New to sea run cuts

Discussion in 'Saltwater' started by Chris Brittin Johnson, Jun 16, 2013.

  1. I would like too try some sea run cut fishing. I live in Chehalis and I have no idea where to go. Any ideas or advice?
  2. Given that you are in Chehalis Olympia seems to be your nearest salt water. 31 minutes each way
    I'm guessing you considered a guided south sound trip?
  3. The first question is do you want to pursue them in salt water (Hood Canal/Puget Sound) or when they return to the rivers (e.g., hatchery cutthroat in the Cowlitz River or wild fish in various OP rivers in the fall). While many fish migrate into freshwater to spawn in the fall/winter for various lengths of time, you can find searuns somewhere in the salt year-round. Les Johnson has written a great general source, Flyfishing Coastal Cutthroat Trout, that talks about flies, gear, strategy. But it doesn't have many specifics about locations. Some locations in Hood Canal and Puget Sound can be gleaned by working through the saltwater threads. Some of the location references are cryptic, but you can find nuggets there. If you are interested in hiring a guide to speed the learning curve around Hood Canal or the west end rivers, Bob would be a great choice (see If you are more interested in south Puget Sound, I would visit Puget Sound Fly Company in Tacoma (see

    Some of the most consistent sea cutt fishing in freshwater occurs on the Cowlitz River, beginning late August and extending into the depths of winter. In addition to Steve Buckner, I would also recommend Mike Sturza (

  4. Thank you for all the info. I'm not real interested in a guided trip. I'm kinda one of those guys that likes to figure it out on my own. Sometimes that can be most the fun. I fish the cowlitz weekly. And I know Mike at lost creek. Great guy and great fly shop! I guess I was wondering specific spots to try. Maybe off the beach near grayland or Westport. Ocean shores or Longbeach. Or if any spots near Olympia would be fun too. Even better if it was near some good camping.
    Bob Triggs likes this.
  5. There are some great places to try in Oly. Just look up some of the public beaches in the area. Stop by the Fly Fisher in Lacey and pick up a few flies and get some intel.

    I figured it out on my own too. Sounds like you fish a lot, so I would guess you'll pick it up pretty quickly.

    Have fun!

  6. Ok great! Thank you. I love checking out new fly shops!
  7. Sounds like you are on track, the thread "what makes a tide good...." Has some additional pointers. Cheers
  8. Although you live in Chehalis, I thought you might like to know that I have a few openings left in my Searun Cutthroat School at Orvis Bellevue on June 29 & 30 - it's a 1-2 hour classroom session on Saturday and fishing the next day, Sunday. You'll learn all you need to know for only $100. 425-452-9138.

  9. Sea-run cutthroat which have access to the open ocean tend to move well offshore (8-10 miles) during the saltwater phase of their lives to avoid the immediate shoreline zone which is not a particularly friendly environment for them. Sheltered bays and and estuaries (Grays Harbor, Willapa Bay, and of course Puget Sound) offer far more desireable nearshore habitat and greater food resources.
    brittinj likes this.
  10. I would love to go but that's a long drive for me. Thank you for the info tho.
  11. I guarantee you that the 1.5 hour drive to Orvis would not be a waste. It would certainly help you in your search, and success with sea runs.

    Puget Sound Fly Company is another good spot to stop for flies & info.

    Steve Knapp likes this.
  12. A good book to read is (as cabezon said) Les Johnson's "Fly Fishing Coastal Cutthroat Trout". In addition, pick up a copy of Chester Allen's "Fly Fishing for Sea Run Cutthroat".

    Then go pick the brains of folks at fly shops who are always willing to help. Also, as others have said, use the search function on this forum.

    Perhaps you've already seen it but this article by member Greg Tims is helpful:

    Then just get out on your local beaches and just watch, study and fish.
  13. Thank you all for the info. I have been researching all night. I think i just need to go out and give it a try!
    Jason Rolfe likes this.
  14. You really should take the opportunity and drive up. Leland is one of the best in WA and you would not be disappointed.

    - Chris Fahrenbruch
  15. O trust me If I could I would. But I have prior obligations this weekend. See I'm also a runner ( helped me quit smoking) and I have a race this weekend in Oly.

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