Purple Peril

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Purple Peril
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Back-ups
Come Back Flies Deschutes Steelhead Fly Set All pictures are Mouse-over.

Purple Peril

 

The best flies become classics simply because they work.  The Purple Peril is one of those flies that seems to take steelhead from varying watersheds and under a wide range of water conditions.  First tied by legendary Northwest Washington angler Ken McLeod in the mid '60's it has taken steelhead from California to British Columbia.  This somber colored fly is particularly reliable for Redband Steelhead in the Columbia River tributaries east of the Cascade Mountains.  As fly tiers turn more  to the glitz and glitter of synthetic materials to create their

"magic-bullets", the Purple Peril remains as proof that bright colors and lots of flash aren't always the ingredients for success.  Many takes on the Purple Peril are very soft. The fish is just there with no perceptible shock.  This leads me to believe that many of these fish would have been too timid to respond as favorably to a brighter fly. 

Purple Peril
Hook: TMC 7999
Thread: Black 8/0
Tail: Dark Purple Hackle Fibers
Body: Purple Chenille
Rib: Flat Silver Mylar

Hackle:  Dark Purple Saddle
Wing:  Natural Red Squirrel Tail
Head:  Black
Common Sizes: This fly is most often used in sizes four and six in rivers like The Deschutes, John Day, Grand Rhonde and Clear Water, although anglers use Purple Perils as large as

2/0 in the Clear Water and in some British Columbia Rivers.  My experience concludes that dark purple materials tie more successful Purple Perils than bright purple materials.  I choose purple hackles that are died over brown rather than white feathers.  This give the fly a deep, dark purple shade.  A plump silhouette achieved with a medium fat chenille body is proven.  Size #4 and #6 flies are dressed with #14 tinsel. Size #2 flies are dressed with #12 tinsel and larger flies are dressed with #10 tinsel.  This gives a pronounced segmentation and contrasting flash to the body. 

Item Description Size Price To Top
21265-04 Purple Peril 4 3 for $5.95

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21265-06 Purple Peril 6 3 for $5.95

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Cortland Precision Tri-Color Spey Line

Size Front Taper Body 3' Running Line Head Weight
5/6 14' (4.26 m) 38' (11.58 m) 3' 64' (19.5 m) 420 grains
7/8 16' (4.87 m) 36' (10.97 m) 3' 64' (19.5 m) 530 grains
8/9 18' (5.48 m) 34' (10.36 m) 3' 64' (19.5 m) 600 grains
9/10 20' (6.09 m) 32' (9.75 m) 3' 64' (19.5 m) 680 grains
A super-slick spey line designed for shooting greater distances.  The middle color creates a

"window" of opportunity on where to pick up the line for extremely effective spey casting.  Perhaps the best all around floating spey line available.  Great distance line for both spey and overhead casting.  Head Length: 56 feet.
Length: 35 yds.  Core: Nylon Braid.  Fluorescent green and straw color.
Item Description Size Price To Top
463035 Cortland Precision Tri-Color Spey Line 5/6 $65.00

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463042 Cortland Precision Tri-Color Spey Line 7/8 $65.00

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463059 Cortland Precision Tri-Color Spey Line 8/9 $65.00

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463066 Cortland Precision Tri-Color Spey Line 9/10 $65.00

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Fly Rod Antenna

For the Fly Fishing Fanatic
Who Thought They Had Everything!

These antennas make great gifts for the
fly fishing fanatic in your life or yourself. 
These antennas look like real fly fishing rods -
complete with reels and guides!

 
The fishing rod antennas are crafted using high quality universal fit car/truck replacement radio antennas. The antennas are made of stainless steel to withstand the weather and also give great radio reception. It takes about three minutes to swap out your current antenna for your new fishing rod.
You can customize the antenna and fishing style by choosing from
black antenna with red wraps or silver antenna with green guide wraps.

  Not recommended for commercial car wash.

Item Description Price To Top
508799 Reel Expressions Fly Rod Automobile Antenna, black with red wraps $29.95

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508843 Reel Expressions Fly Rod Automobile Antenna, silver with green wraps $29.95

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Rio Shooting Head and Line Tip Wallet

 Rio Shooting Head
and Line Tip Wallet

This partitioned wallet separates your shooting heads and changeable tips into five different compartments. Made from bullet cloth for extreme durability. The whole wallet is accessible to air passing through it so wet components can dry. This is a light weight, extremely practical accessory for keeping your lines organized.
 
Make it easy on yourself.
Using a waterproof pen,
label your Rio Wallet
with the line size and kind it goes with.
As you collect more Rio changeable-tip
lines labeling the wallets will
save you time and frustration.

Or buy your new Wallet or
Rio Changeable-Tip Line from us
and we will label it for you.
We've already done hundreds.

Item Description Price To Top
26051 Rio Shooting Head and Line Tip Wallet $19.50

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Back-ups for the Back-ups.

Modern graphite fly rods are very reliable.  I've been carrying the same set of 12-weights for several trips and they have been put to the test with fish of over 100-pounds with no breakage problems.  However, I always carry a couple of back-up rods just in case.   This brings the total number of 12-weight rods in my luggage to six for Patty and I.  That allows each of us to have one 12-weight rigged with a floating line and another rigged with a sinking line and a rod apiece left in camp as a back-up in case of 
breakage.  In half a dozen trips we haven't needed the back-up rods and this last trip I nearly left them home.  The first morning we encountered two Sailfish laid up with a Marlin on the surface with their dorsal fins and tail tips exposed to the morning light.  Our guide Eulogio eased the boat within casting range and the nearest Sailfish pounced on the fly.  After a couple blistering runs and over a dozen jumps it was brought along side of the boat.  It was dead tired and was coming in easy with very little pressure against the rod.  Suddenly there was a loud crack and about three feet of the rod tip slid down the line until it came against the fly which was still embedded in the fish's jaw.  The Sailfish was landed and both the fly and rod tip were retrieved.  Two days later when Jeff Runner landed in town, he discovered that one of his rods, which was an identical model had been damaged in shipment.  We took the corresponding piece out of my rod and repaired his.  My misfortune became his good luck.  The best part is that neither one of us lost any fishing time.

Tim Hambly with a very bright summer steelhead.

Steelhead Fly Fishing:
WHY STEELHEAD EAT FLIES  (Come-Back Flies)
When fly fishing for summer steelhead on inland rivers such as the Deschutes, Klickatat, John Day, Imnaha or Clearwater, the most popular approach is with the floating line and a cast that brings the fly across the current under tension.  Usually the fly is fished sunk, but only slightly.  When everything works right the fly rides inches inches below the surface and the fish rises from the bottom of the river and intercepts it.  The steelhead takes the fly and turns back toward the bottom and hooks itself.

The angler lands the fish and feels smart and is proud of the accomplishment.

Some steelhead are more aggressive than others and.  A percentage of steelhead will rise, but not take solidly.  They will nip, pluck or pull on the fly in such a manner that they do not get stuck.  Others will refuse the fly all together and turn in such a manner as to leave a disturbance on the surface of the water.  This is called a boil.  a few fish will come back repeatedly, each time refusing to take the fly solidly.  These fish are called players.

Some of these players will not take no matter what you do.  But most will eventually take the fly if you are patient and do not loose your cool.  Here are some tactics that have hooked and landed many of these exciting and difficult fish.

Always keep and eye on where your fly is.  There are days when steelhead don't make very much disturbance when they approach your fly.  If you don't see them, you may not cast to them a second time.  If a steelhead boils or plucks your fly, recast the exact same amount of line with the same fly and repeat the presentation that rose the fish.  If the fish doesn't take on this second cast, wade at least ten full steps upstream and fish down to the fish again one step at a time.  This will usually pump the fish up enough to take on the second pass. 

If the second pass doesn't result in a solid hook-up.  Changing the fly is the next best option.  There are many choices that have worked, but the most consistent approach is to go smaller and darker.  Some steelhead have only enough aggression to attack very small somber flies.  For this reason I always carry two dull colored patterns that have bailed me out in difficult water conditions and often succeed with difficult fish.  They are my favorite "come-back" flies.   These two flies are the Doc Spratley and my Prism.  These are dressed sparse on size #6 hooks.  No Flashabou or other flashy material is added except for a fine rib and tag.  They are part of the "must have" Deschutes set.


Blue Max
Blue Max

Doc Spratley
Doc Sprately
Fly DeJour
Fly du Jour
Green Butt Skunk
Green Butt
Prism
Prism
Street Walker
Street Walker

"Must Have" Deschutes Steelhead Fly Set
Everyone who fishes the Deschutes River has their favorite fly patterns.  There are many patterns which will catch fish and there are many patterns that have landed a lot of fish.  The six patterns listed here are in contention for being "all-time" top producers.  The selection is chosen to cover a very wide range of water clarity and light conditions.
The set contains (3) of each pattern in the best size for a total of (18) flies.

Item

Description Price  
DESTFLST Must Have Deschutes Steelhead Fly Set (3) Blue Max #4, (3)Doc Sprately #6, (3)Fly du Jour #2, (3) Green Butt Skunk #4, (3)Prism #6, (3)Street Walker #6, (18) flies in all. $34.95

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Fish long & prosper,
Mark Bachmann, Patty Barnes

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