Ah, prime steelheading time and I have to walk these Arizona golf courses in the heat of the day! Good thing there are inexpensive cold beers available after the game! However, I would be out there steelheading with you if I were home.
Last month we talked about fly movement using rabbit fur as the prime attractor for steelhead. As the season for those giant rainbows is still in full swing, this month we will again look at a pattern tied by my trap shooting friend, Dave Upper. Dave lives at Bowser, BC, with his lovely wife Diane who does approve of Dave spending many days in steelhead season fishing those great Vancouver Island rivers! This fly also features rabbit strip as the key material and as such, we call this fly Dave's Rabbit Intruder. Dave primarily Spey fishes for his steelhead and this fly, as with his Lady Di that we saw in December 2013, catches steelhead equally as well! Enough so that every steelheader should have this pattern in his or her fly box!
Before starting on the fly body, loop a piece of fly line backing or strong braided material to the larger salmon hook shank. Dave makes about a 1/2 inch loop for the trailing stinger hook and doubles back the braided line on the salmon hook shank, cinching it throughout its length with tying thread. He then cements the entire shank and lets it dry before proceeding to the next step. When dry, tie in several strands of krystal flash to the salmon hook shank and let it trail about two inches past the hook bend. Over this, wind the pearl chenille just behind where the lead eyes will be, to the hook bend. Next attach a pink rabbit strip near the hook eye and let it trail back about as long as the strands of krystal flash. Now tie in a strand of orange ostrich herl on each side of the hook shank. The next step is to solidly figure eight a dumbell eye set just back of the hook eye. Dave then likes to paint the eyes green with black pupils and also covers the tying thread between the eyes with orange paint. I am sure you can experiment with different colours and still have a very successful steelhead fly! To complete the process, cut off the salmon hook at the start of the bend with the point and barb, leaving your tied material in place on the hook shank. The last step is to push the loop through a stinger hook eye and around the its bend so that you can snug the trailing hook up tight. Now just try to keep those steelies away from this fly!
Your comments are welcome at "dhaaheim at telus dot net"
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