Wednesday, October 14, 2015

A Memorial Service For

Larry Levine

will be held on Sunday, October 25 at 1:00

Susan Creek Day Use Picnic Area

All are welcome to attend

Monday, October 5, 2015

Remembering Larry Levine

Long-time Steamboater Larry Levine was one of the 10 people killed while teaching a writing class at Umpqua Community College in another senseless mass murder.

Larry was a gentle, literate man, a dedicated flyfisher, a passionate baseball fan, a long time guide on the North Umpqua River, a teacher, a skilled cook, a man with a strong sense of how he wanted to live. 

Larry first visited the North Umpqua River in the early 80’s at the invitation of Dave Hall whom he met when they were attending the University of Oregon.  Larry immediately fell in love with the River, moved up from southern Oregon, and never left.

A gifted writer and observer, Larry wrote several novels, none of which were published, but had several stories and essays published in periodicals including Fly Fisherman and Gray’s Sporting Journal; he also contributed pieces for the Steamboat Whistle over the years.

A gathering on the River is being planned for later this fall, and Steamboaters will be notified shortly about time and place.

Thursday, October 1, 2015

The North Umpqua Foundation's Annual Dinner

On Saturday October 17, 2015, please join the North Umpqua Foundation and celebrate the year's activities & stewardship of the river.

Annual meeting will be at 1:00 in the Library at Steamboat Inn.

Appetizers at 6:00 with dinner following.

$225 per person and reservations are required as seating is limited.

RSVP prior to October 8th - or 541-498-2230

Saturday, July 11, 2015

A Visit with Lee Spencer

Yesterday, Becky and I had lunch at Steamboat Inn and then decided to go all the way up to the Big Bend pool and visit with Lee Spencer. As you would expect, the conversation revolved around the fish. Lee estimated there were around 140 fish in the pool and they were all typical North Umpqua sized fish and he was hoping to see one of the 20 pounders come in as he has in the past. He said those big fish are not only longer but also really round. The conversation suggested the potential for some really large fish being in this river. Those of us who have fished the river for a long time have been lucky enough to have experienced seeing one of these fish and when you see them, they are big.

I hooked one of those big fish in the Oakie many years ago. I had stopped to look as I often did and Holy Moly there was one of those big things. I grabbed my fly rod off the rig and put on my Captain Nemo, a fly of my own design and that big fish slammed it right after it hit the water. I couldn’t believe it but, of course, I also thought I was going to land that thing or know the reason why. We had a hellacious battle but I was sure I was going to get it one way or the other. I fought it until dark and ultimately it became clear I was simply not going to land it so I cut my leader and we were both free.

I got to see one up close and wrote about it in a book I wrote a few years back, The North Umpqua Chronicles, in the June chapter.

“Nevertheless, this is the beginning of my fishing year. June is a slow month, but that does not mean it is a waste of time, there is always the chance of something interesting happening, like the time a few years ago when I was at the “Famous” fishing from the lower stand on a pleasant spring day. After no more than half dozen casts there, a huge fish, at least 20 pounds, came porpoising through the pool like a whale. With majestic head and tail rises it passed no more than 15 yards out from me…an absolutely gorgeous bright fish with a faint pink stripe along its broad flank. It set me off on a period of what was perhaps the most frantically insane fishing episode of my life. I was Captain Ahab wildly pursuing Moby Dick. For days I relentlessly fished everything upstream, madly racing between the pools, clambering up and down the banks, flogging the water, hoping to intercept it somewhere. I never saw it again, but I can see that fish clearly in my mind’s eye even yet. I am sure a few of these huge fish enter the river every year, but we seldom have the chance to see them.”
Pat Mc

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Hot weather and responsible steelhead fishing

The following is used with permission from Mark Stangeland, North Umpqua Fly Guide. The Steamboaters thought it was an important request. You can follow Mark at

 I appeal to you all to be responsible out there this year. If the water is too warm
in the afternoon don't fish. Carry a thermometer and use it. We may have to make some
hard decisions this year till we get some weather/rain etc. I won't fish if temps won't
allow it. I can't tell you what to do you must let your conscience be your guide.
> As a guide it may mean canceling some trips. I'm ok with that. It's gonna be hard
but it's the right thing to do.........
> And also this year, with potentially warmer conditions overall,how about trying to
tell your fishing stories without fish pictures. It can be done. Take some great scenery
pics of people you fish with and call it good.
If temps are anything over 65 I would caution against fishing. We can't tell people what to do but hopefully strong suggestions will help.
The next week could be critical.
Here are the temps out of Copeland creek that could be used as a guide to know kind off what's happening down lower in the river. When you see temps of high 50's up at Copeland you know it's not good at Baker Park in the afternoons......

Thursday, April 9, 2015

The tenth Steelhead Summit

presented by the Steelhead Summit Alliance

Wild Skagit Steelhead:
Conservative fisheries management for continued stock recovery

Saturday, April 18, 2015 | Seattle, WA

Full agenda will be posted soon!

Learn more about wild steelhead and major threats to their existence.
Learn more about the Wild Steelhead Coalition.
Support the Wild Steelhead Coalition with a tax-deductible donation.
Questions or concerns? Send us an email.
Continue the conversation on Facebook and stay updated on Twitter.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Heat stressed fish

Per an email to the Steamboaters from Alan Bunce:

As you know, when the river heats up the fish are forced to use the cold, oxygenated water of the tributaries as they make their way upstream. I have seen these fish in July & August lying on rock shelves with their backs out of the water to get oxygen. Unfortunately, some "fishermen" have discovered this and insist on catching/releasing them, which is often a death sentence. The fish I found didn't have visible marks indicating they had been caught and released.

I talked to Tim Walters of ODFW on Monday about the problem. We both feel that special regulations may be in order to remedy the problem. We talked about a bubble closure around creek mouths when the river reaches a certain temp.

If potentially heat stressed fish are observed, you are asked to call Tim Walters with the location - 541-440-3353.