For more serious fisherman with the hopes of landing a bit of trout, West of the Cascades might appear over populated and un-fishable.
Just east of the Puget sound is home to several neighborhood rivers and opens a secret hub to nearby plentiful rivers, creeks, and lakes that will keep you fly fishing year round. The majority of Seattleites aren't aware of the fact that local fly fishing is even an option on the west side of the Cascades.
I've rounded up eight locations for you to try out this winter season!
1. The Green River is an urban body of water that cuts out of the Puget Sound and runs southbound into Tukwila. Salmon and Cuttroat trout will be plentiful into the fall and winter seasons when Salmon fishing becomes a must, as they don't pass through the green river without a splash.
2. East of Snoqualmie Falls, you will find three wide forks of the Snoqualmie River. Each have a unique fishing experience yielding more than enough tactical pool and challenging trout fishing.
3. North Bend Snoqualmie River Middle Fork, my personal favorite weekday fishing getaway offers a quick drive and well paved path that runs along the river. Trust yourself here and enjoy the experience, this river yields smaller trout but they are no less fun to hook!
4. Fall City South Fork Snoqualmie
5. Fly fishing the Puget Sound from Lincoln Park or Alki point is an experience all in its own. Beautiful and tranquil with the city seemingly in the distance. If you are on the hunt for sea run cutthroat, this is a beautiful place to try your luck. Between August and September, look for larger sea run coho, beware they are larger than river fish and range from 15-20 Ibs. Fish with a view of the snow tipped cascades just around the Alki point. Diverse marine life will bring you some interesting and unique catch for a dry fly. Try a clouser minnow or chumbodies baby in the end of your line, otherwise view an extended list of fly patterns.
6. Skagit River Northwest Washington, is beautiful scenery and offers Steelhead June through January. Expect large winter Steelhead and Coho salmon in October-November.
7. Cedar River In Maple Valley, which runs into Lake Union, holds some surprisingly large rainbows and cutthroat that range from from 16 inches to larger catches around 25 inches. Be prepared to catch and release here and to note the seasonal closures. For an urban fishing experience that runs along a highway, there are some beautiful secluded sections and pools that will make you feel like you are alone in the wilderness.
8. Finally the renown Yakima River, a blue ribbon fly fishing river that flows into east into the Columbia River, known for its large trout and tactical fishing. The Yakima covers 75 miles of beautiful, fishable, trout waters. Try your luck with caddis, stoneflies, or mayflies depending on the season.
If you have more time, and are up for a scenic adventure, follow along highway. It will lead you to parallel the Skykomish River up into Stevens Pass, stop and fish the clear ponds and enjoy the beautiful fly-fishing habitat along the lush Skykomish River. For any other fly fishing related questions or comments please reach out.