High Water Strategies
Recently heavy rains have kept the river at a higher than average level. This presents a couple challenges for swinging flies. The first challenge is finding water that is slow enough to properly swing the flies. A lot of the traditional fall steelhead pools have been flowing to fast to fish. One way to get around this is to search for slower water along the edges. Fishing behind structure that slows the current is another great idea. Logs, rock piles, and gravel bars can slow the current enough to manage your swing. Another trick is to fish heavier flies and sink tips. This will allow you to cut under the fastest currents near the surface. Adding heavy eyes to any fly will help the fly to drop into the zone. A great way to sink your fly faster is to tie them with little or no natural materials. Rabbit strips and wool heads look great but they take a while to sink. In heavy flows sparsely tied flies that still have a lot of movement and flash can be the key. Synthetic materials tend to sink very fast are easy for the fish to see. Here is a fly that has recently been working for me.Shank/Loop for hook
Eyes: Large dumbell eyes tied in the middle of the shank
Tail: Copper Flashabou
Body: Large clump of rusty brown Ice Dub tied in behind lead eyes
Collar: Copper Polar Chenille
Wing: Grape Flashabou tied in on the top and bottom of fly covered by Holographic Black Flashabou
Head: Large clump of Peacock Eye Ice Dub tied in front of eyes and followed by a clump of Orange Ice Dub.