Upper Rogue River Steel and Teal

Rain and snow were the conditions called for today. As you can see from the sunny sky in the first photo the weather was anything but what the weatherman had predicted. My first effort was to catch the steelhead. I cast a duo fly setup. The dropper fly was a small, nondescript, bead head nymph. The top fly was a Midnight Rainbow Carpetbagger Nymph. As I searched the water for steelhead, I could observe numbers of green-winged teal dropping and gliding down to the slough upstream. I was tempted to leave the Rogue River steelhead run and head over to the slough. Eventually I was rewarded with a strike and hookup from the sunlit run. A nice hatchery Rogue River steelhead had bit on the Carpetbagger Nymph. Another buck steelhead. Why does it seem that the male fish always arrive a little later behind the hen steelhead run? Just seems that way to me.

Gathered up all the gear and walked over to the slow and muddy slough. I skirting it wide so as to not spook the ducks. A white egret took off. A white egret or heron will always see you. I always try to spook them away early so as to get it over and done with. Walking slowly up to the slough I could see four teal on the water. Green-wing teal. I moved forward slowly and they took off. I missed, but another bunch erupted from the water to my right. I picked out a drake, swung the CZ Mallard and this time I didn’t miss. Great thing about an over and under is that you get that second shot.

I next set out a couple mallard decoys and sat to enjoy lunch and the rest of the afternoon. I really enjoy watching the pond with its shorebirds, pipers, snipes and every other critter that walks or flies on the wetland. I thought about the decoy I found the other day. It is a pintail drake decoy. Slight crack on the back, but I can fix that with a bead of Lexel® sealer. Little bit of an antique as the company no longer exist. Trademark on the bottom reads Victor D-10 Majestic Decoys. Made in the USA by the Animal Trap Company of America. It is plastic so it is not really worth much. As far as I can tell it dates back to 1960’s. I’ll give it a new lease on life.

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