Salmon River - Fly Fishing Forum
Great Lakes Steelhead & Salmon Amazing "Inland ocean" fisheries

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Old 02-21-2005, 09:13 AM
Shaq Shaq is offline
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Salmon River

Hit the Salmon River on Sunday. It was cold and I had a newbie with me so we stayed in the fly zone. After abandoning the 2 hander because it was "One of those days" and too cold in thwe morning to be untangling the windcutter every five minutes I grabbed the single hander and went back to my roots. Had a good day with multiple hook-ups. #10 stoneflies were the hotter fly although I did hook-up once on a purple spey fly I pseudo-swung off the split shot. Action came in spurts 9:30 after the fog left the water, they turned on, and once more at 1:30pm, they were on for another hour. Great day. I believe I am going to get a double taper for the spey, I tried a guys I was fishing with and those loop contections get tough to shoot when there is ice in the guides. Also the thicker WC tends to manipulate my drifts in ways I don;t want or like, especially in the thicker, winter water. Any thoughts from you guys? Anyways, a great day to be on the water, got sunburned and landed one 11lb hen, she was an early spawner alrerady spouting eggs.
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Old 02-21-2005, 10:41 AM
peter-s-c peter-s-c is offline
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Congrats on a great day -- beats mine, that's fer sure (put a foot through the ice -- without waders).

I've fished a DT floater line once on the Salmon (at the Altmar bridge) and it was a DT-7-F on a 12'6" - 6/7 rod. Though it casted OK, it was definitely too light for the distance I was usually working as the Salmon isn't that wide through that spot. If you go the DT floater route, I'd think about going up a line weight or two over the rating of your WC just so that it short casts OK. Currently I have a DT-10-F that I consider to be about right for an 8 wt. rod when used consistently under 60', especially if you're tossing shot or Polyleaders.
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Old 02-21-2005, 11:03 AM
Shaq Shaq is offline
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THANKS

exactly what I was thinking. In fact we were at the altmar bridge but the good spey casting spots were taken so I had to work the head of the pool. Many contrasting currents up there. I was thinking an 8wt double for my 7wt CND. I just didn't have the patience in the cold yesterday to experiment
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Old 02-21-2005, 11:21 AM
peter-s-c peter-s-c is offline
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The other consideration is standard DT vs. salmon DT. The short front tapers on the standard DT lowers their overall weight a bit when measured at the 60' mark vs. the salmon taper. So an 8 wt. salmon DT is equivalent to about a 8.5 wt. regular DT. at the 60' mark. If you're going the regular DT route, you might want to consider a 9 wt. Cortland HT333s are a nice cheap alternative for experimentation.

I tried a regular DT 8 wt. on my SAS 1308 and to say it was on the light side was putting it mildly.

==============

Forgot to mention that I have the WC to DT equivalents at home so I'll post them up later this evening.

Last edited by peter-s-c; 02-21-2005 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 02-21-2005, 02:03 PM
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QuebecSporting QuebecSporting is offline
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Good Afternoon

Do you feel water temperature influences how fish react??

Is there a "Prime Time Temp" for Steelhead??

(Still learning..... wish I was fishing!)

A..
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Keep'em in the water!!
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Old 02-21-2005, 03:30 PM
peter-s-c peter-s-c is offline
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This topic is usually one that generates disagreement as our personal experiences are dictated to an extent by how we fish. So if somebody has only fished for winter steelhead with a dead drifted glo-bug, then their rule-of-thumb will be dead drift only in cold water. Those of us who have caught fish on the swung fly in very cold water take an opposite view.

Back in '99, I took a drift trip on the Muskegon in Michigan in early May. I brought along a full suit of streamers but the guide told me to leave them in the truck as the fish would never hit them -- "Too cold." he said. In later years, I've had a bit of success with streamers in mid winter so there's no doubt these fish would've hit a streamer in May.

Last edited by peter-s-c; 02-21-2005 at 03:30 PM.
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  #7  
Old 02-23-2005, 12:29 AM
h2o h2o is offline
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Hey Shaq, Glad you had a good time and were able to get out.
Here are some thoughts in regards to loops and tips. Personally I don't like the welded loops, they hang up more in the guides. I prefer mono or kevlar loops and the way they slide through the guides. A simple and secure way to put them on is to nail knot them with 15 # test mono. I ususally do two seperate nail knots. That is all that is needed if attaching to a floating line. If attaching to a thin sinking line, do the same but coat the knots with Loon knot sence.
The RIO sinking leaders are handy but, there is a draw back. Unlike a level sink tip or a dencity comp. tip the sinking leaders will belly and sink butt first. A weighted fly helps. I prefer a factory one pc. decity comp. above all but, for shorter 5' to 10' handy loop on's I prefer to make my own from S.A. Shooting Tapers (RIO, Cortland may have them also ?) I use a level section to prevent bellying and get the fly down quicker. Of course as you & Peter noted for shorter cast's you can just use a well built tapered mono leader and a couple shot and I do also.
Hope to get out soon...............cabin fever Things should break here in the next 2 weeks or so.
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Old 02-23-2005, 09:58 AM
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BLACK FRANCIS BLACK FRANCIS is offline
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Peter, i haven't had any trouble with ice on the full lines. i am admittadly a bit of a wimp and don't fish in the true cold very much (too many flies to tie and too many warmer days comming). the tip cages must go for winter fishing, though. you have seen the results and the big saltwater tips are much better. one of my winstons has small tip top and never sees a winter day anymore. i found out from a customer that Pam cooking spray works very well to keep of the ice. as far as we know it won't damage a line either (veggie oil). it comes in small cans that will easily fit in a pocket too. the wc line has a little more gradual taper on the back so i haven't seen it jam, but i bet the sa short head would with that steep rear taper. i would like to try the dt and see if i can get used to not stripping. has anyone tried an overlined long belly instead? i have a 10/11 sa long that i will try on the seven wt and see how it works for short, non stripping casting. cant be too much different than a dt and i could mark it for the right casting weight/distance, hhhmmm. btw nice work on the loops and thanks for posting the pics.
h20- try the t-14 for tips i think it will work for you. or take a 12ft 7 ips rio sinking leader and cut three feet of the front to get to the thicker taper, then they get the fly down quick. it does help if you have at least a lightly weighted fly.
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Old 02-23-2005, 10:03 AM
peter-s-c peter-s-c is offline
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Just to add about braided loops. The Cortland loops are quite small so they tend to bulk up and are terrible for going through guides. The ones supplied by Airflo, Fenwick, and Rio seem a lot better in this regard. Like you, I also nail knot the braided loops but I've found that the end knot will occasionally catch on the guides. If I'm having that problem, I whip finish the nail knot, a bit of thinned glue to seal it and problem solved.

I agree that Polyleaders work best with weighted flies with one caveat. This past fall, we did a fair bit of fishing at the same spot on the Grand and both of us were using a combination of Polyleaders, braided sinking leaders, or the sinktips provided with the multi-tip lines. I was using unweighted flies most of the time while Dave used mostly weighted flies. While the water temps remained fairly warm, I tended to do better than Dave but as soon as the temps dropped and/or water levels rose and dirtied up, Dave did better than me. My conclusion -- in warmer, clearer waters, the fish will rise and chase my shallower running fly but in higher/dirtier water or when temps are dropping, Dave's flies got down to where the fish were and mine didn't. Most of the time, we were both using T-3s so presumably, our tips were sinking to the same level.

Last edited by peter-s-c; 02-23-2005 at 11:25 AM.
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  #10  
Old 02-23-2005, 10:29 AM
peter-s-c peter-s-c is offline
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About the tip cages and small guides -- they're certainly a curse when things get icy. It's one reason I've ordered a 7/8 Kispiox as that rod comes with large guides and tiptop. It's also a pretty soft rod that won't grossly overpower sluggish winter fish.

If my DT experiments go OK, I'll be buying three or four cheap standard DT-9s in floating, clear, T-3 and T-6 to use on it, mostly for short to medium ranges and no-stripping during the winter. There's a cheap 10/11 cast LA reel on the UK market with cassette spools so that solves the spool cost problem for this solution. This is still just an idea right now and by next winter, I could completely change my mind -- again, but we'll see how it goes. If the weather holds, I'll be fishing a DT floater on the Credit on Saturday in sub-freezing temps -- should be a good first test.

BTW, heard about the PAM trick -- I wonder if SWMBO would have my head if I swiped the kitchen supply . . . .

Last edited by peter-s-c; 02-23-2005 at 11:24 AM.
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  #11  
Old 02-23-2005, 12:44 PM
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voodoofly voodoofly is offline
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Hello Peter

I was casting a DT9F while evaluating a Meiser 6/7. I now have this lined with a Rio MS 6/7. Casting felt about the same in the 50-70' range. Of course the MS is easier to cast. The DT9 might be too light for the 7/8 rod.

I will fish under any condition. When the windchills are below 0 F you need to break ice from the guides. Period. The largest oversized guides help. Your reel spool will freeze to the frame. You need to manually rotate it to free it. Period. Eventually your leader may become encased in ice. Sometimes the fly will. This happens when the line is out of the water too long between drifts/swings or that it's really friggin' cold. Then you need to take a break and let everything thaw out. I really like fishing under those conditions. Every fish is that much more enjoyable.

Gary
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Old 02-23-2005, 01:13 PM
peter-s-c peter-s-c is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by voodoofly
I was casting a DT9F while evaluating a Meiser 6/7. I now have this lined with a Rio MS 6/7. Casting felt about the same in the 50-70' range. Of course the MS is easier to cast. The DT9 might be too light for the 7/8 rod.
Gary
Gary, you could be right -- I'll be trying it first with the DT-10-F that I already have. But I suspect the DT-9 will be OK due to the rod's very soft upper section and that supposedly these rods are built to the new spey standards so it's more of a 7 than an 8. That means a DT-9 should be about right. We'll see when I get it.

About the cold, well you're a better man than I, Gunga Din. I get out in minus Celsius but not in minus Farenheit. Fortunately we don't see too many days like that, but even so, most of the fishable water is either iced over or closed for the season. I'm only getting out to the Credit because the recent thaw and rains blew out the ice. We've had a weird winter.
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