Coldwater Lake Outing

Great fishing under the St. Helens Volcano.

Tom Bradish August 16th, 2022

Greg and I worked south thru the mid morning traffic Thursday with a plan of setting up camp and gear and a quick look at the lake ( 30 minutes from Kid Valley campground). We decided on a early Friday start to avoid any backups at the only launch (not a problem). Fishing started slow and we worked thru dry fly, intermediates, and full sink big fly with few fish. As the day wore on the fishing improved (next day we met Tim Buckley and he confirmed that late day was typically better). Eventually, it was the combo of Greg’s six pack/soft hackle small fly and full sink line that started landing numbers of fish.  Fish were nice hard fighting rainbows in 13-15” with a smaller number of cutts and cuttbows. Tough to break into larger fish ( lake location? Average size dropping?angler error?) . We observed black micro caddis, chironomids, damselfly, still hatching large dragonflies, and occasional larger caddis adults. We fished the southwest end closest to the boat launch. It would take a trolling motor and a longer day to explore the far (5 mile )other end. Wind was not a problem for us but it can be. Decided to push back the early start on Saturday.. fitted well with a leisurely morning of Greg’s homemade pancakes and Tim meeting us. Hot weather, more kayakers and weekenders.. but plenty of room.. temporary  switch to bigger flies didn't work.. Greg worked hard at Chironomids.. back to a full sink, small fly, erratic fast retrieve. Tim did well on a sunk line dbl chiro.. Beach lunch and talked with Tim about the earlier in year dry fly fishing and fall termite falls.. again the fishing improved til we tapped out after 6pm.

Have to give it another try earlier or later? Find a way to get miles down lake?

Coldwater August 2022
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Coldwater Lake Mt. St Helens

© Olympic Fly Fishers of Edmonds, 2022.