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My father-in-Law is coming to visit his grandsons and wants to go out fishing with them. Grand Dad lives far away, thus this is a rare opportunity. I would like to get them into fish, but I am not sure what my best bet would be. I only have the day (Friday) and looking to stay in SW Washington. I am thinking Merwin or Swift.

On my last trip out on July 15th I went to Swift for the first time. After reading reports by “Trolling-for-Trout” I went with great hopes. Five minutes into fishing my fish finder stops working. Now I am in a lake I have never fished, I don’t know the depth, nor can I mark fish. We caught one trout while fighting white caps in the wind. I have a small flat bottom sled thus we were getting punished and I did not want to risk loosing a down rigger to the bottom. So we headed down to Merwin.

At Merwin I went to my usual favorite spot - across from Speelyai Bay down to the slide. I loaded the boat with ********* and did not touch a Koke. Last year I killed them there. I have read the fish are in different locations this year. My sled is not fast or optimal for exploring a large lake, thus I usually target an area and work it.

My question for Swift or Merwin: can you recommend an area of either lake that I should target to likely get some fish in the boat for our special day? PM’s are welcome if you don’t want to widely advertise a spot. Also for Swift – are there arms that are sheltered from the wind that could produce fish?

I really appreciate any help. I’m trying to make for a memorable day with Grandpa and kids.

Here is me with my lone trout from Swift last time. Released him so he would grow bigger for my next visit.
 

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Difficult call. If ya got to Merwin when they opened the gate @ 5 then fish til noon (or at least 10 am) then you could pull out and go up and fish Swift in the afternoon.

But ya gotta get that FF workin.

Have fun,

John
 

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I was all over Merwin on 7/29. up and down both sides fished all depths and got 1. landed about 20 pikeminnows that turned into bird food.

Started at Campers Hideaway and worked my way to the dam and them back.

Hard to say.
 

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I had a decent (not great, not bad) friday I put on the Merwin report. After we got stuck at 13, we simply decided to troll back to Speelyai from down near the dam.

Didn't really pay any attention to the fishfinder, and we caught 6 keeper fish going about 2/3 the way back and had a couple of escapes. We had a whole lot of missed hits on one rod during that troll.

I think- and I may be really wrong- that a person could set up with a ford fender, green wedding ring, plain corn and troll at 45 or 50 feet staying 150 yards off the north bank and never turn the boat around- and catch fish.

I almost tried it Sunday but didn't drive up to the lake. I've got every intention of trying that exact method the next trip out. I think I can get 5 good kokes like that, but maybe not.

There isn't a rule that says I couldn't swing the boat for a second pass around a school, either! I think adding a second hook to that wedding ring (take a look at the pic in the Merwin thread, you can see it good there) really helps prevent fish lost at the boat. Improving the bite to boated ratio makes for efficient fishing. It ain't surefire- that pink wedding ring was getting nailed all the time but nothing seemed to want to stick to it, but I think I can blame it on an overzealous operator. I'll still go with green, though.

If I didn't have a fishfinder, that's what I'd do.

regards, aw
 

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My father in law just returned from Yale, out of saddle dam, with 12 kokes in the 12-14 range. Really nice fish ( he had to show off).
They were fishin 90-100 ft.
Swift has alot of trout. If you fish opposite side of the park, to the right of the launch along the cliff area or left from the launch, same side, out about 100yrds from shore in the channel, troll downhill everywhere, 40-60 pulls, reg. koke gear, wedding rings and worms.

Merwin to me is a bust this year.
 

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Go left (about a mile) when you leave the ramp and try anchoring near the "Fishing Boundary" buoy where the river comes into the lake.(no bait or gas motors allowed past the buoy) I see many boats full of kids doing very well there. Also trolling within a couple hundred yards of there can be very good. There's lots of sandbars and driftwood/logs around so you have to feel your way around to catch the lay of the land.

The nearest calm arm is at least a mile/maybe two down the lake- behind the big island on the left. I haven't fished in there at all so I don't know how it is. If you fish out in the main lake ( it can be good or slow anywhere- you have to search around until you find fish) my advice is to go deep. The last two Saturdays I did consistently very well at 45 feet.

Good luck! Jim
 
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