I've been bitten by the steelhead bug and I have a feeling there is no cure. I managed to hook and land my first one a few months ago and on the swing no less! 2012 has been pretty dry so far but there is a decent sized storm looming on the horizon. Hopefully this will push some large adults into the coastal river systems! Anyways, I've been stocking my fly box with some steelhead patterns and here is one I've added tonight.
The Morrish Medush (Originally tied by Ken Morrish)
Hook: 25mm Waddington Shank with a size 1 octopus trailer (joined with 30lb Berkeley Fireline)
Thread: 6/0 Black
Tail: Red Krystal Flash
Body: Black ice chenille
Wing: Black rabbit strip and three strands on each side of black ostrich
Overwing: Grizzly saddle hackles
Collar: Red Marabou
Eyes: Large lead eyes
Head: Black rabbit strip fibers spun in a dubbing loop
1. Tie in a clump of krystal flash at the rear of the shank. The flash should extend to the end of the trailer hook.
2. This step I just added to cover the shank. Tie in and wrap some black ice chenille and wrap to the 50% point on the shank.
3. Tie in a black rabbit strip directly on top of the shank. Make sure the rabbit strip extends slightly past the trailer hook. Also I forgot to tie in the lead eyes at the beginning. Just tie those in as well in a figure 8 pattern under the hook shank.
4. Then add 3 black ostrich hurls to each side of the shank.
5. Next, tie in the grizzly hackle overwing. One hackle goes on each side. Make sure the hackles extend to about the length of the rabbit strip.
6. The marabou is next. You can either wrap the marabou collar in or just tie in a clump on top and one on bottom like I did here.
7. The hardest part of this fly is next. Create a dubbing loop and insert a black rabbit strip with the leather still on it. Then carefully cut off the leather and spin just the rabbit hair in the dubbing loop.
8. Finally just palmer the rabbit hair in with some turns in back, figure 8 through the lead eyes, and make a few turns at the head. Whip finish and voila! The finished fly! (Note: The original pattern uses hen saddle hackles as fins on the both sides of the fly but I chose to just leave those out)
As always.....stay fly
Friday, January 6, 2012
My dad and I jump started 2012 on the Merced River by floating from the Crocker Huffman dam all the way to Snelling Road. Daniel and I had done this float a few years back and I was anxious to see some of the spots not accessible from the road again. Within 5 minutes of wetting the line, Dad was into a fish, and that fish set the tempo for the rest of the day. Egg/glow bug/sucker spawn patterns seemed to be the ticket for us. Only 1 fish came on a different fly. With catching great numbers of fish typically means a lot of smaller fish in a general sense, but I did manage to nab a nice healthy 18 incher too! All in all it was a great day to get out and fish with my dad. We don't get out there together as often as we used to but it's definitely special to me when we do. I would recommend this float to anyone with a smaller pontoon and a general sense of how to navigate a bit of whitewater. The rapids are nothing extreme by any sense of the word but can definitely put you in a bad position if you are unsure of what you are doing. There are a lot of great wild fish in that section of river!
For those who haven't seen it already! Featured on The Orvis blog and Fly Fishing for Bass! This video is a compilation of the GSF crew and our bassing adventures this past year. All of it was shot with GoPro video cameras and was only shot on small waters in the Central Valley in CA. No Delta. No Reservoirs. We basically took Google Maps and searched out small bodies of water within an hour of home and went at it and this is what we came up with. Enjoy and Stay Fly!