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Old 08-12-2019, 06:41 AM   #301
honker1
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Default Re: Merwin 2019

Looking like I may make a trip up there this week. I've been waiting for Bouy 10 to start up, to clear the parking lot at Merwin. Now if they just keep the water level up so I can launch.

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Old 08-12-2019, 10:27 AM   #302
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Looking like I may make a trip up there this week. I've been waiting for Bouy 10 to start up, to clear the parking lot at Merwin. Now if they just keep the water level up so I can launch.
I was up on Saturday 8/10. Water level ok. Lots of ramp. Just move away from the dock to make room for the next launch. A couple boats were a bit slow, but most people were with the program.
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Old 08-14-2019, 01:56 PM   #303
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Here’s dinner 😉 only 3.. great day on all counts. 40’ deep 50’ setback and fast limit dodger green
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Old 08-15-2019, 08:30 AM   #304
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Had to fish solo...Fun day overall but netting a fish, steering the boat and trying to solo net a fish is quite the logistical achievement.


Shanem, when I fish Merwin solo, I don't use a net.

Netting with only one hand / forearm on the net and then the kokanee unexpectedly diving and darting--in that one quick moment of slack in your line (the natural tendency is to lower your arm holding your pole when you're lowering the other arm holding the net to get under the fish)
and POOF, wave goodbye to the kokanee!


My Merwin kokanee landing ratio is probably 99% now. Here's how:
I reel the kokanee all the way in alongside my boat. I then in one SMOOTH lifting action, raise my pole up and swing it over my boat and then drop the kokanee into my waiting 5 gallon bucket with about 12" water in the bottom. Very rarely, the fish comes off the hooks while I'm over my boat deck--but haven't quite found the 5 gal. bucket target. No problem, the kokanee is still in my boat flapping on the deck!


This method works even with the 14" kokanee. I'm using Celilo Kokanee poles. I'd only use the net for that rare 20" to 24" rainbow. And mostly, there easier to one arm net because they're not thrashing around so much. Good luck!

Last edited by gohappy; 08-16-2019 at 07:50 AM.
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Old 08-17-2019, 08:16 AM   #305
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Default Re: Merwin 2019

Good tip on landing them solo. I will have to give that a try next time.


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Old 08-23-2019, 06:36 PM   #306
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Anyone been up there recently?
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Old 08-24-2019, 08:21 AM   #307
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Up there yesterday. Caught a 43 inch tiger in the morning on a fly, then switched to kokanee fishing around 10:30. Started up by the dam. Caught 2 kokanee quick then thought I had a huge ********* or small muskie on the rod as the fish pulled the release and put a serious bend in the rod. A nice tug of war ensued and I was rewarded with a nice 20+ inch trout. Using arrow silver flashers and pink hoochies tipped with Berkley maggots, and an 18 inch spread between flasher and hoochie. Pretty much nonstop action until 2:00ish. Finally got my last one of my limit around 2:30. Probably lost and released another limit or 2. Seen a ton of boats down by speelyai bay and didn't want to join the party. Most of my fish were in the 10-12 inch category, and I am wondering if the bigger fish are stacking up next to the bay which is why all the boats are there.

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Old 08-24-2019, 08:35 AM   #308
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Up there yesterday. Caught a 43 inch tiger in the morning on a fly, then switched to kokanee fishing around 10:30. Started up by the dam. Caught 2 kokanee quick then thought I had a huge ********* or small muskie on the rod as the fish pulled the release and put a serious bend in the rod. A nice tug of war ensued and I was rewarded with a nice 20+ inch trout. Using arrow silver flashers and pink hoochies tipped with Berkley maggots, and an 18 inch spread between flasher and hoochie. Pretty much nonstop action until 2:00ish. Finally got my last one of my limit around 2:30. Probably lost and released another limit or 2. Seen a ton of boats down by speelyai bay and didn't want to join the party. Most of my fish were in the 10-12 inch category, and I am wondering if the bigger fish are stacking up next to the bay which is why all the boats are there.



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Old 08-24-2019, 12:31 PM   #309
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Last Tuesday, near the dam along the north shore, I caught a 22" chinook (yes, the adipose was clipped). The first couple seconds, i thought i might have been snagged on something--boy was my Celilo kokanee pole bent!
D.R. was at 50 ft. Pulling a Deadly Venom sidewinder rainbow colors.
Mack's hot orange hoochie on a 8" leader.
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Old 08-29-2019, 01:39 PM   #310
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An 18" leader sure worked for me this am on Merwin. I was catching quite a few more fish on one rod more so than the other and the only difference was the length of the leader. One was 12" and the other a bit smaller. I changed the smaller to 18" and it caught three times more fish this am than the 12" There was a good bite this am. Might have been the storm Launched at 5:30 but the lighting was soon too close for comfort so I landed the boat on a sandy beach and went to shore and watched the light show. Saw one bolt hit the hills across from the falls. Only lost one fish this am and couldn't shake any to fish longer. Finished about 8:30 fishing 50-55 feet.
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Old 08-30-2019, 03:17 PM   #311
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Report from today. 50' on the downriggers. 7:00-noon. Tried my normal speed 1.7 and got a couple. Got a double when I slowed to idle so got the rest going about 1.4. Some big and starting to blush. Best tip would be to make sure you are always fishing. Watch the rods. If you think you got bit or haven't been bit in a while, reel it in. They usually steal the corn next to the hootchie and then you aren't fishin. Numbers on releases are experiments to reduce bobbin diameter so I can eliminate the expensive hand cut Kokanee spring between the jaws. Works great! If anybody needs repairs, parts, or spring/bolt/thumbnut upgrades for their releases, send me a PM, I'll fix em for postage, but I don't have any smaller bobbins yet. These were milled down and I'm in the process of welding and resurfacing the molds.

Last edited by sinkerhead; 08-31-2019 at 01:21 AM.
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Old 08-31-2019, 08:45 AM   #312
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If I were to tie 10" long - leader "extenders"with a small swivel so that my usual 8" hoochie would become a net 18" long---would that work? Or do i need to tie full length uninterrupted 18" to the dodger? Your opinion? Thanks
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Old 08-31-2019, 11:43 AM   #313
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The swivel or splice could create a hinge in the leader. This has the potential to decrease any action imparted from the dodger to your lure.
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Old 08-31-2019, 02:30 PM   #314
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Splash, thanks for the reply.
I'll tie up a couple full length 18" leaders with Macks and also Deadly Venom's hot orange hoochies.
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Old 09-01-2019, 08:01 AM   #315
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Up there yesterday. Blanked on tigers. Started fishing for kokes around noon. Had a tough time finding them on my fish finder. Usually anywhere I go around 40-60 feet and they are all over the place. Does it have to do with the spawn?

When I found them, I had a tough time getting them to bite. Maybe they were pike minnow? Found a few up by the dam. Best luck was on a Brad's gold flasher pink hoochie, 1.1 silver smile blade, 16-18"s back at 1.5, pink berkley maggots.

Half my limit was caught pulling and checking my gear and ended up with a fish on. Seems like when I am by myself putting lines out if I miss the initial hit I can't see there is a fish on and I am dragging around a fish. Does the longer noodle kokanee rods help detect fish for you guys or is that just par for the course?

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Last edited by TallFlyGuy; 09-01-2019 at 08:03 AM. Reason: Grammar
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Old 09-01-2019, 04:32 PM   #316
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[Half my limit was caught pulling and checking my gear and ended up with a fish on. Seems like when I am by myself putting lines out if I miss the initial hit I can't see there is a fish on and I am dragging around a fish. Does the longer noodle kokanee rods help detect fish for you guys or is that just par for the course?

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Even with noodle rod, I had a few that way today. Even the full size pre-spawner just nibbles on the bait, if you aren’t watching at that moment, bait’s gone and you’re not fishin’.
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Old 09-02-2019, 07:25 AM   #317
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"Half my limit was caught pulling and checking my gear and ended up with a fish on. Seems like when I am by myself putting lines out if I miss the initial hit I can't see there is a fish on and I am dragging around a fish. Does the longer noodle kokanee rods help detect fish for you guys or is that just par for the course?"


Now that the Kokanee are getting closer to the hatchery and fishing pressure is going to slow down, I have a question for those that fish Merwin year after year.
I also have experienced the dragging of Kokanee around the lake this year. Never knew it was on, until I separated from the downrigger ball to check bait. Almost all the fish I caught this year seem to be smaller then previous years fish, based on the same time zone. I don't think I even cleaned 1 Kok this year that had eggs in the belly. Caught males only. Even the red Kok last week was only 12", which I would have expected to be 14" and football shaped.

So my question. I know you may have caught the rare 15"/16" fish, but overall, do you think the fish were smaller this year?

Males vs Females. Strikes me straight that all this year I never got one fish with eggs.
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Old 09-02-2019, 07:38 AM   #318
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Just the opposite here larger than last year, most are males but caught a lot of females with eggs. If you are dragging fish around put a 2 foot line from your ball to your release it will signal bite much better.
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Old 09-02-2019, 07:07 PM   #319
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Some real toads for me this year and some smaller fish that surprised me. Largest one in the pic is just under 17 inches by about an eighth. The eggs were from her, should have brought em home and cured em for steelhead.
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Old 09-03-2019, 09:09 AM   #320
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Last Friday, 08/30. 10' off the DR at 50' depth, 4 rods in for the 2 of us. Shoepeg and kokanee eggs from last outing. Pike minnows gave it up to the seagulls and eagles, belly up over and over. Saw hundreds and hundreds and hundreds on the finder, more than I've ever seen, but no interest. Common to reel in with no corn or a pike minnow and not know it even with the most limber kokanee rods. It became obvious that when my rod tip stopped reacting to my mini-360° that I had a pike.



I'll wait now for a month. One guy said he had 6 but no one else we spoke to had any.
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Old 09-03-2019, 12:06 PM   #321
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Was unable to get out early on Labor day. Finally made it out around 3. What a zoo! People and boats everywhere. Was 3:30 when I got on the water. Went right to the waterfall area and put the rods down. Felt like I was on the ocean with all the waves from the pleasure boaters. In the first hour I got three. Then I couldn't get anymore to bite. I moved up to the dam area and got four more. Just before dark I hit a big trout that went 22+inches and just over 5 1/2 lbs. What a blast. Clicker was on.... wasn't paying attention, then the line was zipping out. Caught the trout and kokes on green hoochie, 18inch leader, pink and silver 1.1 smile blade and Berkley maggots on silver and gold Brad's flashers. 40 to 50 ft down with 60'setback.

I was curious what was in the trouts stomach. The last picture is what I found. Leaves? Can they really digest leaves?

Also, found the solution to dragging around fish. I picked up a couple of the big c tackles releases. I set them really light, and didn't crank down on the rods when on the downrigger. Only popped once without a fish. Makes it nice not to have to try to keep your eyes on the rods nonstop. Just wait for the "boing" and fish on

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Old 09-04-2019, 08:30 AM   #322
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Quote:
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Was unable to get out early on Labor day. Finally made it out around 3. What a zoo! People and boats everywhere. Was 3:30 when I got on the water. Went right to the waterfall area and put the rods down. Felt like I was on the ocean with all the waves from the pleasure boaters. In the first hour I got three. Then I couldn't get anymore to bite. I moved up to the dam area and got four more. Just before dark I hit a big trout that went 22+inches and just over 5 1/2 lbs. What a blast. Clicker was on.... wasn't paying attention, then the line was zipping out. Caught the trout and kokes on green hoochie, 18inch leader, pink and silver 1.1 smile blade and Berkley maggots on silver and gold Brad's flashers. 40 to 50 ft down with 60'setback.

I was curious what was in the trouts stomach. The last picture is what I found. Leaves? Can they really digest leaves?

Also, found the solution to dragging around fish. I picked up a couple of the big c tackles releases. I set them really light, and didn't crank down on the rods when on the downrigger. Only popped once without a fish. Makes it nice not to have to try to keep your eyes on the rods nonstop. Just wait for the "boing" and fish on

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Try a chamberlain release. You can crank down on your rod but have your bait line set very light.
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Old 09-10-2019, 11:07 PM   #323
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Ed's right about the Chamberlain releases, they are the cats meow on my boat, even the stackers work great!!!
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Old 09-19-2019, 08:51 PM   #324
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Fished Merwin this am 6:30 - 11:00 mid lake Woodland Park - Marina mostly towards shore BOTH SIDES. Not much of a bite. Picked up a couple next year fish 10-11 inches around 10:30 @ 45 feet 60 feet back. That time of year. Peaceful.
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Old 10-04-2019, 05:58 AM   #325
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I haven't been fishing much this year at all.... Re-roofing and painting the house, fence, etc. and summer got away from me. Heading up this Saturday and going to give it a shot. If you have a VHF radio, I'll be monitoring channel 16/68 and willing to share intel -Todd
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Old 10-04-2019, 07:00 AM   #326
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Won’t be there. Very curious about your day though. Ramp access, water clarity, temp ect
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Old 10-05-2019, 02:59 PM   #327
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Well. Not a great day for us. Only fish caught (2) were in the Buncombe Hollow area west of the stump farm. 10-11” one rod at 35’ other at 40’. Tried shallower. Just couldn’t hone in on anything today. Drug some pike minnows which didn’t help. Water was around 60F and pretty clear. No wind and a little sunshine. Not productive but still fun.
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Old 10-07-2019, 02:40 PM   #328
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I took a drive to Speelyai hatchery today. Needed to get out of the house. so decided to see if the Kokanee were trying to get into the hatchery. I wasn't disappointed. The creek was full, and several jumpers trying to clear the bars.

Saw about 7 trailers at the launch, but have no idea how they were doing. I suspect it's hard going, trying to locate next years fish. BTW. Water is down 9', so be careful launching.

Yale launch looked better, with only 4 trailers in the huge parking area. BTW. The kokanee are also in Cougar Creek.
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Old 10-08-2019, 08:14 PM   #329
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Thanks for Merwin Report 👍 latest I ever fish Sept 15. Might go after spawn, who knows😉👍🥃🇺🇸
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Old 10-09-2019, 09:04 PM   #330
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Went today ... Man what a beautiful day ... met a new friend from up north who test drove/reserved my Suzuki 175. I fished before he got there and caught 6 by 10. The 2 of us got 2 while chatting about the motor, OS brackets (he's converting a 21' jet boat). I got my last 2 about 15 minutes after he left. Lost about 6. 30 and 35' on the downriggers, about 1.5 mph, mostly between the waterfall and the point. All bright and chubby, 11-12" next years fish.

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Old 10-10-2019, 06:57 AM   #331
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Wow, I would have thought they would be a bit more colored up and have their fall spawn colors going. Those are much brighter than I would have expected.


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Old 10-10-2019, 07:53 AM   #332
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[QUOTE=shanem;16137979]Wow, I would have thought they would be a bit more colored up and have their fall spawn colors going. Those are much brighter than I would have expected


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Old 10-10-2019, 09:48 AM   #333
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Yeah, the spawners are in the creeks. I didn't encounter any. Next years fish are worthwhile on a warm and calm day. They do a great job with this lake. Fishing wasn't hot, but 1 or 2 per half hour makes it fun. I always see a lull from about 11-2.

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Old 10-15-2019, 09:04 AM   #334
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Incredible sun-filled Monday, the bright orange - yellow alder leaves contrasting with the dark green fir trees along the shorelines. Couldnt get any morning bite outside Speelyai--so i headed to the dam.

Found the bright 12" kokanee in water
170' to 185' deep. D.R. 30' to 35'.

D-V dodger: Arrow in the custom rainbow blue-purple-green with the UV snake.
Hoochies in similar colors on 8" leaders.

Those 7 kokes are now in the smoker.

Last edited by gohappy; 10-17-2019 at 08:37 AM. Reason: grammar
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Old 10-21-2019, 09:49 AM   #335
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Any one know what the screen on cougar creek is for? It is just downstream from sr 503
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Old 10-21-2019, 04:12 PM   #336
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Any one know what the screen on cougar creek is for? It is just downstream from sr 503
Second hand info but here you go...

It's designed to push the fish migrating up the creek to spawn into a trap/counter located on the far side of the screen/weir. I think it's to give fisheries biologists from either WDFW or PacifiCorp any idea of spawning escapement numbers.
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Old 10-26-2019, 01:39 PM   #337
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Fish today, 2 people, 4 rods. We caught em from 30 to 50 ft down. 2 limits by 10:00. 60ft set backs. A great morning, no wind, no waves, no rain!


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Old 10-29-2019, 09:39 AM   #338
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Monday 10-28
Trolling the dam area, I was mostly protected from afternoon wind.
Put out 110' of line, d.r. 25' to 30'.
D-V custom Rainbow colored dodger with rainbow glitter hoochee on 8" leader.
8 bright beautiful 12" kokanee.
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Old 10-30-2019, 08:06 AM   #339
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TallFlyGuy- I didn't see a reply to your question about the stomach contents of that huge trout. Looks to me like crayfish shells. Once I caught a trout at Marion Lake (OR) that had a huge stomach. I looked at it's contents and there were 2 crayfish in it. The shells looked like those in your fish. That's probably why your trout was so big- lots of protein. Way to go!
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Old 11-11-2019, 07:19 AM   #340
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Default Re: Merwin 2019

My be my last trip to Merwin on Thursday before the Holidays and no fun bad weather for the Winter sets in. If anyone is going to Merwin in the next couple of days, please post. Even if you don't limit, it would be nice to find out where the fish are hanging out. Do I head for the dam, or are they holding around Speeyai. Have the Kokanee come back to the surface, or are they still deep. (30' +).

Hooking and landing these will always be a challenge, but a Merwin is a big lake to cover with limited daylight.
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Old 11-13-2019, 09:41 PM   #341
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Super slow today. Tried different gear, depths, and locations. Only fish caught was a clipped chinook about 12 inches long. The only bites I had were on a pink micro hootchie behind a pink Sling Blade flatlined 150 feet back. Talked to several others who reported slow fishing also. Hopefully it improves soon.
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Old 11-14-2019, 04:15 PM   #342
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Default Re: Merwin 2019

Check out some additional reports from Merwin via the Northwest Kokanee Addicts/Facebook page. They have a couple dudes that report weekly almost year around.


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Old 11-14-2019, 07:47 PM   #343
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The wind was howling out of the East. Total waste of time and downright dangerous. Waves must have been 3' high. Impossible to control the boat to do any serious kokanee fishing.
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Old 11-14-2019, 08:15 PM   #344
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Denneroll View Post
Check out some additional reports from Merwin via the Northwest Kokanee Addicts/Facebook page. They have a couple dudes that report weekly almost year around.


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Old 11-16-2019, 09:01 AM   #345
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Those of us not a part of facebook sure have missed the accurate, detailed Lake Merwin reports from Pepsi Guy & his dog.

If you're also on facebook, please say hi for me. I sure learned much from his postings.
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Old 11-18-2019, 05:57 PM   #346
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Is the ramp at speelyi still usable for say a 19' boat? I know they drain it in winter, just not sure when. Also is Yale and swift full still?
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Old 11-18-2019, 07:41 PM   #347
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Water level at Merwin is down 8'. You shouldn't have a problem launching a 19' boat. Normally they lower Swift the most, and then Yale. I don't believe that the launch at Swift is operational. Not sure about Yale, but accounting to the website I check, Yale is down 22'.
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Old 11-19-2019, 06:49 AM   #348
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Default Re: Merwin 2019

Saw a post on FB Kokanee group from Saturday that Yale had a sign out the ramp was closed due to low water levels. May want to check the PacificCorp site if you are heading there.


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Old 11-19-2019, 09:34 AM   #349
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The website:
waterdata.usgs.gov
has a graph showing the water level-elevation for Lake Merwin, current conditions for the past 7 days.

When they're drawing down Merwin a foot per day---very often the kokanee bite drops off considerably.

Interesting---when they raise the water level of the lake, it doesn't seem to hinder the kokanee bite.

Last edited by gohappy; 11-19-2019 at 12:48 PM.
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Old 11-19-2019, 06:19 PM   #350
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Ok thank you. I see the water levels on the site, just not sure what levels the ramps are still ok to use. Thanks.
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Old 11-19-2019, 08:32 PM   #351
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Full pool level is 239.5
Right now is at 233, so it's
down about 6'-6"

Back on October 8th, Merwin was at 231 and I launched my 17' Smokercraft without any problem. There was definitely reduced length of usuable dock space.

I hope they keep raising it, I'll probably give it a go on Friday.
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Old 11-24-2019, 10:33 AM   #352
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Default Re: Merwin 2019

Fished Merwin Friday. 2 rods from 10 to 2. Caught a limit all at 20’/1.4 mph. Had no action long lining for an hour so dropped that rod to 20’ as well. Color of dodger and spinner didn’t seem to matter.

Fished again Saturday with 4 rods from 9 to 4. Had a triple hookup right as we started our first troll. 2 made it into the boat....then it was scratchy fishing the rest of the day. Managed 2 limits catching fish from 20’ down to 50’ at 1.1 mph. Colors didn’t seem to matter again but a copper/red spinner caught the most.

Thanks again to the fellas that shared their bait corn with us at the Speelyai boat ramp


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Old 11-26-2019, 10:55 AM   #353
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Default Re: Merwin 2019

Merwin Report - Friday 11/22. Fished 4 rods (3 anglers) from 8:45-2:00. Finished with 27 kokanee, with the largest being 14". Nice fish for this time of year.

Used leads, but two rods were long lining without weight on. Spinners and hoochies for the win with silver dodgers. Colors used varied, but the typical producers worked as well as ever.

Seemed like a lot of folks were out there on Friday, but that's not too surprising with the lack of quality fishing opportunities in the area right now.
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Old 12-01-2019, 09:58 PM   #354
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Is the dock still useable?
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Old 12-02-2019, 08:19 AM   #355
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Originally Posted by crabbydan View Post
Is the dock still useable?
Yes Grasshopper ; the dock is usable !
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Old 12-04-2019, 05:15 PM   #356
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Default Re: Merwin 2019

Trolled 3 rods rigged with small spin -n- glows, or hoochies behind dodgers from 11 am - 3 pm. Tried various depths, came home with two kokanee about 11" long.
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