With 140,000 steelhead over Lower Granite Dam on the Snake River it is easy to understand why steelhead fishing is improving in the Grande Ronde River. The question remains: "why are the fish late arriving this season?"
The first 10 days of October were dismally slow fly fishing, but that is changing and the success rate for fly anglers is quickly catching up with the gear anglers.
Since late September the daily steelhead counts over Lower Granite Dam have exceeded 3,000 fish nearly every day, with more than 6,000 fish being the largest count for a single day.
The Grande Ronde River is noted for its dry-fly steelhead fishing and there are enough fish in the river to make that approach worth considering.
More precipitation is arriving this week and the increased flows will attract more fish up the Grande Ronde during the remainder of October and through November, which will result in improving steelhead fishing results.
Recent creel surveys have Oregon and Washington anglers on the Grande Ronde producing catch rates in the single digits and we have consistently produced those kinds of opportunities during the last week.
I hope you have an opportunity to fish the Grande Ronde this season. If you are looking for a guide, please keep me in mind.
Eagle Cap Fishing Guides
Orvis Endorsed Fly Fishing Guide
PO Box 865
Joseph, OR 97846