Location: Downstream of 7 Mile Dam, Pend Oreille River
Weather: Partially sunny with cloudy breaks
Temperature: 27 degrees Celsius
We began both days mid afternoon between 2-4pm. It was a hot afternoon with slight cloud cover rolling in towards evening. We always lead off a family fishing day in the Pend Oreille with a traditional swim in the bath-like temperature emerald waters. This is what makes this fishery such a great option for beginners and children. The various landscapes offer a variety of rock jumping and wading.
After a mid day cool down, we began our fishing adventure. We tried a number of methods including top water cast and retrieve, jig tipped with and without bait, and other spin cast methods. The bottom water was where the action was to be found. Using a 3-way swivel, a current dependant rock for weight, and different presentations of beads, corkies and blades on about a 3-foot lead worked very well. Our weight was set no more than 4” from the tri-swivel. The best action was realized on rigs tipped with worm though at one point we reused a piece of crayfish stuck in a Bass’ mouth with immediate appreciation. Once baited, the rig was tossed into about 10-15 feet of water and the rod placed into a Rod Sprocket fishing rod holder, slack line was taken up, and action began almost right away.
Bass are greedy so almost any colour works, but we found that any combination of bead and float involving chartreuse to be deadly. Silvers and blues are a fine back up. For the most part we averaged 10-15 bass/day with lengths between 6-12”. 3 “first fish’s” were caught in these two days! I always take beginners here as it is as close to a guarantee that you can get in the wonderful world that is fishing. We also caught about 10 Northern Pikeminnow per day, which are a boney fish and not my favourite, but averaging 14-18” they are a great fight for a first-timer!
Even though the Pend Oreille River is exempt from single barbless, I recommend pinching the barbs down. The action is steady enough you can afford to lose a few, and Bass are known for swallowing the hook. A larger hook than you would think also helps like a #3 or 4 hook.