Plunking at Willow Bar, Sauvie Island

OREGON FISHING FORUM

Well for my first ever attempt at plunking I settled on Sauvie Island. After getting some suggestions, which I will be using in the future(thanx SteelmonKiller20) I decided to stay a little closer to home, and after looking at the map, and getting directions to a couple places, I decided to try Willow Bar. Got to the Bar at about 5:00am and so did about 80 other guys and gals, and kids and dogs, so at least I felt like I at least picked a spot that people actually fish.
The spot I picked on the map was a ways down the beach, so as I drove past the others, being the first to arrive at the little curve in the beach I had determined(by my trained fishing eye...lol ...my best guess)would be the most productive, I was wondering if I needed to go back to the crowd, when another truck came and parked next to me. I immediately mentally gave this other fisherman high marks for picking the best spot on the beach(he obviously had a trained fishing eye also).
So I get set up and tossed my first rig ever out there, a couple spin and glows with some of my home cured row. My partner that was gonna meet me (Steelies4life) was gonna be late, and he had made the last minute trip to Fisherman's and had the stuff I needed to rig a prawn, so I just put eggs on my rigs for the time being, but confidence was high, as alot of other fisherfolk=good spot in my book.
As the sun rose, so did the attendance, as boat after boat got into the trolling line just in front of me trolled down around the corner and returned for their next passes. I could count 25 or more boats at a time in the line from my view...more confidence in the spot...these guys OBVIOUSLY knew where to fish...more highly trained fishing eyes.
So the guy that parked next to me comes over and says "I noticed your OFF sticker on the back of your truck....blah blah blah"...and we are now friends(Alm21) from here on the forum. So he tells me from his recon of the area I happened to land on the BEST section of beach...PROVING I have a highly trained fishing eye.
So a few hours go by and I've tried a couple different set-ups, singles, doubles and triple hook setups. with and with out bait, with a Kwikfish, with and without scent. The hot tip of the day was no bait, just a couple beads and maybe some scent. As proven by a texted pic from a buddy fishing in another area. And then we see the first "fish on" out in a boat in front of us. The net flew and then got put away, no landing on that one.....and then for the next 10 hours I worked on my sunburn. Not another bite or wiggle or jingle heard or seen for pretty much the whole day.
So as everyone was giving up, and the boat trail has left the area, I decide maybe I'll read my book for a bit before packing up. So as soon as I get into a good section My buddy starts yelling, MIKE, MIKE, There you go!!! I jumped up and got the rod in my hand started to reel down to feel the slack taken up and SHAKE,SHAKE....SET THE HOOK...ONE SHAKE....and slack....freakin' drive-by! 12 hours in for that?... I was a bit dejected at that point. But it kept me there fishing as everyone left. Soon after, it was down to me and a couple of folks a 100 feet or so away. I started to gather up my stuff when I get a another little rattle of a dinger...then my rod starts to bend and shake, so I run over and do the same cha-cha as the last time with same end result...GRRR...The guys up the beach giving me the shoulders shrugged, palms up "oh Well" gesture as they shook their heads, believe me my head was shaking too.
Oh well ...at least I got a couple bites. That will make me go out again, I'm not so sure how game I'd be to go do that whole "sit and wait" kind of fishing again if I hadn't got those bites, plunking isn't really MY thing, but the adrenaline dump from those couple bites will probably have me back out there again tonight..till the last minute of fishing again!
 

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alm21

Active member
It was good meeting you Mike. Fortunately the weather was great because the fishing was dead! I'm with you, plunking isn't really my thing either but bonking a bright CR springer certainly is so plunk on!
 

DrTheopolis

Well-known member
Alls I'm saying, is that if Steelmon gave your noobass advice over the internet, and your bell got rung, he's pretty much the man. I'd listen to any future advice.
 

flyman

New member
good post Mike. i was at Willow Bar also, my third trip in 5 days. Being woefully under equipped but full of hope I arrived excited. As I approached a spot with my 7 weight steelhead rod the looks were like daggers. Out of courtesy I asked if I could slip in between two clearly experienced plunkers. one replied , 'only if you have enough weight'. His disdain was palpable. Whew. 2 hours later I succumbed to the sun, lack of activity and friendliness and headed for the Multnomah channel on the advice of 'Steve' from two days ago. Landed and bagged a 12 lb chinook without a person in sight. So much for Willow Bar.
 

DrTheopolis

Well-known member
Wait -- you were planning on doing battle with a nook on the C with a flyrod? And then actually did it on the Channel?

Join the "Man" club with Steelmon.
 

OnTheDrop

Well-known member
Wait -- you were planning on doing battle with a nook on the C with a flyrod? And then actually did it on the Channel?

Join the "Man" club with Steelmon.
And a 7wt to boot... FlyMan- is this true?

You are the MAN. Even if it was just a joke, I still dig it.
 
Sounds like something "experienced plunkers" would say! Had a kid put in just above me one time. Was throwing a 4 oz pyramid way out there. After I got his rig untangled from mine, I just handed him one of my sinkers and said give this a try. :)
 
Took my noobass back to the same spot for a few hours last night thinking I could finish up the season with a little of that CR springer bonking action....NOT! But there is something to be said for the "old timers hanging out fishin" kind of fishing. Met a couple good 'ol boys who are gonna give me a call next time they go out to Meldrum bar. So I guess I can dig on the whole rod holder, BSing, beer drinkin, fish story tellin' counter culture when I'm not hiking thru a bunch of thorny raspberry bushes trying to find a hole. Thanx again Steelmon for the tips, much appreciated! Alm21 I'll be in touch, let's do the Sandy soon!!
:flex: And way to go Flyman!!:worthy: You stud !! I wish I could have watched that fight!! Good Luck out there!!
 
Good stuff. I was up at Sauvies a lot last week. Met one of those old timers you were talking about. Great fishing connect. Met him up there on Saturday. We sat all day and then the bell went off around 4 and got this one. Guy hooked me up with steaks....total class act. fish.JPG
 
Good stuff. I was up at Sauvies a lot last week. Met one of those old timers you were talking about. Great fishing connect. Met him up there on Saturday. We sat all day and then the bell went off around 4 and got this one. Guy hooked me up with steaks....total class act.
Niiice!!! Glad to see someone got something. I'm gonna keep trying till I get one. Were you on Willow Bar too? I think next shot will be Meldrum Bar for me... AFTER I get a Steelie fix up on the Sandy.
 

DrTheopolis

Well-known member
I think next shot will be Meldrum Bar for me...
I'm not trying to discourage you in the least, but don't expect the crowd at Meldrum to be as friendly as Sauvies as a whole. But you'll find some friends amongst the ruffians. Just make sure to use enough weight (rocky bottom, lots of current -- sinker doesn't dig in like the Columbia), and if a fellow bankie starts shouting at boats for getting to close, just back them up and you'll get along fine.

I'm just saying the crowd can be a little rough there. And if you can barely drive out at anything but low tide -- don't drive out there. Just because other people do, doesn't mean it's smart. Tow truck do a good business there. If you can easily drive at high slack, you should be fine.

You can also turn left in the park, and go down to Dahl, which covers the mouth of the Clack and the Bulkhead.
 
Thanx Doc, Alex(Steel4life) and I, are at Meldrum Bar right now. The Bar for the moat part is under water so we are set up just off the edge of the ramp, along with the rest of the good ol boys. So far we have talked to several very nice guys and everyone is playing nice, so its actually a pretty cool place. I took notes well and brought plenty of weight, but due to losing all my 6 and 8 oz. Weights, I'm now anchored quite well with a 12 ouncer. Point taken on the roughness of the crowd as I wouldn't want to be th guy that just fouled about
3 guys lines up...lol Anyway I did manage to hook up once already, but after a 30 second battle, calling for the net to Alex, the bugger let go...heartbroken. I was gonna leave at 10 but after that fight I'm staying now...funny how a lost fish can make you skip out on work to fish lol Thanx for the heads up on Dahl, I might try that the next trip. Will keep you posted when we start catchin' something!
 
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