10-15-2004, 02:42 PM
Been thinking about doing a float on the mighty "Q" this winter. Any info. on this river would be great. The thoughts of big, bright winter pigs beckon. You can private mail me with info. if you want to keep things under wraps.
10-15-2004, 09:25 PM
The Queets is neither all that big nor very mighty and is only about 100' wide in its wider sections. There are no real rapids on it making it a fairly easy float; however, sweepers can form with little or no warning and they can be very dangerous. Also, it is a long way from population centers and the only section of it you can legally fish (unless you are a member of the Indian Tribe) is located entirely within Olympic National Park, which sets and regulates fishing seasons on the river. Be aware that last year's October flood put a very nasty sweeper in the river just below the uppermost float put in, so if you go, be very careful and to be safe, portage around the sweeper.
There are large fish to be found; but there are no accomodations anywhere near the river. The closest motels and eateries are at least an hour away, so you must camp to be on the river. Also, shuttle service is for all puposes non-existent due to its remoteness. This means that you will either have to provide your own shuttle, or be prepared for a several mile hike back to the put in to get your rig. And the sole campground is not very big and pretty primitive, so be prepared to have your own drinking water with you, etc.
The road along the Queets is unpaved and can have some rather nasty potholes in it. However, the road is never more than a few hundred yards from the river, so it is fairly easy to just park on the road and hike into the river to fish. This makes it pretty easy to fish without floating. Also, since it is in a rainforest, be prepared for a lot of rain (especially prior to mid-March) and the possiblity of the river being out for days.
It is a great river to fish and its virtual wilderness setting in the coastal rainforest is stunning. Sometimes the Queets is very generous and other times you can spend many days without a hookup.
10-16-2004, 08:01 AM
I love that river! Flytyer pretty much gave you the gist. The road in Sucks....I love it! The campground is primitive...and gets rather moist at times...I Love it!
I am probably going to jinx it and it will never be the same - BUT the Queets is far enough south of the "glam rivers" that is really doesnt get the pressure. It gets fished dont get me wrong. However its not a 50 boat wait like the Hoh or the likes up the road.
When the queets goes out of shape - it goes in a hurry. I was fishing it one time 2 years ago at about 3000 cfs. She started to color and rise a bit so I bailed (I was on foot on an Island.... By the time I got home it was 10,000 and rising. That was in about 2 hours.
Last season - it started raining OLYPEN style - put out my blazing fire in about 10 minutes. There was 6 inches of water in my buddies drift boat the next morning. It started raining about 10 pm. Nope, there was no fishing to be done on that day....at least not on the Queets proper.
There is a launch in the campground, the next one down is Streaters. The next one down from there is unmarked I think... and then you have Hartzells, which is near the salmon river (which has the hatchery somewhere.). From the Salmon river (hartzell - I think) launch there is a take out on the downstream side of the bridge that crosses the queets on the Clearwater road. Its private property and they ask for a 2 or 3 dollar a day donation to park your rig there. The take out is kinda tricky, and you have to pull your boat up a little side channel to where you can get a truck down in to get it. The little side channel is on the right side, just past the bridge embutment.
There is one rapid....between the streaters and hartzell that might eat you if you dont know what your doing. There are a couple of funky rocks right below the rapid.
I am up there about every weekend from Jan through Mar. Bring a chair, a cold one, and look for the fire....it'll more than likely be me. Not too many people ever camp in that campground...which leaves alot of water to me! :lildevl:
10-16-2004, 12:22 PM
Thanks for the info., gents. I like the remoteness of the river and as long as there is a chance to hook into a chrome bright winter steelie, there's not much more to ask for. Sounds pretty cool.