Fish long & prosper !!!

Rabbit Fur

Close-out Jackets

Spey Rods R' Us!
All pictures are "mouse-over".

an other Zhuponova River rainbow/steelhead (continued from 08/25 The Fly Fishing Shop Insider)
Journey to the Forbidden Land  (Part-2)
A three part series about Kamchatka wilderness adventure - 
by Mark Bachmann

That doesn't mean that the fishing on the Zhuponova was always easy for us.  Steelhead are still steelhead and they have their moods.  Besides it was spring and run-off time.  The river turned muddy the second day of our trip and was in and out the whole stay. 

...a Russian steely

However, luck came to me in spades.  I drew  Ed Rice and John Randolph as roommates.  These guys have fished the world and their guidance was priceless. The group was divided into fishing teams.  My guide was Guy Fullheart and fishing partners were Al Corrado and Henry Creators.  Together we made a very compatible team.  Ed Rice showed me the black and white smolt pattern, which proved to be the killer pattern when fished deep and slow. Water temperatures ranged from 33-35 degrees.  Watercolor American jet boat in Russian waters

...jet boat...    To Top

Henry with an average fish.

ranged from dark brown to light brown in the main river.  However Guy had the plan that beat the odds.  We took a jet boat from camp each morning and fished below the mouths of several large, clear tributaries.  Here the water would be clear enough to fish for several hundred yards.  With the water temperature so low you had to fish very carefully because the fish didn't want to move very far for 
...catch & release...

your fly.  The saving grace was that there were a lot of fish in these spots and we caught quite a few.  My average for the trip was seven fish landed per day.  These fish averaged between five and ten pounds with the largest estimated at fourteen pounds, not an Earth shattering record, but enough to keep me grinning the whole trip. 

The Zhuponova fish were designated not as steelhead, but as coastal rainbows.  This is because at the time the Russian Red Book had Kamchatka steelhead listed as endangered and therefore off limits to fishing.  So they changed the name of these fish so we could legally fish for them. There is little doubt that these rainbows have a sea run life style.  Whether they are true steelhead or not is a debate for biologists.  They looked and acted like steelhead to me.  There were few large fish in the Zhuponova when we were there with average size was  

the guide gets to fish.

...average 25"-30"...
very much what an angler would expect in the Deschutes, 25" to 30".  All fishing was with barbless flies and all fish were released.  On the sixth day we loaded three15' Avon rafts into the helicopter and flew about 30 miles upstream from camp.  That day we floated a tea colored tributary called the Right Fork of the Zhuponova.  It is a low gradient, fine gravel stream about 100' feet wide.  The edges of the stream are deeper that the middle.  It was wadeable almost everywhere, even in high flows.  For unbroken miles the bottom was terraced with redds from spawning fish.  There had to have been literally thousands of steelhead that had spawned there.  Judging from the looks of the bottom we were behind the peak of the spawn and still we must have floated over several thousand fish that were still spawning.  It makes you wonder if our home rivers looked like this when they were this pristine?  We caught some of these fish.  Really, you couldn't miss.  However most of the guys felt it unsporting to molest them. 
(to be continued in 09/08 FFS Insider)

Rabbit Fur on the Hide is some of the best tying material for .....
...only 1/2 of our selection of full hides... deadly wet flies.  Probably no other material has as much life-like movement when wet. Whether tied over the back, Zonker style or palmered like a hackle, the fibers separate and flow with life-like, seductive properties. Rabbit strip is also very durable and easy to use.

However, its best quality is that as soon as it leaves the water, it collapses and on re-entry it puffs out. Flies tied with rabbit strip fish big, but cast small.

We have located a reliable source of premium hides. These hides are tanned and dyed to perfection. Some colors are rich and earthy, while others are bright and vibrant. All hides are very clean and glossy. Average dimensions are 8" x 12".

These hides have many uses. You can cut a hide into sections. The center ridge of the back always contains the longest guard hairs and makes the best for straight-cut strips for Zonkers & Pike Flies. The center 2/3 of the hide is best for cross cut strips.

The sides of the skin are actually the belly of the rabbit and make the finest dubbing. These side pieces can be sheared for dubbing and the colors can be custom blended to your exact needs. Each hide contains enough dubbing in these side pieces for hundreds of flies

Straight-cut strips are sliced with grain of the hair into 1/8" or 14" wide strips. 1/8" strips can be purchaced in economical packs of (4) rabbit strips or whole hides. They are perfect for Hare Matukas such as Steeltookas, Zonkers and Steelhead Bunnies such as "Big Black" and "Big Red".  You can find more information on them here: The Evolution of Big Black.

...part of the selection of straight cut whole hides...

...probably the most complete selection to be found any where... For a large suggestive bait fish pattern, dub a   loose flowing body of LiteBrite or Flashabou Dubbing.  Brush it back.  Add a magnum rabbit strip zonker style for the back and three or four turns of cross cut rabbit strip for the head. Cross-cut strips are cut across the hide.  They are 1/8" wide.  Cross cut rabbit strip is normally palmered on the hook to form the body for streamlined bunny buggers or in this case, the head and gill plates of a larger bait fish.  This can make killer bass, pike and cuda flies. Rabbit strip flies are easy and very fast to tie.

Rabbit Fur on the Hide, best buy with free shipping!
No road kills in this selection, 
these pelts are all soft-tanned, number one fur quality rabbit hides.

What our customers say:
"Earlier this week I received an order of rabbit strips on the hide.  Let me tell ya, these are the best strips I have been able to find.  You gave me great service, great products and a great price.  I go though a lot of rabbit strips and will be ordering again soon.
 Thanks for the great work you do!"
Tim Hanford, Mechanicsburg, PA 

Packaged Straight Cut Rabbit Strips Uncut Whole Rabbit Hides
Straight Cut Stripped Whole Rabbit Hides Packaged Magnum Rabbit Strips
Packaged Cross Cut Rabbit Strips Snowshoe Rabbit Feet
Cross Cut Stripped Whole Rabbit Hides European Hares Masks

Wading Jacket, Waterproof, Smart looking, Practical, Durable.

Wading Jacket, "Q-Nimbus" Water Proof 
by Redington. 30% OFF !!!
One feel of this wading jacket and you will know that is was designed to be bullet proof.  If you're a rain dodgin', brush bustin', all out - all day, daylight 'til dark fish chasing kind of fisher person; this is your coat.  It's made with breathable "BarrierFlex" tri-laminate material to make it water-proof.  Then the sleeves and shoulder areas are armor plated with 300D Polyester Packcloth.  The roomy chest pockets and the flaps that cover them have rounded corners to prevent intervention with your fly line, there are two retractors for tools, adjustable hood with a firm brim, large rear pocket, fleece lined hand warmer pockets, D-rings and lots of other goodies.  Color: Forest green with black yoke and trim.

Item Description Size Price To Top

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Looks good anywhere. Redhead not included.

Water Proof Wading Jacket, "Stratus"
by    30% OFF !!!
This affordable water proof wading jacket is loaded with features usually found only in more expensive garments.  
Breathable, 100% nylon Tactel outer shell with TPU waterproofing, color: midnight blue.  Roll-up, stowable hood, D-rings for accessories, adjustable waist band, built-in retractor, fleece lined hand-warmer pockets, breast pockets and interior pockets for efficient gear storage, large back pocket , medium weight for comfort and durability.
This coat was designed to hide you from the fish, keep your gear safe and organized and keep you comfortable regardless of the weather.

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Spey Rods R' Us!
Pictured at right are 17 of the 24 models of spey rods that regularly revolve through our inventory.   We carry the best models from: Flylogic, Hardy, Redington, Sage, Scott, St. Croix, Thomas & Thomas and WinstonWhat may be more interesting is, that we have cast every model we stock and have caught steelhead on most of them.  Don't worry, it is a work of love.  This kind of study is the best thing about working in a fly shop.  Everyone likes toys to play with.  Don't you wish that you owned 24 different spey rods and could try four different lines on each one....and didn't have to justify 

...spey rods on the wall...

your excess to anyone?  The first thing you might realize is that there are a few differing opinions about actions sizes.  Our collection features models with classic slow actions to newest cutting edge fast action tapers.  These rods run from 12 1/2' to 15' 4" in length; from #6 to #10 weight.  The second thing you come to terms with, is there is no one single model that is the best for every situation.  You can find models that will fish long & short, dry & wet, winter & summer, but to a degree each model is specialized to a certain set of parameters.  Few anglers would choose a 15' #9 for summer fishing on the Deschutes over a 13' #7.  The 15' #9 would win over the lighter rod for tossing big tube flies in the dead of winter.  Slow, soft rods are a joy for playing fish and take little expertise to form serviceable casts, but often bog down in the wind.  Very fast rods build terrific line speed and throw sinking tip and large flies, but take focus and skill to cast well.  Probably in the end, medium size, medium weight, medium action rods fit the widest variety of angling situations and ultimately perform the best for the widest majority of casting styles.

...another capture for old reliable (7141-4)... Sage 7141-4....still in love...
Possibly the one single best steelhead spey rod design of 2001-2002 era. This rod has a very user-friendly action.  It casts long, handles wind & sinking tips.  Fishes well in winter & summer.  The 7141-4 has an action that plays fish with authority on 10 pound Maxima tippet yet absorbs shock and covers mistakes.  It balances best with a Ross Big Game #6 and a Airflo Delta Spey 7/8 line.  The  Sage 7141-4 has few if any faults as a summer steelhead stick. It works well with 7/8/9 WindCutter, 7/8 MidSpey and is really special with a Delta 7/8 spey line.  
Always in The Fly Fishing Shop!

Sage European Style

SAGE 7141-4







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7141-4 7-8 14' 1" 4 9 3/4 $735 -->SALE ENDED

Be sure to check out our ALL NEW Fishing Reports Section !!!  

HOME.  The Fly Fishing Shop, Welches, OR

1(800) 266-3971

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Fish long & prosper,
Mark Bachmann & Patty Barnes

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