Heading to Central Oregon’s High Lakes for a Week of Premier Kokanee Fishng

Broken Top from Wickiup Res. Note the White Pelican in the Distance

I am headed East for some of Oregon’s best kokanee fishing. I am not planning on making it to Wallowa Lake this year although that is not because there is not a lot of “want,” just that  my time is limited at this point and there are some other destinations that are kicking out some trophy fish. The fish that I am speaking about are not. world record breakers, but they are some of the best fighting kokanee in Oregon! My destination and home base of sorts will be Wickiup Reservoir located about twenty-five miles out of La Pine Oregon. My wife and I have been spending quality time at this lake for many years due primarily to it’s central Location in the heart of good Cascade kokanee heaven.

White Pelicans on Wickiup Res

Within easy driving distance of Wickiup are Paulina Lake, East Lake, Cultus Lake, Crane Prairie Reservoir, Odell Lake, Crescent Lake and several other pristine lakes such as Little Cultus. If you tire of lake fishing, (like that is possible…) There is some awesome stream fishing available on the upper Deschutes River. I’ve spent much of my life fishing these lakes, and the upper Deschutes, in fact I grew up in this area, only moving to the Willamette Valley a little over twenty years ago. To be quite honest, it was quite an adaption from thousands of square miles of free access to everything being private over here in the valley. You really have to learn a new style if you want to fish! Fortunately we do have Green Peter close by which has proven to be a very good lake for kokanee.

2011's Kokanee Derby Largest Fish (they are bigger this year!)

The finale for my week in Central Oregon will be the upcoming kokanee derby (hosted by Kokanee Power Oregon) on Wickiup Reservoir this coming Saturday. This derby is open to all who might like to try their luck or just come out and have fun. There will be some of the best kokanee fishermen and women in the Northwest there and it is a good time to meet and greet with those folks. These people are just excited to share the tricks and tips to help you get onto the kokanee. The derby is followed by an awards ceremony and lunch. Newbie’s are encouraged to come and hang out at which time you can learn to up your game!

Kids 15 years and under can enter into the derby in the junior division for free and a chance to win all sorts of prizes. I highly encourage your to get your kids involved in this! It is an opportunity to get them into a sport that will bring them enjoyment the rest of their lives!

If you are interested in fishing at this derby check out this link.

If derby fishing for kokanee is something you would like to pursue check out this page

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See you in the comments!

Kent Cannon


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About Kent Cannon

My passion is fishing and hunting as well as traveling throughout the Northwest and writing about those adventures. I was separated from my job a few years ago due to the still ongoing economic downturn. I had spent years working, focusing on things that really were not near and dear to my heart all the while scrambling and climbing to what I perceived as the top. I of course did not realize what I was doing, because I was caught up in the moment, focusing on what I thought was the American dream. Crashing and pushing ever forward like a Lemming headed for a cliff, oblivious the world around me. I was more than a little bitter over loosing my job; it was a good job as far as jobs go and I was making a lot of money so I could live according to the manner in which I wanted to be accustomed. In the process of trying to find another job in an unfavorable economic climate I found something that I had left behind many years ago. I found me! That is how and why I started this website, looking for myself and sharing things that I found along the way. Even though I am older now, suffering a little from arthritis and my hair is now somewhat graying I still have fire in my belly for the next adventure. The more that I seek out my next adventure, the more excited I become!

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