Cutthroat & Rainbow Trout

Cutthroat & Rainbow Trout

Washington state offers a variety of opportunities to fish for both rainbow trout and several species of cutthroat trout, including coastal, westslope and lahontan varieties.

Rainbows are universally loved throughout the world and are known for their acrobatic fighting ability and beautifully colored bodies. They generally take dry flies well, especially when a good hatch of insects gets going. The Yakima River in eastern Washington and the Cedar River near Renton offer excellent fishing for these fish that range from 8" up to 20". The Yakima is Washington's blue ribbon trout stream and has miles of fishable water from Cle Elum to below Ellensburg. Insects are abundant and reliable hatches during most of the year keep things interesting. The Cedar has some big rainbows, as in those measured in pounds. There aren't very many, but they are worth searching for with big dries, nymphs and streamers. These rainbows likely use Lake Washington as a foraging and wintering area.

Cutthroat trout are the native trout of Washington and the sea-run coastal cutthroat is probably the most abundant right now. Enlightened catch and release management in Puget Sound has brought back good numbers of fish along the beaches. An angler can catch fish from 8" to 20" within minutes of downtown Seattle if she wishes. These sea-run fish use the rivers in the fall and early spring for spawning and great river fishing is available in the larger rivers north of Seattle. The Snoqualmie and Stilly both offer excellent sea-run fishing in the fall.

Coastal cutthroat are also available in a land locked form in the upper reaches of most of our mountains. There are a few westslope cutts as well, but these are generally found east of the mountains, while the coastal variety are found west of the Cascades. These are free rising fish, that respond well to most dry flies during the summer and fall when the creeks are at their lowest levels.

Please contact us at [email protected] or call 877-347-4874 for more details.