A Mild Winter

It is the start of a new year and with that said; we are still waiting for winter to show up here in the Kittitas Valley.  Our first large accumulation of snowfall dropped in on us yesterday, with about two inches, coating the ground this morning. 

With the warmer temperatures residing in the low elevations through the month of December, Central Washington’s Yakima River has continued to fish quite well.  You know the fishing is good when the “Whitefishermen” complain about catching big trout.  

Many of these robust, seasonal fishermen, patronize the fly shop this time of year, gathering fly tying materials to put together these very simplistic, “Whitefish flies”.

In December, a Rocky Mountain Whitefish season begins on the Yakima River and this tradition of bouncing small flies with attached lead on or near the bottom of the river with a maggot attached to the bend, has not lost its popularity.  During this season, 15 Whitefish per angler may be retained, per day.  

Of course, any trout that are landed, need to be properly and carefully released back into the river.  The Whitefish season remains open this year, until the end of February.  These are a native fish to the river and a member of the trout species.  They have an ecological benefit to the river system, so make sure to handle them properly as well, if you do not decide to retain them.

If the winter and weather continue to this degree, expect the Skwalla Stonefly fishing to begin in the first parts of February.  The earliest I have seen the adult stonefly, is the 5th of February. That may sounds crazy to you, however the first Yakima River Stonefly hatch will begin around that time frame and we could in all likely hood be fishing size 10 dry flies, in the first portions of February this year. 

This first week of January is usually the coldest week of the entire year.  The temperatures are predicted to rise again into the upper 40’s towards the end of the workweek, so I would not anticipate a cold snap happening.  

It is only going to get warmer as we progress to February. We are already seeing longer daylight, as the calendar days of January disappear.

If you would like to get out on the water with WBFC and spend a mild winter afternoon fly fishing the Yakima, then give us a call at the Proshop.  Our seasonal, Professional Guided Fly Fishing trips will remain in effect until daylight savings time, which is Sunday, March 10th-2019 this year.

Call the proshop with any questions you may have.  Happy New Year and we look forward to seeing you this fishing season.

Steve Worley-Owner-Head Guide
Worley-Bugger Fly Co.

1713 South Canyon Road
Ellensburg, WA  98926

Listen Every Monday Night At 7:00 pm to our live podcast of "Guide Chronicles" On Ellensburg Community Radio at www.eburgradio.org


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