Don't mean to shirk bretheren, but giving up a favorite rock on the OP is not likely to happen. The WDFW is a good source of info ( historical run timing and harvest data ). Also, if you are looking at a system that lives in the Olympic National Park they can help as well.
The simple truth is that all you need do is pick a river on the OP, and go fish it because that is a prime time to go. Public fishing access areas are easy to find once you are there. But as Hisgarness said, none of us are going to give up our hard-earned info on specific rivers.
It is unbelievable the tight lips on this forum. Steelhead Bum is not asking to fish behind your favorite rock or your (God help someone finding out) your "Private Run", the man only wanted some General Info about the area. I can tell you this, one river boat trip down your favorite river and I will know just about everything there is to know where to fish, and if I can't find all I need know floating, I will find out at the local pub that night. This has been a proven fact for me over 30 years when I decide to fish "New Water".
Steelhead Bum get ahold of Dave at Water West in Port Angeles 360 417-0937. A great guy he will let you in on whats going on.
I did exactly what you siad, I gave general and accurate information. The OP rivers usually do have fish in them in good numbers in the time frame he is looking at, which means he can pretty much pick a river, fish it, and find fish. There are public access areas, which are fairly easy to find (most are on a paved road). I didn't provide river names because a quick look at a map shows the river names and where they are located.
But in the name of sharing info, any of these rivers will have fish at the time you are looking to fish the OP: Sol Duc (especially the middle and lower river); Bogachiel (all the way from the national park boundary to the mouth); Calawah (south fork to its mouth, although access between the mouth of the south fork and the Bogachiel is limited and since above Hwy 101 it flows through a canyon with some pretty technical water, floating it is not easy and requires a good, experienced oarsman); Hoh (from the national park to the mouth); Queets (anywhere in the national park); Quinalt (in the national park, the lower river is on the Quinalt Indian Reservation and you need a tribal guide to fish it); Hoko (especially the fly only water; but be forewarned it is walking access only along an old railroad grade); and the Dicky (a small, brush covered stream with limited access that requires brush busting to fish it).
I'm with Flytyer all the way on this one. Give me five minutes with a mouse and a web crawler and I could garner all the information I would ever need to go out and fish the OP with complete confidence, including which rivers to fish, where and when to fish them, what their optimum flows are, and what to throw at the fish swimming between their banks.
And I'd kill two birds with one mouse because I wouldn't have to edge uncomfortably around an internet website with my hat in hand soliciting information that I could easily find on my own. And if I got into a fish that way, somehow it would be that much more satisfying.....
Hey Yelostn801: I'm impressed you can float a river in a day and "know just about everything there is to know where to fish". I lived in Forks and have been drifting the Sol Duc and Hoh since the mid-eighties and I still don't have anything dialed in out there.
It seems each time I set foot on either of those rivers, I have to start all over again from scratch. I submit the old URL that worked for me last time and what happens? I make my cast and immediately get the dreaded 401 error message (Unauthorized) or even worse, the 405 error message (Method not Allowed)....
So, Flytyer's advice was really the best advice that could have been given under the circumstances:
February = good timing. Highway 101 parellels lots of good water and Public Access is well marked. That's all you really have to know. Once you get past that, if the weather cooperates and you have even the shred of a clue what kind of water these fish favor, stumble around long enough with your fly in the water and maybe it'll happen for you. Or maybe it won't.
I thought the point of having a forum is the gathering of like minds to share ideas, information, and to meet new people that have the same passion for a sport as you do. If this is not the case, then there shouldn't be forums, let alone a forum for "Destinations".
When someone can't come on here and ask General Questions concerning a specific location, such as where to fish, where to stay, and what to use, without being chastised by the board members then this forum has lost its purpose to me. It perturbs me that certain members feel they have to try and protect their hot fishing spots on public water. If someone doesn't want to give information about their "Home Water" then why not just be quite about it, rather than tout "how much they know, but are unwilling to give". This board was about information and sharing knowledge, when it looses this purpose, then it may be doomed.
waters west, dave, as well as JD love are both great suggestions. if you are freelancing, it is critical to understand that the olypen rivers are free running. the queets, and hoh are draining some high elevations from basically the west end. as a result, you need to check the freezing level in the olympics. an easy source is the seattlepi, click on their weather section.
the quileute system is a horse of another color. lower elevation drainage, for the most part. upper and middle solduc are hard to access unless you drift, and then you had better be damn good as it is not an easy river to read. bogy is easier and a bit more accessble. i understand the calawah has a slide with lots of mud flowing, don't know how uptodate that report is, however.
there is access from the bank so do drive around and look. dave at waters west can tell you about clarity on all of these rivers, from there its up to you. see'yah out there.
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