If you find a more stunningly beautiful and serene glacial moraine lake, let us know. Wallowa Lake is a truly sacred local place. The lake is deep, cold, and impossibly clear. That means that it doesn't harbor the plant and insect life to be a true blue ribbon trout lake, but you could do worse then spending an even at the river in-let on the south end fo the lake swinging nymphs and fishing with Bald Eagles and Osprey. And, if warm enough for a swim, well, there isn't a better place on earth.
Fly-fish for stocked trout at the south end where the river comes in. Cast into the stream current, throw a few mends, then strip line off your reel and let the current carry it out, then strip it in. Try a green woolly bugger or damsel fly with a small orange soft hackle trailer. Or simply dead drift a prince nymph in the current.
ODFW is a reporting in a significant shift in the Kokanee fishery. Small kokanee under 10" have increased in recent years from 70,000 to 900,000. The daily catch limit was recently increased from 10/day to 25.
Some of our favorite Wallowa Lake Fly Patterns :
Dries: Griffiths Gnat sz. 12 -18 , Parachute Adams sz. 12- 18 , Purple Haze sz 10 -16, Renegade sz. 12-16 , Turks Power Ant sz. 12 -16
Nymphs: Princes sz. 10 - 14, Rubber Leg Squirrel sz. 10 - 14, Copper John sz. 12 - 18 , Lightning Bug sz. 14 - 18, Kaufman Stone Nymph sz. 6 -12, Green Damsel Nymph sz 10 - 14, Orange Soft Hackle sz. 14 - 20, Scud Patterns, Mysis Shrimp Patterns
Streamers: BH Olive or Black Rubber Legs Wooly Bugger sz. 8 - 12 , Matuka Spruce sz. 6 - 12 , Muddler Minnow , Leeches
Wallowa Lake Reports:
9/7/19: Rain yesterday in the mountains, so a little more water in the river for the kokanee to spawn. Rainbows follow the kokanee.
8/30/19: The hatch of some kind of small bug is happening again all around the lake. Fish are rolling and dry fly fishing is good morning and evening. Kokanee are starting their fall spawn up into the river. Beautiful big red fish this year. No wading in the river due to spoiling the spawning beds (redds).
8/19/19: Fishing has been poor this last week, from shore and boats. The last stocking was almost two months ago, and no stockings are scheduled for this fall.
8/16/19: Has slowed-down as the lake has dropped from irrigation use. Still producing trout at south end, or from boats.
8/2/19: Remains “crazy good” for stocked trout on dry flies at the south end of the Lake where the river comes. We will see if this continues as the lake drops.
7/29/19: Wallowa lake has been fly fishing as well I can remember. The lake remains relatively high - the upper delta remains covered. Perhaps because of this many fish are actually being caught on dry flies where the river runs into the lake (unusual for Wallowa Lake). Or, fish nymphs (under a strike indicator, or simply cast into the river current where it enters the lake, then strip out line allowing the current to carry the line into the lake. After waiting for the fly to sink a bit, put the line under your finger on the cork and strip it back in.
7/10/19: good to very good flyfishing where the river flows into the lake on the south end. Try fishing a black or green woolly bugger cast into the river - stripping out line so the fly carries out into the lake. Or Euro Nymph in the river, or use dry flies (caddis or parachute adams) on the seam between the river and the lake,
6/19/19: Stocked and fishing great.
10/05/18: Here’s a weird one. Fishing was pretty fair most of the fall, and, of course, the river was full of spawning Kokanee. However, this morning I ran into a friend at the local coffee shop. Yesterday he was fishing the lake (no other boats) when he spotted some large fish on his fish finder at 40’. He assumed they were Mackinaw. So he put on some bait and targeted the fish. He had the darnest set of pictures of large trout with little pointed heads and football size bodies. Go figure
8/8/18: Still fishing great.
7/26/18: Heavily stocked - AND they will stock again tomorrow Friday the 27th). Fish either end where they are stocked - or stop at the road pull-out near the south end and watch them swim around. Also consider fishing the little river coming into the lake - stocked trout run up it looking for food.
7/12/14: Heavily stocked. Go catch dinner.
7/4/18: Stocked and fishing well. Flyfish near the river inlet inlet on the south end. If possible, cast into the river current and let it carry your nymph out into the lake before letting it sink. Then strip it back in. Sometimes stocked lake trout will swim up the river looking for food.
10/10/17: River into the lake is down to a trickle, ODFW haven't stocked the lake for several months, thus fising on the south end is slow.
7/16/17: The south end of the lake, where the river enters the lake, continues to be a great fishery - the best in Wallowa County this summer. Cast your weighted woolly bugger, with a small (sz 14/16/18) trailing fly, into the river current and let it be be carried into the lake, then sink, before stripping it back in. Stocked trout, some 16" to 20" - good eating.
7/25/17: Fishing better than ever on the south end where the river flows into the lake. Some big heavy 16" fished were stocked this last go-around. Fish are even taking dry flies in the morning and evening - purple haze or caddis.
7/13/17: Fishing remains good at the river inlets near the State Parks. Try a GB flash a bugger with an ant pattern 18" back. Allow the stream current to carry your flies out into the lake, allow them to sink near the bottom, them strip them in.
6/25/2017: Trout fishing with bait or flies has been fair to good. Fish bait off the bottom rather than from a bobber. fish streamers near the river mouth.
6/15/2017: The lake has been well stocked this spring. Fishing can be spotty on any given day, but some flyfishers are having 20 fish outings fishing near the river mouth. Trolling for kokanee has also been good for small to medium size fish.