Prineville and the Crooked River on 11th and 12th March

Hey there folks, I've been pretty much gone for last 8-9 months, it's been a bit rough on the fishing time since my second one was born last summer. However, hoping to make up for the lost time this year. I've got a cabin booked in Prineville state park next weekend, a buddy of mine has another cabin too. Not sure if our wives realize it, but we plan to leave them with the kids and go fishing come snow or rain.

So we have the Prineville reservoir itself, and the Crooked river; on the list. Got the usual lake trout and bass and cat fishing gear sorted out, and the crawdad traps too, plus little flies to target mountain whitefish in the Crooked. So basically I am ready to try all I have. Does not matter what I catch, but I really really do want to catch some fish. Ready to try almost anything to catch a fish, short of asking the fishmonger to throw one at me!

Any tips, friends?

I've seen years when the reservoir has ice still on it in early March. And according to ODFW web page there is ice there now. Maybe you ll find some open water. Do bass and catfish like cold? Thought they were more warmer water lovers.
You are right Bill, there is still a lot of ice but open patches have started showing up. Bass and cats will probably be lying low now but it's still fishing even if I can't catch any .
I fished the upper Crooked and Prineville Res. for the first time this time last year. The river was blown out with runoff and I came out empty while nymph fishing. I suspect the locals are able to pick a few up under those conditions with their knowledge of best spots and feeding patterns. Check in with the local shops about it. In terms of the reservoir I caught a couple of bass bank fishing by focusing on still sunny shallow coves where sunlight was warming the bottom structure in 2-4 feet. I was using Senkos. I would use whole live nightcrawlers on a small jig and bobber and move it a foot or so every few minutes if I went back right now. The pleasant surprise was catching a couple of Steelhead size trout while bass fishing - 2 footers. They hit a slow retrieved Senko in 8 feet of water also in sunny still shallow coves. I would think a slow fluttered spinner or suspended night crawler would work better than soft plastic for them. I grew up trout fishing in the Rockies, where we hit the lakes and rivers all winter long. Just as the ice was coming off the lakes made for some of the most agressive and interesting trout fishing of the year. When the water is this cold it helps to tip the spinner with a little piece of night crawler for scent. Please report back on how you do.
Awesome tips, thank you.
I took a drive to Powder Cove this week to check on the ramp and conditions. The water is warming up due to run off but is a "light brown" color. Lake is at 90% and should stay there through the spring runoff from the upper elevations. Ramp is open but the dock hasn't been let down yet.

Top water popper in most coves and points early just as the sun comes up through about 10AM. Then Senkos with a tiny split shot on points and rocky shores.

Crooked River below Bowman dam for trout? Don't waste your time because of the water they are drawing out of the lake in preparation for current and future runoff. Normal is 1000+/- CFM but currently it is over 3000CFM
Sorry been too lazy to report. Day one morning on the Crooked, too much water, no dice. Afternoon by jasper point, tailgate fishing, too windy, chocolate color water, too much shrubbery in the water, no luck. Day 2, by the ramp, nice clear water, caught a sunburn. Day 3, while tying up a car top bag with straps I passed the straps thorough the car windows instead of the doors and got stuck. Good trip though, fantastic luxury cabin, great views and 3 days without rain.
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Fished all weekend at prineville res 3/31-4/2. Trolled west side of res with ford fenders and mepps dipped in trout dip. 2 17" bows. Lots of fish marked but little to no activity. Went and banged rocks across from marina and hooked into 2 small mouth bass. No ice on the res. Just poor fishing as it is still early.
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