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Author Topic: Fishing the Sol Duc in February  (Read 2376 times)

Offline TeacherMan

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Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« on: January 11, 2018, 01:54:52 PM »
So i just booked a float trip on the Sol Duc mid February for steelhead. Trips on a Saturday but I'm planning on getting over there on a Friday and be around there Sunday. What kind of spinning gear are they using for steelhead that time of year? Figured it be fun to try a little bank fishing. Assuming bait isn't allowed.

thanks

Chris
If you shoot the first one you will never get that true trophy.

Offline huntnphool

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2018, 02:53:52 PM »
 Who did you book with?
The things that come to those who wait, may be the things left by those who got there first!

Offline JimmyHoffa

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2018, 02:59:07 PM »
It will kind of depend on the river conditions.  If it is too low and clear, the light(er) stuff can work best.
8-12 lb test, 1/2 oz lure rod set up should be good, maybe a touch on the light side.  Bank fishing on the Sol Duc is not the most ideal (not to rain on your parade), but there's a lot of private property or tough access.  If you get a spot, you don't get a big stretch of river to really walk--you kind of have to fish one spot, drive down to the next, then over to the one after that.  Good thing is there's three other rivers real close.

Offline 7mmfan

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2018, 03:38:23 PM »
The Calawah, and Hoh offer lots of bank opportunity, as does the upper Bogachiel. Everything from a gear perspective is water dependent. Having 3 days to fish, even if only one of those is guided, is great for you, as the chances of having less than ideal water conditions any 1 or 2 of those days is pretty high.

My personal go to's for gear would be as such:

- Float or drift fish a pink rubber worm. If float fishing, set up either by sliding a 4" worm onto a 1/8 or 1/4 oz jig head and setting your depth approx. 1' off the bottom, OR (my preferred rigging) set up as if you were drift fishing, just add a sliding float above it, and set it so you just barely tap the bottom every once in a while. The term "Bobber dogging" loosely applies to this. I usually slide a corky down on top of my worm to keep it a little higher in the water column and add some motion to it in turbulent water.

- Float and jig. Aero jigs work great for big natives. 1/8 or 1/4 oz in the pink, pink/purple, red/wht/blk (nightmare), or shrimpy colors. Make sure the jigs you get have good hooks, Owners are preferable, 2x Gamakatsus work, but are just ok.

- Yarn-balls trimmed to nickel size (aka Yarnies). Drift fish these with light lead, or fish under a float with a similar setup to the worms above.

- Spoons. The appropriate size for the spot, but a 1/2 - 2/3 oz little cleo, mortac, bc steel, type spoon swung through tail outs can be down right devastating.

Those would be my 4 main choices. If you want any details, send me a pm, I'm happy to share suggestions.
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Offline plugger

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #4 on: January 12, 2018, 04:49:55 AM »
There is some bank access at the bear creek camp ground, the trail follows the river, there is some really good pocket water in that stretch. Fish down stream of the campground. Not the easiest place to land one, but you cant land one if you don't hook it first. That's were I would fish if the river is high. If its low, I would fish just above three rivers, and again, don't be afraid to fish the pockets in the faster water. Those sol duc fish like to hang in the pockets.

Offline Bullkllr

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2018, 02:25:57 PM »
Good advice in those last three posts above.

How to gear up for a short stint to me depends on what a person is used to. If you're used to fishing floats, hardware, drift-fishing- then probably stick to your accustomed method for best chances. They all work -depending on the piece of individual water one may work better- but I'd go with what you're used to.

Depending on location and water conditions, I'd consider 12# UG Maxima to be around a standard minimum leader that time of year. Especially from the bank. There are places where lighter might work- but many others where "zing...ping" could likely result. If water's higher, drifting a #4 Spin-glo on straight 20# is not too much.   :twocents:
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Offline trophyelk6x6

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2018, 06:09:15 PM »
I've fish the Sol Duc several times with a guide and did well, and also got skunked.  Each time I went we were basically alone on the river and that made each trip awesome. I think I learned more on that river from my guide and made every penny worth it.  Have fun and enjoy the solitude, and PS those hawgs can lay in water you would of never thought.  Those were the best hookups!

Offline ManastashMule

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2018, 09:13:24 PM »
I used to teach in Forks and ventured out to go fly-fishing once on the Sol Duc in January. Didn't catch any fish. What I did catch was my first and hopefully last case of Giardia. No clue how it happened, the only thing I can think of is I was unlucky enough to get it from licking the line when I was tying my knots. I promised myself I would hire a guide someday and try again since I missed out on the fishing while I lived their. Good luck to you.

Offline SkookumHntr

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #8 on: January 22, 2018, 09:19:51 AM »
valentines day is always prime time up there, if the river is in shape you will have a great trip!
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Offline TeacherMan

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #9 on: January 31, 2018, 02:14:15 PM »
Who did you book with?

Called Nicks Guide Service. Hes a young guy but really works for them from what I've been told. We will see soon enough I guess  :chuckle: You can look him up in instagram if your on there. All one word. nicktsguideservice his name is Nick Turner.

I fish the Kenai in AK around 80-100 days a year but salmon are a different story that steelhead I know that. What I'm pretty good at is feeling fish on the end of the line and I do my best to not break them off in a hurry  :chuckle:

I'm bringing my 8'6 Steelhead Ugly stick with 50lb powerpro mainline and 15 lb leader attached. I use the heavy power pro just to help avoid nicks in the line. I realize Im playing the fish on 15 lb test  ;) I'm also a net guy. I know they can get in the way but at the same time they are crazy helpful when you get one on. Nothing more frustrating to me than loosing a big fish because there isn't a bank to beach on.

I've picked up the 4' pink power worms with neon green tip on tail, 1/8 and1/4 oz heads, 1/0 hooks for the worms to rig differently, a few light colored corkies, slip bobbers, light split shot, bobber slides, swivels, steelie spoons in hammered nickle and a few marabou jigs.
If you shoot the first one you will never get that true trophy.

Offline opdinkslayer

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #10 on: January 31, 2018, 03:17:30 PM »
Pray for some better weather or you won't be fishin at all. The solduc is punched today and will need several days of little rain and lower snow levels to be in drifting shape. When in February are ya fishin?

Offline TeacherMan

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #11 on: January 31, 2018, 03:28:43 PM »
Pray for some better weather or you won't be fishin at all. The solduc is punched today and will need several days of little rain and lower snow levels to be in drifting shape. When in February are ya fishin?

hoping for the 10th.
If you shoot the first one you will never get that true trophy.

Offline HntnFsh

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2018, 05:33:56 AM »
Try to shorten up the power worm. Unless your targeting the real pigs! :chuckle:

Offline opdinkslayer

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #13 on: February 01, 2018, 06:06:03 AM »
Pray for some better weather or you won't be fishin at all. The solduc is punched today and will need several days of little rain and lower snow levels to be in drifting shape. When in February are ya fishin?

hoping for the 10th.

forecast looks much better next week. good luck on getting perfect conditions and nice weather. Not a prettier float than the solduc in feb on a nice day. :tup:

Offline 7mmfan

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #14 on: February 01, 2018, 08:26:28 AM »
I think you'll be in good shape. We're expecting massive rain this weekend, but then pretty much dry after that. It sounds like you have a good assortment of the right stuff. Just keep it in the water and near the bottom and you'll do fine.

And regarding the net, I'm with you. I was a diehard tailing guy for years, and then I switched to a 100% stretchy rubber net and never looked back. You land more fish and land them much quicker with the net than without, causing less stress on the fish. Just make sure its a legal net, knot-free and coated at least.
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Offline WSU

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #15 on: February 01, 2018, 08:29:56 AM »
Try to shorten up the power worm. Unless your targeting the real pigs! :chuckle:

Itís pretty damn cool when a big angry buck tries to kill a 6 inch worm and damn near rips the rod out of your hands!!

Offline JimmyHoffa

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #16 on: February 01, 2018, 08:41:54 AM »
Does your guide fish any of the other rivers as a back up in case the Duc is out?  Calawah seems to come back in shape sooner than the others, but can be trickier.  Seems a lot prefer raft over drift boat on that one.

Offline TeacherMan

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #17 on: February 12, 2018, 09:15:09 AM »
Awesome weekend of fishing on the Sol Duc! Really big fish this time of year. I would like to give a shout out to our guide Nick Tucker (360)477-6740, he did a really good job plus he was really reasonable. I fish a lot but he knows every channel and rock in that river and was able to put us on the fish. Did a 13-14 mile float in gorgeous weather. Not many things more beautiful than the Peninsula on a sunny day in February.
« Last Edit: February 12, 2018, 11:56:05 AM by TeacherMan »
If you shoot the first one you will never get that true trophy.

Offline 2MANY

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #18 on: February 12, 2018, 09:22:12 AM »
Congrats.

Offline X-Force

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #19 on: February 12, 2018, 09:28:25 AM »
No pictures! come on man!

Congrats on a sweet trip.
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Offline opdinkslayer

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #20 on: February 12, 2018, 10:28:13 AM »
Congrats on hitting the water & weather just right. Sure was nice to have a nice weekend for a change.👍🏻

Offline TeacherMan

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #21 on: February 12, 2018, 11:52:43 AM »
I think I'm pretty sure I took a hundred pics but there are all way to big to post  :bash: I downsized this one to wet your taste buds  :tup:
If you shoot the first one you will never get that true trophy.

Offline SkookumHntr

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #22 on: February 12, 2018, 11:55:57 AM »
Beauty!!
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Offline 2MANY

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #23 on: February 12, 2018, 12:13:27 PM »
Nice job keeping it in the water.

Offline WAcoueshunter

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #24 on: February 12, 2018, 01:15:22 PM »
Oink Oink!  Thanks for sharing!   :tup:

Offline Ironhead

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #25 on: February 12, 2018, 02:53:59 PM »
Very nice!
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Offline tlbradford

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #26 on: February 12, 2018, 04:28:28 PM »
Does your guide fish any of the other rivers as a back up in case the Duc is out?  Calawah seems to come back in shape sooner than the others, but can be trickier.  Seems a lot prefer raft over drift boat on that one.

I was going to mention this too, but then I saw you already have success photos.  Nice job.  I too think the Sol Duc is the nicest float on the OP.  There are some creeks and tributaries I target when everything else is blown out that usually only need a half day of clear weather.  I am sure they are known to most locals, but thankfully I can usually hit them without seeing anyone else.
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Offline X-Force

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #27 on: February 12, 2018, 04:34:19 PM »
Wet our appetite? Crap... it just started to make me drool!

Awesome fish. Cant wait for more.
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Offline 7mmfan

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Re: Fishing the Sol Duc in February
« Reply #28 on: February 12, 2018, 04:43:46 PM »
Nice fish, sounds like a great time!   :tup:
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