Fish Rap by Roger Phillips: Getting the jump on fall fishing season

rphillips@idahostatesman.comAugust 29, 2013 

Time to ignore the calendar again because the first day of fall is officially more than three weeks away, but considering hunting season and college football start this weekend, it’s close enough for me.

What does those have to do with fishing? Because fall is the best time of the year as far as I am concerned. Things cool down and fishing tends to improve. Steelhead come back to Idaho rivers, and it sounds like we’ve also got one heck of a fall chinook run heading our way.

Rivers start fishing well, and those mountain lakes go nuts.

The summer traffic also subsides when the kids go back to school so popular fishing spots are less crowded, but to be honest, most fishing spots aren’t crowded around here. Maybe more than we want, but not bad.

The downside is reservoirs. They’ve been hit really hard this year with the drought and irrigation needs during the hot summer, so you have to be pretty selective which one you choose because it’s likely to be low.

But on the flip side, it’s a perfect time of year for a cast-and-blast trip. You can do a little hunting and fishing on the same trip, and there are lots of places where you can do it. With any luck, I will be doing a dove hunt and fishing trip this weekend. Not your traditional cast and blast, but hey, traditions have to start some place and by someone. Grab your buddies and start one of your own.

Steelhead update: Two-second summary, not good, but not as bad as last year. Steelhead counts at Lower Granite Dam from June 1 to Aug. 27 are: 4,447 fish; 10-year average 10,179; same period last year, 3,116.

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