Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by Alexander, Oct 23, 2010.
In winter, it's all about the string leeches for me. I prefer black, black, and black.
Yeah, I'm a steelhead noob, been reading and asking questions everywhere, trying to learn as much as I can about them. I'm aware of summer / winter runs and was referring with regard to the winter runs.
Question: what's with beads? To imitate eggs? Why not just fish yarn egg patterns? What am I missing about the beads?
beads = eggs. completely
Really depends on the river geography. On west side temperate rivers like the Sandy, N. Umpqua, etc.. I prefer larger profile flies like purple and blue intruders. On arid rivers like the D, Clearwater, GR, I fish traditional smaller profiles: perils, skunks, practitionars.
Early summer late April to late June, I use smaller versions of winter flies. 3-4inches Marabuo tied on shanks with stingers in Pink, Purple and black with just a little if no flash.
Summer July-Sept the fly size goes down as the water drops and pressured fish get wise. Switch over to traditional flies with natural colors in sizes 4 early down to 8 or 10 fall.
Winter fish December through March I throw big big flies 4inches to 7inches. Marabuo tied on a shank with a stinger, in black purple blue with more flash the lower the vis.
I don't nymph for steelhead much. If i'm going to nymph I just pull out the gear rod and swing spoons or drift worms/jigs.
Same with what i do, if the water isnt right for a swing i pull out the spoons/jigs/bait. If your not swinging, your not flyfishing. Period.
Alexander, good luck with the winter steelhead this season! It can be tough for a newbie. Keep your chin up.
As far as using a bead instead of yarn tied on a shank... My understanding is this: beads come in a myriad of colors and translucencies. Also stringing a bead onto a leader taked about a quarter of a second. I don't nymph anymore, so maybe someone who does can chyme in about that.
As far as winter fish, you are still at least a few weeks away from the fore runners of the hatchery stocks being in the rivers in any appreciable numbers.
If you do swing for steelhead this winter dont get tricked into thinking you need to swing elaborate flies. My first winter I lost a ton of flies, so it was easiest to tie simple ones.
A quick tie is the following:
Tie on a loop of firewire to a waddington shank
Then tie on your strip of pink, purple, or black rabbit strip
Tie a hackle with your choice of marabou (I like pink or purple or blue)
Tie on dumbbell eyes
What I like about this fly is when the hook gets dull you simply replace the stinger.
Vary the length of rabbit strip and the weight of the dumbell eyes and the color combos and you have a simple fly that can cover most of the conditions you will find on the OP rivers this winter.
Call it what you want, use what you want.
I like to fish with my flyrod every chance I get be it nymphing, streamer fishing, high sticking, swinging, bobber fishing, dry fly fishing etc. Some make a big deal about the naming. Just simplify we like to fish with our flyrods when we can. And use other methods when we feel like it.
If you are going to use beads you might as well just gear fish. Using beads isn't fly fishing as I see it. Fly fishing is using materials to imitate what a fish eats. Beads are hard plastic and not eggs as fish see them being soft to eat.
It may not technically be fly fishing; but fishing beads on a fly rod in pocket water is fun to some of us. Granted, it's not my preference in the winter months. And I don't do it at ALL in the Puget Sound rivers... But there's some pocket water on a few coastal rivers that can't be swung, and a bead gets the job done.
:hmmm: Define "fly fishing".
Just kidding!!! :beathead::beathead::beathead:
I'll repeat a quote I made a few months ago:
Fly fishing is employing the least effective method possible given your current conditions.
iagreemarabou is money. dave probably catches crap loads of fish. purple/black orange/black marabou tube flies super simple and work. winter speys are fun swinging but ive never had action on any yet hopefully this season!
the moal leech is where its at
A bead is a material that imitates what a fish eats. But then again so are rapalas and soft plastic lures. I think your definition of fly fishing needs to be much more specific and complex than that. I'll admit, I have my reservations with beads, and I definitely prefer using egg patterns tied with yarn or chenille, but sometimes the beads are simply more effective. I understand your point that you might as well gear fish, but some of us just prefer casting a fly rod over a spinning rod. I don't understand why you wouldn't consider the use of beads as fly fishing.