North Coast Report

Sorry for the lack of fishing reports but we have been busy on the water everyday. It has been a very dry winter so far and has allowed for all of our North Coast rivers to drop into shape. We are expecting some rain tonight and tomorrow which is much needed as many rivers have become very low and clear. With this expected rise, we should see another good slug of fish move in. As the rivers drop we should see some more good fishing through March here on the North Coast.

Dan Andrews with a chrome 32" hen

This past week we experienced some great fishing with hookups on the swung fly everyday. Alan and Dan came up from Southern California and experienced some great fishing. In three days they went 6 for 11. Not bad for only their second trip swinging flies. Later in the week Chad Foster and Jeff Hickman made the most of their trip down south with an epic last day where they each hooked multiple fish, including a mid-teens chrome buck that Jeff lost right at the bank.

Jeff Hickman hooked up to a large buck, seconds before it popped off!

Lastly, I have recieved a few emails from anglers asking about how fishing has been and what we are using. Fishing has been typical for swinging flies for winter steelhead. We have had some really tough days where we might see no fish or maybe a grab and some really good days. When the stars have aligned and the conditions are “right” we have been seeing fish to the fly most everyday. Water color and height have a lot to do with this and can be the difference between success or failure when chasing winter steelhead on the fly. Fly and color selection can sometimes be critical and when things are high and off color look to fish bigger, darker flies. As the water drops and clears like this past week, we are fishing smaller flies in both dark and bright colors depending upon light conditions. Our most successful patterns have been Hartwick Hosers, string leeches, Silvery tandem tubes, Idyl marabou tubes, and Intruder style patterns. Just remember that if you put in the time and effort, you will eventually be rewarded. Winter steelhead on the swung fly can be the fish of 10,000 casts but when you get one, it could be the fish of a lifetime!

Jeff Hickman with a costal buck

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