Fishing guide welcomes wet weather: 'I lost 3 weeks work'

SPRINGFIELD, Ore. - Normally in late December, fishing guide Todd Linklater would be out on the water.

"I fish 12 months out of the year and I take people fishing that want a guide and don't know the river," he said.

Instead, Linklater has spent most of this month on dry land.

"I'm not the only duck sitting on the same pond, I've got a bunch of good fishing guide buddies and they're all doing the same thing, singing the blues."

Singing the blues over an abnormally dry December. "Right now this river is at summer level," he said looking out over the Willamette.

That means it's harder for Chinook Salmon to swim in from the coast.

"To get up into the river, they need rain to bring them higher up, so they can make it up river," he said.

With no salmon, Todd can't take clients to fish the Siuslaw and other rivers. He had 36 trips booked in December, he had to cancel all but 11.

"I lost about three weeks worth of work, which was a pretty good chunk of money."

And it's not just guides that have taken a hit. It's trickled down into other areas too.

"That's affected the economy, small towns that have people, my clients staying, buying gas, buying food, buying motels," he said.

But recent changes in the weather may turn it around. With heavy rain forecasted the next few days, Todd and other fishing guides said they may be able to get their business back on track, just in time for the new year."

He said he won't make up for all the work he's lost, but the rain is a welcome start.

"This right here is a blessing," he said pointing at the sky. "Things are looking up. the rain is coming down, Oregon's gonna be in the Rose Bowl. It's all good, it's all good. You gotta be patient sometimes."