What flies for deschutes river [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: What flies for deschutes river

05-28-2002, 08:04 PM
What flies should I use for the deschutes river.

05-28-2002, 10:44 PM
Ohh this is an easy question to answer..
And the answer is.. Any steelhead pattern you want to use. They really do ALL work.

If that is not a sufficient answer here is a list of what I use.

Silver Hilton Spiders
Purple Perils
lady carolines

Most popular patterns are

Freight trains
Max Canyons
Green butt skunks
Street Walkers
Purple Flashs
articulated leeches

As I stated above they all work.

Most people use #4 and #6 I prefer 1/0s

05-29-2002, 12:40 AM
head of a pin. But the fellows who 'into'ed' me to the river were both Native Americans. One the only licenced Indian guide on the upper river.

Their advise: any thing you want ... as long as it's purple. Used all the 'normal' Rogue stuff and got jack squat. Shifted (read that borrowed) a couple of purple based flys and fish on, and on, and on.

Other than the short run of true fall runs on the Rogue purple is a waste of time. On the upper Deschutes this appears to be the colour of choice.

05-29-2002, 12:55 AM
Haven't been for a few years but it was purple then too--a fly called the "limit lander" which was sorta Freight Train-ish as I recall--purple body, white wing, flo-orange or pink butt, tied low water on a silver #4 or #6 Alec Jackson Spey hook. Hooked lots...landin' 'em on those springy lightwire hooks was another story...:eyecrazy:

05-29-2002, 07:38 AM
Interesting why some rivers have particular hot colors. I have also never been successful with purple don't know why. Any color is good as long as it is black is probably a good approach. If I had only one color here to fish it would be small black nymphs or wet/speypatterns. Next would be chartreuse, caddis or other small wet/spey patterns. Then natural color nymphs, tan, cream colors.

05-29-2002, 03:03 PM
Where you are in the river, how late in the season it is, and what time of day it is all have some bearing on fly selection.

Early in the season (late July and through mid-August), the fresh run fish seem to like the bright flies (Dell Coopers, Purple Perils, Streetwalkers, etc.). The later in the season, the more fish seem to be attracted to drabber, slimmer flies. Also, the later in the season, the more effective orange seems to get. A Green Butt Skunk may be the fly of choice in early August, and the Max Canyon (a black, orange and white fly) in late August.

As the season progresses and the water temperature drops (late October through December), the fish definitely do not respond as well to the swung fly as they do to (gasp) nymphs fished off a strike indicator.

Start your day on the Deschutes as soon as you can see clearly enough to find the water. Under very low light conditions, a large, all black fly is effective (first thing in the morning and last thing at night). As it gets lighter, switch to one of the patterns suggested in the posts above. I would add an Ackroyd to my fly box, as it's been a very effective fly for me over the past several seasons.

Also, do not forget your skaters and wakers. The Waller Waker or any of the many Bomber variations (Purple with a red butt is good) really pull fish up.

When the sun gets full on the water, lots of people give up for the day, but don't. Switch to a sink tip and put on a big purple fly and keep after them. There's often a lull in the action between one or two in the afternoon until the shade comes back on the water, so it makes for a convenient siesta break.

Hope you enjoy your fishing on the Deschutes.



05-30-2002, 12:11 AM
Muddler, Skunk, Moose Turd - that's about all I carry in my fly-box anymore when I fish the Deschutes (or just about any other river that contains summer runs for that matter).