while there tested some of the smaller streams that come out of the coastal range into the Willamette valley. Trout fishing in that part of Oregon in August is not an easy proposition. Most of the streams that I have fished over the years, late in summer, are really low. The fish are very skittish and you have to work for anything over 8 inches.  It seems that I'm never in Oregon in May through June when the water levels are better. I have to take what I can get.

Anyway, I had not fished Baker Creek previously so I thought I'd give it a go. When I was there the days were hot, reaching into the 90's. That makes for some sweaty fishing. The water temperature wasn't too bad, 62 degrees F. Any higher and I would have not fished due to fish stress. But 62 is still in the safe zone, for a stream -- less so for a lake.

Upper Baker Creek

I drove through the pretty countryside of Yamhill county and up into the hills of the coastal range. I decided to fish up high early on, then down lower later. The hillsides were still green and lush despite the lack of rainfall over the past month.

I had my Gamakatsu MultiFlex with me, but it was not the right rod for the stream. It has the right lengths and versatility, but it is too stiff to really enjoy small fish. A better match would have been my Oni type III, Sagiri 39MC, Try 330, or Nissin ProSpec 2-way, but I didn't have any of these rods with me. I should have brought some of these to Oregon but I had brought my big rods instead, as I had planned on doing some summer steelhead fishing and carp fishing. I never did get a chance to fish for those species however -- my wife had other plans.

I fished among the ferns and conifers of the Oregon hills, carefully casting my woolbodied kebari into the few pools that were in the stream. There were lots of fish, all native coastal cutthroats, but nothing larger than 8 inches. They would hit the kebari as soon as it hit the water or a few seconds after.

The "big" one of the day.

After a while I drove downstream, found an access point, and reentered the creek. Up high the stream was over a gravel bed, but lower down the stream was pocket water in among boulders. I bet this stream is fun in May. Access is challenging due to private land and blackberry brambles (I really need a machete to cut through those brambles, but I'd probably cut my leg off). Again I took coastal cutthroats and again they were all small. I fished for a few hours then went back home as it was really hot outside!

Baker Creek downstream

I'd like to try other small streams in Oregon when I get back there. If any of you Oregonians know of some nice trout streams in the Willamette or Northwest Zones, and would be willing to share with an out of state guy, send me an email. Better yet, if you'd like to go fishing together when I get back to Oregon send me your email address through the Contact Me tab above. I don't know when I'll get back there, but my daughter lives there now so it shouldn't be too long in the future.

Here is a short video of Baker Creek and some of the small cutthroats I took:

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