Tod's Blog

Adventures with family & friends and other things I'm passionate about…

Pau Hana Happy Hour!

Posted by todblog on May 23, 2007

Okay, so I told you how busy spring is already. Well it just got busier.

Each year around this time, the spring chinook salmon are charging up the river and a little ways behind them is another fish species that comes in from the ocean to spawn in the river. They are known as shad. Shad are great fighters on light tackle and when it’s good they are supposedly caught with each cast. They occupy certain sections of the river and will hit a small jig or dart that scurries along the bottom. They turn their flat bodies sideways to fight the angler much like a papio will do. Shad will use the river current along with their body shape to make the retrieval more difficult. On 4 pound test it is a great thrill to catch and land shad in the river.

After being in Oregon for five years, and living only a half mile from some decent spots, I never even bothered fishing for shad. Too busy I guess. Surprised at hearing this news, my dear friend and neighbor Ray Lehne, was kind enough to take me down the Umpqua River not too far from our house for an evening shad fishing event. We floated down in a pair of his inflatable kayaks until we reached the shad hotspot. We fished for a little more than an hour and headed back up the river. It was awesome. If you don’t count the mega eruption of mayflies hatching on the river, we had the place to ourselves. The sun painted all that it touched, a golden hue. It was gorgeous. Combine the intense colors of the days end with joyful music of water scurrying over rocks and the sound of line stripping off a reel makes for a pretty awesome way to finish the day!

The Umpqua River an hour before sunset.


My guide, Ray “River Rat” Lehne.


Big kine aholehole!



6 Responses to “Pau Hana Happy Hour!”

  1. jackie n dwaine said

    wow todd sounds like your really enjoying your life up there we have got to take the boys up to see you guys what i woulnt do to get a fresh salmon for dinner on the barbie spencer loves salmon as much as i do dwaine does too not as much as mahi mahi but salmon is my favorite !!!! as far as maosn goes well fish isnt in his basic food group however ish stick are the closest things and he does have fried shrimp sometimes … take care we miss you todd ..hope to see you guys this yr…… jackie


  2. wendell said

    Nice to be able to fish right in your own backyard. They appear to fight like e’nenue or kala. Spinner?

    Bottom line: How do you eat them?


  3. judy evans said

    Todd: Thanks for the Shad update. Glad you’ve discovered how fun they can be. Loved the pictures. Beautiful country. Judy


  4. bob said

    You don’t look like you even aged since we left school a long time ago.
    You’re making me jealous. I hope to tell you stories of catching fish after we spend the weekend at Camp Naue. Take Care!


  5. Bob Hera said

    How’d the bugga taste on the frying pan? Bob


  6. ning mcgill said

    tod, your fish stories make me jealous & i’m not even a fisherman/fisherwoman!!!!…sounds like great fun.
    so glad you and ray are good friends and neighbors.
    can hardly wait to see you, jeanine, jacob and jessie…counting the days. love you, mom


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