Fly choice for winter steelhead....

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by pcknshvl, Jan 25, 2010.

  1. pcknshvl

    pcknshvl Member

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    when the water is low, clear, and cold? My guess would be larger dark flies on dark days, and a little smaller bright flies on bright days. I'm thinking dark maribous, ESL's, etc. for dark days; GP's, Orange Speys, Winter's Hope, etc. for bright days. Or maybe it's just keep using the same ESL that always seems to work....

    I'll keep messing around and find out for myself, but I wonder others' experience has been.

    Thanks for the comments,

    Tom
     
  2. Joe Smolt

    Joe Smolt Member

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    Tom:

    I find that I change flies less and less each winter season. I tie my own flies and select the fly that has the best "movement" mojo. So I will look at the swimmingness of a new fly. If good, I tend to go back to this same fly. This is often some kind of marabou creation, often with a lot of black, on waddington shanks for a small articulated hook. Figure the articulated hook gives less chance for the hook to be leveraged out of the mouth. I've been mixing marabou and long feathers with good movement mojo. I try to make flies with weighted and unweighted variations so I can select on the water I am fishing.

    Joe
     
  3. NomDeTrout

    NomDeTrout Fly Guy Eat Pie

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    similar to joe smolt, been tieing variations of big fuzzy marabous, esl's, and whatever i think of I guess. some bright colors, some darker, etc.


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    this articulated hook looks really big in this picture for some reason.
     
  4. stewart dee

    stewart dee Guest

    The fly on the bottom looks as though it will swim upside-down than how its set-up. The eyes ride on bottom, its just gravity.

    We like a comment made by a fella in Oregon. - They will take your car keys if they are in the mood.
     
  5. rick matney

    rick matney Active Member

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    an egg......or if that is taboo then smaller flies the more clear the water and more sparse.
     
  6. Salmo_g

    Salmo_g Active Member

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    Pcknshvl,

    I think you're thinking waaaaaay toooo much about your fly pattern choice for winter steelhead. Unlike the Oregon fella, I haven't tried using car keys, but I've no doubt they'd work just fine. My experience is that I've yet to tie a fly that steelhead won't hit. Since it's been written numerous times that steelhead will hit just about anything that's ever been tried, the more interesting question to me is why are you ponderinig so much over that one thing that least influences your steelheading success?

    A useful discussion would be about strategies that affect steelheading success IMO. Fly pattern wouldn't even be on the list except that a size 2 marabou stream in any color is more likely to get bit by a winter steelhead than a size 18 chironomid.

    Sg
     
  7. Panhandle

    Panhandle Active Member

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    High floating bomber.
     
  8. Flyborg

    Flyborg Active Member

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    Please note that when Rick Matney says "small", he means four to six inches.
     
  9. Grayone

    Grayone Fishin' to the end, Oc.P

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    +"an egg".....................yep
     
  10. KerryS

    KerryS Ignored Member

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    Winter steelhead fly choices:
    Cloudy day - big, black, and ugly
    Clear day - smaller big, black, and ugly
     
  11. rick matney

    rick matney Active Member

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    yeah.....I think kerry said it best......and isn't 4"-6" small?.....is it not?
     
  12. pcknshvl

    pcknshvl Member

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    Thanks for the comments so far. Salmo, I haven't been over-thinking things, just thinking. I usually end up fishing a "swimmy" looking thing anyway. Like you, I tie maribou things on Wads. I try to get a nice profile without too much bulk. I'm also inspired by Marty to tie and fish some of his patterns, too.

    I agree, it's not so much the fly, it's how it's presented, how it swims, and how confident I feel.

    Tom
     
  13. chromeseeker

    chromeseeker Where's the Bucket?

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    I met a guy the other day who fishes the same size 4 GBS for winter and summer fish all season, just uses a floater in the summer and a light ST in the winter.

    If it's meant for steelhead and it's on the end of your line it will probably work.

    C
     
  14. Creatch'r

    Creatch'r Heavies...

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    why hasn't anyone mentioned bunny?

    i dont know nothin bout nothin. im a year into this large waste of time. but i enjoy tying steelhead flies. as we speak my computer/tying desk is overrun by every imaginable color of marabou, bunny, schlappen, bucktail, flash, chenille, etc. i get off work, sit here and just look around and put something together. everything has a stinger and is tied on 3 principles. 1) profile 2) color 3) movement. pretty simple but thats my take on the subject. i havent asked the experts and i havent read the books or watched the videos. i just go from my gut feeling about mr steelhead.

    large and bright. large and dark. "small" and bright. "small" and dark. heavily weighted, lightly weighted and a few unweighted. i feel like that covers about any situation. they make plugs for the others. i like having a box (read large clear plastic plano compartment box) stuffed with flies so when im standing on the bank i can peer in there until i say "thats the one" and then i fish the shit out of it.

    but dont listen to me. im something like 0 for 20 this winter. i'll keep swingin tho. cause im overdue for something epic to happen. plus im startin to get the hang of this spey castin thing. which makes me feel noble.

    but if i didnt enjoy tying these things i'd just nymph beads.
     
  15. TD

    TD Active Member

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    Sean - Well put. I like your style.