Winter Steelies

L

Letemgo

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Jan 5, 2011
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Canby, Oregon
It's been several months since anyone posted anything about the Molalla so I do not expect an answer to this thread but....on Jan 3 '11 my newly aquired fishing partner, who had never been in a drift boat and who had never caught a steelhead, solved both of those deficiencies when he picked up up a buck that I guesstimate at about 10 pounds. After a quick photo he slid him back into the water with the biggest grin I have seen for a while. The steelie fell for a metallic blue plug in about 6 feet of water. About an hour later I lost an estimated 6 pound hen after it circled the boat a couple of times and then gave my lure back to me.

The following Sunday we hit the river again with high expectations but came up short. There was a moderate degree of pressure from other anglers and no one was getting any action. The boat ride was fun as always and breakfast at The Hitchin' Post was great!
DarrelHermansfirststeelheadMollalaRiver1-3-2011.jpg
Darrelsbuck1-3-11.jpg

This weekend (1-16-11) most of our rivers in the Northwest are out of shape so we're headed to the boat show in Portland. Happy fishing, Steve
 
troutdude

troutdude

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Willy Valley, Oregon
The Molalla's small winter steel run, has only just begun. According to my info...the run peaks in March.

Good luck, and nice job getting your bud into the boat and into a fish!
 
F

fish4life

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Oct 24, 2010
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molalla,or
Ussally never fish it until about mid febuary for native winters. Havnt fished it for a long time, might have to give it a shot this year I can think of a good spot where my fly rod would work.
 
G

GDBrown

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May 28, 2009
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Hillsboro, Oregon
Nice looking fish! Keep them out of the net if you can, and OFF the deck if you are releasing them. Their slim comes OFF easy and that's what protects them. Love the look of steel in the winter, Keep it up!
 
M

metalmania

Nice fish man:D. I hit this river a lot last year and the fishing was amazing. From the looks of it this year could be as good or better than last:pray:.
 
G

Growbug

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Nov 3, 2009
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527
Location
Dickie Prairie, Molalla
Real nice fish. Which section did you drift?
Yeah, you are holding a real early Molalla Steelie. I have seen some people out and about on drifties these last 2 weeks, but most have been saying that they havent caught anything yet. You did real well.
 
Y

youngbuck307

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Mar 5, 2009
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SE Portland, Oregon
I plan on hitting this river for natives this year!!! Nice to see u picking them up already
 
M

Modest_Man

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Sep 2, 2010
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Woodburn, Oregon
I want to fish this river for steelhead as well so if anyone wants to meet up let me know. Closest river to me by long bit, I'm tired of driving an hour and a half each way to get skunked. I'd rather get skunked close to home. :)
 
G

Growbug

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Dickie Prairie, Molalla
Well, I do have a marker on my GPS "Whitefish hole" up past Glen Avon.
Was surprised last year to pull one out whilst steelie fishing, lost its glitter around number 5.
 
L

Letemgo

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Canby, Oregon
I knew I would get a comment about the net. I only carry it in case we get into a situation where we cannot access the bank. I only use cotton netting because it is way easier on the fish than poly. And rubber netting does not lay flat and tends to get tangled with everything. We put in at the slide at the Meadowbrook bridge (hwy211) and drifted to Wagonwheel Park (hwy 213). The gates just opened at both of these access points on Jan 1 and we were there on Jan 3 so we hit it about as early in the season as we could. My first steelie from the Molalla was in 1977. Back in those days there was a lot more access for boaters. I'd like to see Goods Bridge area opened up again but the resident at the end of the road on the north side of the river is very protective of his heavily potholed road and even chased my wife and me off just for driving down and taking a look. We used to be able to put in on the south side of the bridge but years ago they blocked off vehicle access with a guardrail. The argument was that 4-wheelers were driving in and tearing up the river bottom. Dang their hides anyway. The good news is that within the last couple of years, the area at Knight's Bridge is opened back up to the public. Steve
 
M

markasd

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in my tracks
Have always wanted to drift and fish that river - gorgeous setting and have seen some bruisers landed there.
 
F

FishFiddle

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Jan 1, 2010
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Albany
Nice fish! I would like to follow you through sometime If possible.....would love to fish the Molalla a little. They're pretty much all natives as I understand. Let me know if that might be a go.??
 
G

Growbug

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Dickie Prairie, Molalla
I feel an organized flotilla being planned.

I have been thinking of 'tooning the Feyrer Park - Wagonwheel section this winter.
 
L

Letemgo

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Canby, Oregon
There is nothing technically difficult about the Molalla. On the Meadowbrook to Wagonwheel drift, there is only one house that is even close to the river. Just below that house the river splits. Go to the right. It does not look good from above but there is adequate water to get you through. If you go to the left, you will hit rocks. No big deal if you do hit bottom there and there are a couple of nice runs to the left that you will miss if you follow the bigger water. Either way your boat won't care. At 1000 F3/s you will hit bottom in a few places. 1200-2200 F3/s is great. Much over that and you will have a boat ride instead of a fishing trip. I have done it at 3000 but it was high and off color. We fished close to shore and used large bright drift rigs. Caught a nice 7ish pound hen that day but we were the only ones on the river. Steve
 
A

adambomb

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Mar 22, 2009
Messages
354
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Forest Grove
I knew I would get a comment about the net. I only carry it in case we get into a situation where we cannot access the bank. I only use cotton netting because it is way easier on the fish than poly. And rubber netting does not lay flat and tends to get tangled with everything. We put in at the slide at the Meadowbrook bridge (hwy211) and drifted to Wagonwheel Park (hwy 213). The gates just opened at both of these access points on Jan 1 and we were there on Jan 3 so we hit it about as early in the season as we could. My first steelie from the Molalla was in 1977. Back in those days there was a lot more access for boaters. I'd like to see Goods Bridge area opened up again but the resident at the end of the road on the north side of the river is very protective of his heavily potholed road and even chased my wife and me off just for driving down and taking a look. We used to be able to put in on the south side of the bridge but years ago they blocked off vehicle access with a guardrail. The argument was that 4-wheelers were driving in and tearing up the river bottom. Dang their hides anyway. The good news is that within the last couple of years, the area at Knight's Bridge is opened back up to the public. Steve
FYI The old man that used to live in the house next to Goods Bridge passed away last year, and the house has been sold to a very environmentally conscientious man. I met him in person last March and he seemed like a nice enough guy. He has put considerable time and effort into re-planting his section of shoreline with native plants and trees. I politely informed him that in the summer months, that particular spot is very popular with swimmers and the like. He was not happy to hear this. He understood that he did not own any of the river, but was very adamant about deterring trespassers. Last time I went there to fish he had constructed a "natural" fence consisting of small logs and sticks combined with blackberry vines. You can still access the river on foot from the South East side of the bridge, but unless the water is low enough to cross there isn't much steelhead water there. P3060041.jpg
I landed this one that day that I met him, I believe it was March 5th.
 
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