Fly Fishing and Fall Foliage
By Jai Colvin
It’s the best time of year to hit the rivers throughout Washington and Oregon. The breathtaking scenery offers a backdrop to some of the best fishing of the year, and there’s nowhere quite like the Fall River in Oregon to get your fly fishing on.
The Fall River is actually a large, beautiful spring creek that runs for eight miles into the Deschutes River. This incredibly clear river flows around bends bordered by grass and willow trees, making it a great natural home for many species of fish. The Fall River is located about 25 miles south of Bend, Oregon, and with relatively easy access it offers the average fly fisherman a chance to hone his or her skills in some of the most beautiful land on the West Coast.
The stream contains wild brown and brook trout, and is stocked with rainbow trout. The wild brook trout are reportedly small, averaging about 6 inches but still offering up some fun fishing. The wild brown trout grow rather large and average between 8 and 15 inches, making fly fishing challenging. The rainbows average about 10 inches.
In order to get to the Fall River you can go to the fish hatchery. Locals often access it on the national forest land as well. The fly fishing is legendary in these parts, and locals claim it’s good all the way from the headwaters downstream to the falls. A section of the river below the falls is open from spring through the fall, and the area above the falls is open year-round.
For gear, advice and tackle, the nearest towns are Bend and Sun River. There are a number of local fishing businesses that focus specifically on fly fishing on this river. This is an easy river to fish and at any given time you will find folks actually teaching fly fishing on the Fall River. Locals say that it is a great place to teach a kid because you can often spot trout hiding near fallen trees.
The Fall River also draws hikers to the area for the beautiful foliage, which also helps make the fly fishing great. The river is absolutely beautiful, and flows from peaceful meandering flat water to small riffles and waterfalls that tend to add some excitement into your fly fishing outing. There is a trail that follows the river upstream from the hatchery to the primitive campground and then on to the source, so take some time when you hit these waters; it is worth the time you take to enjoy this fall jewel.