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We Couldn’t stop at just flies. now carrying everything but the fish!

Salmon | Steelhead

Salmon Flies & Steelhead Flies

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Salmon Fly Patterns

A salmon fly is a thing of beauty. They are meticulously tied with some of the finest fly-tying materials known to mankind. Salmon fly patterns are always colorful and vibrant. They stem from historical waters such as the Babine and Metolius. A salmon fly can be tied to imitate things like shrimp and squid, or they can be tied to mimic a variety of baitfish and stoneflies. In most cases, salmon fly patterns are tied on hooks with an upturned eye, which are designed to be swung down and across the current of any given river. Also, a salmon fly like the most popular Egg, Sucking Leech fly in black can be used to catch steelhead as well, as both fishes can occupy the same waters at the same time. In most cases though, you will find anglers targeting one of these particular fish at a very specific time, as often they enter the river at different times of the year. A good salmon fly will also be tied in a variety of colors, in order to match the different water conditions found throughout the year. That is why the Egg Sucking Leech fly in purple is the most popular salmon fly in existence.

Steelhead flies can really vary depending upon the region where you are fishing. For example, anglers who fish for steelhead on the west coast, tend to fish rivers that are bigger than the ones found entering the Great Lakes. Because of this, the fish are harder to locate out west, and thus, a whole different style of fishing is required in order to catch them. Typically, most anglers here will choose “swing flies” in order to cover a lot of water. If you can find fish in these big rivers, they are usually willing to eat whatever dry fly or wet fly you have tied on, as most have not seen a ton of angling pressure. A typical steelhead fly pattern for the rivers out west will be tied intruder style, meaning they will have a main hook shank with either wire or dacron tied to it, and a single trailing hook behind it. These steelhead flies are designed to have a ton of movement in order to entice a lethargic fish.

On the flip side, most steelhead anglers who fish the great lakes region, tend to prefer steelhead flies that represent fish eggs, stoneflies, and baitfish. Usually these waters are smaller in size compared to the rivers found out west, and the fish tend to hold in more defined locations, thus you don’t need to search as hard for them. However, because of this, these fish do tend to see more angling pressure and therefore a more of the “match the hatch” fly fishing approach is necessary to catch them.