Not all fish are created equal. This small Rogue River hatchery steelhead goes back into the drink! Grow larger.
The water flow has lowered and the steelhead bite seems a little tentative. I felt several other steelhead “mouth” the fly. However I was a little slow on the hookup to the skinny water wary fish. Smaller flies have been the fish ticket. Try a size #10 Yellow Fork Tail Prince Nymph. A small G.R. Hare’s Ear Nymph is a good second choice.
More January reflecting. Thinking back on August when the Rogue River ran high but without the stain and cold of January runoff. Sure the river will continue it’s winter antics but the conditions overall are improving as we near February.
Here’s a lucky day during late August 2016 when a Hobo Spey and Midnight Rainbow Carpetbagger Stonefly Nymph were the successful flies to use.
Found this fresh fall steelhead in a good high water run on the upper Rogue River. Recent showers have swollen the flow of the river, but the water remains clear. The fly was one of my new stonefly nymph patterns, the “au natural Carpetbagger Nymph.”
The water is very clear right now. That was the first thing I noticed, lots of good flow and gin clear. It didn’t take long to find a nice sized cutthroat trout with the Midnight Rainbow Carpetbagger Stonefly Nymph. The first steelhead came to a Brown Fork Tail Prince Nymph. He was a little further downriver in the run. Finally just before the sunset I was able to cast at the “sweet spot” as it became vacant. I was soon on to a nice steelhead. I played the fish well and was giving it a different angle of the rod when the hook came out. No matter, I made a cast to the middle of the run, and on that very next cast I was hooked to an even better steelhead. The buck fought well, lighting up the water with some spectacular runs and leaps. Finally I was able to control those and some other stubborn antics. I tailed the fish and admired the white, crimson and green of his thick sides. Like I said the Rogue River was up and I was, “Liking it!”
This fresh, Fall, upriver bright hit a orange bead head Brownbagger Stonefly Nymph.
The orange egghead Brownbagger is the pattern to use now on the upper Rogue River.
There’s something about the spawning Chinook salmon and the effectiveness of hot orange egg patterns for Rogue River steelhead during October. Why not fish two flies in one pattern? The Brownbagger carries the look of the ever abundant river bottom stonefly nymphs. That hot orange bead head is definitely an attraction as both color stimulant and salmon egg imitation. The Brownbagger is two flies in one…a stonefly nymph and an egg pattern.