Fly Fishing Christmas Party 2014, Winston Rod Clearance, Loreto, MX, Winter Spey Schools, The Engaged Fly

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Especially YOU Are Invited !!!
December 13, Saturday, 9:00am-4:00pm
Metal Head Christmas Party
and Annual Winter Steelhead Clinic

A new winter steelhead season is here for celebration!
Free Food, Prizes, Programs, & Demonstrations!
Factory reps and fly fishing experts will share their knowledge.
(This Cast of Celebrities may change - check in often)!
Please Share The Day With Us:
Special Guest: Trey Combs
Yes, this is the man who wrote THE BOOK: Steelhead Fly Fishing, which indeed launched the Spey Revolution in North America.
Trey will be at the Metal Head Christmas Party all day, for you to talk to and hang out with.

Mark Bachmann

Patty Barnes

Hawkeye Hawkins

Josh Linn

Eric Neufeld

Bruce Berry

Garry Sandstrom

Brian Silvey

Dick Sagara

Marty Sheppard

Charles St. Pierre

Chris O'Donnell

Come meet the Company Reps:

Josh Linn: G. Loomis
Eric Neufeld: Simms, Echo, Airflo, Winston, Umpqua
Garry Sandstrom: Hardy, Scientific Anglers, Royal Wulff
Bruce Berry: Beulah Rods, Hatch Reels, Montana Flies
Dick Sagara: TFO, Teeny, Rainey's Flies
Jim Teeny: Teeny Nymph Co.
Shane Wootan: Loop Rods & Reels

Come meet the Guides & Instructors:

Trey Combs
Jack Mitchell

Mark Bachmann
Josh Linn
Chris O'Donnell
Hawkeye Hawkins
Brian Silvey
Marty Sheppard
Bruce Berry
Tom Larimer

Slide Shows & Demonstrations
Mark Bachmann - Winter Steelhead Fly Fishing 101 - 9:00-9:45 a.m.
Trey Combs - Quinault River Steelhead- 10:00-10:45 a.m.
Marty Sheppard - Oregon Winter steelhead -11:00-11:45 a.m.
Barbeque Lunch: 11:45 - 1:00 p.m. FREE!
Josh Linn - - 1:00-1:45 p.m.
Chris O'Donnell - Coastal Steelhead - 2:00-2:45 p.m.
Tom Larimer - Defining Modern Spey Lines - 3:00-3:45 p.m.

Fly Tying Demonstrations (all day): 
Featuring: the region's most experienced steelhead guides tying
their favorite winter steelhead flies.

Hawkeye Hawkins - Chinook Flies
Josh Linn - Stinger Flies
Charles St. Pierre - Foxxee Dog, etc.
Bruce Berry - Pro Tube Flies
Mark Bachmann - Possum Flag Flies
 Brian Silvey

Discounts and Prizes Galore!!!

Party At: The Fly Fishing Shop - Welches, OR
This will be the best party in Welches, Oregon: December 13, 2014 !!!

R.L. Winston Rod Clearance 30% OFF

This is only going to happen once in your lifetime!
Loreto Mexico Saltwater Adventure 2015
Click for Information: Dorado/Billfish/Roosterfish: June 25 - July 2, 2015
6-days fishing, 7-nights = $1,995
Premo Accomodations Included In The Price.

Winter Steelhead Spey Schools
JUST CLICK... Our Schools provide well rounded education.
Click for: Description and Calendar of Classes

This class room provides learning with relaxed comfort.

This class room features life long memories!
The Engaged Fly, The Insiderís Guide To The World Beneath
By: George Cook

Over the course of 30+ years of chasing such Sea-going Critters (Kings/Steelhead/Sea Run Browns and Giant Sea Run Dollies), one thing is crystal clear…when it comes to proper, and successful swung fly presentation fly engagement is mega critical. Each of these species has its own preference in terms of water type and speed, making your strategy as an angler distinct and well defined by species.
With Steelhead, learn to play the near to far game as many fish often come from close lies,  prime water into which many an angler has stepped particularly in early morning. Near to far rules state that your first couple casts shall come from an ankle deep wade with nary but a small chunk of line, be it sink tip or floating, extended from that rod of choice. From there, progressively longer casts can and should take place; take your time, enjoy the morning mist, and know that plenty of fish can and do come from the point blank cast and not just from early morning presentations. I’ve seen lot’s of Newbie Steelheaders clean up out there in part because their Spey casting skill level hadn’t matured into the long-bomber caster stage, and that short-coming is a boon in that so many fish choose to be in that easy close holding water. It is self punishment that the better casters have all blown past this neophyte water with 80’ lasers one after another, all while their fly swoops thru that same edge, but now at a different engagement speed, based on initial landing distance. There’s a food for thought as you wade in next outing.
As for Kings, as a general rule, they will more often than not, be the channel dweller. In this a major dichotomy occurs each season as early season high flows level off into brilliant long glides that we all cherish. The high flows- while not nearly so inviting for a swung fly, offer the traveling Chinook an easy highway to be in; a pathway that once again, a lesser sink tip (Type 6 and 10’-12.5' T-11) and a “Short Game” mentality, often wins out. Once the water drops, the Channel Dweller will indeed reward the casters who can simply throw the furthest, and do so with the largest, nastiest sink tips (13’-15’ in T-14, T-17 and Megatron T-20). At this juncture, engagement range comes into full view and deserves close study. I learned a long time ago, guiding and fishing in Alaska waters, that the “Plug Boys” not only crush Kingy (Kings), but provide some really good clues, as to just what is going on-that gets it done ! The first observation is that those cats are ALWAYS engaged in the ZONE, always got Ol’ Pluggy doing his magic thing in the King hallway. Second, Kingy gets faced with two basic equations…”Eat Or Leave”. So how do we as fly anglers become laser focused as to this task ? Well, the bad news first: (A) No matter how fast a sink tip you choose to employ, it will only get so deep;

and (B) your swung fly “Zone” is a dramatically smaller window of which to play in. SOoooo, how do we address these two things? Lets start with (A), Sink Tip Rate: where this is really just a mental assessment of the fact that some water is just flat ass unfishable with a fly, with the exception of a boat set angler running a single handed 10-12 weight stick with a 400-600 grain 24’ sink tip, and going “Old School” right in the wheelhouse.  Believe me, when I tell you that in the 1990’s on the Kanektok, as well as other western Alaskan haunts such as the Alagnak, this was what we did and with bang up success, mind you. However, the game and the perspective changed once we became the Spey Nuts we all are these days. To put yourself in the proper mindset, here is again, although not as wide and fixed as in pre-Spey days, the need to rule, that some water is simply “No Bueno”; and that your efforts are largely aimed at the alpha class critter, who will torpedo often upwards to grab your fly, or engage it over a longer swing. You will be rewarded with a take coming near the end, or every once in a while on the Ol’ hang down- so always let it soak a spell down there! The other item to note as well, is that most of the really successful King Spey Anglers, simply ply “Workable Waters”, knowing maybe less fish- but better odds. Moving on to (B), The Zone: as provided above, this requires the Spey enthusiast to not only learn to really cast long, but to be a thinker at the same time, or strategist at best. An example of such a scenario would be this: The Channel Dwellers are approximately 65’ to 85’ feet away from your wading position; here a 75’ cast has but little chance, as the zone is about a mere 50’ to maybe 60’ from your wading position, only affording you just the odd take- and probably Jacks and Chums at that(I know, I know “Chums Happen). So a long ball cast of 80’ to 105’ is the cast you fundamentally need here, in which to grove into the zone. In other words, the engagement zone is just part of the required, initial cast distance; put simply- you have engagement distance, and engagement zone.
That folks, was the First Part, bringing us to the Second Part: which is the proper mend, and fly profile aspect. Oh boy, here we go, take notes here fellow anglers- cause the “Insider’s Guide” is about to unfold for ya! In this, that beautiful Intruder Pattern you took 90 minutes to tie, is only of real value “IF” you can capitalize on its broad profile. So here is where the “Thinker” needs to stand behind the rod. Once you’ve selected the engagement angle (generally somewhere in the 70-90 degree cast in front of you) it is "super duper critical" to pay note as to just how that fly LANDS. In this, this is the fly landing as straight as an arrow (Fabulous), or are you handicapped because it has a little upstream curve to it (Not what we want)? If the latter has occurred your mend now is doubly important- in you’ll need to both “Straighten & Drop”. Confused? No problem. As you lift to mend in the classic upstream position, get yourself a solid visual on the fly, as to draw it back into a straight edge position as the mend

occurs. As Ed Ward once famously stated, “The Straight Cast Fishes Best”. Amen brother, words to fish by ! I spend a good chunk of my thought time during a swing mentally mapping just what I think- the “Swing Track” is doing. You’ll make slight adjustments based on this mapping, and it will pay off in "spades" as the key ingredients of speed/depth and profile, come together.
The Sea Run Brown game of Tierra Del Fuego- “Touch The Bank George”, was probably the keynote council I received prior to the first of my 8 trips to this Brown Town wonderland. Peter Crow, the Fishing Sales manager at SMITH Optics, rattled that mantra off to me, and boy was he dead on! Brownie lives in the trenches, and those are most often straight up on the other side, so “Engagement Range” is relatively defined as- hit the grassy bank on the other side. The aspect of engagement zone is a short “Bucket”- and getting down matters. These critters are literally the Whitetail Deer of Fish, where early and late movement is when you need to be on the water, and the Wind, of which you will see wind like you never imagined, can push you out of fishing during middle of the day. This then leaves you with having to siesta your way towards the magic evening time, when Brownie will truly pull out of his lair and truly look up as the light fades. That “Mental Mapping” really matters here, as one of the world’s great experiences awaits.
Sea Run Dollies of Near and Far, Washington state along with British Columbia make up the “near”, while Northwest Alaska and Canada’s NWT make up the “far”. These critters are an interesting lot. I’ve seen them in a host of water types, at times very little to separate those runs apart, even with a trained eye. Consider a 15’ type 8 sink tip with an olive Intruder pattern. It could certainly be the ticket in a deeper slot.  More appropriate for a shallower tailout, could be an unweighted classic buktail fly such as a Brad’s Brat. Like the Big Boy Rainbows of both western Alaska and the mighty Kenai, you can get away with some sloppy presentations there, as both species conform to the apex predator label. To be sure, the biggest beast will likely fall to the “Engaged” angler, who brings those Steelhead –King ways and means northward.


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1(800) 266-3971

P.O. Box 368 - 67296 East Hwy 26
Welches, Oregon 97067, USA
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