Seasons of the Clearwater
There are two primary seasons on the Clearwater. From August through September the lower river is inhabited primarily by "A-run" fish who seek refuge in the Clearwater from the warm temperatures of the Snake River and the occasional surprise B-run fish that have entered early.Though these A-run fish are smaller in comparison to their B-run cousins, they tend to be very aggressive and spunky. These early- season high flows make swinging for these fish both challenging and very rewarding because they hold in exclusive areas not typically covered during the popular low water months occurring in the last week of September.
In September, flows are dropped and stabilized for the remainder of the season, the B-runs enter and we begin moving upstream as they do. This season lasts all the way through March. B-run steelhead are famous for their size and power; returning to spawn after two-three years in the ocean, these bruins return to the river running 30-40 inches and surpassing 20 pounds in weight. In fact, the Clearwater’s B-run fish are the largest steelhead in the lower 48 states and these great fish attract serious steelheaders from around the world.
Each month of the Clearwater season from August through March offers something unique and incredible. All of it is worth experiencing!
HERE is an interesting article about Clearwater steelhead and the journey they take home.