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A recent trip on the Willamette River near West Linn Oregon netted a nice smallmouth bass. The trip was a first for me in the kayak in these waters. I have fished them several times for coho in one of my many previous boats but never the kayak. An added bonus for the day was taking nephew Travis out for his first kayak trip in a Hobie.
The weather was great with little wind and warm temperatures. We took out early in order to have time on the kayaks without the powerboats. Since this was expected to be the last weekend of the summer with temps in the 90s, I was certain we would see several boats.
It took us little time to gear up the kayaks and we were underway by 8 a.m. We crossed the river and I started fishing close to the shore while Travis started snapping photos with his iPhone.
It didn't take long to get into a bass and I quickly brought in an 8-inch smallmouth. I showed it off to the camera and started back at it. I was trolling a size 6 brown woolly bugger on my 7 weight with a clear sinking tip. Within 30 minutes I was onto a large fish. I fought it for about five minutes before it came up and revealed itself. It was a beautiful 17 inch smallmouth. I landed it, measured it and then turned it loose. I had signed up for the northwest kayak anglers Angler of the Year competition and the bass was the first fish I entered. At 17 inches, the smally should earn me 170 points on the board.
I caught one more small bass before the boat traffic and the temperatures increased. With the fishing becoming slow, Travis and I explored the river for another couple hours before heading back to the dock. It was a great day and the fishing wasn't bad either.