The Clearwater River
For many, fishing for steelhead is an obsession, for me obsessed is an understatement. I live and breathe for the experience of walking onto that perfect run early in the morning as the fog lifts; I step in, strip, cast, and swing. The anticipation of that fish moving to my fly on the next cast is life. One of the most wonderful things about steelhead fishing is the environments and nature in which you fish for them. From rain forest to desert, they inhabit our earth’s most pristine lands.
Of all the rivers to swing a fly, the Clearwater is special beyond all others.
The Clearwater is an anomaly of a steelhead river. It is very large and carves its way through coniferous forest and sage laden desert. The water is constantly clear as its namesake suggests and is always stable, making concern over fishing conditions an afterthought. The river is seldom changed by erosion and river rechanneling, means the fish are predictable in their path and holding areas from year to year, which means the more you fish the Clearwater the more intimate relationship you build and historical knowledge you accumulate.
Clearwater fish are all summer run fish, and the largest summer steelhead in the lower 48. In fact, Clearwater fish rival the size of western winter run native fish and can be much larger on average. Making things even more special is the fact that Clearwater fish are very aggressive and love to move to fly presented in the upper portion of the water column.