By Kevin Marshall | 08/16/2010
Arguably one of the most beautiful places in Oregon, the Deschutes combines a very scenic environment and large numbers of Summer Steelhead. It also provides a challenge both from the water itself and the special regulations governing it’s fishing. When fishing the Deschutes anglers must fish from outside of the boat. We can use boats for transportation up and down the river but while in the act of fishing you must standing on the bank or river bottom. Other regulations include not using any forms of natural, soft plastic or rubber artificial baits. You can however use scents. Below are some of the methods I use in my business while taking advantage of the use of scents to improve our odds.
Plugs – Tadpollys, Fatfish, Wiggle Warts, and many other plugs are very effective and all have their place and water condition. Color patterns such as the michael jackson, fire tiger, blue and green pirates and many others are all solid choices. Many anglers are also painting plugs flat black and placing a red or chartreuse dot near the tail. Plugs can be both cast and swung through holding water or used behind a side planer. In both cases I’ll add scent to improve their effectiveness. I start each morning with clean plugs that have been washed to remove any left over smells from the day before. A couple of my mainstays are the Pautzke liquid Krill, anise oil or a combination of the two scents applied liberally at the beginning of each run.
Spinners – I generally make my own spinners using sizes 3 and 4 using french and inline blades in colors of black, gold, copper, and some silver. Production spinners such as the Blue Fox vibrax in size 3 & amp; 4, Sonic Rooster Tail, or Panther Martin are also good options. Just like with the plugs I start each morning with clean lures that have been washed from the day before. I then add the same scents I use on my plugs several times over the course of the day to improve the lures effectiveness.
Drift Fishing – This is probably my favorite method. I’ll use several different types of drift bobbers and yarn combinations depending on the time of the year and water clarity. Spin-n-glos in size 12 and 14 in the blue metallic, silver metallic, fire tiger, sherbet, and clown are all good choices and account for their share fish. I fish these above a 4mm bead on top of a size 1 Gamakatsu hook with anywhere from a 20 to 36″ leader depending on the water conditions. In late September and October I use a lot of corkies. Anything the looks like a salmon egg will work but my favorite is the red with black egg scale in the 12 and 14 sizes. I’ll fish small yarn balls with each of these lures in white, cerise or flesh colors. The yarn serves several purposes. One it adds another color to the offering but it also provides a place to add the scent. I like the Pautzke nectars in the application, especially the red. A couple drops applied periodically on the yarn makes for a very effective bait.