Summary:Low, Clear & Busy
Local rivers are all at low winter flows of at or less than 2 meters as you can see from the chart below. Low and clear means fishing will be very slow. Water temps are close to freezing. The metabolic rate in bull trout and rainbow trout are all going to be at minimal levels as they are cold blooded meaning feeding will be almost nil. The clarity will make them very skittish so finding them out feeding will also be a challenge. 2018 chum fry have not emerged and we won’t see those for quite some time. There are some yearling coho and chinook fry in the shallows which are great food items for the few fish eating. Common patterns at this time of year are woolly buggers and smaller zonkers / sculpin imitations. Egg patterns can also work. I guess the most important thing to remember is to fish your flies slow no matter if you are swinging or nymphing. Incidentally, for the number of active fish and the tough conditions, the angler traffic on the rivers is very high even through the mid-week.