Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by ex nihilo, Dec 6, 2001.
In general, what's the how, where, and when regarding rockfish?
keep it reel
The how of rockfish is pretty easy: find where they are and put your fly in the water. Bright flies with some action and a little wieght seem to work "best" (compared to almost anything else, which seem to work fine). Steve Probasco's "half-a-rabbit" is a good choice. You don't always have to get that deep, but a line that will generally get you down to 10-20 ft will come in handy (a 300-grain shooting head is perfect). You'll want an 8-weight to cast the line and heavy flies.
Look for fish near kelp and/or other vertical structure, but not always really tight against it; the schools of bigger fish will often hold 25 or so feet from the structure. They're pretty school-oriented and the schools are pretty mobile, both vertically and horizontally. If you hook one, you'll find more, and you'll no when you're no longer over them because you won't be getting a fish per cast. A fish finder is a real plus for finding and following the school and knowing what depth to fish.
There's good fishing out on the Strait west of Sekiu, particularly at Neah Bay, and I guess ther'e pretty good fishing from the jetty at Westport. It's mostly a boat show though. The Sound is toast, but I think there may be decent fishing in the San Juans. Anywhere in BC; Clayoquot Sound on Vancouver Island is red hot.
It's good all spring and summer and into the fall; and I guess Neah Bay in APril and May can be just stupid, with shots at big Lings possible.
i have caght rockfish before just like ray said around kelp beds or rocky head lands. neah bay area is world class. pinnacles, reefs forests of kelp harbor fish of all sizes, not the trophy fish but alot of action. i was really surprized 2 years ago when i bought a boat and went to sekiu on labor day weekend then tried neah bay. black rockfish were so plentiful you could not let it sink 5ft in some instances. copper, canary.greenling make most of your catch in puget sound, until you come ocer gravly areas where sanddabs and cabezon will be present. large glow in the dark or irredecent flies work for me. Ray i read your article on lincoln park yesterday, and that pretty candlefish fly. think i might try to look for some yak hair. later Ben