March has arrived with more blustery winter weather. YesterdayTeri and I made our first float of the year. The weather was a heck of a lot better and we enjoyed a good time flyfishing on the Rogue. Additionally, we were able to stop by the local State Marine Board and get the driftboat inspected for all the required safety equipment. The drifter passed with flying colors.
On the river we flyfished for trout and winter steelhead. The water still runs cold at around 41°F. We did note some dry fly hatch activity and fished accordingly to a number of shakers.
The trout that were active were rising to something that was really small. We knew that we could fool them with a very small G.R. Hare’s Ear fished on the swing. And so we did.
Still wanting to catch that first upper river winter steelhead I suggested that we change gear to heavier flies. Teri, who pretty much always makes up her own mind, bypassed my suggestions and opted for a recently tied Freight Train. For when I would get a chance to fish, I chose a heavier Carpetbagger and Beadhead G.R. Hare’s Ear nymphs.
Actually I chose for my rod, the big Orange Beadhead Brown Bagger nymph. That’s simply a Carpetbagger tied with Copper/Black chenille and a huge orange bead. I’d lost a nice steelhead early in the week on the same pattern. Lost not just the steelhead and fly, but a whole flyline! That steelhead was hooked pretty straight downstream of my position, and when the backing left the reel and came under some tension, it parted.
A bit more of bad luck from early in the week. While wading some deep water, my Canon camera got just a little bit wet. I’ve dried it out pretty well, but as the rest of the photo’s will show, it still has issues. Tough camera though. I’ve nursed it through the Canon E-18 error issue and now this. I think with a little more drying time the A-60 will be back in good shape.
On yesterdays float, Teri succeeded in showing me that the Freight Train pattern tempts not only steelhead , but also the Rogue’s cutthroat trout.
Definitely the trout of the day. Teri played the cutty to the cheers of some spectators on shore. When the time was appropriate I assisted with the Drifter’s net.
A Hare’s Ear nymph accounted for one other notable good sized trout. I believe I observed a steelhead create a rise on the surface. A good sized fish. If it was a cutthroat then it was a grandpa cutty. Many cast to the area produced nothing. The river runs higher yet cold and clear, and the bite is yet to come during March.