Rogue River Steelhead, 1913

The Oregon Digital Newspaper Project is a treasure trove of history. A search for the word “steelhead” landed this one. Click on the image below to launch the ODNP page and read the article.  Enjoy!

image: screenshot of Oregonina article about steelhead fishing on Rogue River, Oregon

Here are flies similar to those mentioned in the article, as tied by the brilliant Don Bastian:

Image: Royal Coachman wet flies tied by Don Bastian

Royal Coachman (Wet Flies)

image: Coachman wet fly

COACHMAN Tip: Gold tinsel if desired Tail: None Ribbing: None Body: Peacock herl Hackle: Dark red brown or brown Wing: White

image: Gray Hackle Yellow fly

GRAY HACKLE YELLOW Hook: Standard wet fly hook, size #8 to #16 Thread: Danville Flymaster 6/0 white for body; black for head Tag: Flat gold tinsel Ribbing: Flat gold tinsel Body: Yellow floss Hackle: Grizzly hen


Your Maine Hunting Shoes Rebuilt

I have a pair of LL Bean Lounger boots from the 1980s that are a favorite for yardwork, camping,rainy day errands, sloshing around parking lots in ski country, and so on. They were always on the small side and my feet have changed in the intervening years. The treads were also quite worn down. Luckily, Bean’s still offers a rebuilding service, so off they went for new bottoms in a larger and wider size. I asked for the “Maine Hunting Shoe”  rather than the “Bean Boot” version. The MHS is softer and quieter.

I’m very happy with the results. The shoes came back a week earlier than expected, complete with a new set of insoles. They’re a great fit with two pairs of midweight socks, or a thinner liner plus a heavy sock.


image: LL Bean Lounger Boots









This cost about $45 plus shipping. Higher than 1938 (see below), but still not bad, especially if they provide another 20+ years of service.

Deschutes Sunset

…I fish because I love the environs where trout are found, which are invariably beautiful…

– Robert Traver 1964, (Judge John Voelker 1903-1993)

image: sunset over Deschutes River, Central Oregon, USA

Deschutes River, Oregon, Summer 2010. Upstream from the Trout Creek BLM campground.

Black Flying Ant

image: black flying ant (artificial trout fly)

Hook: dry fly, size 14 – 18 (fly in photo is tied on a #14 Gamakatsu P10 "Traditional Dry Fly")
Thread: black or brown
Abdomen: fat ball of black dubbing
Thorax: Thread with a few turns of black hackle
WIngs: blue dun hackle tips
Head: another fat ball of black dubbing

The world is full of ants, and I’ve caught fish whenever I remember to fish ant patterns, with or without wings. Here is an easy one that will work either wet or dry. Be sure to keep the thorax section nice and skinny.

Bike N’ Fish

It was a beautiful Willamette Valley afternoon, and I had a tough decision between fly-fishing and a nice long bike ride. The obvious answer was to do both.

image: touring bicycle with fishing gear

This is a Miyata 215ST touring bike. Waders and boots are in the panniers, and my vest is in the saddlebag.

In less than 40 minutes I was on the McKenzie River at Armitage Park:
image: McKenzie River, Oregon near Armitage Park

I caught one native cutthroat trout and missed a few others. The action was on a soft hackle wet fly with brown hackle and brown dubbed body ribbed with hackle stem, size 12:

Watch for more Bike N’ Fish reports in the near future.

Quail and Olive (soft-hackle)

Quail & Olive Soft-Hackle

Hook: wet fly hook (this is a size 12 Dai-Riki #730)
Tail: California Quail neck feather fibers
Rib: fine gold oval tinsel
Body: mixed olive & natural beaver
Hackle: California Quail flank feathers, palmered through front 1/3 of body

We have friends with a ranch west of Eugene; the quail feathers are from a young female that was left behind by a coyote or bobcat.

Coho Salmon return to N Fork Nehalem River

This is fun to watch:


from IEODFW:
Coho salmon entering an ODFW live-cycle monitoring fish trap on the North fork of the Nehalem River, October, 2009.