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Old 07-28-2019, 05:51 AM   #1
troutman69
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Default Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

I just finished fishing floats over last week from Peoria to Buena Vista (through Albany & Corvallis). No bass. I am very familiar with these floats and had 30 fish days last summer. Now, just pikeminnow. I am thinking the smallmouth population was affected by the winter floods.

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Old 07-28-2019, 06:19 AM   #2
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

Can't speak for up where you fished but the smallmouth population around West Linn is very healthy. The floods this winter were not all that bad so (at least down near Portland) so I would be surprised if that was the cause. Did the river seem to have more or fewer weeds? Perhaps some pollution source changed the PH of the water to favor pikieminnows.

Hopefully dirtman will offer up his insight. He seems very familiar with the upper Willamette.
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Old 07-28-2019, 06:53 AM   #3
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

Much fewer weeds, very clear water, clean gravel. The rock structures and riprap were unaffected of course but they produced only pikeminnow.
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Old 07-28-2019, 06:37 PM   #4
davidafrances
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

Very surprising. I usually fish the Willamette in Albany afterwork, and usually slay the smallmouth
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Old 08-12-2019, 07:30 AM   #5
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

They all moved to Portland Its been Steller in both size and quantity. Lots of large mouth around too which hasn't been the case the past few years.
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Old 08-28-2019, 10:44 AM   #6
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

I also had a unusually slow start to summer bassing around Salem this year. Same places, same lures... Weeds are always bad, but it seemed that I was catching fewer, and smaller fish this year.

I gave it a rest for a few weeks before hitting the water last weekend.
Completely different game. Not sure if the fish just moved in to the area that I was fishing or what. But I was only catching the 1-2 pounders, and zero dinks. I know there are big fish in that stretch, but they're hard to come by. This one from an early October evening a few years ago keeps me coming back every year...


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Old 08-28-2019, 01:36 PM   #7
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

I have noticed a change in Salem area smallmouth for the last 2 summers. 3 summers ago was killer, lots of nice 1-3 lb smallies, last summer was slower and this year even slower. DT, looking at that pic reminds me of this topwater smallie I caught 3 summers back.
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Old 09-02-2019, 06:10 PM   #8
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

Quote:
Originally Posted by salembassin View Post
I have noticed a change in Salem area smallmouth for the last 2 summers. 3 summers ago was killer, lots of nice 1-3 lb smallies, last summer was slower and this year even slower. DT, looking at that pic reminds me of this topwater smallie I caught 3 summers back.
Oof, that's a biggun'

And yes, three years ago was crazy good. Was out this morning and the grass was quite a bit worse than last week. Maybe the holiday weekend boaters churned it up.
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Old 09-28-2019, 11:57 AM   #9
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

Headed out again this morning thinking the cooler weather might have some fish moving. MUCH better fishing right now. The grass is all but gone, and the fish are snapping. No pics today, but lots of 1-2 pounders and only a few dinks. Crankbaits and 4" pumpkin grubs were all that was needed.

Get after 'em while the getting is good!
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Old 09-28-2019, 02:05 PM   #10
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

Thanks for the update DT! I am presently torn on fishing Hagg or the Willie tomorrow. Either a bass/trout trip or a bass/sturgeon trip. Really sucks that we have too many good choices out here
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Old 10-26-2019, 03:45 PM   #11
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

Couldn't resist the beautiful afternoon sunshine today, so hopped in the boat for a last of the season effort on the upper Willy. Was only out for an hour or so, and I left the phone in the car, so no pics.

A little slower fishing, but the four I landed were noticeably bigger than the usual summer time fish. Smallest was 2#, biggest was a hair under 3#. Pumpkin grubs on a jig in 15' of water.

Love this time of year.
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Old 11-04-2019, 10:05 AM   #12
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Default Re: Did the flood get upper Willamette smallmouth?

Nice DT! Love those big fall smallies.
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