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 > Steelhead Fishing, Trip Report

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insp1505

Oregon

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Joined: 06/11/2010

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Posted: 04/12/11 03:23pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I got back from steelhead fishing a few days early. I didn’t spend my whole week off camping this time but I still have one day left before I have to get back to work so I thought I would put together another trip report.

I went with two of my brothers and two of my uncles to the Salmon River in Idaho near Challis and then we moved downstream past Shoup a couple days later to see if we could find better fishing conditions.

Overall the fishing was pretty slow this time so after a few hours of nothing I would go off exploring and taking pictures while my uncles and brothers kept at it all day. I was teasing my brother with a quote from Albert Einstein about the definition of insanity, something to the point of, doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results. He said apparently Al never took the time to go steelhead fishing. My brother spent hours on end casting away at the waters with the same results, no fish.

My uncle was the only one who landed any steelhead. That was on the first evening when he caught two, one hatchery keeper and the other one was wild so he had to return it to the waters. After that the only fish I saw were a couple of suckers my brothers caught on the last day. We didn’t go home empty handed though as the fish hatchery near the junction of the Salmon and Pahsimeroi Rivers give away fish on Thursdays that they capture and remove the eggs from. We ended up with about 25 steelhead thanks to them.

The weather was much better this trip than my trip to eastern Oregon two weeks ago and there were no scary moments to report this time either, just a nice relaxing week of camping and fishing.

It was a bit windy in the river canyon but nothing like it was in Oregon. We did get rain, snow, and hail again, it never really lasted very long when it did, but for the most part the weather was very pleasant. We got up one morning before six to beat the crowds to a fishing hole. It was cold, down below freezing, for a couple of hours as we had to clear ice from the eyelets of our poles every few casts. I am not a morning person anyway so I only did it one day and it didn’t really pay off as nobody caught any that day. The rest of the trip I slept in and made late breakfast for the real fishermen that I was with as they would usually be at it before sunrise each day.

It was a fun time to spend out with my brothers and uncles who I don’t see too often. And as the saying goes the worst day fishing is better than the best day working. I haven’t decided what I will do on my next seven days off. Steelhead fishing goes till the end of April so we might try it again, or I may just work on my truck. I have been wanting to pull the leveling lift kit off the front end so it sits more level with the Arctic Fox on rather than looking nose high all the time. Maybe I will just take the next week off and work on projects and see what the price of fuel does. Diesel fuel was as high as $4.41 in Salmon ID this week. I was down to ½ a tank and it cost $93 to bring it up to full. Makes going places pretty expensive.

Well here is another photo journal of my latest week off. Enjoy.

Couldn’t quite make it all the way to the river on only one bladder filling so I had to stop and empty in the Big Lost River valley under the shadows of the Lost River Mountain Range in central Idaho.

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Too bad it was cloudy as Mt. Borah, the highest peak in Idaho, was just behind us in this picture.

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Made it to the river, this is the section just a few miles downstream from where the Pahsimeroi River enters the Salmon River.

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One of the few steelhead I saw landed on this trip.

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Some fast moving wildlife. It was fun trying to capture them as they flew past. I thought this picture did a good job of portraying their speed.

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More river scenery as there wasn’t any fish caught on this morning.

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Now we have moved camp downstream past the small town of Shoup. This is where the river canyon becomes very steep and narrow which gave it the name of the River of No Return. This is the stretch of river that turned Lewis and Clark around and sent them north over land instead of canoeing down the river where if they had ran into trouble on this unexplored stretch they would not be able to get back due to the steep sheer rocky canyon walls. There was very little flat land in this section until they built the Salmon River Road which we camped next to.

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My uncles stayed in their wall tent, my brothers stayed in my camper with me. My uncles are a tough couple of guys, they stayed in this tent last month and I think in February as well when it was even colder, personally I like my camper set-up, much more comfortable even though we did spend a bit more in fuel getting there.

My uncles only complaint however was the mice getting in to their stuff in the middle of the night and keeping them awake with the noise of them chewing on stuff and running around inside. They would get so annoying they had to get up turn on the lantern and shoo them all out then an hour or so later do it all again. I was glad I was sleeping soundly about 7’ off the ground in my mouse proof Arctic Fox so I didn’t have to hear that. I did inspect the wiring under my hood to make sure I wasn’t missing any important sections of it before we left though.

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This is my view out the camper window from our campsite along the Salmon River Road. I saw this kind of shot done on someone else’s trip report and it got me thinking of a slideshow with a collection of pictures from inside looking out the window at the view of the places I camp to remind me of how fortunate I am to be able to go to such beautiful places. Some will be pretty like this others may be a rest stop looking out at the side of a semi or an RV park looking at the side of a motor home or something but most of the time it will just be of the wide open scenery I go to out west. This will be my first slide with many more to come this summer I hope. Wish I would have gotten some in Oregon, maybe I will have to get out the Photoshop and make one for that trip [emoticon]

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Here are some of the waterfalls coming down the steep canyons.

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A close up of the previous shot. No, I didn’t climb up to it I just got out my 300mm lens. I’m not that ambitious enough to climb up the near vertical mountainside.

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A couple more falls along the road. If you haven’t noticed from this and my Oregon trip report I love to photograph water.

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Here are some of the locals who seem to have mastered climbing around on these steep rocky canyon walls.

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I was lucky enough to catch these two rams dueling it out.

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I hesitated to put this last one on here but I wanted people to see it because it turned out pretty cool. No, the skies weren’t that dramatic the evening I took this shot. Yes I did get a little help from my Photoshop program to do this one.

When I saw the original, shown below, I thought what a cool shot of that ram posing on that rock for me but what a boring flat grey sky I had behind it. I knew I could make a really dramatic picture out of this one if the sky was better so I took a sunset shot I had from a neighborhood I use to live in and replaced the boring grey sky with it.

I really like the effect it gives however I know some people are against this type of manipulation, they say it’s not real. It’s a real picture of a ram that I shot, and a real picture of a sunset I shot. Real+Real = Real right? [emoticon]

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion of photo manipulations which are all around us by the way, almost every photo we look at is manipulated in some way shape or form, some just more than others. I like it so I thought others might enjoy it as well.

Here is the “real” shot followed by the other “real” shot I used to create it.

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I hope you enjoyed my little trip report. Can’t wait to get out and do another one soon. Only one week of work stands between me and doing just that unless I decide to stay and work on my truck instead. Hope diesel prices drop soon so I can go on some longer trips but there are plenty of places close to home if they don’t. Well happy camping everyone, I hope to see you out there and look forward to reading more of your trip reports soon.

BradW

Mayor of Flat Rock

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Posted: 04/12/11 03:30pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Cool photos. Thanks for posting. I would like to catch a steelhead one day. [emoticon]

Brad


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Blueboat

Arizona, Mesa

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Posted: 04/12/11 04:31pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Idaho is our dream, now if the economy would just shape up so we can get a job up there.
Mike


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cewillis

Tucson, az, usa

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Posted: 04/12/11 05:20pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Great work, even if few fish. That manufactured shot is a classic. I sure wouldn't call if a fake, after all, it's all real.


Cal


Bubtoofat

SE Michigan

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Posted: 04/12/11 05:31pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Really ugly country up there. Truly hidious. Naw, I'm just envious. I live near Detroit. Loved that last photo-shopped ram. Really majestic.
Mike


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Camper_Jeff_&_Kelli

Seattle

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Posted: 04/12/11 06:21pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I like the Photoshop sheep on the peak.
You're being a drama queen for nothing. It makes for a great scene and real+real works for me. So long as its not a UFO or Bigfoot. Then I insist on real. Nice trip report and write up.
Thank you.


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Nemo667

Louisiana

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Posted: 04/12/11 07:43pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

With scenery like that it's ok with me if the fish arent biting to good. Thanks for posting.


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whazoo

Idahome

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Posted: 04/12/11 07:57pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Doggone, another post with awesome photography. Goes to show there's always room for improvement, I'm talking about mine. Very very impressive, thanks a lot!

DianneOK

Donnelly, ID

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Posted: 04/12/11 08:03pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Sooooo, no need to take my fishing gear to Riggins tomorrow?


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RenoAl

Reno, NV

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Posted: 04/12/11 10:00pm Link  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Nice report. I enjoyed the pix.


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