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Fire Blog


Alaska's Mat-Su Valley Coho Coming In Strong
By Andy Couch | 08/29/2014
The first summer after the Alaska Board of Fisheries reconfigured Upper Cook Inlet commercial drift fishing regulations to ensure more adequate spawning escapements of salmon to Northern Cook Inlet streams, and to provide a more reasonable opportunity for Northern User groups to harvest some of the Inlet’s salmon bounty, Knik Arm silver salmon stocks have arrived in streams in some of the best numbers in the past six years. .. Read more

Alaska Yellow Eye & Lingcod on the Chew
By Chris Shaffer | 08/28/2014
Last Tuesday we endured a 110-mile run from Seward, Alaska, down the rugged coast to a set of remote islands in search of lingcod, yellow eye and rockfish. The boat ride took roughly five hours in open ocean. Fortunately, the swells weren’t bad. From the moment we left the dock there was a medium size white bucket on the floor in the back right corner. It rested near Pautzke pro John Albrich’s feet and quickly became a symbol for the trip. .. Read more

Alaska Pipeline Trout Biting Now
By John Albrich | 08/26/2014
Normally this time of year I spend Sunday on the couch watching preseason NFL games or catch and release steelhead fishing on the Clearwater River. However, Sunday I found myself trout fishing along the Richardson Highway, feet from the Great Alaskan Pipeline. We’d driven two hours east of Fairbanks and past Delta Junction into what felt like the middle of nowhere. In fact, road signs showed the next town roughly 75 miles away. .. Read more

Coho Flooding Kenai River
By Luke Haman | 08/25/2014
Last year was one of our best silver runs in the last decade. This run started out slow, but it’s been very good the past week and should continue. It’s hard to say what’s going to transpire, but there’s no reason why the run shouldn’t be a good one. I’ve been catching limits, two trips a day. .. Read more

Learn To Fish Washington's Nisqually River
By Duane Inglin | 08/25/2014
Credit goes to the lead agency, the Nisqually Nation, who is working with the state to continue to gain ground in Puget Sound salmon recovery. Due to the tribe’s extensive effort we, as sports anglers, get to enjoy a productive fall Chinook fishery. .. Read more

Learn To Fish Bobber & Eggs
By Andy Couch | 08/23/2014
For faster action, an opportunity to see each strike, consistent catches, and economical use of bait and tackle, fishing cured salmon roe under bobbers provides maximum thrills on my guide boat. Below are a few tips for getting started or stepping up your game to a higher level with this technique... Read more

Klamath River Salmon Coming Despite Warm Water
By Alan Borges | 08/18/2014
Meanwhile, it’s important to remember we are in a battle for water right now. We are in a drought. The water is low and warm, but we have a good number of fish milling out in the estuary and offshore. The way they are coming in now, which is in small groups, is good. It’s better than them all coming in at once. For the past few weeks we’ve had salmon slowing trickling in. .. Read more

Mixed Bag Starting to Show on Huron
By Josh Choronzey | 08/17/2014
Local anglers are blaming the intense winter and cold summer for the poor fishing. Water temperatures across Georgian Bay and Huron have had the kings in water far away from the traditional ports that produce good catches in the month of July. There is little argument that Chinook on the Ontario side of the lake were a difficult target until the past few weeks as mature fish start heading home to local watersheds and stocking sites... Read more

What Color Brine Will Be the Ticket For Salmon?
By Toby Wyatt | 08/14/2014
If you’re coming to fish Buoy 10, or in the salt, you’ll be running bait, like everyone else. Right now, brining baits is a must. We have huge tidal exchanges and the current rips. If you don’t have Fire Brined bait you’re basically screwed. Without brining them, the herring will be soft and won’t last long. It just falls apart. If you keep them stiff they’ll hold up and run well in heavy current. .. Read more

Banner Salmon Season Expected on Oregon's Upper Rogue
By Steven Theel | 08/12/2014
The West Coast has seen banner salmon runs this summer. Fortunately, the Rogue River is no exception. I’m happy to report we’ve been seeing salmon for three weeks already and there’s plenty of salmon staging in Rogue Bay that will be headed here shortly. It’s important to remember the salmon run on the Upper Rogue begins earlier than on most Northern California and Southern Oregon rivers... Read more

Salmon In Rogue Bay Now!
By Troy Whitaker | 08/07/2014
This summer salmon are faced with warmer temperatures, forcing them to slow down and acclimate prior to heading upriver. The scenario is prompting me to believe we’ll see better than normal fishing in Rogue Bay through early fall as salmon are spending more time in the bay. Keep in mind fresh fish continue to file in through October. Our season is just starting. .. Read more

Pros Reveal Secrets How To Catch Big Halibut
By Andy Martin | 08/06/2014
Editor's note: Pautzke Pro Staffers Andy Martin and Rye Phillips (who co-authored this blog) have a well-earned reputation for putting customers on barn door halibut. Each year the two Alaskan charter boat captains help people catch dozens of fish pushing 150 plus pounds. Big baits and lots of scent are their keys to success for massive halibut... Read more

More Than 2 Million Salmon Entering Columbia River
By Pat Abel | 08/05/2014
We haven’t seen a salmon fishery like we are about to see on the Columbia River and its tributaries since the 1930s. Fisheries experts are predicting a minimum of two million fish returning through Buoy 10 and that’s being conservative. If you talk to authorities they are expecting many more. I’m starting to hear legitimate chatter of upwards of 2.6 million salmon. .. Read more

Big Salmon Finally Showing On Lake Ontario
By Troy Creasy | 08/04/2014
While it’s been a tough bite at times in June and July, we picking fish each trip now and it should only get better. Fishing has been up and down and we aren’t seeing the numbers we’d like to see, but if conditions improve weather-wise, the bite will follow suit. .. Read more

Lower Klamath Plugged With Steelhead
By Chris Shaffer | 07/31/2014
Meanwhile, the Lower Klamath is plugged with acrobatic, feisty summer steelhead. They’ll be aggressive until massive crowds arrive to chase fall salmon, which should happen mid-to-late August, on through September. .. Read more

Chartreuse Baits Top For Ocean Salmon
By Gary Blasi | 07/30/2014
Trolling a Fire Brined bait is like creating a smoke screen in the water. When you put the brined bait in the water it stands out like a light bulb. On a normal day (when there’s no weeds, dirty water, etc) when you put it in the water you don’t even see the flasher because the bait stands out. That’s what we want. There’s so much bait in the water I want to drag something the fish is going to see. My theory is I want it to be a bait like all the live bait out there, but I want it to look different. I want it to catch the salmon’s eye, which the chartreuse does. .. Read more

Salmon Stacked Off Eureka Coast
By Chris Shaffer | 07/29/2014
While the odd day happens, limits have been common this summer and it’s only going to improve. Eureka is keeping pace as the most consistent, hottest fishery in Nor Cal right now, a sign that Northern California and Oregon and in for another great salmon run. According to Blasi, most of the salmon they’ve caught have been hatchery fish, which usually means they’re headed to the Sac, he says. .. Read more

Learn To Cure Eggs Like An Alaskan
By Andy Couch | 07/28/2014
Many drying or preserving agents will work for curing salmon roe, and throughout 40 years of salmon angling I’ve successfully cured roe that caught salmon using borax, salt, sugar, Jell-O and various commercial cures. At this point, as a salmon fishing guide, I use Pautzke’s Fire Cure, which provides quality drying/curing agents and enhances the finished bait with krill scent. .. Read more

600,000 Sockeye Invande Upper Columbia
By Brad Wagner | 07/25/2014
It’s been an exciting July here in Central Washington. We’ve seen more than 600,000 sockeye salmon cross Bonneville Dam, the first of seven dams these fish swim past on their way up to Lake Osoyoos in Canada. There’s so many sockeye in the Upper Columbia River right now that it’s been a chore for me to sit down and write this. .. Read more

The Secret Shrimp Cure, That's Not So Secret!
By Brad Wagner | 07/23/2014
As with any bait keeping them cold is important. As long as you do, you’ll have a quality bait to use. And, with a massive amount of salmon coming to the Northwest it’s time to prepare your shrimp now. Keep in mind, many of us don’t have eggs to cure yet. Fortunately, with these shrimp there’s no problem. You can still catch fish with shrimp and many times will surprise yourself and be out catching guys using eggs... Read more

Steelhead Filing Into Oregon's Willamette
By Bret Stuart | 07/22/2014
Most steelhead are found on the Middle Fork/Main Willamette between Dexter Dam and Beltline Bridge, which is about a 30-mile stretch, basically from Lowell to Eugene. Size-wise we are seeing larger fish this year, most notably a lot of 10-11 pound fish, rather than the eight pounders we saw last year... Read more

Sacramento River Salmon Season Opens Today
By Scott Feist | 07/16/2014
Due to our drought there’s a lot of pessimism on supposed low water conditions. First off, let me tell you right now our rivers are far from low. And, we are supposed to have good flows for some time. With that being said, we are going to have less water in our rivers at an earlier time than we normally do. But don’t let that fool you. The salmon are coming. That’s the key thing: the salmon are coming. It doesn’t make a difference. If there’s enough water for them to swim up the river they are going to come. .. Read more

Big Kokanee In Tahoe
By Rick Kennedy | 07/15/2014
So far this year, in my boat, I’ve seen fish up to 18 inches. These are fat, hard-fighting, 18-inch fish. I’ve witnessed other anglers at the boat ramp with fish up to 3.5 pounds and larger. Also, I’ve had several reports from reputable anglers of even larger kokanee so far this year. It’s going to be a great summer for kokanee fishing in the Tahoe Basin. There’s big kokes around, but don’t expect all of them to be huge... Read more

Kentucky's Hatchery Creek Stuffed With Trout
By Chris Shaffer | 06/18/2014
For those who haven’t been, which I’m guessing is most; Hatchery Creek is one of Kentucky’s most heavily fished creeks. At the base of Lake Cumberland, and just feet from Wolf Creek National Fish Hatchery, this small stream gets pounded by anglers and stocked often. .. Read more

Kentucky's Cumberland Rainbows Showing Big
By Chris Shaffer | 06/17/2014
Fortunately, unlike many portions of the Southeast, the Cumberland River is a year-round trout fishery that is turning the corner into prime now. Even when it’s in the 90s, and extreme humidity is present, these trout flourish in 50-degree water and continue to grow daily. For a chance at a three-pound rainbow, which is pretty common this summer, it’s time to head to South Central Kentucky, where some of the hottest trout fishing in the country is taking place right now. .. Read more
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