Favorite Color [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Favorite Color

09-23-2002, 02:54 PM
Have noticed in other threads questions on the importance of color for various types of dressings. My question is if you could fish only one color winter and summer, fall and spring, what would it be? I once heard an old Skagit hand say that he fished any color marabou fly as long as it was black. While black would be a close second for my go to color, it would probably get edged out by purple with dark purple preferred.

09-23-2002, 03:24 PM
I've noticed that on some rivers the fish appear to display a very strong preferrence to one (Purple on the Deschts, black on the Rogue, Chetco pink/red, etc.) colour vs. another.

Often wondered the 'why' of that.

09-23-2002, 03:47 PM
Not that I would fish it year round so I chose Black at least that one color is in all flys I fish by nature of my tying thread being Black.

09-23-2002, 09:17 PM
I voted black, but also fish a lot of natural tan/beige/cream nymph colors. For some reason I have never had luck with purple, must because I have not fished it confidently. But don't see many other people using purple in GL country either. Know it is big out in PNW country though. Green chartreuse is a big color out here also.

09-23-2002, 09:46 PM
Some may be surprised as I chose black. ;)

In general, I fish and catch more fish on pink then any other color but I believe pink to be a rather ineffective color in late summer-early fall while black is very productive at not only this time but any other time of the year...but not as productive as pink in winter/spring/early-summer IMHO.

09-23-2002, 11:34 PM
I use pink most of year. Except in the dry days of summer. Sometimes I even tie up a variation, with pink but, with other colors involved. I think at times it comes back to presentation over anything else. But from jigs, spinner blades, plugs, corkies, flies, yada yada yada, Pink is my all time go to color. As Ryan said, not the best for summer, but I catch enough fish the other 3 seasons on Pink to well make up for the slow summer months.

09-24-2002, 12:21 AM
I'm 100% with Sparkey and SH69 on this, so no vote on a single color. Different sets of rivers summer (inland) vs winter (coastal) so different flies.

09-24-2002, 01:51 PM
When in my drift fishing days it was almost always orange, then pink or red, except for plugs. Spinners and spoons were always silver or brass.
Back in the late 70s a pearl pink corkie in a certain pool east of I-5 would get excellent results.
Now that flyfishing is the preferred method, black, purple, brown, dark blue and even green are used.
But what color do the hatchery steelhead like best?
Still havent figured those fish out yet.:)

09-24-2002, 09:09 PM
Interesting, why are there no votes for orange ?

If you look at any steelhead fly tying book they are filled with orange fly patterns.

Or perhaps I am going color blind


09-24-2002, 11:23 PM
I use purple dyed golden pheasant marabou - it goes virtually black in the water - so I have to vote black.

09-25-2002, 01:43 AM
iIve gone almost exclusively to cerise and orange marabou combinations for my dressings. I only deviate from this when I go strait cerise...call me unimaginative but thats what I put on in the fall and pound through even in summer. The dressing might be a bit skimpier but the orange cerise combo has been a killer.

09-25-2002, 02:02 AM
It is nice to know someone else has found pink/cerise effective in the summer...if I modify my standard dressing it will catch me fish into the lowest waters of summer/early-fall (had a 6 fish day on the Stilly with hot pink after the 4th of July on the Stilly this past summer...but the water was not super low and unlimited vis. yet) but I wouldnt want to be limited to that color all summer/fall long.

Spark's Bobber Brigade, eh?? I like that...we should have some t-shirts and hats made!! :D:devil:

09-25-2002, 08:31 AM
Yes, cerise is a good color, caught a 15lb chrome king on that last Friday, going back for more this week.

09-25-2002, 09:17 AM

Orange would certainly make my top three and for spring days it might win out. It also has been a good producer in the fall but I just don't have the confidence in it for most summer fishing.


09-25-2002, 10:43 AM
Not sure if color really makes a difference as a combo of black,white and brown have done me well lately. God no it is not a cop car!

09-25-2002, 11:24 AM
As noted 'dark colours' are the most consistent 'fish hookers.' The only real exception that I've found is very late September-October when the fall kings are free spawing in the river. Then a small light orange single egg pattern (the sparkle yard can add a lot to the party) can be super productive.

Rest of the year for 'orange and reds' .... nada. In context, remember the 'upper Rogue' is over125 miles up from the Ocean so it's been a long time since the fish have seen anything with these colours involved. (Damn which 'stops' the upper Rogue is at "river mile 155."

09-27-2002, 08:20 PM

This is a tough one. I have to agree with you though that if I could only use one color it would be a dark purple. Black ranks right up there in the summer though. But, at certain times of the year or on certain rivers I would use a straight fushia or cerise and orange combo. Then there are other times that red and blue combined have been very good. And orange is high on my list in spring or late November early December.

Still, I have to say that dark purple (sort of a bluish purple) is my favorite.

09-28-2002, 08:07 AM
Well, I am definitely going to be tying and fishing more purple flies, as I have not had confidence in them to date. But it looks like many others do have success. I voted black, now we have a tie between purple and black.

old man
09-28-2002, 06:58 PM
Well I can't answer this question as I have yet to catch a winter run steelhead on a fly. I have caight a few summer runs on flies,but I was trout fishing at the time so I don't think that would count. But if I was to vote it would have to be black,but that is because of all that I have heard is to use something black.

09-28-2002, 08:15 PM
Old Man,

Glad to see you are back, was just thinking yesterday who had we not heard from recently and you came to mind. Must be doing a lot of zipper lip fishing, I suppose. I turned 55 yesterday went fishing, got up at 3:30 AM, fished until 1:00 PM, boy was I tired today. Getting old is hell, I remember when I could do that for days in row with like 3-4 hours sleep a night.


Bunny Leech
09-29-2002, 12:57 AM
So many good comments, so many good colors. Having said that my favorite is still purple. Performs and silhouettes nicely (like black) in low light. Catches sunlight and can glimmer in bright conditions. Good contrast from leaves (green) when the wind is blowing them in the river (can you say Deschutes?). All around hard to beat any time of year in my book. But then, it's a short book:)