Copyright 2017 James Marsh
Fly Fishing The Hoh River Washington
The Hoh River is located on the Olympic Peninsula. It
begins at the Hoh Glacier on Mount Olympus and flows
through the Olympic Mountains of the Olympic National
Park and the Olympic National Forest. After exiting the
forest, it flows through the foothills of a broad valley and
into its final destination, the Pacific Ocean at the Hoh
Indian Reservation. The scenery along the river is
breathtaking and unusual. For example, the National
Park section has some of the largest trees in the World.
The river also passes through the Hoh Rain Forest.
There are three branches that make up the Hoh River.
The North Fork, Tom and Glacier Creeks referred to as
the Middle Fork, and the South Fork. The North Fork of
the Hoh is fed by the Mt. Tom Glacier and the South Fork
is fed by Humes Glacier. There are several other smaller
tributaries along its route.
The large native winter steelhead the Hoh River is
famous for are supplemented by hatchery planted fish by
the state of Washington and the Hoh tribe. The hatchery
fish begin to show in the river in November along with a
few returning native steelhead. In late January the
hatchery run starts to slow down and the large natives
start to show in larger numbers. Although this is the prime
time, Steelhead are in the Hoh River every month of the
year. Most of the time there's enough water in the river
to keep the steelhead on the move making it possible for
one to catch a steelhead just about anytime of the year. .
By far the best method of fly fishing the Hoh River is to
fish it from a drift boat. The Upper Hoh River has three
boat ramps and three basic sections to drift. The first one
is just inside the park; the next one at Morgan's Crossing;
and the lower ramp is at the Oxbow Campground. There
are also several places on the Upper Hoh River where
you can wade or fish from the banks and catch steelhead
Many anglers prefer to fish the Lower Hoh River and of
course, they are the first ones to have a shot at the fish
entering the river. It's wider and usually runs a little
slower and smoother than the Upper Hoh. There are two
boat launch areas on the Lower Hoh. The Cottonwood
Camp launch area can be reached by Oil City Road.
Farther downstream the Nolan Creek Bar can be reached
from highway #101.
The Hoh River has a very large Silver Salmon run. The
fish average about ten pounds with some going up to
twenty. King Salmon enter the Hoh during the Fall. These
large salmon can weight up to fifty pounds or more.
You may also want to consider fishing the South Fork of
the Hoh River. It's a tributary stream that enters the Hoh
River near the National Park boundary. It sees far, fewer
anglers than the main stem of the Hoh. It's best described
as small stream steelhead fly fishing.
|Type of Stream
Steelhead (Native and Hatchery)
Bull Trout (protected)
Resident Cutthroat Trout
Medium, about 39 miles of water
from the Glacier to the Ocean
Seasons are species specific, Check
State of Washington
National Weather Service Link
USGS Stream Flow Data:
Hoh River near Hwy101
Fly Fishing Guide - Gear, Tackle
Free Shipping Continental U. S.
100% Satisfaction Guaranteed
Recommended Tackle & Gear
7, 8 , 9 or 10 weight for appropriate type
rod, sinking, sinking tip and floating
10#, 12# in 9 to 15 feet lengths
10# and 12#
Best Fly Rods:
Perfect Fly 7, 8, 9 and 10 ft. single hand
For 7 to 10 weight lines
Fly Floatants and Misc Items:
KISS Strike Indicators, Lanyards, etc.
Tools & Accessories:
Nippers, forceps, retractors, etc.
Hoh River Fishing Report:
11/22/13 Customer reporting hatchery
steelhead beginning to show up in good
numbers in lower river. Ordered our Perfect
Fly Steelhead Green Sedge caddis larva fly.
Hasn't caught any yet but say this fly worked
great last year.
Salmon fishing starts about the second
week of October when the river levels
start rising from the fall rains. Steelhead
fishing begins about mid November.
January to April is the best winter
Be sure and check the current year
regulations for seasons which are species
April continues the winter steelhead season
Summertime is the least productive time of
11/29/13 Fishing has improved. Lots of
hatchery fish being caught according to
our local contact.
12/12/13 Fishing is still very good in the
lower river and improving upstream.
12/23/13 The river is still low but it has
come up some within the last couple of
days. It is flowing at 1830 cfs and 3.6 ft
which is still below normal. Still only a
few fish being caught.
Fishing Report Updated 02/18/17
(Bottom Of Page)
12/30/13 Talked to a customer ordering
flies that fished the upper Hoh yesterday
and did not catch a fish or see one caught.
01/11/14 Rain has very recently brought
the stream levels up to 13,000 cfs and
8.11 foot which is high. This should help
the fishing opportunities big time. Rain is
in the forecast for the next several days.
01/18/14 The rain has improved the
fishing big time and steelhead are being
caught. We had fly orders this past week
for our Perfect Fly Spey patterns and
Comets and Buggers.
01/25/14 Stream is back down below
normal at 1460 cfs and 3.09 feet. No
reports from any customers.
02/01/14 The water has a little color on
the upper river and lower has a lot of
color. Lots of anglers were fishing and
the results wasn't that good.
02/08/14 Snowing today and tomorrow
then turning warmer and raining for the
remaining of the week. Much better
conditions expected in the near future.
Remember, the Hoh takes longer than
the other streams to clear up.
02/15/14 River is flowing at 3910 cfs
and 4.57 feet which is high. Heavy rain
is forecast for the next week so look for
it to blow out for a few days.
02/22/14 The high water brought more
wild fish in the river. The water is still a
little off color and getting low fast. Much
better conditions exist.
03/01/14 Right now the Hoh is in decent
shape with good levels and more fish but
there is rain in the forecast everyday for
the coming week and the levels will be
03/08/14 Very high water exist with over
20,000 cfs and will be blown out for a
03/15/14 Conditions have improved.
Stream flows are currently 3720 cfs at
5.48 ft. Those are good levels for fishing.
03/22/14 The river is back to near normal
flows and steelhead are still being caught.
03/29/14 The river is a little high but rising.
Currently it is at 3590 cfs and 4.41 ft. but
there is rain in the forecast every day for
the next week.
04/05/14 Fishing has been okay. Some
spring Chinook are showing up.
|Options For Selecting Flies:
1. Email us (firstname.lastname@example.org)
with the dates you will be fishing this
stream and we will send you a list of our
fly suggestions. Please allow up to 24
hours for a response.
2. Call us 800-594-4726 and we will help
you decide which flies you need.
3. Email us (email@example.com)
with a budget for flies and we will select
them to match the budget and get them to
you in time for your fly fishing trip.
All orders are shipped free in the
U. S. Orders over $50 are shipped via
04/12/14 Only three more days left in the
04/26/14 Season closed. We will
resume the reports in May.
05/17/14 Season reopens the first
Saturday in June or June 7th. Check back
with us then.
05/07/14 Season opens today. Be sure to
check the flows.
06/14/14 No reports from anyone fishing.
The river has good visibility and steelhead
and trout can be caught.
06/21/14 No reports but good levels and
clarity. No salmon fishing. Trout and
steelhead can be caught but still no
reports from any anglers fishing.
07/05/14 Low water and few anglers
fishing. Let us hear from you.
07/26/14 Few fish are being caught.
Conditions are expected to improve later in
08/10/14 Low water conditions is still
hurting the fishing.
08/16/14 Cooler weather will help the
situation some, but for all practical
purposes the fishing opportunities are zip.
08/30/14 The water is still too low but
great to wade. Some resident trout are
being caught all the way into the park.
09/13/14 No reports for the past two
weeks. Resident trout were being caught
and probably still are but that's about it.
09/27/14 It won't be long before Fall
Kings and Coho begin to enter the river. It
is usually mid October but it all depends
on the levels. .
10/11/14 Anglers are catching a few Coho
and some steelhead but fishing is still slow
due to low water. It is getting cooler, starting
to rain and fishing should improve soon.
10/18/14 No reports from this past week. It
is raining with more forecast.
10/25/14 Stream flows have been high
and more rain is in the forecast.
11/08/14 A few coho and chinook are
in the river. No steelhead yet.
12/03/14 This month steelhead fishing
should get going but you have to pay close
attention to the water levels. No action yet.
12/14/14 Plenty of steelhead were being
caught in the lower Hoh River. The river
isn't currently in great shape but watch it
closely. Some winter's should be showing
12/27/14 Stream levels are back down
near normal. Nothing reported caught
since the first of December.
01/10/15 Anglers have been catching a
few hatchery steelhead on a regular
basis. Levels are still in good shape.
01/17/15 No reports from the past week.
01/24/15 There have been a few
steelhead caught in the upper river but
all in all, it is still slow.
02/07/15 The Hoh is blown out at over
18,000 cfs. It will take a while to clear up.
02/21/15 Three customers reported
catching wild steelhead in the upper Hoh
within the last few days. Nymphs and
03/21/15 Most anglers are reporting slow
fishing "catching". The levels are high
today, so be sure to check them.
03/28/15 The Hoh is off big time. Catching
04/11/15 There has been a few fish
caught but very few. The season ends
04/18/15 Season ended April 15th. Send
us an email or give us a call and let us
plan your next trip.
05/23/15 Send us an email and let us
help you plan your next trip.
06/13/15 You have to watch the water
levels and clarity. Glacial melt or low water
can be a problem. Summer steelhead, sea
run cutts and spring chinook. Steelhead will
be better later this month.
06/27/15 Summer steelhead are showing up,
sea run cutts, dolly varden and spring
07/11/15 The river is largely ignored in July
but the above species can be caught.
08/08/15 Not much of anything to report. Low
water levels, which is normal for this month.
08/29/15 National park water closed to Oct 31.
State water: Sea run cutts, some hatcherfy SH
and some coho are being caught. Rain and
cooler air temps should help.
09/05/15 Anglers are catching lots of sea-run
cutts. There are some summer run SH and coho
in the river as well. The rain really helped.
09/12/15 Remember the Nat. Park waters are
closed to Oct. 31st. The state waters are
open and anglers are catching lots of sea run
cutts, and some summer run steelhead.
09/26/15 Anglers are doing good in the Hoh
with lots of sea-run cutts being caught and
some coho and steelhead. Give us a call or
email for fly selection.
10/10/15 Sea-run cutthroat trout fishing is
excellent with some very good number being
caught. There are a few King and Coho
salmon as well. The National Park waters
open at the end of this month. Salmon Flies
10/24/15 Low, clear water continues to hurt the
fly fishing opportunities. Few fish are in the
river and what is there are spooky. There is a
chance of rain every day for the next week and
maybe conditions will improve soon.
10/31/15 Water levels were up after some
good rains and a few Coho were caught but
they are on the way back down.
11/07/15 They are catching a few coho, kings
and sea-run cutthroat is good. Rain on the way.
11/14/15 The river has been way up and off
color but falling fast. There is more rain
forecast but right now, conditions are good.
11/28/15 The stream levels have been high
and the water off color but back down to near
normal. You might catch a coho. No
steelhead spotted or caught yet.
12/05/15 Still no hatchery fish caught but it
should happen very soon. High water now and
it will be getting higher with all the rain forecast.
12/26/15 As I'm sure you know, the rain has
continued to fall for the last three weeks. High
water levels eliminated the fishing but the
river is down to almost a normal level. Many
of the hatchery fish have probably returned.
Let us hear from you.
01/09/16 There are a few hatchery fish and
some wild steelhead being caught mostly in
the upper Hoh. The flows are a little below
normal now and nymphs is working best.
Perfect Fly Steelhead patterns.
01/23/16 There has been very few steelehead
caught the last couple of weeks due mostly to
stream levels and flows. It is at 10,000 cfs now
but falling. You will just have to watch the level.
01/30/16 The river is just now getting back down
from almost flood stage but in decent shape
now. Fish are scattered from top to bottom.
02/06/16 The Hoh has 6100cfs flows and
heading up. The water is fairly clear but swift.
02/16/16 The river got down to about 4000 cfs
three days ago but now back up to 6450 cfs. It
is best around 2000-2500.
02/27/16 The river has just recently got back
down to a normal level and clear enough to fish.
Fishing was good yesterday. Swinging flies is
working best. - Our Spey patterns are working.
03/12/16 The river is still flowing at 6180 cfs and
normal is about 2230, so it is still very high and
raining. Fishing will be good when if falls down.
03/26/16 The river is down to 3330 cfs, much
better but still high. Some Steelehead are
being caught mostly in the upper Hoh.
04/02/16 Good numbers of steelhead are
being caught in the upper and lower Hoh.
Good conditions exit right now.
04/15/16 Season closed today, the 15th.
05/28/16 Spring Chinook are being caught in
06/11/16 The heat from the past week has the
water cloudy but it should start clearing up fast
this week. Right now, there is little opportunity.
07/02/16 The Hoh is closed for the summer
due to low numbers of Chinook.
08/06/16 Closed until September 1st.
08/20/16 Just a little over a week until the
season opens. Now is the time to make your
plans. Send us an email.
09/10/16 Coho are throughout the system.
Summer Steelhead are starting to show. The
water is low and needs to come up.
11/12/16 There are a few coho in the river.
Steelhead should start coming in anytime now.
11/26/16 There are steelhead coming into the
river. Flow are 6450 cfs but falling.
12/24/16 The river is flowing about 3000 cfs, or
just a little above normal and steelhead are
coming in. We haven't received any reports this
week but should be getting some. Swinging and
nymphing should be best.
01/14/17 The flows are at 1400 cfs. We haven't
received any reports of steelhead caught yet.
They should start coming in before the month is
over and get going good in February.
01/28/17 The river is still on the drop and
getting better. A few wild steelhead are in the
river and it should get much better very soon.
02/04/17 A decent number of steelhead were
caught last week. Stream levels are a little high
but still okay. Fish the lower and/or upper river.
02/11/17 The water is still high but falling fast.
As soon as it is down a little more fish from
Morgans Crossing to Cottonwood Campground.
02/18/17 The stream levels are falling and back
down okay for boat but not yet low enough to
wade. Swinging flies should work good.