Summer Steelhead, Fly du Jour, RIO Scandi Lines, PolyLeaders and VersiLeaders

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Summer Steelhead
Fly du Jour
RIO Scandi

The River is Calling By Matt Sherman

The sun rises on another gorgeous morning in an ancient canyon. The emerald green ribbon that runs through this canyon is the reason we are there, but, one can’t help but be enamored with the surroundings. Golden streams of morning light illuminate the river and its surroundings, birds sing, bugs hatch, and you can’t help but feel a new day beginning. As the old saying goes, “there is always tomorrow”, but here, every “today” is treasured, and the anticipation of tomorrow is lost in translation as your thoughts are drawn to what awaits, today.

The Deschutes comes alive in July and August. Other than the die hard steelhead angler who has already been on the river for the past month, its most treasured inhabitants begin to enter the river in good numbers as the water temperature in the “D” becomes consistent with that of the mighty Columbia, sending droves of summer steelhead to their various destinations. In the minds of the steelhead addict, (me and most others reading this article) this time of year is our proverbial Christmas, even better in that it last for several months.
I will make the disclaimer now that I don’t put much effort into watching damn counts, or predicting steelhead runs. I’ve grown to believe that I will forever be driven by the pull of anticipation, with which most folks whom I associate can relate. If I think that there is one fish in the river, who I might be so lucky as to encounter with the swung fly, I will go fishing. It’s quite simple really, as stated in a movie I once saw, “a fisherman is someone who goes fishing, no matter what.” That is my fishing life and career in a nutshell. With that said, the run looks good this year. We all want to see steelhead numbers increase, and with the advent of the internet, we can all take a look at things like damn counts and make our own predictions. I will say that I hope for greater things to come, and as of right now the numbers look promising.
As a young steelheader it is hard not to think of the past, lifetimes ago when the future of steelhead and salmon in the Northwest was not so much in doubt. I will also say that I feel extremely lucky to be in the presence of wild fish and the rivers in which they return to each year. We are all responsible for the future, whether you fish or not, this incredible creature is due nothing but our utmost respect. If treated properly, predictions will not only become more promising, but we may even see some of those come to fruition in our lifetime.
I know this article becomes somewhat contradictory and muddled in the reader’s mind. As I write it I feel pulled in two directions, everyone looks to successful anglers to predict the future, but all we can do is anticipate the days to come on the river. A pretty famous steelhead angler once said, when asked to predict such things as steelhead runs; “Hey Bob, what do you think it’s going to be like this year?” His reply was, “I will tell you when the year is over.” Bob Clay is a legendary figure in our world and his words ring true with anyone who knows anything about fishing for steelhead.
I don’t mean to be so vague, but no matter what there is always one more thing you can do. Go fishing. My friend Travis, who is as fishy as they come, would interject here. He might say something like, “every time you make a cast, every time you let the fly swing under tension amongst the riffles and runs of your favorite piece of steelhead water, you’re giving the fish the chance to eat your fly.” After having caught a few of them myself, I’m still that stereotypical masochist that thinks of a once in a lifetime encounter every time I present a swung fly to the inhabitants beneath the surface. It is that anticipation that keeps me coming back, and my heart still stops at even the slightest tug. In summation, I can predict with confidence, that if you go to the river enough, persist in swinging great water, and do so with all the love and passion that a true steelheader holds for the fish themselves, you will catch fish. That my friends, is one prediction that I don’t think can be debated, or perceived in any other way than I’ve just put it. In short, just go fishing, and have a great summer on the water!

Fly du Jour Special Edition  BUY NOW!

 This fly was an instant success. Clients called it, "Fly du Jour" (fly of the day).
The name stuck and this pattern has remained in the spotlight for about twenty years.

Fly du Jour
Hook: Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron NSI
Thread: Red Uni 8/0
Tag: Flat Silver Mylar
Butt: Fluorescent Pink Edge Bright
Ice Dub, Purple
Rib: Flat Silver Myla
Hackle: Purple Saddle
Wing:  Selected Hair Wing, White Kid Goat
            Fluorescent Pearl Krystal Flash, Cerise KF02
Head:  Red
Common Sizes: This fly is most often used in sizes five and seven in rivers like The Deschutes, John Day, Grand Ronde and The Clearwater.

  The "Fly du Jour" has been proven on all sizes of rivers and during a wide range of water temperatures, and conditions.  It is one of the have-to-have flies no matter where you fish steelhead along the Pacific Rim. The Fly du Jour may be the best of all the Deschutes summer steelhead flies for floating line fishing the majority of the season.  Ninety percent of the season it is my point or dropper fly of choice.  Just another purple and pink fly?  Maybe?  There are many.  Purple and pink is a popular theme on the Deschutes with such patterns as Rick's Revenge, Silvey's Sno Cone, and the Freight Train being examples.  The Fly du Jour is different because it uses a revolutionary material called Edge Bright for the orangish pink butt.  Edge Bright is a material that gathers light through its broad side and amplifies it through its narrow edge. It is wrapped on the fly so that the rear edge of every wrap is exposed.  Viewed from the rear this butt literally glows.  The effect is further enhanced with the butt surrounded by a halo of dark purple materials.  Sorry to say that Edge is no longer made, and we only have enough to tie our own flies, and when they are gone...we don't know of any material that can take their place. The Fly du Jours in stock may be the last ever.
The pattern was an instant success when it was introduced in 1990.  In the space of a couple of weeks two different groups of clients who didn't know each other called it the Fly du Jour (fly of the day), and that is how it got it's name.  These "Special Edition" Fly du Jours are tied on Alec Jackson Nickel Plated Steelhead Iron hooks. This is a well proven fly, having been used for many years by our guide service. The Alec Jackson hook is noticeably heavier than the original TMC hook, which allows the fly to ride a little deeper in the water. The nickel plating increases the flash factor.
There are #3 Fly du Jours for winter fishing. Tie one on during your next trip to the coast.

Item Description Size Price To Top
st-ffs-101-03 Fly du Jour, Alec Jackson Nickel Plated Steelhead Iron hook 3 3 for $11.85 Sale Ended
st-ffs-101-05 Fly du Jour, Alec Jackson Nickel Plated Steelhead Iron hook 5 3 for $11.85 Sale Ended
st-ffs-101-07 Fly du Jour, Alec Jackson Nickel Plated Steelhead Iron hook 7 3 for $11.85 Sale Ended

The #5 Fly du Jour pictured here has landed 3 steelhead.
No one beats our quality at any price!

RIO Scandi Shooting Head Fly Fishing Lines
RIO Scandi RIO Scandi Mega Kit RIO Scandi Short VersiTip RIO Scandi Versitip

RIO Scandi Shooting Head Fly Fishing Lines

An easy casting shooting head designed for effortless distance and great presentations.
This series combines the popular Steelhead Scandi and AFS series of Spey lines into an integrated system to fit all two-hand rods used for anadromous fish. For 2014 these lines have been up-graded with RIO's new low-stretch ConnectCore which delivers more sensitivity and casting accuracy. Also these lines incorporate Extreme Slickness into the polymer coating, which enables them to shoot farther and float higher. You will like the RIO Scandi Shooting Head color design, which is highly visible in most light conditions, allowing the angler to track the position of his/her presentation at all distances.
Item Description Size Price To Top
6-20848 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 210 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20850 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 240 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20851 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 270 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20852 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 300 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20853 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 330 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20854 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 360 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20855 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 390 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20856 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 400 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20857 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 420 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20858 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 435 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20859 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 450 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20860 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 460 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20861 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 480 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20862 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 510 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20863 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 520 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20864 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 540 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20865 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 580 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended
6-20866 RIO Scandi Shooting Head 640 gr.
$54.95 Sale Ended

RIO Scandi Shooting Head Mega Kit

This complete kit includes one of every size RIO Scandi Head, with two ConnectCore shooting lines (0.032" and 0.037") and two floating VersiLeaders (10' and 15'), neatly packaged in a RIO HeadCase.
If you are a well financed hard core Spey Angler you will want this set of Scandi Heads to play with and test rods with.
Item Description   Price To Top
6-20849 RIO Scandi Shooting Head Mega Kit, 18 heads, 2 VersiTips, 2 shooting Lines   $829.95 Sale Ended

RIO Scandi Short VersiTip

The Scandi short VersiTip Series is packaged with a floating Scandi body and four 10' long interchangeable tips making it perfect to use with  rods shorter than 13'. The tips included in the package are: floating, intermediate, type 3 and type 6.
Item Description Size Price To Top
6-20659 RIO Scandi Short VersiTip 275 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20660 RIO Scandi Short VersiTip 320 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20661 RIO Scandi Short VersiTip 370 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20662 RIO Scandi Short VersiTip 425 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20663 RIO Scandi Short VersiTip 485 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20664 RIO Scandi Short VersiTip 540 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended

RIO Scandi VersiTip

The Scandi short VersiTip Series is packaged with a floating Scandi body and four 15' long interchangeable tips making it perfect to use with  rods 13' and longer. The tips included in the package are: floating, intermediate, type 3 and type 6.
Item Description Size Price To Top
6-20965 RIO Scandi VersiTip 445 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20961 RIO Scandi VersiTip 510 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20962 RIO Scandi VersiTip 585 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20963 RIO Scandi VersiTip 650 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended
6-20964 RIO Scandi VersiTip 700 gr.
$119.95 Sale Ended

PolyLeaders and VersiLeaders
Buy Airflo PolyLeaders Buy Rio VersiLeaders
What is a PolyLeader When to use a PolyLeader

What Is A PolyLeader

The term PolyLeader was first used by the Airflo Company of UK, to describe a new leader system they had developed to enhance leader performance.  A leader forms the essential link between the fly line and the fly. A leader must retain just the right amount of energy during the cast to place the fly perfectly on target.  Fly fishing leaders are tapered to retain just the right amount of energy to turn the fly over and then lose that energy so that leader comes straight and then settles to the water.  Most leaders of this period are made by tapering nylon monofilament

strands. Nylon leaders are inexpensive and are fairly trouble free.  However, some times the flow of energy doesn't transfer smoothly where a nylon leader joins a fly line because the line and leader are each made from materials that bend differently. Poly leaders are constructed by using a level core and tapering a coating much the same way fly lines are made.  They become an extension of the fly line itself.  There is also an added advantage for being able to vary the coating to float or sink. Rio VersiLeaders are a nearly exact copy of Airflo PolyLeaders.  They are made in USA and actually cost less. 

When To Use A PolyLeaders

Airflo developed the PolyLeader so that the kinetic energy created by the fly line could be carried further, for longer, smoother, more accurate casts.  PolyLeaders may be the ultimate fly fishing leaders. These tapered leaders are literally an extension of the fly line.  They allow for much better turnover, provide an easy and interchangeable system for adjusting sink densities, and allow you to use greater

Sink Rates
Floating = 0" ips
Clear Hover = .5" ips
Clear Intermediate = 1.5" ips
Slow Sinking = 2.6" ips
Fast Sinking = 3.9" ips
Extra Fast Sinking = 4.9" ips
Super Extra Fast Sinking = 6.1" ips  

lengths of level tippet for line-shy fish. PolyLeaders have a high-strength level monofilament core surrounded by supple, tapered polymer. This unique combination provides the fly fisher with a leaders that almost turns over by themselves! Available in a choice of seven densities, Polyleaders extend your tactics to a degree unrivalled by  traditional mono leaders. The level monocore is exposed at the tip, allowing you to simply add your favorite tippet material and create extraordinary leader lengths.  Floating PolyLeaders are clear with positive buoyancy so that they ride over ripples and not through them.  Sinking leaders come in a wide range of sink rates that give you the latitude to adjust to changing water depths, water speeds and retrieve rates.

Airflo PolyLeaders
Trout PolyLeaders - 5' Spey PolyLeaders - 14'
Steelhead/Salmon PolyLeaders - 10' About PolyLeaders

Trout PolyLeaders

From casting on a turbulent stream to searching the depths of your local lake these leaders cover the full spectrum of trout fishing situations. Smoothly tapered to give easy turn over of dries, nymphs and streamers they open up many new techniques, not only with a floating line but with sinking lines as well.  The 5' version is particularly useful on stillwaters and rivers.
Max. tippets up to 5' long and as strong as 12-pound test may be added.  Normal tippet lengths are 3' to 4' and may be as fine as 6x.  Stealthy presentations are easier to make with long fine tippets.  Larger diameter tippets will retain energy for casting large flies or for casting in the wind.  Best used with fly lines #4 to #6 weight

Item Description Type Weight Price To Top
PFO-5T Airflo Trout PolyLeader, 5-feet long Floating 11-grains $8.99 Sale Ended
PH-5T Airflo Trout PolyLeader, 5-feet long Clear Hover 11-grains $8.99 Sale Ended
Pl1-5T Airflo Trout PolyLeader, 5-feet long Clear Intermediate 12-grains $8.99 Sale Ended
PSS4-5T Airflo Trout PolyLeader, 5-feet long Slow Sinking 15-grains $8.99 Sale Ended
PFS85T Airflo Trout PolyLeader, 5-feet long Fast Sinking 16-grains $8.99 Sale Ended
PSF165T Airflo Trout PolyLeader, 5-feet long Super Fast Sinking 21-grains $8.99 Sale Ended
PESF24-5T Airflo Trout PolyLeader, 5-feet long Extra Super Fast Sinking 40-grains $8.99 Sale Ended

Steelhead/Salmon PolyLeaders

Available in here in the four most popular densities in 10' lengths to provide complete depth control, so often essential for salmon/steelhead fishing. Floating leaders work well when fishing waking flies and also for fishing wet flies near the water surface.  Intermediate PolyLeaders allow you to fish your wet fly a little deeper or anchor the line tip a little harder to the water for roll casting in the wind. Slow and Fast sinking leaders are perfect for controlling the depth you wish your fly to be fished at.  The Extra Super Fast sinking leader gets the fly deep quickly.  It is very popular for fishing in the winter or in bright light conditions.  Max. tippet strength: 24-pound test.  Tippet lengths of up to 4-feet are commonly used.

Item Description Type Weight Price

To Top

PFO-10S Airflo Salmon-Steelhead PolyLeader, 10-feet long Clear Floating 39-grains $12.95 Sale Ended
Pl1-10S Airflo Salmon-Steelhead PolyLeader, 10-feet long Intermediate Sinking 29-grains $12.95 Sale Ended
PSS4-10S Airflo Salmon-Steelhead PolyLeader, 10-feet long Slow Sinking 32-grains $12.95 Sale Ended
PFS810S Airflo Salmon-Steelhead PolyLeader, 10-feet long Fast Sinking 38-grains $12.95 Sale Ended
PSF16-10S Airflo Salmon-Steelhead PolyLeader, 10-feet long Super Fast Sinking 58-grains $12.95 Sale Ended
PESF2410S Airflo Salmon-Steelhead PolyLeader, 10-feet long Extra Super Fast Sinking 93-grains $12.95 Sale Ended

Spey PolyLeaders

These longer PolyLeaders are popular for Spey rod fishing with many types of lines.  They are especially popular for fishing Scandinavian shooting head lines, as the longer Poly leader provides an easy anchor when fishing short head lines.  Often tippets of up to six feet are added to floating and intermediate PolyLeaders when fish are line-wary.  The extra length in the sinking  leaders allows you to fish your flies deeper than with a 10-foot leader of the same sink rate.  Max. tippet strength up to 40-pound test may be used.

Item Description Type Weight Price To Top
PFO-14s Airflo Spey PolyLeader, 14-feet long Floating 55-grains $14.95 Sale Ended
Pl114S Airflo Spey PolyLeader, 14-feet long Intermediate 65-grains $14.95 Sale Ended
PFS8-14S Airflo Spey PolyLeader, 14-feet long Fast Sinking 75-grains $14.95 Sale Ended
PSF16-14S Airflo Spey PolyLeader, 14-feet long Super Fast Sinking 72-grains $14.95 Sale Ended
PESF2414S Airflo Spey PolyLeader, 14-feet long Extra Super Fast Sinking 115-grains $14.95 Sale Ended

Rio Spey VersiLeaders
Our camp thermometer registered 108-degrees in the bottom of the Deschutes Canyon. The water warmed accordingly and the steelhead went into the doldrums. My resourceful guest, Bruce Hampton added a 15' sinking VersiLeader to the end of his floating spey line and managed to turn the tables on a couple of steelies who hadn't the energy to rise all the way to the surface for the same fly (his new improved version of the Fly du Jour). Determination and little tricks like this can often add to your catch. Mark Bachmann photo.
Bruce Hampton added a VersiLeader to his line to get the fly down to the fish...

10 ft (3 m) and 15 ft (4.6 m) leaders with a high tenacity nylon core coated with a super low modulus polymer mixture. VersiLeaders feature an ultra smooth welded loop in the butt end making it easy to connect to the fly line.
The floating Spey VersiLeader is perfect for forming the anchor when spey casting Scandinavian style.
These leaders are ideal additions to all Spey lines and in particular RIO's new AFS heads and AFS OutBound lines. They come in a full range of sink rates to customize your presentations.

Densities: Floating, 1.5 ips (3.7 cm/s), 2.6 ips (6.6cm/s), 3.9 ips (9.9cm/s), 5.6 ips (14.2cm/s), 7.0 ips (17.8cm/s)

Strength: 24lb

Rio Spey VersiLeader Full Set
All six densities are organized in individual zip-locks in a beautiful Cordura pouch.  That way you can easily carry the full selection and always have what you need.  These VersiLeaders are adaptable to all kinds of fly lines above size-6.  They are most comfortable with lines 7-8-9 sizes.  They will work well with all spey lines & saltwater lines. 
Item Description Sink Rate Price To Top
24224 Rio 10' Spey VersiLeader Full Set $79.95 Sale Ended
24225 Rio 10' Spey VersiLeader Floating Leader Floating $12.95 Sale Ended
24226 Rio 10' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 1.5 ips $12.95 Sale Ended
24227 Rio 10' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 2.6 ips $12.95 Sale Ended
24228 Rio 10' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 3.9 ips $12.95 Sale Ended
24229 Rio 10' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 5.6 ips $12.95 Sale Ended
24230 Rio 15' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 7.0 ips $12.95 Sale Ended
24237 Rio 15' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader Full Set $89.95 Sale Ended
24231 Rio 15' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader Floating $14.95 Sale Ended
24232 Rio 15' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 1.5 ips $14.95 Sale Ended
24233 Rio 15' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 2.6 ips $14.95 Sale Ended
24234 Rio 15' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 3.9 ips $14.95 Sale Ended
24235 Rio 15' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 5.6 ips $14.95 Sale Ended
24236 Rio 15' Spey VersiLeader Sinking Leader 7.0 ips $14.95 Sale Ended

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1(800) 266-3971

P.O. Box 368 - 67296 East Hwy 26
Welches, Oregon 97067, USA
Voice: (503) 622-4607 or 1(800) 266-3971 FAX: (503) 622-5490

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We have been in business since April 21, 1981.

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