This past weekend, Chris and I went on a fishing trip with his family. His dad, Dan, is an avid fisherman and he invited us to go out on the Deschutes with him to fish for some Steelhead. This was different fishing than I've even done, and I loved it!
Chris and I drove out to a campground near Maupin (Central Oregon) on Saturday to meet his dad, mom, sister and brother who had gotten there the day before. Most of the crew had been out on the river fishing all day. His sister caught a hatchery fish (identified by their clipped back fins) which you can keep, as opposed to the native fish which you have to throw back. We ate good that night - Dan cooked up some steak and a bit of the fish. Delicious! As it got dark, we all sat at the picnic table and played Apples to Apples by lantern light. You could hear the river rushing just about 50 yards away - so relaxing!
The next morning, Dan, Chris and I headed out on the river in Dan's drift boat around 9am. The river keeps a good steady pace, but Dan knows how to maneuver that thing through the water. We wore waders and boots and fished in sometimes waist-deep cool water (no fishing from the boat allowed on the Lower Deschutes). We would stop along the bank, climb out of the boat and cast our line out using a jig and slowly walk down with the current waiting for a bite. I caught one fish, and fought it with everything I had to actually get the sucker in. He was a big one and right as Dan was trying to get the hook out of him, he swam off with the hook still in his mouth. He was probably about 10 lbs, but we weren't able to get a picture of him... so in that case, I actually think he might have been closer to 20 lbs. I fought even harder for what I thought was a bigger fish and ended up realing in a big mossy stick... I'll tell you more of that story later, Uncle Les, so you can get a big laugh out of it.
It was a beautiful, fun day on the river. We came in around 4:00pm, headed back to the campsite to pack up and then drove back to Portland. We're so fortunate to have such close access to amazing rivers and fishing!