Midnight Fire Carpetbagger (A steelhead pattern for the Rogue River.)

All steelhead will go for the Carpetbagger.

Magic Fly Video

As per request a video on the tieing of the Carpetbagger. This is of the Wayne Van Burger “Magic Fly” version. My own favorite flavor is the Midnight Rainbow Carpetbagger. The Brownbagger comes into it’s own during salmon spawning season or during the cold winter months. For those that can tie, have fun. For those that don’t want to tie their own, visit my About Page for viewing of the Carpetbagger patterns available from me.


October’s Idyllic End on the upper Rogue River

Late October Summer Steelhead on the upper Rogue River

With frosty mornings, falling leaves, dry grass and perfect mid-day temperatures in the sixties, October comes to an end on the upper Rogue River. The river level has dropped to about its lowest, and the Fall chinook spawn is still going on. The steelhead catching has been spotty. Never the less they make their presence known on occasion. I came across this October steelhead the other day while duck hunting a favorite slough of the Rogue River. Just a little frosting on the cake, the mallard ducks were also cooperating. Local birds and a few migrants I suppose. Other than mallards, teal, wood ducks and Canada geese, I haven’t seen a big waterfowl migration yet. I guess October’s conditions are just too darn nice! The Rogue Valley weather should take a good nosedive sometime in November and with that change look for a fresh influx of new steelhead and waterfowl on the upper Rogue River.

Upper Rogue Mallards

Opening of duck season on the Rogue River.

The CZ Mallard scored it’s first waterfowl of the Fall. Mallards! I passed on the smaller teal. Wasn’t alot of waterfowl movement on the second morning of the season. The Rogue River is very low and some of the best slough areas are just mud holes. The weather continues to be very nice. Indian summer. Today the temperature high’s are up near 80°F. The mallard feathers are welcome as they replenish some fly tying supplies.

Upper Rogue River Steelhead

I’ve heard some good reports from the Rogue River around Grants Pass. Sizeable steelhead are being caught within the Grants Pass city limits. The steelhead are staging off the spawning Fall chinook. These fish are finally working upstream into the upper Rogue River. I caught this beauty late today above Medford. I was flyfishing a Carpetbagger and Bead-head G.R. Hare’s Ear fly combination with the 11 foot switch rod. Casting to just beyond and behind some spawning salmon I hooked the steelhead in the deeper water. The steelhead took off so hard and fast I though I had hooked a salmon. Chalk that up to that powerful fast water. After several strong runs (with no leaps!), I finally leveraged the steelhead to shore for this quick photo. A bright female of about 27 or 28 inch long.

A bright and fat steelhead from the upper Rogue River. The October fish are arriving.

October 9, 2011 Wild Steelhead on the upper Rogue River

Teri and I put in the time on the upper Rogue River today and we did find a steelhead. The fish was a fiesty native sporting a mean attitude. I guess he didn’t like us discovering his little hiding hole. Ran away in tirade a couple of times. The first run was upon hooking up. After I coaxed him back a bit he went another wild run that ended with a spectacular leap. Slowly I worked him back to shore and we landed and released the pretty native Rogue River steelhead. We caught him with a Carpetbagger!

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