Ask Timothy O'Neil
Aspen Ridge Fly Fishing Ranch on the Upper Williamson River, OregonAbout the PropertyAspen Ridge Ranch offers private fly fishing on Oregon's famous Upper Williamson River. If it's a one-of-a-kind fly fishing experience you are searching for then look no further than the black drake hatch at the beautiful Aspen Ridge Ranch. The Upper Williamson River meanders through the Ranch and is teeming with native red band trout during the legendary drake hatch. Located east of the Cascade Mountains in South Central Oregon, the Ranch consists of 240 acres nestled in a mountain meadow surrounded by National Forest. Old growth ponderosa pine, aspen, and boundless wildlife will be your only company at this remote fly fishing haven.In this small valley where most of the private property consists of ranches that span thousands of acres and cost millions of dollars (if they are available at all), this is a rare opportunity to purchase a dream property.nearly a mile of riverbreath taking meadowslodgepole and ponderosa pine timberlandsa beautiful 16 x 16 log cabin with sleeping loft set in the same location as the cabin from the 1930'sa large barna 12 x 24 screenhousean 8 x 24 bunkhouseand even a bit of spectacular 50 foot rimrock cliffs along the NW edge of the property.This is a remote, off-the-grid property. Yet only 2 hours from the little big city of Bend, Oregon and the Bend/Redmond commercial airport.The property can be accessed from the east or the west.For electricity, we use solar power. A small solar power system is included, and with abundant sunshine year-round, the potential for expanding the solar generation is virtually unlimited.Water: There is currently no plumbing in the cabin. We get wash water from the river (20'away) and haul in drinking water from town or get it from one of two nearby springs that produce unlimited, crystal clear water year-round. There are two wells on the property but neither has been used in years.Pastures and meadows are sub-irrigated, as are all other ranch properties in the valley. They get their water from underground in the floodplain. There are not irrigation rights to pump water out of the river, but the grass grows tall and rich every year without it.About the FishThe ecosystem of the upper Williamson River is completely different than that of the better known lower Williamson River. Even the fish found in the Upper Williamson are completely unrelated to those found below the Klamath Marsh. The marsh and an ancient series of waterfalls located above the Kirk springs on the lower Williamson have prevented the Upper Williamson River fish from mingling with those of the lower Williamson, maintaining a native population of trout now identified as the Upper Williamson River Red Band. They are indigenous only to this river.The trout at Aspen Ridge Ranch range from 10 to 30 inches and can weigh up to five pounds. Even during the immense black drake hatch, when their bellies are over-stuffed with flies, these fish are very athletic and are great fighters, often jumping out of the water numerous times before tiring.About the FliesThe black drake, siphlonurus rex, is a medium-sized mayfly that is rarely found in the west. One place it does call home is the Upper Williamson River in Oregon. The black drake hatch takes place in the spring and early summer. During this period, it is the major food source for the native Williamson River red band trout. The best time of day to fish the black drake hatch is during the afternoon and evening when the fish feed aggressively on the surface.Most fishing during the hatch is done by casting to rising fish with size 10 to 12 dry flies. A 4 weight rod is ideal. Siphlonorus nymphs usually inhabit slow-moving back waters and quiet pools. The black drakes on the Upper Williamson River, however, keep to the oxbows and swales filled with vegetation where they are safe from fish. Viewing this extremely rare property.Shown by appointment only. Please call the Broker Tim for an appointment. He would love to introduce you to every corner of this First Class Fly Fishing Ranch.