Steelhead Caddis (A Rogue River pattern for hot August)

Bill McMillan's Steelhead Caddis, a good pattern for hot August on the Rogue.

During hot August days you can often dredge the bottom with offerings like the weighted Carpetbaggers and smaller nymphs and barely touch a trout. You know that there is fish holding, but for some reason they will not take those offerings that are presented to them down deep and dirty. I’ve found that more often than not, steelhead and cutthroat will be looking up. What I mean is that for some reason the fish will be more susceptible to a topside presentation. Swinging a regular wet fly like a Skunk or Silver Hilton is a good option. I’ve often elected to tie on a light fly like Bill McMillian’s Steelhead Caddis. The natural look of the fly inspires confidence. It nearly always fishes right on the surface. You can actually create a top surface disturbance with the fly by riffle hitching it to skate or plough a V wake through the water. What ever the fish see or maybe don’t really see I can’t imagine, but they do react. Sometimes a summer surface presentation is better than going deep for trout, cutthroat or wary Rogue River steelhead.


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