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Don't Overlook Stillwaters
Don't Overlook Stillwaters for Quality Trout Fishing
With warmer weather finally on the horizon local fishing should turn on. One often-overlooked opportunity in Oregon's lakes. Counting desert reservoirs, high cascade lakes, valley ponds, and coast range lakes the number of opportunities is staggering. Close to Portland, we have Timothy, Harriet, Lost and Hagg lakes that all produce solid fishing. There are also several smaller hike-in lakes dotting the Mount Hood National Forest that fish great as well.
Timing, methods, and patterns will vary from lake to lake. But having a few leaches, Callibaetis nymphs and dries, Damsel nymphs, Chironomid pupa, flying ants and beetles, and of course the trusty Woolly Bugger will get you in the game.
All one needs to be productive is both floating and intermediate lines, if the lake is deep then adding a full sinking line in type 3-5 can be advantageous. I always have two rods rigged and ready to go, both a floater and intermediate. It saves downtime by having to restring switching lines.
Another nice thing about fishing lakes is early am wakeups are not necessary. Most will turn on mid-morning and fish well on into the evening. Some of my best fishing has been at twilight, I consider it far more productive than first light.
Don't let lakes intimidate you, observation and experimentation will win the day. Reading a lake can seem difficult, but just like a river, you will quickly learn what to look for. Shoals and channels are a great place to start. Also, keep in mind that fish in lakes cruise to find food so watching for movement and the direction can point YOU in the right direction. To begin, fish everything, keys, and productive areas will present themselves in short order.
You might discover what lots of confirmed "Lakers" already know. Lake fish are big and feisty!