Central Oregon Fly-Fishing Adventure
This past September, my mom and I had the perfect fall adventure in Oregon. We set out on a road trip from Portland to Central Oregon for a weekend of fly-fishing.
Day one: Sisters
We arrived in Sisters on a beautiful fall day. The streets were buzzing with pedestrians exploring the art galleries, specialty shops and antiques stores. We joined the fun, bought some handmade fudge and explored the Sisters Fall Street Festival, where we bought a stunning ceramic salmon from artist Debbie Bowen of Juniper Hill Ceramics.
After overdosing on the above-mentioned fudge, we checked in to the FivePine Lodge for the night. Our cabin was pure luxury comfort with gorgeous craftsman décor. We walked around the property and spotted Shibui Spa. Hot stone massages would have to wait. This trip was about fly-fishing.
Day Two: Gone Fishing
The next morning we drove a few blocks to The Fly Fisher’s Place to meet owner Jeff Perin, who has been fishing this region for many years. He loaded us up with the proper equipment and fishing licenses then put us in the capable hands of Head Guide Dan Anthon for the day.
Then we drove toward Warm Springs where we began our 10-mile float on the Deschutes River in search of redband trout. Mom and I put on waders and boots, while Dan loaded up the drift boat. His dog, Trout, was already onboard.
It was a blue-sky day as we floated through rim-rocked canyons, past the occasional lone fisherman. We stopped for our first lesson, which was to find out what the fish were eating that day. Dan put a small net-like device in the water and drudged up some bugs: mayflies, caddis flies, golden stones—all kinds of insect life. This helped us determine which flies we’d tie on as we tried to mimic nature in search of a bite.
Dan taught us about roll casting and drifting and mending. Soon, we were in the water up to our waists searching for fish. Between mom and I there were quite a few bites (or bottom snags) and then finally—FISH ON!
Dan coached me through the process of reeling in the fish: “Let it swim”; “Don’t give it any slack”; “Keep your rod up”. After a brief battle (this little guy had some fighting chops), I reeled in a nice sized redband trout.
We released him back into the Deschutes and floated on, enjoying the rest of this spectacular day of fly-fishing in Central Oregon.
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