Friday, February 09, 2007

Fly fishing Indian Creek

Wild Bill and I took a road trip to Indian Creek today to find fabled winter steelhead. We passed a lot of good looking water on the Siuslaw River on the way there, but we were determined to check out this wader-friendly tributary.

The water has been really low, not good for feisty fish, but it makes fly fishing a little easier. I floated a chenille and chain-bead egg pattern on a Palsa indicator. Wild Bill was throwing a black woolybugger.

I was drifting over some good looking runs, but nothing happening. The water was really clear, tough going for sneaking on the fish. We probably spooked a bunch. But we eventually saw one of the fish we spooked.

It looked about 30 inches from what I saw of it. Wild Bill had a better view. He spooked it from where it was holding at the top of a riffle. It ran down to the sandy bottom of a deep pool, and then he lost track of it.

He spent the rest of the afternoon trying to get it coming back around, but no luck. Spooking a steelhead is a lot like pissing off your girlfriend. No amount of flailing is going to make things go your way. Best to let things calm down and come back later.

There were some really tiny nymphs in the water. I had them all over my hand after climbing over some rocks. I was taking a picture of the nymphs when something popped up in the river in front of me. At first I thought it was a seal. Turned out to be an otter, which was really cool to see. And then I slipped and dunked my camera.

We’ll see if it comes back. I’d like to try to identify those nymphs.

We saw a bald eagle flying over Lake Creek on the way back. It might have been Stephen Jr.

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