Summer Steelhead PhD School Report, Surgeon General Steelhead Fly, Digital Pocket Scales, Fishpond Sweetwater Reel Cases

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Summer Steelhead PhD School Report

Dec Hogan teaching basic Spey Casting skills at PhD.

09/06/15: Sent out to all parties concerned with Summer Steelhead PhD Schools
Summer Steelhead PhD School

Nothing in the world of steelhead fly fishing is predictable. If you are looking for codification of well-defined scientific facts, or the ordered classroom in a simple world comprised only of the theorems and laws, I’m sorry, you signed up for the wrong class. Summer Steelhead PhD Schools are much more than that. Here it is not against the rules to develop intuition. Be patient with yourself. It may take some time.
     Steelhead live in the wild, and they are from a time when nothing was ordered by men, or classrooms. They obey only nature’s laws, of which the most prominent one is, adapt or die, survive or be consumed by something else. Steelhead are aware that they taste good. They know that being seen is not a good thing. Muddy water is good to them. Even though they can’t see far enough to make feeding very practical, they can feel and hear the bumbling of stumbling anglers, and the rip and tear of fly lines interacting with the water. Imagine how perceptive they might be if the water were clear and they had full use of their remarkable 360-degree vision.
     The average steelhead has a brain the size of a common pencil eraser. We believe that our big brain makes us superior, and no doubt we are in most cases, by our own definitions. But, still more than 90% of the steelhead are caught by fewer than 10% of the anglers that fish for them. Consider that most of that 10% are fishing with a few select professional steelhead guides.
     The presumption that the best casters and waders usually catch the most fish is numerically provable, but casting long and pretty won’t by themselves guarantee your success. You are still stalking wild animals. Be stealthy, and alert about it. To be a successful steelheader, you need to learn to cast and wade well enough that you no longer think about it very much. Instead your fish detector is turned on and you are immersed in the focus of the hunt. You don’t exist except for the primordial experience of the “stalk-and-acquire,” at the most subconscious level.
Locally, the freezing level is dropping, and with it so are the water temperatures. The drought isn't quite over, but it has been raining, off and on for several days. Anadromous fish are moving on both
sides of the Cascades. Soon rising rivers will fill with Chinooks, silvers and steelhead.
There seems to be a fair number of steelhead in the Deschutes system. The fish trap at Sheares Falls is starting to pass fish up river. Night time water temperatures at the mouth of the Deschutes have now dropped to 58-degrees. With the lower freezing levels, White River is running comparatively small and clear. The timing of all this is comparatively normal. Water clarity is still not what we would like it to be. It is about 2-feet, and we think that 4-feet would be more in our favor. No doubt that muddy water makes wading more difficult.
         Bring a change of heavier underwear and a sleeping bag that keeps you warm at 40-degrees. Throw in a lighter-weight fleece blanket as well. If the weather turns back hot you can sleep on top of your sleeping bag with blanket over you. If the weather drops to freezing you will be more comfortable inside your bag with the blanket on top of it.
        Bring your Skagit as well as your Scandi gear. Fishing with sinking tips can extend your fishing periods, and make you more productive in dirty water conditions. If you are apprehensive about wading in dirty water, bring your WADING STAFF. DON’T FORGET YOUR HOOK SHARPENER! Your kit of sinking MOW tips should include both T-11 and T-14 in 5Fx5S, 2.5Fx7.5S, 10’S, and my personal favorite of 11’ of T-11. We can custom make them for you. Shorter Scandi rods are killer Skagit rods when combined with RIO Skagit MAX Shorts or Airflo Switch Heads. I plan on doing a demo with that kind of outfit (Sage METHOD) as well as a more traditional Skagit rod (Sage MOD).
Looks like we are lined up for a great time with great weather.
Dec’s Crew: meet at the new boat launch at Mack’s Canyon Camp Ground 9/14 at noon.
Simon’s Crew: meet at the new boat launch at Mack’s Canyon Camp Ground 9/17 at noon.
If there are questions, please don’t hesitate to call my cell phone or email me.

Fish long & prosper,
Mark Bachmann
The Fly Fishing Shop, Inc.
Phone: 503-622-4607

Simon Gawesworth in his calm articulate manner is teaching the finer points of casting to Tim Wytle. Unfortunately, we just got the news that Simon's father died on September 24.

Ron Walp discussed the role that Deschutes River Alliance has taken in keeping an eye on the biology of our favorite river

Nobel Morinaka and Luther Kyle at dinner. This was Nobel's first PhD and Luther's third PhD.

The after dinner gab-fest, from left: Patty Barnes, Ron Walp, Dan Hill, Tim Wytle, Henry Carlile, Simon Gawesworth, Dave Bennett, & Don Lerner.

Svend Tang-Peterson trying out my new Sage MOD 7130-4. This was Svend's fourth PhD, his casting skills are bodacious.

Dec's Crew (from left): Ron Walp, John Tehan, Svend Tang-Peterson, Greg Corrado, Dec Hogan, Luther Kyle, Ted Neely, Jimmy Houston, Ben Kolibaba, Mark Millonas.

Simon's Crew (from left): Nobel Morinaka, Henry Carlile, Luther Kyle, Don Lerner, Simon Gawesworth, Dave Bennett, Tim Wykle, Dan Hill, Stephen Roberts.
Mostly the fishing was on the tough side, due to poor water clarity from White River glacial silt. A few steelhead were caught each day. Most were landed using Sinking tips and Skagit style tactics. Fishing improved as the classes went on. Night time air temperature was dropping. The last few days were the best.
After PhD, I was joined by a group of two anglers. They had the best water quality and the most productive fishing of my ten day string, with the next to the last day being the best with nine fish including the one pictured above.
Surgeon General Fly
Listed as Surgeon General Dark in Trey Combs book, Steelhead Fly Fishing and Flies, this pattern has caught Deschutes steelhead for us for at least 30-years.  It is believed to be originated by Dr. Robert P. Terrill of Gleneden Beach, in Oregon in honor of Dr. Herbert Bently, a highly regarded neurosurgeon. The Surgeon General, as it is commonly known as today, is one of the flies that has become regarded as a classic; a steelhead fly which should be added to the main working box of every serious steelhead angler. Our Surgeon Generals are tied on nickel plated heavy duty Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron hooks for added durability, and extra sink rate.
Get More Information or Buy Deschutes River Steelhead Flies
Item Description Size Price To Top
ST00105 Surgeon General Steelhead Fly 5 3 for $11.25 Sale Ended
ST00107 Surgeon General Steelhead Fly 7 3 for $11.25 Sale Ended

US Balance Digital Pocket Scales
Great for hobbyist of all kinds.  This scale has a vibrant blue back-lit face for easy reading. Has removable plastic lid, which becomes a tray. Also is automatic tare setting capable. 
Modes: g, oz, gn, ct, ozt, and dwt.
Weighs in grains which is a favored fly line calibration. 
Weighs in ounces, a favored fly rod calibration.  Uses two AAA batteries (included).
500g capacity (17.6 ounces)
5-year limited warranty

Item Description Size Price To Top
US-ION US Balance Digital Pocket Scales 500g $29.95 Sale Ended

Sweetwater Reel Cases
These soft storage cases with padded sides and molded tops and bottoms provide an extra measure of protection for valuable reels and spools when you’re on the road. Three sizes to hold most fresh and saltwater reels.

  • Interior pockets secure small tools and Luggage
  • Carry-on sizing for valuable reels
  • Molded waterproof top and bottom
  • Adjustable, removable, padded interior divider system
  • Jacquard webbing carry handle

  • Small: Small 4.5 x 4.5 x 4.5 (Holds one saltwater or two fresh reels)
    Medium: 9.5 x 4 x 4 (Holds four freshwater reels or two/three smaller saltwater reels)
    Large: Large 10 x 4.5 x 5 (Holds four saltwater reels or two reels/two spools)

    Item Description Size Price To Top
    SWRC-S-3 Sweetwater Reel Case, Small, Cutthroat Orange 4.5" x 4.5" x 4.5" $16.00 Sale Ended
    SWRC-M-3 Sweetwater Reel Case, Medium, Sand 9.5" x 4" x 4" $24.00 Sale Ended
    SWRC-L-3 Sweetwater Reel Case, Large, Bahama Blue 10" x 4.5" x 5" $29.95 Sale Ended
    SWRC-XXL Sweetwater Reel Case, XXL, Sand 11.5" x 7.5" x 5.5" $59.95 Sale Ended

    The Fly Fishing Shop HOME. The Fly Fishing Shop, Welches, OR

    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

    1981-2015 The Fly Fishing Shop
    We have been in business since April 21, 1981.

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