(NFR) Facts

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dear s.s. at the very least make one more post. let us know your book is on the market. i am looking forward to adding it to my collection. do you have a name for the book? thank you for all of the info. i can hardly for the ronde.

I may post less that I lurk, but I agree that S.S. should stay. I anticipate the release of his book and hope to fish with him some day. Any new partner can lend new advice.


Indi "Ira" Jones

To whom it may concern... Thank god for the NFR policy. This stuff is so freakin entertaining. Not that I derive pleasure from others pain. SS you included but sometimes it's incredibly important to talk about something other than fly fishing.... ahhhhhhhhh..... I know I said it... I hope my wife's not watching she'd never beilieve I just wrote that down.

Thanks to all who post their grievances. And to those who have found affence to others postings, If I've ever been one I first apologize for myself and even though I don't have the power, I secondly apologize for everyone else.

Best of luck to all of you.

Ha, Ha, Gee Michael, Those are some pretty serious insinuations you have made about my character. I would say they border on being slanderous. So I invite you to back up your mouth for everyones benefit on this forum and prove I am a doper, neglect my family and am self consumed.


Kent Lufkin

Remember when you could remember everything?

>I hate it when Cabin Fever becomes an epidemic!!

The only rational post in this entire thread.

"A true gentleman is someone who knows how to play the accordion, but doesn't." ~ Anonymous

o mykiss

Active Member

I have resisted jumping in on all the Sharp Steelie banter up to now, but my resistance has been worn down so I'll post just a few observations:

1) Like others, I've felt some incredulity at SS's exploits - although I have never fished the streams in his neck of the woods, the numbers and size of the steelhead he says he has caught defy imagination. Flyfishing is a rather inefficient way to catch these fish compared to other methods, and I have never heard tell of such exploits from even the most talented gear guys who fish from boats. (Not that I know many, but one I do know says a very good day for him is five fish - from a boat, no less - and I've never hear him tell of 20 and 30 lb. fish.) I have heard of exploits rivaling SS's from a guy I know (and whose veracity I trust) who lives in Alaska flyfishes Alaska's most productive steelhead streams, and have seen pictures that back his stories up. But Washington streams in the last 15 years? There just isn't much evidence of a fishery that would kick out the numbers and size of fish referred to in SS's posts.

2) Nonetheless, I'm not ready to conclude SS has made all this up. For those of us who (perhaps idiotically) fish classic steelhead patterns in classic ways, we do need to admit that we purposefully stack the odds against ourselves, and that methods do exist that would turn the odds more in our favor. For example, I was on the Grande Ronde last fall and fished the "shade hole" for about 3 days. There were a fair number of flyfishers there, many of whom appeared to be quite accomplished, fishing spey rods and one handers, classic wetfly swings with sinktips, damp and dry flies on floating lines, and even some people nymphing with an indicator setup. This is a long stretch of classic steelhead water, and there were obviously fish there as many anglers were hooking up and landing fish. However, most fished through the run 4 times or more over the course of the day, and even the people who really looked like they knew what they were doing were lucky to catch more than a couple fish a day. On the last day, some guy gets into line and starts fishing differently than anyone else. I can't quite describe it, but he was fishing a sinktip, not with a classic swing but deaddrifted with a lot of slack, which he kept feeding out by hand. I am not exactly sure what he had on for a fly, but it looked like something as simple as a weighted stonefly. Lo and behold, this guy pulled out 5 fish in one turn through the run! Was it luck? Maybe to some extent, but there was clearly something about his technique that was better than anyone else's (as long as "better" means effectiveness at catching fish; the aesthetics certainly were not there in the eyes of the classic technique snobs.) We also need to admit that there are just some people who are damned good at catching steelhead on the fly. I once heard from my brother that a famed fly angler fished the Wenatchee River after coming to talk to the local flyfishing club sometime in the late 80s, using a floating line and dry or damp flies. He is reported to have rose close to 20 fish, of which he landed most. This was reported by people who fished with the guy that day. (Sure, maybe it was exaggerated, but even if the real numbers were half of what was reported, it was still an astonishing feat.) So, I don't think any of us can rule out that there are simply some anglers who are damned good at this game, either because they fish using non-conventional techniques or simply because they're a hell of a lot better than mere mortals. And then, there is the fact that on occasion, an angler just gets everything right on a particular day. He or she finds the fish - maybe by luck, maybe by skill - and finds a "zone" in his or her technique. Witness Skinny's recent day of 7 fish hooked, 4 landed. (I would kill for a day like that.)

3) That said, I am guessing that there are many members of this board who are very accomplished flyfishers, who catch lots of fish (whether steelhead or other). (Alas, I am not one of them and hold little hope of ever becoming one.) I've been a member of this board for over 2 years and visit nearly every day; I cannot remember anyone who so explicitly touted their exploits as SS has done. Maybe that's because there's no one here whose exploits have approached the heroic proportions of SS's, but I think it probably has more to do with the fact that it is just not the style of the vast majority of the people on this board to tout their accomplishments in quite the same way as SS. And, that, I suspect, is what has rubbed a bunch of people the wrong way. It is too bad that some of us have chosen somewhat inflammatory ways of responding to SS's posts.

O Mykiss, the Sharp Steelie agnostic

Old Man

Just an Old Man

This is not about this thread. This is pointed to the little message under our names. Our "member since" seems to change about every time we hit the Gallery. I have been here just about from the outset and have been here a few years and have over 3000 posts But my member since is stated that I have only been here since Jan. this year. So you can't go by that date because it changes all the time. This message is pointed toward the unkown what ever.

I for one don't like to see anybody leave as we all gain from what everyone says. At least I do. But why is everybody so negative on what is being said. I seen many people on this site brag about 40 fish days on a few lakes and no one shuts them down so I can't see why this man should be shut down. So he catches a few steelhead. What in the hell is wrong with that. I wish I was that good. But I'm not.



Active Member

Good post O.

I share much of the same thoughts as you.

One thing I think many of the naysayers/flamers don't necessarily realize is how bad the state of steelhead fishing is in northwest WA, compared to southern WA, Oregon and even California. For whatever reason, hatchery runs have been on a decline with the wild runs on a long enough timeframe that I think people have forgotten or don't have a sense of what "good steelhead fishing" constitutes. By no means do I remotely consider myself a good fisherman, but when I lived in CA (just last year, not fifty years ago), there are places that I would find steelhead stacked up so that multiple fish days were not unusual. In the hands of an accomplished fly fisher, I don't see how one would not be able to replicate Clay's numbers. For example, there are people I know who have had double digit days on the Feather River in CA (not myself) that even make Clay's numbers seem small. Another example I remember from last year was someone in the Bay Area who was really new to the sport (just over two years experience) but was consistently pulling nice bright wild fish when every one else was catching nothing. This person simply immersely himself into the sport and paid his dues (e.g. covering 2-5 miles a day on foot) to achieve his success. This guy, however as opposed to Clay, was tight lipped about where he fished and how he fished. So that is one reason why I am defending Clay's posts.

Finally, what I am most surprised about all these posts, is that it is genuinely the very first time I have seen on a fishing bulletin board (and I frequent Westfly, Northern California Fly Fishing and this board over the past 5+ years) someone been dragged through the dirt for posting good results. Certainly how one describes their success is a matter of choice, but even then, we should tolerate different styles much as we do face to face.

Jim Wallace

Smells like low tide.

Right on, Chris, and Wetline, and the rest of you board members who have not sank to the low level of flaming Sharp Steelie for sharing his success with us. I detect alot of envy and ego-defensiveness in the flamers' posts.
It sucks! Ask Speycast and Shakes what they think of Clay's fly patterns. Sounds like they are effective to me.
I, for one, am sorry that a few A-holes have driven Clay from this site, just because he burst in here a little suddenly with his claims of success. Sounds to me like he is sincere in his desire to share.
A pox on all you flamers!

:reallymad Jimbo

I don't know anyone who has had the success of SS, but on the other hand I have caught more steelhead fishing similar patterns, and techniques to the one's he describes, than traditional methods. Personally, I find his willingness to share refreshing.

I know a couple of flyfisherman that haven't been skunked this year (after a dozen or so trips), and one gentleman landed 10 in one day (a few years ago I fished with him and he landed 7 winter fish in one day on flies). His techniques are unorthodox, and his flies cannot be found in any book, but he catches and releases a lot more fish than I. Perhaps there are a few more Sharp Steelies out there? My feeling is that when these people speak, one should shut up and listen, and if you don't "believe" them, leave it alone. If you think fishing is a competition, then I am sorry for you.

Sharp: there are many people on this board that don't post regularly, who would like to hear more reports from you and are interested in seeing your book. I've spoken to a couple of them, and felt I should speak up. Part of the reason for their silence is the lack of decorum by some of the more vocal members of this board, and the tone that has developed lately. The forum's moderator has a tough job of balancing topics and people, and does a pretty good job of keeping the flame retardant ready. P.S. I caught my largest steelhead ever (42") last week on the Skagit River using a "sparsely" tied, subtle colored pattern, on a DEAD drift.

Keep your tip up! :thumb

If you don’t believe him, then ask him to take you out and show you where you might tag a big one.

Pretty simple. Just ask.

And this BB has a tendency to have the trailer parkers rear their heads with regard to a majority of things besides the credibility of fish sizes and numbers produced.

One thing for certain, you can take the boys out of the trailer park, but you can’t take the trailer park out of the boys. IMHO, Pretty typical behavior for most of the goat-ropers and cretins on the WWW.

SS’s fishing prowess may or may not be true. But I have an experience on the Grande Rhonde with a 40+ incher from the WA side. They are there…just ask Jim Teeny about it….or ask SS to take you out and see where and what he does...
It is sad that people are sometimes rude and stupid on the World Wide Web, but then the barrier of entry is pretty low! Also, if you choose to post, be prepared for stupid and rude comments!

I have to take SS's comments at face value. Outside the Puget Sound area there are some great areas, with huge populations of Steelhead. I have been fortunate to have had a few 10-15 fish days within a few hours of Tacoma, and I am not very good! There were just a lot of fish!

I have always been a proponent of going against conventional wisdom when it comes to fishing. Don't ridicule and criticize someone shares his or her techniques. Nobody is forcing you to use them!

As a general comment about posting on this site. I have read a number of threads that just beg me to use my sharp tongue/keyboard, however I choose not to. It really doesn't add anything, and in some cases, takes (drives) things away.

I hope you are not gone Clay! I would love to learn more from you! I will show you some of my waters, if you show me yours!;)

Thanks for your posts!



Active Member
Clay, you gotta understand where these guys are coming from. First off, Sink-tip is no rookie. As are the other members who came down on you. they are some of the best flyfishers on this board. They don't want their real names revealed, you'd be shocked, they are guides, authors, they are some of the best in the business. They know thier stuff. they cannot understand how what you say can be for real, 6 fish was your worst day?? thats just not possible. I for one do not believe you. Unless your using eggs.

Second, this is all a big joke. The Goddess at work maybe??? she's done it before.......or somebody else just trying to stir it up.....

Third, Clays photos are in poor taste. Holding up fish by the gills??? Not cool. thats enough to piss off quite a few people around here. besides, I see no fly rod in the photos and you just look like a baitchucker.

Sorry, just calling it as I see it. If Clays the real deal, he will transend the sport. really, he will be the new king. Is he ready for that? Seriously, Dennis Dickson would be out of work.

If I had to vote now, I vote its all BS. Stop messing with the board and getting people is a tizzy.

YT :smokin Been steelheading for 20 years, I haven't caught a steelhead in over a year. Now thats not BS....;)
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