How’d the Rogue River flow jump so much over the weekend? I was away from the valley floor and up in the mountains trying to take some possible Christmas Card photos while breaking in a new pair of Rocky Boots. Granted it did sprinkle rain and hail a little at that attitude, but for the most part it was just plain cold with fog. The fog made finding and taking photos difficult, while the new boots proved up to the task of the weather and terrain. What was my surprise Monday when I returned to the river and found the water semi murky and a foot or so higher along the bank. Note to oneself, it is getting to be that time of year when extra attention must be given to the weather in order to monitor good Rogue River fly-fishing condition
Definitely the best buck of the past season. He showed up on trail cam after the season had close. Most of his appearances during mid-November were late night, but he did make a daylight, dawn appearance during the month. I believe this is the same four point that I saw during the 2013 season. Oh, to see him again in 2015!
Two days of sub-freezing night time temperatures and the catching went cold on the Rogue River. Even with a late morning visit just to give the river time to warm up we could not find a bite. We were treated to a nice sight. Where does this blacktail buck hide the rest of the year? I do not know because I never get a sight of him until November. I know he is around because sometimes his track shows in the early fall. I first saw him two years ago. He only becomes this unwary during the month of November.
Today they were hitting the trailing fly. I thought of it more as a swinging fly, something the steelhead hit as it came to the end of the swing. Today hookups to the little fly came during the dead-drift. I could even feel the Rogue River cutthroat trout’s nibbling bite to it. The steelhead paused the downstream travel of the fly line and leader connection. I took out the slack, and a good fish was on with the fly solid in the corner of the jaw.
A great way to fly fish two flies is with the following rigging. The examples I’m using are the two patterns shown in the photo. Both patterns have caught nice fish lately so I’m showing them again. So, the rigging goes as such. First tie the heavier, larger pattern to the end of your tippet. In the photo that would be the larger, rubber-legs stonefly nymph. I like that tippet section to be 10# test because you never know what size fish you are going to hook up with on the Rogue River. Also stout 10# test, like Maxima brand, allows you to pull out of most snags without losing your flies. The knot I use exclusively throughout this whole set up is the Uni-Knot also known as the Duncan Loop. Fast and easy to tie, the knot is also very strong. The second, smaller fly (I call it following fly) is attached to the first fly with 24 to 26 inches of 8# test tippet. Sometimes I will use 10# test if the water is up, fast and heavy; or if river conditions are much like they are right now which is low and cold, I will drop the tippet size between flies down to 6# test. The tippet between flies is attached to the larger fly either at the bend of its hook or at its eye. I prefer to attach to the bend of the hook, but both attachment points will work. The second fly is simply tied to the end of that “between” leader. Again I like to use the Duncan Loop knot at all knot points. A good reason to have that long leader between flies is too keep from foul hooking while playing the fish with the “following” fly. Of course you always run the risk of that following fly hooking a snag or rock while you are playing the fish…but chalk that up to fishing luck. As is that edge of favorable chance that fishing two flies at the same time can give.