Every winter(dec. through Feb.) I looked forward to the resident coho fisheries. I have enjoyed this fisheries for over 25 years and this year it has been the worst which I have ever experienced. In Nov. there was some sporadic action. The resident coho seemed to have disappeared by mid-Dec. The last time which I went out I didn't see any resident coho or even string up my fly rod. It was a good "ole" skunking! I normally don't start fishing for sea-run cutthroat until late Feb./early March. This Fri. I decided to "check out" this fisheries since the resident coho fisheries has been so poor this winter. I didn't have much in the way of expectations and was pleasantly surprised to have an excellent day of sea-run cutthroat fishing. It was nice to get rid of the taste of a skunking from the resident coho fisheries. The strategy which I used was to fish a couple of locations within 1/4 mile of stream mouths in two estuaries during a moderate ebb tide(approx. 9 ft. exchange). At one location(broad shallow shelf with nice walking speed tidal current) the fishing was outstanding for about 3/4 hour with hookups every couple of minutes. A large group of sea-run cutthroat were seating in 1 to 2 feet of water within 6 to 8 feet from shore. For the first 15 minutes I used a two top water setup with the front fly being a floating sand lance pattern and the back fly being a Delia's top water squid pattern. Most of the hookups were in the squid pattern with a few strikes on the sand lance pattern. Once the top water action slowed down, I switched to an olive/white clouser minnow on a sinking line. The action continued for another 30 minutes. At a second location(broad shallow shelf with nice walking speed tidal current) a nice group of sea-run cutthroat were again seating in 1 to 2 feet of water within 6 to 8 feet of shore. Numerous fish were landed for 20 minutes. There were no strikes/hookups 1/4 mile or more away from stream mouths at other locations. The keys for success seemed to be to fish shallow shelves near stream/estuary mouths with walking speed tideal current. I was surprised that the fishing was so good and the size of the fish landed(13 to 18 inches) as shown in the photographs. All of the sea-run cutthroat seemed to have very bright red slashs below their jaws. My impression is that they had just returned to saltwater after maybe spawning. The first photograph shows a fish with a very bright red slash.