What’s On Bench – Rogue River Steelhead Flies

Steelhead Fly Patterns

Flies for the Rogue River – All the Carpetbagger patterns, G. R. Hare’s Ears, Prince, Yellow Fork Tail, Herniators Skunk, Silver Hiltons…


Intruders! That’s what’s on the bench.

Red Ants (Bead head) Single Hook

Bead Head Red Ants

Very similar to the old Rogue Ant, only lacking a double point hook and a fine gold oval rib.

The Red Ant is very similar to the Rogue Ant. Indeed John Shewey mentions in his book Steelhead Flies that the Rogue Ant is also referred to as the Rogue Red Ant. I believe the Red Ant is the older pattern, and the Rogue Red Ant was an adaptation created for the lower Rogue River in the 1920’s and 1930’s. Instead of a single, down-eyed hook the Rogue Red Ant was usually tied on Mustad double point hooks. It also featured a fine, oval gold rib through the body. If jungle cock feather eyes were available, two were mounted on the outside of the bucktail wing. One on each side, much like the old Rogue River Special. Old double point hook flies were fished off the front of the boat to swing and flutter in the current 30 to 40 feet below the driftboat. No casting of the flies. The movement of the boat did the work. The half-pounders and adult steelhead found this tactic irresistible.