Lock-Jawed Coho

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by CLO, Sep 19, 2013.


How do you get river Coho to bite when they are jumping all around you?

Change Fly Color 5 vote(s) 17.2%
Change Retrieve 7 vote(s) 24.1%
Change Fly Size 8 vote(s) 27.6%
Grab some roe 2 vote(s) 6.9%
Go gome 7 vote(s) 24.1%
  1. CLO coho where are you?

    Posts: 767
    Ratings: +307 / 0
    How do you solve the lock-jawed PNW coho problem?
  2. plaegreid Saved by the buoyancy of citrus

    Posts: 548
    Renton, WA
    Ratings: +618 / 0
    All of the above? Minus go gome, of course.
  3. underachiever !

    Posts: 623
    suburban hell
    Ratings: +423 / 0
    Seems like coho are either biting or they aren't. If the ones in front of me aren't, I check out different water in hopes of finding some aggressive ones.
  4. Stonefish Triploid and Humpy Hater

    Posts: 3,862
    Pipers Creek
    Ratings: +1,260 / 1
    Keeping doing what has worked for you in the past. The jumpers aren't the players anyway.
    Blake Harmon likes this.
  5. Josh Smestad aka Mtnwkr

    Posts: 620
    Bremerton, Wa
    Ratings: +67 / 0
    I change flys a few times, brake my rod over my knee and chuck it as far out into the school as I can. Then I go and drink beer.
    Terry Bare, ten80, Skysoldier and 4 others like this.
  6. skyrise Active Member

    Posts: 591
    everett, wa.
    Ratings: +51 / 0
    tie on a Dick Nite half/half.
    Mark Kraniger likes this.
  7. Cruik Active Member

    Posts: 459
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +141 / 0

    Doesn't work as well unless you're running a slinky and 10 feet of flossing leader.
    Patrick Allen likes this.
  8. 10incher Active Member

    Posts: 210
    Coupeville, Washington
    Ratings: +92 / 0

    Actually, the best thing I know to do is use a color that is generally considered to make them aggressive. For Coho I guess that would be chartreuse and/or orange. Then, if you can find a fish holding in one area, cast to that area repeatedly. There's a chance the fish will become annoyed and bite your fly just to make it die or go away.
  9. cuponoodle breakfast gritty

    Posts: 1,650
    Ratings: +303 / 0
    I fish them when the water is colored. If that's not an option, I fish a glacial river where the water is colder.
    And I usually fish them with gear.
  10. bennysbuddy the sultan of swing

    Posts: 2,260
    Ratings: +674 / 0
    GEAR, you much braver than I to admit to useing gear. I once admitted to being fond of Plunking & drinking Budweisers as a great pastime and was nearly banned......
  11. Patrick Allen Active Member

    Posts: 397
    Ratings: +174 / 0
    Go steelhead fishing! They say 1 out of 20 coho in a pool is a biter but 1 out of 2 steelhead in a holding location will bite a properly presented lure. That being said there are 100 times as many coho in a river than steelhead so keep swinging
    Flyborg likes this.
  12. 10incher Active Member

    Posts: 210
    Coupeville, Washington
    Ratings: +92 / 0
    Here's an idea I just thought of, so I've never tried it, but...

    Slip a pea sized red bead onto your leader before tying on any minnow imitation streamer. Then peg the bead in place with a toothpick right at the knot. The salmon may take it for some egg stealing critter and attack it out of species preservation instinct. Sort of an egg sucking leech on steroids. I'm definitely trying that one if I make it to a river this year. Lock jaw fish are maddening.
  13. PT Physhicist

    Posts: 3,544
    Edmonds, WA
    Ratings: +711 / 2
    Fly and retrieve. Change as needed.
    Don Freeman likes this.
  14. mtskibum16 Active Member

    Posts: 929
    Puget Sound Beaches
    Ratings: +201 / 0
    No, then we go catch some sweet SRC action! ;)
  15. Fishee Member

    Posts: 152
    Ratings: +18 / 0
    I haven't had any luck using flies for coho in the rivers, but i do have luck using roe and marshmellows (use it like a corkie). What i notice is i only get bite during tide changes. When they do stop biting, they stop!

    I do catch chum on the fly in the rivers no problem, oh and pinks too.
  16. sopflyfisher Active Member

    Posts: 707
    Where the fish are located
    Ratings: +417 / 0
    coho are.rad and frustrating. bottom line is they don't always bite. it also matters if they are in a run or their beloved frog,bass water. flies must go up and down, weighted on a floater is best. mono leader only! polys suck as they retard jigging motion. if you must use a tip use a long leader, the fly must go up and down! as for colors start with any color so long as its pink. then peach or purple. lastly go black and blue. avoid chartreuse at all costs. kings like it coho flat don't find it compelling. steelhead like it too. i have caught less than ten on chartreuse. countless on pink. don't overdress. the fly must jig well, too much material retards this. they are like big pinks. if you catch pinks you can catch coho. your best pink flies a couple sizes bigger will make a good coho fly. lastly avoid the coho being caught by the roe and flosser guys. the coho you are looking for eat spinners and car keys if the are for a pink prius. they are not always the lowest fish in the system. big is good. i like big flies, big lines, big leaders, and big rods. longer rods throw longer lines and longer leaders. lastly coho like funky water. I've made an anglers living swinging and twitching from an anchored or well rowed boat. finally be quiet. coho are the most easily spooked fish in our rivers. this means while you're buddy is making noise with that skagit and twenty feet of t 14, he is screwing you! don't drop pliers in the boat, don't talk loud, turn that phone off (yes i think they hear it ring), and single spey softly, or single hand. remember solving the puzzle is the reward and satisfaction. sometimes these fish are stupid, really stupid. other times they are extremely picky and tempermental. the bite changes too, what hammered them two hours ago might not work now. keep casting, quietly.
  17. Flyborg Active Member

    Posts: 2,299
    Kalama, WA
    Ratings: +597 / 0
    I hear so many different opinions on coho I don't even know where to start really. Methods seem to vary by region and run. Personally, I've had some epic (30+ fish) days and some epically disappointing days where I see countless fish but don't touch a one. I've had days where the guy next to me hooked none and I landed six in a few hours--both using the same fly, lines, sink tips. I even switched him spots a few times.

    Personally, I think chronically harassed fish in low water are going to be much harder to catch. When we get rain on the local rivers in the fall, I'm there hoping to run into a pod of fresh fish. I've caught them on purple egg-sucking leeches, sharp-steelies, Last Calls, egg patterns, MOAL leeches. My best days have been on smaller, sparser, bright flies like Idylwilde's Last Call.

    Unfortunately, I've rarely met two people who have the same opinions of coho. It's hard to get a consensus of what makes them bite.
    ten80 likes this.
  18. Ian Broadie Flyfishing is so "Metal"

    Posts: 670
    Kirkland, Washington
    Ratings: +57 / 0
    I did up a "fly" in silver and gold flashabou to mimic the natural motion of the wild Dick Nite :D
  19. sopflyfisher Active Member

    Posts: 707
    Where the fish are located
    Ratings: +417 / 0
  20. sopflyfisher Active Member

    Posts: 707
    Where the fish are located
    Ratings: +417 / 0
    flash flies are good ian. i tie mine in silver with pink to imitate the blue fox hatch. the foxes are number four right now.
    Cruik and Ian Broadie like this.