Alan Liere’s fishing-hunting report for April 21

Fly fishing

McDowell and Bailey lakes are open for fly fishing on Saturday and should fish well this year.

The St. Joe’s River has been fishing well recently. Silver Bow Fly Shop said there were good brown peaches in March in the afternoon after streamer fishing in the morning. You can go as high as Packsaddle above Avery. The upper reaches of most rivers aren’t worth fishing until May.

Trout and kokanee

The open season for fishing in the Washington Lowlands lakes is Saturday. The best prospects in District 1 are Cedar, Starvation, and Rocky, but Waitts Lake, which is open year-round, should also fish well, as should Jumpoff Joe. Sherry, Mudgett and Rigby lakes received important plants. In District 2, West Medical, Clear, and Fishtrap will probably be good, but Badger could be better with lots of carries and some good-sized kokanis.

Lake Chelan kokanee are deep and beginning to move towards the lower basin. A good place to start is the red roof area. The fish aren’t in big schools yet, but they’re bigger this year. The best depth seems to be between 70 and 80 feet, and the mornings have been the most successful.

Salmon and rainbow trout

Spring Chinook Salmon will be open on the Snake River as described:

Slot A: Open on Tuesdays and Fridays only, from May 3 until further notice. Location B: open Wednesdays and Thursdays only, from May 4 until further notice. Location A is below Little Goose Dam from the Texas Rapids boat launch to the fishing restriction limit below Little Goose Dam. This area includes both banks and the rocky, concrete area between the Juvenile Diversion Return Pipe and the Little Goose Dam along the south bank of the facility, including the walkway area known locally as the “wall in front of the juvenile collection facility. Location B is below Ice Harbor Dam from the Highway 12 bridge southbound near Pasco upstream approximately 7 miles to the fishing restriction limit below Ice Harbor Dam.

thorny ray

Walleye anglers have had some luck recently at Rufus Woods and Spokane Arm of Lake Roosevelt. Jigging and bouncing bottom were equally productive. On Roosevelt, some large walleye and smallmouth were included in the catch.

There were plenty of walleye, smallmouth bass and big rainbowfish at the recent Banks Lake Triple Fish Challenge. Fishing in Banks Lake for all species has improved dramatically over the past two weeks.

Moses Lake is a great place to start bass fishing. There are miles of shoreline and plenty of docks to lay on Moses Lake. The fish must be in prespawn mode and not yet on their beds. However, they will soon be staged and the capture will increase significantly.

Braving the elements on Lake Eloika, a friend had a great day fishing for crappie with his two kids on Monday, catching around 40 fish in two hours. He said most of the fish were over the legal size limit of 9 inches. Crappie is also starting to appear in the shallow waters of other lowland lakes like Sacheen, Newman, Fernan, Hayden and Hauser.


Although turkey hunting was a headache for me this spring, several friends did well. I hear a few gurgles, and the birds that normally visit my pasture north of Spokane haven’t appeared. I blame the unstable weather, and with more than five weeks left in the season, I’m optimistic things will change.

The Idaho Fish and Game Commission approved the 2022-2023 migratory game bird seasons during its April 14 conference call. Notable changes include the closing of duck seasons on Jan. 31 for the majority of the state, bag limits for Canada geese increasing from four to five geese, and sandhill crane tags increasing in all but one area.


Contact Alan Liere at [email protected]

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