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Reservoir Dog,

How about an introductory fishing story post before asking for fishing information? It's the custom of Ifish.net.

SKP
 

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There is the South Santiam River for summer steelhead (average 8-10 pounds) and spring chinook (average 15 to 20 pounds). You drift a small orange or red or whatever color corky on a bare size 1 or 2 hook with or without colored yarn (some use scent). Go with 6 or 8 pound test leader about 36-48" in low summer water conditions in August. Put on some pencil lead above your leader, enough to bounce the river bottom, but not snag up. You cast up stream about 45 degrees. You let the rig get to the bottom, and you will feel your weight ocassionaly bounce the bottom. If it constantly bounces, lighten up your weight. If it doesn't bounce, then you need more weight. It takes a little practice. Keep doing that cast after cast. Pretty soon (or long) you'll feel a nible. Set the hook, and out will fly a steelhead. Summer steelhead go ape this time of year. You hook them, and they go bananas, out of the water, fast runs, tail walking, etc..., just keep your drag set loose enough to allow them to take line, not break line. You'll have to let them take several runs to tire them out, as they are a very spunky fish with attitudes when Mr. Mustad is in their mouth.

You want to get a spot in the late summer with riffles, but not too fast. I would try Wiley Creek area just below Foster Dam above the town of Sweet Home on the South Santiam River. Or try Waterloo park, in Waterloo. Its about 25 or so miles from Albany. There's lots of steelhead water in there. You'll not be alone, so intently watch what the regulars are doing, and then when you see someone land one, go tell them howdy, nice fish, but actually watch keenly what they were using to catch the fish when you are saying howdy. That's how I learned.

As they say, do as the locals do.

This river is crawling with summer steelhead and spring chinook salmon right now. Keep in mind if you catch a salmon, you can't keep them after August 14, as the season for salmon closes on that river on August 15.

Go to the G.I. Joes sporting goods store in Albany, and ask questions. Or go to Sportsman's Warehouse in Salem and ask questions. These two stores can give you a wealth of info for fishing this area.

Good luck, and post how you did, I'll be curious in August.

SKP
 
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