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It's rare that I get a chance to fish a river when it's falling perfectly into shape. Today was the exception. I checked the gauge on the way out the door: high of 12' yesterday and 11.5' today and dropping nicely. My first glimpse of the river showed nice steelie green conditions with some limited visibility, my favorite. I thought about jig patterns while I drove in: with visibility somewhat down a dark or contrast pattern should work well.

As I was putting on my waders, Andy-AP Emerger (your secret is safe with me :wink: ) showed up with his 18 month old son. The little guy had his very own fly rod and everything. I grabbed my rods and headed for the water. A few minutes later, Andy came through with his son strapped to his back, started working the water below me and soon disappeared downriver. A couple of drift boats passed. Soon, I was the only person in sight.

I had tied on a sparkly pink number and lost it on the first cast. Maybe the fish gods were trying to tell me something. Visibility was about 2' to 2.5' at that point so I tied on a black and pink jig with a little sparkle to it and worked in close to shore. I worked over the sections pretty thoroughly then moved down. One thing you gotta love about jig fishing is that you can cover the water pretty well in a couple dozen casts.

About an hour into it I had a bobber down. My first assumption was that I'd hung up since I was fishing a little deeper than I thought I should be fishing. As I reeled in tight, I could feel the head shakes. The bobber went down a good twenty yards below me so I did my best to keep pressure on the fish while I stumbled downriver to get closer to it. Once I was parallel to the fish it was all over but the release. A scrappy little native about 6lbs was tailed while I removed the jig from the tip of its beak. I took extra care to revive the fish and made sure that it swam off with vigor. First trip of the year, first fish. I think it's going to be a good year.

I moved back up to where I was before hoping to find the buck in the mating pair but I guess she hadn't paired off yet. I continued working my way down until I ran out of fishable water, then hiked back up to the truck.

I fished a couple of other spots and had a bobber down or two but had too much slack on the water to know whether it was a fish or a rock. Visibility increased during the day to 3-3.5' and the sun was out at times. With the water as cold as it is, I figured my chances were pretty slim so I headed home early.

Moral of the story: not all jigs that catch fish are white and pink. Sometimes conditions call for darker colors and black is a great option for limited visibility water.

PS: it's good to see that all the mud and silt in the Sandy has settled down, at least for now.
 

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Congrats on your Fish,
:dance: and Thanks for the report. :cheers:
 

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Awesome, Ampersat! Some of the best days of my life I remember are fishing solo on the Sandy, the long hike in thru the moss hanging in the forest, catching a fish, maybe not....I wish I were there today instead of cleaning up the ice damage trees in the yard. Thanks for sharing.
 

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Nice to hear of some success on the Sandy yesterday Amperset! I too was lucky enough to get a chance to hit the river under nearly perfect conditions (though a little high for my taste). Fished with my Dad from upper Oxbow park and found plenty of elbow room. Color was excellent but your right, it was probably a little cold. We fished jigs, and eggs under bobbers most of the afternoon without any fish hooked other than a whitefish (on a jig!). It was a beautiful afternoon to be on the river. Heard of several caught lower in the park - a mix of natives and hatchery fish. Should only get better.
 

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Nice to hear of some success on the Sandy yesterday Amperset! I too was lucky enough to get a chance to hit the river under nearly perfect conditions (though a little high for my taste). Fished with my Dad from upper Oxbow park and found plenty of elbow room. Color was excellent but your right, it was probably a little cold. We fished jigs, and eggs under bobbers most of the afternoon without any fish hooked other than a whitefish (on a jig!). It was a beautiful afternoon to be on the river. Heard of several caught lower in the park - a mix of natives and hatchery fish. Should only get better.
 

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Nice report, thanks Ampersat!

Way to go on the fish! I'm still hoping that we will have a good season on the Sandy this Winter/ Spring....
 

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Well, gave it a go mid-day. Nothing doing for me. But, like UmpquaSpecial said - it is a beautiful river! I enjoyed the day fishing - good to see a couple of fellow Ifishers today.

Heard of two caught and released by one of the plunkers (you know who you are) - one a runback (dark) and the other a chromer. Another drift fisherman got a nice hatchery fish. I drift fished pink corkies most of the day - then a clown (white with pink dots). Tried scent and eggs. Just didn't happen for me.

Oh - almost forgot. River looks great. Green and clear - 10.8' and slow drop. Perfect. Cold :sick: . Can't keep your hand in it very long cold (didn't have a thermometer).

[ 01-18-2004, 09:41 PM: Message edited by: Navigator ]
 

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Thanks for the report. I was there the same day and floated by the backpack kid and his dad. Good looking rod holder. Good to know somebody got one. Hopefully I get one today. Floating Oxbow to Dabney.

Slow
 

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Fished the sandy this afternoon. I saw 3 other fish landed of which only 1 was a hatchery. Overall the river was slow for such a big crowd.
 

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Wow. I fished it yesterday from Oxbow to Lewis and only saw one fished hooked. Very slow!! I talked with two other boats, including one guide boat, and not even a nibble. I did hear that the fishing was a little better up higher that same day. The Clackamas has way more fish! The only downside to that are all of the sleds running up and down the river. Best of luck.
 

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Shougalnite,

Thank you for your thoughtful insight. I gotta learn how to post one of those things. :grin: :tongue:
Am going Dodge down tomorrow with the spinners. Even if the fishing is slow it's a great ride!

Oh, almost forgot...... :cheers:
 

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Amp-

Thanks for the post! That's a great point about jig color...though i've nailed them on the pink 'n white, there are times when another friend in the arsenal will do the work better.

-Luis
 
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