Having fun with the Klamath Country Fly Casters

A nice Williamson River rainbow
October found me down in Klamath Falls, Oregon for a few days with the Klamath Country Fly Casters. This long-established fishing group invited me to talk about kayak fly fishing and offered a few incentives to get me to drive 5 hours for a couple days of fishing.

The invitation came from the group's president Dale Zemke. Dale is a kayak fly angler who has roots south of the Oregon border and has fished with the great Jim Sammons, a pioneer in kayak fishing.

Dale contacted me in February and plans were made for a three-day trip that included a presentation to the group and some fishing on the Williamson River. The Williamson is a storied river and since I had never fished it, I jumped at the offer.

I looked forward to the trip for more than a month and found myself researching flies and fine-tuning my presentation. The day finally arrived and I left Portland in the first rainstorm of the season. On the way down, I stopped in at Odell Lake to fish for Kokanee. The wind and rain cut my efforts short and I was off the water in a couple hours. As it turned out, I should have launched at Princess Creek on the east side of the lake since the wind and waves were much calmer.

I arrived in time for dinner with members of the fly casters including Dale, Jack and John and Lois Krueger of Time Flies Outfitters. The company, food and wine was fabulous.

The next morning I enjoyed a productive day on the Williamson with John and Jack, landing four rainbow trout over 20 inches long, including one approaching 8 pounds. As I was casting from John's Clackacraft drift boat, I kept thinking this would be great water to fish with the Hobie Pro Angler.

We fished until about 2 p.m. and then headed back to Dale's house. As the featured speaker, I needed to clean up.

My presentation included a slide show and my Hobie Revolution kayak fully outfitted and on display. I ended up with an audience of about 50 members plus 8 to 10 guests interested in kayak fly fishing. I talked about 45 minutes and was pleased they applauded at the end. I was more excited that several attendees asking me more about the sport.

The next day my goal was fishing the Williamson's famed blue hole in the Revo. After about an hour in the skinny kayak, I was missing the stability of the Pro Angler.

I decided it was safer to back troll through the hole since it was full of downed logs and car-sized boulders. It took me about an hour to settle in and I was rewarded with a single bite. Time was running out and with wet weather forecast for my drive home I packed up feeling a little disappointed.

The disappointment was short and I am already trying to figure out when to go back. I think a spring trip may be in order so I can get into some of those Kokanee and catch a Williamson rainbow from the kayak.

I better contact Dale soon.

Go Farther. Catch More.


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