Teri and I did pretty good Saturday on a short float on the upper Rogue. We put in about 4:00 PM and took out just before sunset. I tied a Steelhead Caddis Emerger on to Teri’s 9 foot Sage rod. For when I got a chance to fish, I set my switch rod up with a Beadhead G.R. Hare’s Ear nymph point fly off a Midnight Rainbow Carpetbagger big nymph. I started out rowing in tank top, but pretty quick covered up exposed arms with a long sleeve shirt. The air felt pretty cool in the shade, while it was bright and warm out in the direct sun. The Steelhead Caddis Emerger fly was doing pretty good in the shallow riffles and I helpfully released the trout, salmon smolt and one nice cutthroat trout for Teri. After while she was on her “own” with the instructions, “Just invert the hook and shake them off!”
The first steelhead came to my rod. While anchored up in a deeper hole I cast a few times to the weak side of the driftboat. Teri had said that she saw a good fish come to the surface. I swung the Carpetbagger and Hare’s Ear off some shallow side riffles into the deep water. After about 10 minutes I got a grab and a steelhead went airborne immediately. A fiesty 16 inch native had glumped on to the Beadhead G.R. Hare’s Ear. He put up quite an airborne display and we finally wet released him right at the boat.
We passed a few people fishing away the late afternoon on the sunny banks of the river. Down in a nice shaded run Teri drifted her fly out in front while I rowed slowing our pace through the water. Bang a big fish came up and grabbed the Steelhead Caddis Emerger and left Teri shaking. Too good to be true, it didn’t last long and the leader came back curly-cued and minus the fly. I rowed back up and we drifted through that run a couple more times. Nothing more, I guess he’d had enough!
Down near our take-out we pulled over, went ashore, and picked blackberries. Back on the water and a last hole to fish before takeout. Nothing doing in the water where’d I caught a fish earlier this week. Taking out was a little slower with the shallow water level and abundantly exposed rocks. We got it done and were soon back on the road home.