Steelhead Fly of the week – Coal Car [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Steelhead Fly of the week – Coal Car

09-13-2006, 03:29 PM
This is one of a series of flies invented by Randall Kaufmann of Portland, Oregon. Kaufmann is the owner of Kaufmann’s Streamborn, a very well know fly shop in Portland. The fly has a good reputation as a dark day fly, with just enough color to attract the fishes attention.

Hook: Up eye salmon hook.
Tail: Black hackle barbs.
Rib: Oval silver tinsel
Body: ¼ Fluorescent orange yarn, ¼ Fluorescent red yarn, ½ black chenille.
Collar: Black hackle.
Wing: Black crystal flash and black squirrel tail.
Head: Black

09-13-2006, 04:22 PM
Now this one sends shivers up my spine... over the last 20+ years, 12 as a resident, I had many toenail curling, tooth grinding takes from summer runs on this and it's close cousins the freight train and max canyon.

Oh I need a steelhead fix....

09-13-2006, 06:38 PM
Nice tie, as always, Charlie.

The funny thing is, there never were coal cars along the railroad through the Deschutes canyon. When steam was alive, the RR's burned oil from their tenders to heat the locomotive boilers, coal being a scarce commodity.

I guess "tender" wouldn't have been as sexy a name as "Coal Car", though.

I wonder if anyone has tried this fly for Atlantic Salmon. There's been such a fusion going on. Four of my favorites for the Deschutes were AS patterns: Ackroyd, Undertaker, General Practioner and Thunder and Lightning (absolute fall favorite).


-- Eric

09-14-2006, 10:03 AM

I would imagine that some of them would work great for Atlantics. There are a few that if I didn’t know any better I would say they are Salmon flies. The steelhead flies I have been tying for the board are going up to Gaspe with me next year. So we will see how well they work on Atlantics. I will let everyone know.


Steelhead are starting to run in the great lakes. Kind of limited right now. But it is raining and the weather is cooling down. A few weeks and they should be in good. Let me know when you want to come out.


09-16-2006, 12:44 AM
In 1987 I was a relatively inexperienced atlantic salmon fisherman fishing the Mirimichi for the first time. A local steelhead guide gave me some flies to try that he said worked well for steelies and pacific salmon on a local river. Not many were catching fish that week, but I did better than most at our lodge thanks to these rather non-descript flies this guide had given me. While there was quite a color range in the flies, the designs were very similar to that of the Coal Car. They featured strands of krystal flash, which as near as I could tell at the time, had not yet come into use in the tying of atlantic salmon flies. When I went back some years later, many flies had now evolved to include Krystal flash. Of course I must admit - my bad - I knew these flies were somewhat weighted (illegal) but totally forgot that little fact and its implications till about the last day of the trip.:tsk_tsk: My guide (another interesting story) never picked up on it, or probably didn't care, since for most of the week he was off in the bushes with a bottle.