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Boating Rufus Woods

3809 Views 21 Replies 14 Participants Last post by  takedown
A good friend of my was talking to an old timer who has been fishing Rufus for more than 20 years. The old timer was telling my buddy (Lil Corky) that he should take his boat if he wants the best success at Rufus for the big ones. He said it is important in order to leverage the river current properly to catch the big ones. He was telling Lil Corky to use black jigs and side drift from the boat in some of the heavier current areas. Lil Corky asked about rocks and whatnot since he has a prop, and the old timer said the river is very navigatable as long as you don't go crazy and pay attention to the water.

I know many members here are fans of the shore when I asked a couple months ago about fishing from a boat at Rufus. Lil Corky and I decided to take his boat up there to see if we benefit from using it. We'll be heading there sometime next month. Let me know if there are any thoughts or recommendations for fishing below the dam. I have the new issue of Fishing & Hunting News that shows some routes for fishing the river, but I want to double check with the my fellow gamefishin members before we head up to get more specifics if anyone has information.
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I boated it the first time and ended up casting towards shore. Unless you are going to target Walleye etc then towing the boat over there is wasting gas IMHO.

Plus in the boat you will miss all the fun on shore (and I ensure you it will be fun)...
SportJet said:
I boated it the first time and ended up casting towards shore. Unless you are going to target Walleye etc then towing the boat over there is wasting gas IMHO.

Plus in the boat you will miss all the fun on shore (and I ensure you it will be fun)...
Those were my thoughts SJ, but Lil Corky really wants to put his boat in the water. I wouldn't mind sitting on shore with some monk coffee and a propane heater and chill a bit. But with the new bug in Lil Corky's ear and all it sounds like we're taking the boat. LC has another good point too about over crowding at the main fishing spots. He said this may be the best way to assure we get a good spot.
If you plan to try for more than just triploids then you need the boat from what I have seen. given the temperature over there I think its mostly a trip show right now though
I'll see if I can talk him out of it. Everytime we have a conversation about Rufus he wants to put his boat in there. If it sucks from the boat then I'll let him sit on it while I fish from shore.
One other thing to consider is pulling a boat through the pass in January and February. The passes can be hairy enough in a vehicle by itself, then put 2000 lbs attached to the back and it gets even hairier.
My buddy lives over in ellensburg and only uses a boat at rufus and catches the big ones (thats his fish on the front cover of fishing and hunting news). One of these days I will get over there. Take the boat if your comfortable driving in the snow.
Very nice Radfish!!
thanks Dr. Hook.... rufus has become one of our favorite places to fish in winter and it has something for everyone. I'm sure I'll join in on one of the trips and give the bank fishing a try. looks like a great way to spend the day with good people having fun....
Holy shhnikes! Radfish those are some footballs for sure :eek:
I guess a boat isn't such a bad idea after all. Are you using jigs for those big boys? Not too worried about the cost of gas, but the snow forecast will indeed need a close look for sure. I've have only towed once in the snow and didn't have problems thankfully.
I always fish from a boat at Rufus, like mentioned above there are tons of good fishing holes you cant get to from shore.
Since I have a boat over at my second home in e.washington, I will take it to Rufus, I don't want tow one across the pases.
I haven't been there before...which boat would be better, my 20 foot Ranger bassboat or my 11-foot Boston Whaler/25 hp outboard?

After talking to Lil Corky we're going to play it by ear. If the road conditions lend to it the boat is going. Looking at some of those, the boat would be nice. We're going to use black jigs and whatnot, but if anyone else has any tips or good locations to start it would be much appreciated. If we have to stay on the shore, then so be it. I'll just flot a big worm with a marshmellow. Looking to go around mid to late January.
Marc both boats would work just fine, just remember to bring warm clothes.
Man I've alway's fished from shore, I think it's about time to pull the boat over and start exploring more of the river...
That is cool that I could use my bassboat! Now I have to ask, what is the launch ramp situation? Is there a courtesy dock? Thanks for the info. Don't worry, I can dress warm after having been in the Army for 23 years...that won't stop me! :mrgreen:
Seatons Grove near the dam has cement slabs and is a good launch for all boat types. No dock(atleast last year). There is another launch near the first set of net pens. It's coleville tribe property and a license is required to use it. It is nothing more than a gravel beach. I have launched my 16 foot crestliner there and will launch my new 19 foot sled there. Watch for rocks while launching, 4x4 recommended for trailer launching, car topper no problem. Limited parking too. Sometimes one guy takes up three or four spots. As far as the lake goes, there are no hazzard aslong as you stay near the middle. It mostly rather deep but some of the islands and points have long shallow flats around them. As for fishing from a boat, I won't go with out it. You can jig and dunk bait around the net pens. I like to troll plugs around the bar. Walleye guys jig the bar and catch trout too. Also the Hawg Quest show was there and were sort of free drifting the bar with scented white bass tubes. Also check out the other end by Cheif Joeseph dam. Not many giants but more consistant. Kokanee are in the mix up there aswell. Start trolling wedding rings right from the ramp. And if thats not enough go to coulee play land get advice and go jig for whitefish on Banks lake! I love that area wish I was going!
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