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Wapato Lake Report
Chelan County, WA


Rainbow Trout

Annual opening day trout trip with dear ol' Dad. Started by 8am. Calm wind, made passing the Lake Chelan ramp at Mill Bay, real difficult!. That was short lived. Caught and released several fish on lures. Dick nites, triple teasers, super duper, and a first time for me the wiggle fin in front of a smile bladed fly! One rod on the dr at 20 to 35ft, one leaded line out 1 to 5 colors depending on the time of day, last rod had 1/4 to 1/2oz, again depending on time of day.

Dad is a old school, anchor up and bait fish kinda guy. So, we did that for 1 1/2 hours due to he wind! It had become brutal. I am talking 20 to 35+. That wind cleared the lake of all boat except mine, a guy in a 12 ft aluminum displaying a full size American Flag on a 6ft pole off the stern. That flag would flap in the same direction as the boat, when the boat traveled with the wind. Looked strange. But clearly the wind was blowing way faster than the top boat speed possible with a 9.9 motor. I had dropped dad off for a potty break at the ramp. Went back to get him and the dock was plugged with boat's. All boat's were heaving in the white cap driven waves, and many were 16-18 foot boats!

Caught nothing while still fishing. So, back to trolling and bucking the wind. Found the leeward end of the Lake to be very manageable. Caught a couple more during the next hour, but fishing had really tapered off. Came across another boat out during the big blow. Chatted as we trolled side by side. They had caught and released 13, and lost 11 in the 11 to 16 inch range.

They were feisty, line peelers. Pulled hard! Leaving the outboard in gear while reeling in the fish, made reeling them in take too long, and consequently the hooks had a better chance to pull loose, and did several times. Was better to leave the kicker running, in neutral, then kick in a out of gear to keep other lines fishing. Lost one due the the turning prop, dove 3/4 oft the entire rod under water for the ones that went under the boat.

From about noon to 6pm, the wind was howling. Anton talks about wind shear in his Lake Chelan report. At times, the wind was so strong, that water drops ripped from the waves. Traveling parallel too, and just above the turbulent waters surface. I want to say 35mph is a fair number.

Boat control? There wasn't any! it was keep the bow from being pushed to far one way or the other or you went 180 in an instant. Fishing picked up again around 7pm. It was fish on or drive by's every 5 minutes.

Saw three port-a-boats this year. The most ever! Talked to one gent in a porta, that was having trouble hooking fish with a wedding ring. Saw him later in the morning heading in, and he had pop gear and the wedding ring. That was a effective tactic, when I used to pull blades, years ago. Do not know how he did. But sure was a shinny set of blades, elevated off the upright rod, and strung out by the wind, spinning in the breeze!

Was another fun trip, hoping for many more!


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Available Guide

Available Fishing Guide:
Website: D&H Guide Service

Phone: (509) 759-0098