Guided Fly and Spey Fishing Trips for Steelhead and Brown Trout with
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While we really like fishing the swung fly, and try to focus on spey techniques when possible, there are simply sometimes when conditions or the preferences of people fishing with us mean fishing an indicator rig. When we do fish an indy rig, more often than not at the end of the line you might see a little thing we refer to as "the item"- a colorful plastic bead pegged in place above a hook. I first started fishing a bead in Alaska in 2008 and quickly saw just how useful it would be back on my home streams. Over the years, I've tweaked my rig a bit so I can change things out (the hook or bead) without cutting my line. Here's my bead rig:
Step 1: What you need is your bead, tippet (already tied onto your leader), a hook ( for steelhead or lake run browns I prefer size 2 or 4 octopus hooks- bigger for beads 12mm or more, smaller for smaller beads, while if I'm fishing stream trout a 4 or 6) and a toothpick.
Step 2: Slide the bead onto your tippet, then tie a figure 8 loop in the end of your tippet. The loop will be what holds the hook on the end and should be about 1 1/2 - 2 inches. Why I like a loop is because I can then trade out hooks and even beads without cutting the line. Simply unloop the hook and pull the toothpick stopper from the bead and it will slide over the knot.Here is how to tie a figure 8 loop:
Make a loop in the tippet first:
Wrap the loop around both the tag end and main part of the tippet twice:
Pull the single loop through the double loop formed in the line:
Pull the knot tight:
Step 3: Use the toothpick to "peg" the bead. Push it in then snap off the sharp point. This will keep the bead from slipping down below the figure 8 knot. Later if you need to change the bead, poke the sharp end of a toothpick down the other side of the bead to push out the little piece of the toothpick that is broken off and it will pass over the figure 8 knot.
Peg the bead:
Snap off the toothpick:
There will be a piece stuck in the bead that holds it in place:
Slide the pegged bead down to the figure 8 knot to hold it in place:
Step 4: Pass the loop through the eye of a hook, wrap it over the shank, and secure it to the tippet:
Step 5: Bead up fish:
Notes: The rig above is tied with an ungodly large hook and 30 pound high viz big game leader. That is not my normal setup but was done so it would show up better in pics. I usually use 8-10 pound clear fluoro and a size 4 hook. Please do not fish a 3/0 saltwater hook with a bead.
Though again, not our preferred way of fishing, but an incredibly effective method that has its uses as conditions or the preferences of others dictate.
|Posted on December 25, 2016 at 9:55 AM||comments (79)|
Happy Holidays! We're still fishing over here on our Western New York creeks. The last few weeks have been kinda all over the place. About the second week of December, we started getting some really heavy lake effect snow. Parts of the upper Catt above the dam saw snowfall in excess of 40 inches over about a week and a half. During the third week, a blast of artic air that kept daytime highs in the teens and twenties for over a week locked up most of our smaller creeks, meaning we had to work a bit to find open water. Then toward the end of last week, we got a few days of rain and daytime highs in the 40's.
Currently everything is flowing high from predominantly snowmelt. But it means that all our creeks are still open. Before ice up we were still getting into really good steelhead and browns, so when the creeks drop back to fishable conditions it should be great fishing. Look for the Catt to be out of the picture for the foreseeable future, as there is still tons of snow on the upper river. But don't be afraid to take a look at her when she's flowing a little higher- snowmelt runs clearer than rainfall runoff. We were there three days ago and she was fishable at over 800 cfs.
Yesterday the smaller creeks were peaking and should be dropping today and tomorrow. Even in the dirty water we had fun, but didn't find any Christmas Eve steelhead. Still, here are a few pics.
When fishing dirty water, look for slow water out of the main current. Here Eliot Alpert targets a slow seam below a slate cascade.
Though unpleasant for the minute, the high water opened our creeks again from ice.
During high flows, fish will often tuck away in places that are too shallow for them in normal or low flows. Here Eliot and Benny Alpert fish a broken slate run that only flows inches deep during normal flows.
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|Posted on October 23, 2016 at 8:15 PM||comments (0)|
Fresh Lake Erie Chrome
Nice Egg-Wagon Brown
We have a good run!!!
Well like promised, the blast of water we had at the end of the week triggered a good push of fresh steelhead and a smattering of lake run browns. In the smaller Erie creeks, both in Pennsylvania and New York, dropping water conditions yesterday afternoon and all day today produced some fantastic fishing. Visibility ranging from two to four feet depending on the individual creek or even the stretch being fished all fell within prime steelhead ranges. Stripping weighted woolly buggers or bunny leaches in white and cream colors through the guts of ledge pools produced arm jolting take after take. The bigger creeks are still too colored to fish well. The Catt is still out of the picture but should come back online here in the next day or two. The Grand will be out of shape until the middle of the week.
In Lake Ontario creeks, look for good numbers of lake run browns, along with a fresh run of salmon to have pushed in with the weather. All fish this year have been running on the larger size due to the mild winter, but reports coming back from Lake Ontario over the summer, along with the major river salmon fisheries have shown kings running up to 35 pounds this year. The Salmon River is also in the middle of the best Atlantic Salmon run since 2010, again with good sized fish (see below for a 20 +/- pounder).
So despite the adverse low water conditions that stuck around longer than we hoped, the main run has started. For the last two weeks, I've been calling some of my repeat clients who like to book trips earlier in the season and rescheduling. Looks like it's time to tell them the good news. For anyone else wanting to get in on the action, the next few weeks should be on fire.
Giant Salmon River Atlantic:
Photo from Salmon River Fishing Reports: https://www.facebook.com/SteelHead101/