A lot of shad over Bonneville

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by zen leecher aka bill w, Jun 7, 2013.

  1. zen leecher aka bill w

    zen leecher aka bill w born to work, forced to fish

    I've been following the shad run this year and it appears to be about a week late. But, there are lots coming over the dam. First day I started looking was 94k and I wondered if that was the peak. Definitely not as 212k came over last day recorded.
    Paul Huffman likes this.
  2. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    If anything, I say their early. Previous years, it didn't seem like they were coming in those numbers until mid June... Then again, they seem to be all over the board when it comes to timing. A few years ago we were crushing them on 4th of July weekend.
  3. GAT

    GAT Active Member

    Shad react to water temps more than salmon/steelhead/SRC to move upstream to spawn. As water temps vary from year to year, the timing of the runs do the same.

    The Umpqua shad run is similar as far as fishing on the 4th of July. Some years it is great, some years, not so much.
  4. zen leecher aka bill w

    zen leecher aka bill w born to work, forced to fish

    The "rule of thumb" I was told years ago was Memorial Day was the peak for Bonneville and the middle of June was the peak for John Day dam. It has been a little off the past few years. Maybe the water's getting colder because of global warming.

    I think the 4th of July fishing you did was a couple of years ago when all the snow melt was in the Columbia. I saw a picture somewhere of an osprey nest on the top of a piling that should have been 15 feet or so above the water. It was about 3-5 feet off the water.

    Evan, you have to realize us seniors are very unflexible and If I was told 25 years ago about the "rule of thumb" I expect it to be cast in concrete.


    unflexible, cranky and irritable
  5. Flyborg

    Flyborg Active Member

    Went up late last week and it wasn't stellar but I hooked fish. This week it's been off the charts. Best run I've seen in quite a few years. It's nice when you can get dozens of fish on a fly in a few hours after work. On top of that, my buddy lost a small springer Tuesday (on the fly)and a girl I work with lost a huge one yesterday (on a kastmaster). That's what keeps me going up there.
  6. Is below Bonneville pretty much the place to be or can you follow the run upriver-- say if the counts slow at Bonneville do you just move to the next dam?
  7. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

  8. zen leecher aka bill w

    zen leecher aka bill w born to work, forced to fish

    The fish ladder site that was on the WDFW page had info on whether the fish were coming up the WA or the OR sides of the dam. I used to fish below John Day and 75% or better of the fish used to come up the OR side.
  9. luv2fly2

    luv2fly2 Active Member

    what is the number one fly to use to catch a shad? mke w
  10. zen leecher aka bill w

    zen leecher aka bill w born to work, forced to fish

    A Dick Nite.
  11. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    I used to think the same thing. No longer


    That said... My buddy has been down fishing shad all weekend. He's hooked none, and seen two caught. Despite the hoards of people out trying, there doesn't seem to be much action.
  12. zen leecher aka bill w

    zen leecher aka bill w born to work, forced to fish

    I checked the page and about 900K shad went over the dam in the last 6 days.

    Evan, some people used little fly rod jigs back when I first got my introduction to hickory shad in 1971. I was slinging "shad darts" with a spinning rod and watching them drifting the little leadheads thru the same run with better results.
  13. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    When I go shadding, we have fly rods, baitcasters, spinning rods, barbie rods, and other assortment of screwing around materials. We use shad darts, shadslayers, dick nites, beads, plain gold hooks, and other unmentionables. It's a trip of debauchery and ridiculousness. All that said...the slipstream jigs seem to get the job done better than the other stuff.
  14. Flyborg

    Flyborg Active Member

    I do really well these in a variety of bright colors. And they seem to up the bycatch of chinook. I've even got some walleye and smallies on 'em.

    Attached Files:

  15. cmann886

    cmann886 Active Member

    Very similar to a fly I use, except I frequently tie it on a light headed jig hook (1/32 or 1/64 oz), less and frequently no hackle and a little more pearl mylar tinsle in the tail (normally I tie them with mylar tubing). I am going to try more sparse tinsle after looking at your fly. The color combo is consistent with what I have had good luck on.
  16. zen leecher aka bill w

    zen leecher aka bill w born to work, forced to fish

    Freestyle shadding!! Nothing better.
  17. Jason Hoffman

    Jason Hoffman Member

    where can I find the slipstream shad slayer shown above?
  18. Evan Burck

    Evan Burck Fudge Dragon

    The Slipstream guy is on the board here (under the name Slipstream). Or you can call Rolf at the Klickitat Trader.
  19. East Fork

    East Fork Active Member

    I've been using glass beads and yarn. Its not pretty but it works. And its cheap.
  20. What's the best presentation on any of the options listed above? Are you guys swinging those jigs or drifting under a float/bobber?

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