A session with the steelhead shrink. [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: A session with the steelhead shrink.

11-01-2004, 01:24 PM
Well, well, well, what a lousy cold, wet day out here in the sound area. Other than a trip to the Snake in a couple of weeks I guess it's time to start thinking about sink tips again. I have a hard time converting over, it's so nice fishing warm summer and fall mornings with light gear. Don't get me wrong once the conversion is made I look forward to fishing with good friends, good single malt and lots of heavy water proof clothing on. Winter in the NW is just amazing, but feel like I need a session with the steelhead shrinks on this site to get me going.
Anyone else having a hard time with this time of year?

11-01-2004, 02:22 PM
You just have to follow the seasons... When the roadside farmer's markets open, I switch to floating lines. When they close I switch to sinktips :hihi:

11-01-2004, 02:31 PM
I hear you OC. It is one of those times of year when I get a little less motivated to fish the north-sound rivers. There is nothing I like more than swinging tips for fresh Winter/Spring fish but I can't get as excited to swing tips for late summer-runs. That being said, I think it is time to switch over.

Now on the eastside of the state, it is still floating line time and will be for some time. That point was made very clear to me last year by you. :lildevl:

11-01-2004, 03:00 PM
This is my least favorite time of the year. Locally steelhead fishing is mucked up with rotting salmon and in another few weeks the hatchery season starts which is always depressing as far as my catch rates are concerned and traffic on the rivers.

Last year I was unable to flee east as my child had just been born and this year some jackass stole my car so it is not going to happen again this year. Just bought a fancy new vise though with an eye towards learning to tie full dressed feather wings so that will keep me busy until late January rolls around and my odds go up for finding native steel in our local streams.


11-01-2004, 04:56 PM
This is a difficult time of year. Although I did setup a new line on a reel with a real drag in it just in case a purple striped freight train happened to get its poor self impaled on one of our dull hooks. I have been known to hack the hook off at the bend to prevent unwanted hookups. We went high up on the Skagit Sunday to do some practice swinging and get the sinktip cast back in order. This time of year the goal is to fish but not hook up with anything that has purple on it. I know it is strange but to be an effective non-chum fisherman is not as easy as it sounds. I am happy to say we managed about 5 hours on the river without one solid hookup. In a few weeks the chummies will be thick and it could be a nice time to use the lighter tackle and fish for bulls below the spawning chums. Still I have done this and accidentally hooked into a smelly old dawg. This is why having a light tippet is advisable.

Hang in there. The good times are a coming.

11-01-2004, 04:58 PM

I always hate to put the floating line away and go over to sink tips. However, after I start using the big rod and sink tips again, I begin enjoying using them. I would just prefer not to switch over until mid-December instead of early November like we have to here in the north sound as our rivers start there regular late fall and early winter up and down flows.

11-01-2004, 07:07 PM
Winter is my favorite time of year. I was up hunting Grouse today as I just canít bring myself to impale dying silvers or nasty chum. I was in and out of the snow line several times as it poured down. I knew the birds were under cover and I would never see one, but I just kept driving up and down the tribs of the Beckler, Foss and Miller rivers. I was excited because this was where it was all beginning. It was dumping and these tribs were filling up and running into the Sky. As Iíd cross over a single lane bridge, Iíd stop and watch it snow and rain as these little streams would flow downhill. Leaves of yellow, red and gold were caught up in the water. It was cold. It was wet and it was great.

All summer long, I struggled with my floating line cast. Having worked for months with tips, I had developed habits like short stroking, forcing the cast, etc. I finally had to go to Aaron and get some help. He got me back online for floaters, but I really didnít want to. I love casting heavy assed tips with big gaudy flies. I can remember when I first started Spey casting, I thought I was never going to figure out how to cast tips. Now I canít wait to get back to it. Layer on Layer of wool under my waders. Water so cold my legs are going numb. The air is even colder and mist is coming off the water. Frost on my mustache and beard. Or better yet, my ears going numb from the sound of rain pouring down on my hooded rain gear. God, I love that stuff. But you know what is funny? I havenít caught a winter run yet. I have had hook ups though. This year I believe I will get several to hand.

Leland Miyawaki
11-01-2004, 07:45 PM
I just now walked in the door from my trip. The Horizon flight home from Spokane was cancelled last night at 9pm. It was the last flight out, so they had to put me up at a hotel for the night. I caught the 10:30 flight to Seatac this morning. I think Horizon cancelled the flight because they didn't have enough people on the Seattle-Spokane leg and it's cheaper to put 12 people up at a hotel.

I arrived friday morning at ten in Spokane and Michael Mathis picked me up at the airport. We dropped his jet off at the motel and fished the Clearwater but didn't touch any fish. We stopped by to see Mike Cummins at the Red Shed and made plans for he and Linda to join us for dinner saturday night at El Sombrero. I found out that Mike and I were both from Garden Grove, California. Linda, by the way, was born and has lived most her life in Orofino.

Saturday, Bob McCurdy, a friend of Mathis' and who used to work at the now defunct Blue Dun flyshop in Spokane, joined us for breakfast at Rusty's Ranch Cafe and fished the Snake with us. Mathis and I each hooked up and lost a fish and I later landed a 34" wild buck that took me well into my backing a couple times.

Sunday, Mathis and I each hooked a fish. Mathis landed his and mine came unbuttoned. We almost had a double. Later in the afternoon just before we had to leave to get me to the airport, I found a "nest" of rolling fish in the same place I had taken the big buck saturday. We each pulled a fish out before I put them down with my waker.

All in all, the Snake came through big-time. We fished floating lines and low water patterns. I went three for five and two of us totalled five for eight. We fished mostly on the "other" side of the river. The water temp was 55 degrees and the weather was sunny, windy and pissy Ė typical.


Brian Simonseth
11-01-2004, 10:02 PM
Sorry about this boys.


So thats why you wasn't at the meeting today! :tsk_tsk:

Blaming it on the air lines! :tsk_tsk:

Oh bye the way, Thanks for lunch! :hihi: