A walk in hike lead to this early September hatchery steelhead in a narrow holding run along the bank of the Rogue River. My home-made Scandi/Skagit casting head made throwing a G.R.Hare’s Ear Nymph easy from a casting area backed up by a high bank with trees and brush. The steelhead are where you find them. Never easy, but always a glorious challenge.
The hot Carpetbagger Stonefly Nymph patterns springing from the fly tying vise. Midnight Fire, Midnight Rainbow and Hot Orange Beadhead Copper/Gold/Black.
Until all this forest fire smoke lifts and disappears, I’m not straying far from the house and filling my Rogue River fly bins.
Getting closer to September 1st and fly fishing only on the upper Rogue River. The hot Carpetbagger Stonefly Nymphs are being fashioned on the Renzetti fly tying vice.
Smoke from Oregon forest fires. 100°F in the shade. What’s not to like? Carpetbagger Nymph playing predatory insect, hunting Rogue River cutthroat trout and summer steelhead (if I can find one!) Today I saw a nice steelhead jump upriver in a hole I had just fished. I guess it wanted to take a look at me as I waded down river. Looked like a nice one, about 20 – 23 inches. Chrome sides and dark back! Next time!!!!!!!!
Last year at this time:
This year I need a gas mask as well as this new CamelBak water bag to take along flyfishing for summer steelhead.
While the big Hornbrook fire burns north, west and east at the Oregon/California border, our sky is still clear and smoke free in the Rogue Valley. Day time temperature got up to around 90°F this afternoon. Winds were southernly. The water is clear and good looking, but no grabs today. I guess the big thing I can grouch about is the water flow. It is a mere 1630 CFS and about 58°F. Last summer there were high flows and the fish loved it. All I could muster today were several Chinook smolts on a Bead Head G.R. Hare’s Ear Nymph.
Click above for video. Rogue River flow – 1810 CFS. Temperature – From 52°F to 61°F.
Steelhead count at the Cole Rivers hatchery = 130 (June 20th)
What do you get when you cross a crawdad with a grasshopper?
Finally the landing.
Caught on the Crawhopper Fly.
A perfect 18.
When I want a little practice playing fish before summer steelhead season comes on the Rogue River, I go to the high Cascade mountains for redband trout. These natives fight like summer steelhead. High leaping, long running and long endurance. In the location I fly fish they are all legal, the only requirement being “artificial lures and fly fishing only.” Practice on!