Thanks to all my supporters

Dear Friends and Anglers,

I have officially shut down all aspects of my fly fishing business. This blog will remain up as an archive and for when I feel inspired to discuss fishing and fishing related issues. I want to thank everyone who has supported me through this adventure. My clients are incredible people that I really enjoyed spending time with over the years, dating all the way back to 1994 in Colorado. I hope to see many of you out on the river. Feel free to email or drop me a line anytime!

Jason Cross

For local guiding and lessons, please contact my good friend Ed Megill @

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Phil Anderson elected to take over.

So Phil Anderson is taking over as director of the WDFW. What will this mean for us sports fishermen? Anyone have an insight?
What have you been up to this summer? Bull kelp wrapped around my fins looking for coho is where I have been. Ready for the rain and the rivers, steelhead and silvers. Hope to see you out there soon.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Remaining Nooksack River Outings

Kenn Kiesner with a nice dolly!

The good news is that the Nooksack has produced some great fish this season. The bad news is that we have 8 days left in the Nooksack season. Now or next year baby! The other bad news is that I won't be able to take any more outings personally because I am booked with private trips. The other really good news is that Ed Megill is offering up a plethora of outing dates from now until the end of March (listed above).

Good friend, and guide, Ed Megill is offering discounted outing trips for two people. The Nooksack River, after the January floods, is best fished with two people and we made the conscious decision to keep the experience top notch. Last year the runs could accommodate 4-6 anglers at a time or two anglers for three hours. That is not the case this season especially with the low water.

Ed has been prowling the banks of the Nooksack this season and has had great success on top secret runs and patterns. See what its all about. Get out there, you won't regret it. Give me a call.

The Lunch Bucket

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Nooksack River after the Floods

I was out today with a friend on the North Fork. It is still high and quite dirty, maybe a foot and a half of visibility maximum. And that is above the hatchery! The Middle Fork continues to provide 35% of the flow below Mosquito Lake Road and the South Fork and Middle Fork making up over half of the flow on the main stem. I saw a couple people putting in their pontoon boats at Mosquito Lake launch and I hope they looked at the MF flows. The lower North Fork is somewhere around 2900 cfs.

Surprisingly, right before I nearly fell to my waste in Quick-sack sand, I felt a tug on the dangle. I pulled back on the spey rod as I fell and the fish at the other end likely kept me from falling flat on my face in the water. I struggled to shore hoping I had a good hook set. What a beautiful fat dolly! I wasn't sure at first what it was because of the size. Much more than one could ask for on a day like today...and then the sun came out, warm on the face! The fog cloud still sat over Ferndale and Blaine when I got home...should have stayed on the river.

Outings are on hold for a bit until I can get back out and see the river in full. It needs a few more days of cold to drop into shape on the North Fork and maybe a week or more on the Main Stem. The Main Stem could keep it's poor clarity for some time depending on what the South Fork clay banks have in store for us. The Kendall hatchery, as of the 15th, has 46 fish back. Either a bad year, there are more to come, too many harvested in nets or the fish gave up during the flood and are spawning somewhere else. Will we really know if they don't show up at the hatchery? I can't imagine nets were too successful this year either with the early ice and then the floods.

I will keep you posted on outings for late January or early February on the Nooksack. Looks like we should head for the Skagit now that there isn't snow covering the put-ins.

Local Information

Nooksack River

The Nooksack is our most Northern Puget Sound river. From the flanks of beautiful Mt. Baker and the Mt. Baker Wilderness the Nooksack River travels 75 miles to Bellingham Bay through diverse terrain. Three forks make up the main stem that locals say starts in the town of Deming. The North Fork provides most of the water in the drainage right off the northern side of Mt. Baker and parallels the Mt. Baker Highway often unseen. The Middle Fork is smaller and faster tributary with a steeper gradient and deep plunge pools. The South Fork, although some 50 miles long that stretches into Skagit County, is only fishable for 14 river miles before it closes to protect endangered Chinook spawning grounds.

The North Fork Kendall Creek hatchery provides a decent fishery for winter steelhead and October salmon fishing. Chinook and coho hatchery returns are mainly from the Native hatchery on the South Fork at Skookum Creek. Salmon fishing opens on the Main Stem in early September and stays good through a healthy chum run well into December. Both forks open in October for salmon but can be fished for sea-run cutthroat trout in September. Thanksgiving brings about hatchery steelhead season which carries through into January. Wild steelhead start trickling into the system in December and really show up in good numbers in January and February. Sadly for the fishermen the river closes in the end of February.

The main stem is a true spey rod river with some beautiful classic steelhead runs that will remind you of other nice places you have fished. The forks are smaller and lend themselves more to the single handed rod or a switch rod. The North Fork Nooksack is a wild and scenic river and boasts an incredible population of bald eagles. The river shifts quite frequently throughout the vast channel as the waters rise and fall with rain. Tree roots and log jams make up much of the excellent fish habitat on this fork. The south and middle forks are more defined channels and runs and holes remain more consistent. Wherever you are on this river the backdrop is spectacular. Around one bend you will look back and see The Sisters and the next bend will offer a pristine view of towering Mt. Baker.

Resident trout and anadromous dolly varden are found throughout the system in small numbers with the latter being off limits to target. The North Fork Nooksack above the 100 foot Nooksack Falls can be fun summer trout fishing with light weight rods and surface flies. Some open tributaries such as Canyon Creek can be great fun on the dry fly in July through September for small to medium sized trout. These tributaries of crystal clear cascading water sooth the sole and bring you smiling back to the roots of fly fishing.

Puget Sound Beaches are fun relief from the river and Stillwater settings. Sea-run cutthroat are available for the catching along several nice cobblestone reaches. The shelter of bull kelp beds provide a great feeding grounds for this fun anadramous salmonid. Late summer sees the arrival of solid hatchery coho fishery easily within reach of shore.

Come on up and get away from the crowds. You wont believe how beautiful it is and you won’t regret it. And, oh yeah, you might catch some nice fish!