Steelhead flies?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by fly15, Apr 26, 2002.

  1. I would like to start tying my summer run steelhead flies and even next years winter run steelie flies. I am just getting started in the fly fishing for steelhead game and was wondering what rivers to try this summer, in the medium to small size? I have read a lot about how the fly pattern does not matter that much when fly fishing for steelhead but I think it matters more than some think it does if nothing else it is nice just to have confidence in the fly pattern your fishing. If you had only 10 fly patterns for steelies what would you carry in your fly box? I love tying these steelhead flies they sure are easier than a size 20 trout fly.I was thinking of hitting the north fork of the stilly in july or august would that be a good bet for a begginer.THANKS. :DUNNO
  2. As to the rivers, the NF Stilly and the Sky are both Seattle area rivers that have summer runs. But I understand that the NF Stilly is better in memory than fish these days, and one should hit the Sky.

    As to the patterns, I would tie McLeod's Ugly, Green Butt Skunk, Skykomish Sunrise, Fancy Spade, and Comet, then I would move into smaller spey and marabou patterns: Deer Creek, Heavy Breather, Guinea Pseudo Speys, and Marabou Speys in black, purple, yellow orange and green.

    But I wouldn't forget surface flies for steelies like Bomber, Waller Waker, Steelhead Bee and October Caddis.

    That's about all I know.
  3. I spend most of my summer and fall on the NF stilly. It is true it's not the river it used to be, but still does offer a good chance at both hatchery and native summer runs. As far as flies go, you do need just a couple for a floating line and a couple for a sink tip that you have confidence in, that seems to be key, fish flies you are confident in. I have boxes and boxes and only a handfull see much action. Floating line flies for the NF, size 6-8 bomber, ocotber caddis, muddlers, low water style freight train, skunk series, max canyon, etc. For a sink tip, small marabous, small GP's, bunny leeches, don't forget my best summer run pattern, size 6 woolley bugger ( not because it's a better pattern but because I know a steelhead will strike at it if presented well )in black, purple or maroon. In the late summer August and September, the Stilly can be low, so go with drabber colored flies in black, olives, browns. Nymphing can be the trick when the water is low and the sun high in the sky. Then a #12 hares ear, prince nymph or stonefly nymph will get them. Good luck, See you on the Stilly.

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