Tuesday, December 24, 2013

December is still producing!

The Rogue amazes me! We started catching summer steelhead in July and continue to get them into February. That's 7 Months, ya 7 Months. The end of March brings Winters into the upper system so there are virtually fish in the river most of the year. What other River produces such runs? I didn't get out today but here are a couple Rogue Summer Runs that one of the local fish smacker hit today. Good job Jordan!

Run & Gun!

Wild Hen (Summer Run !?!)

Saturday, December 7, 2013

A Great New Forum and Helping Veterans!

We are getting really close to the first Free Veteran Trip, Please register at http://www.bigstickflyfishing.com/ and help get The Veterans on the Water!

Snow, Christmas Lights, Rogue River Steelhead, and the Jacket that Keeps me in the game.

The Rogue Valley has been covered with the most snow that I have seen in years. It caused a cancellation of a trip on Friday as my clients tried to get back North before the bulk of the weather hit. I can't blame them as the news was calling for 2-5 inches of snow on the valley floor. 6-8 inches was more like it. The day off provided some time for some Christmas shopping (yuk), much needed time with Misty, and a snowball fight with the boys!  But, after the way swinging flies on the Rogue has been, I was itching to get on the River--its not very often you can fish the Rogue with snow on its banks.  First though,  I had honey do's to get done. Ya that's right, even guides have honey do's that need to be done before they can go fishing.

After some online Christmas shopping and getting the Christmas lights hung, the dogs and I were off to the river. We made it through the gate and noticed that there were only one set of tracks to the river bar, and they looked like a some from a kid that was playing around, so I had the river all to myself. I needed all the help I could get, when I got to the river I noticed steam rising from its emerald waters. I started at the top and swung my way through the three buckets the Modoc contains. I spent a good couple hours making my way through the buckets, spending the majority of the time in the second as its the top producer for me. No dice, and it was starting to get dark so I moved down river to the last little bucket. The ice in my guides made it nearly impossible to cast, but I managed to keep my fly in fishy water. I about gave up hope when sudden pause came into my swing then a light tug. I almost wrote it off as bottom, but I knew there was no way it was as I have swung hundreds of flies, at all different river levels, and have never have touched
 the bottom. I stripped in the Skagit Intermediate head and re-casted, making sure to get the exact same drift. The line paused again, but this time I felt the heft of a fish. I dropped my tip, paused a second, then pulled strait back. The rod came to a stop against angry, Rogue Steel! Weight turned to Powerful throbs, then to drag ripping fury! I was taken by surprise as it has been over ten hookups since I connected with a Native Rogue fish. I let the beast run until it hit the tailout leading to ledges below. I knew that if the fish made it over the riffle there was no way I could wade to it from my side of the river so I applied some pressure to the the palming rim, but it was more than the 10 lb fluorocarbon tippet could handle as it parted like a rifle shot. This fish made a couple congratulatory jumps, and returned to the emerald depths.

The sun went to bed, I loaded the dogs and we enjoyed the beauty of the snow as we made our way home. As I unloaded the dogs and the gear my neighbor made a comment to the loss sanity that was involved to wade hip deep in the middle of a river and swing flies on a day such as this. I smiled and put the rod and waders away. I thought to myself, there is no way I could have stayed out that long without my wool base layer and down jacket.

I spent several months researching the perfect insulating outerwear for fishing and hunting. I wanted the packable lite weight of down, but was afraid of it around the water. Down is only insulating when it is fluffy and dry as that's how it holds air. Once it gets wet it loses it's loft, and all of its insulating qualities--this could spell disaster on the river as I am around rain and water all winter long. Sometimes miles away from the warmth of the pickup. I thought I would have to live with the heft and bulk of pirma-loaf until I ran across a company that specializes in light weight extreme weather clothing Kuiu.  Kuiu ultralight cloathing allows me to stay warm on the river, with peace of mind, through their innovative product: Supper Down.

Kuiu Super Down Jacket
This Jacket is light weight, packable, and safe. It isn't your normal down jacket as its down has been treated with a special loft keeping, molecular waterproofing. This waterproofing has worked great. Although the jacket is considered as a insulating layer and is meant to be worn under a shell in wet weather, I have found its water resistant properties to be a asset when I dunk a arm releasing fish or retrieving the occasional fly. Check out Super Down in the Video below.

I have found this Jacket to do all that's claimed. If your looking for a down jacket that can give you a little peace of mind check out Kuiu. Here are some pictures of me testing mine and the beauty if the Rogue in winter dress.

Down Touvelle Rd.

One track and I!

Getting to the River!

Putting Kuiu through its paces!

Swinging the Second Bucket.

That fly has accounted for the last ten hookups for us.

Steam coming off the River! I guess it does that at 20 degrees.

The Lights are up! Still Have to fix the cross!

Winter Struck

Southern Oregon got covered by a blanket of snow, canceling one day of my clients two day trip as they tried to get back home before the snow hit. We did well the day before the snow.  Hooking three fish and one on the swing, a take that left Dave shaking! Im going to try to sneek down to the river this afternoon and get a picture of  a fish in the snow. Stay warm. 

Friday, November 29, 2013

Proud Papa!

What happens when the lady of the house goes shopping and leaves the boys at home on a day off? We go to the Rogue and swing some flies. We loaded up the rods and headed to the top of the river to try out a couple of new patterns that I wanted to fish. I took Gage to the top of the run, tied on my prototype fly, and pointed out the rocks to pay attention to. Gage, rolled his eyes and told me,"Dad I know, I'm not a little kid anymore." I thought, ya kid, I would listen if I were you. But, I smiled at Gage, and headed to the next run below. I about made it to my run when I heard, "Dad, Fish On!" I looked up river and sure enough Gage had a nice fish making a good run. By the time I got back up the river he had the nice hatchery fish subdued. "Griller Dad, I told  you I know where they are." Gage said when I got there. I took some pictures and congratulated him nonchalantly, but I couldn't be prouder as my son has turned into a steelheader, he is reading his own water and catching fish out of it. He went on to hook and a hog just a bit further down the run. I tied on a "prototype" and hooked a couple of my own but they didn't get me near as excited as Gage's! To say I am a proud papa is a understatement.

Locked and Loaded!
Swinging "his" water
Gage with a well read fish!

Following suit!

A couple for the grill!


Saturday, November 23, 2013

Time for the big boys on the Rogue River!

When temps drop in the low 20's in the Rogue Valley, and the days shorten, its time to pull out the big flies, and if its on the Rogue River it had better have black, orange, and blue. It should also have a bunch of movement and some flash to move cold water fish. The perfect Rogue Cold Water swinging fly should poses all these things, That's what moved me to design Casey's Intruder. Named after one of my favorite cold water runs on the river, this fly contains everything the Rogue River Steelhead want. The next few photos will show you how to tie it.

Start with a long shank hook.

Get some Heavy Mono, I like colored just to add to the fly.

Start it through the eye of the hook. Make the loop go back to where the Marabou will flow--normally a couple of inches but, If you get a ton short strikes like the Rogue make a larger loop.

Fold the mono through and lash it down! Do a good job here as this is what will hold the fish. I also hit this with super glue.

Install eyes and super glue them.

Use orange chenille and make a ball. this ball will make the marabou loo like it has mass when the fly swim's.  

Tie in a marabou tip like a hackle.

Add a couple of flash strips, I like holographic flash.

Add a tinsel over-body advance you thread, and make another chenille ball.     

Add another marabou tip and wrap it like a hackle. 

Add four white rubber legs that do not go past the marabou in the swimming position.

Add flash, and a blue hen hackle.

Whip finish and clip off the bend of the hook with diagonal cutters--this will keep the fly swimming right.

Add a octopus hook to the mono.

There it is, a fly to move cold water Rogue River Steelhead!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Helping the Veterans

Some of you might, or might not know, that I am close to the service as I am connected to it on several different levels. That is what drove me to help Big Stick Forums say thanks to America's Veterans. Big Stick Fly Fishing Forums is giving a project healing waters rod to Veterans with every 500 people who sign up, and I am giving away some free trips! Come, register at and Help the Vets!
We Are a service oriented family. From left to right, Nathan Gage Bailey Sea Cadets, Chase Bailey future Cadet, Misty Bailey the General, Aaron Bailey/Adams Us Army MP, Nathan Bailey Us Air Guard F15 Mechanic. 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Check out my website and win free stuff!

Hello all www.southernoregonflyfishing.com has just passed 1500 views. Once we hit 3000 views Im going to give away one of my favorite lines--the AirFlo Rage!

here are the rules, once you view my website you have to click on the email link provided there and email me that you viewed it. Once we hit 3000 views I will take pull a name out of a hat from those emails. Pass the website around, the faster we hit 3000 the faster we chose a winner.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

The Rogue River Spey Fishing Is Back on!

Last week consisted of praying for Rain!--the Rogue slowed the last couple weeks. The Rain finally came, the River grabbed some color, and best of all, the Steelhead started biting again. I had some new lines to try out so I hit the river at about 3:30 this afternoon leaving me just a couple of hours to get my two new Tfo's dialed in! I started through the run with the TFO 4/5 126 4 DC. I lined it with a 330 grn Airflo Skandi compact, which was a tad on the heavy side, but I slowed the rod enough to let it do its thing. I tipped the head with a intermediate polly and  about 3 foot of 0x tippet. I placed two prince Nymphs and dead drifted them in The greased line fashion of old. Even though the the flies bounced their way through the run the fish waited until they started to swing before he slammed them! The little Spey Rod did well, and 15 minutes later the 5 lb buck was in my hands. I loved casting the little rod, but Im going to buy a 300 grain scandi for touch and go casting.

I really wanted to catch a fish on both rods as it was the first time they were out, and I knew it would put some serious Steelhead Mojo on them, if they hit fish. The next rod to Fish was the TFO TF 6/7 130 4 DC. This is the absolute best rod I have casted and fished, in a long time. I lined it with a 480 Airflo Skagit Intermediate and 10' of T7. The line swung slow and hung just off the bottom. This presentation brought a huge strike that jerked line off the reel. I felt the weight of the fish, but was unable to get a solid hookset. I fished until dark and had a couple small taps, but left the river with a huge Grin. I love the rods, with a little more fine tuning they will become at the top of my list of great rods.

Two Hours and a few fish,  it sounds like the bite is back on boys--lets make up for some Lost Time.

Nice Little Buck

The 4wt Spey  Rod did a great job on this Rogue River Steelhead !

6wt Swinging the Rogue!

The Rogue Is getting some color!

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Monday, October 28, 2013

Dang Kings!

One of the best places to catch Steelhead on the Upper Rogue River is behind the Salmon Redds, but this can be tricky at times because the salmon that haven't spawned yet will hold in the same water, and after being in the river for a few months they get persnickety. This, bright for this time of year, salmon went 20 feet to slam this fly before Bob could get it out of his way a second time. Normally we strait line em ' but this salmon was bright enough I thought, I might be able to get our flies back...I was wrong!

Saturday, October 26, 2013

The Rogue--Spey is still in the Game!

With the low, cold, water the Rogue has become more technical. There are a ton of Fish in the upper section, and we are still picking up fish Swinging with tips. Once the rain hits you had better be there!
Bring your tips, large, and dark flies. Normal years we would have turn to nymphs to keep things rolling, but with the advent of intermediate Skagits, and some good ole greased line steelheading, we are still in the game with our Spey Rods as the weather cools the water below 45 f.

Enjoy some pictures of  last weeks action.

Rogue Color and Spey Rods! What more could you want?

Those men from Iceland can cast!

A good smoke.

Enjoying the day.

Showing the boys what a D-loop looks like.

Nice Setup

Fish On!

That Wild Steelhead Is Camera shy!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

A week full of Rogue River Spey! Tug is the Drug!

The Upper Rogue River is full of fish, and I am blessed enough to be spending these fall days on the river. The water is staying under 45 deg f most days making swinging tough, but we are still picking up fish. This is the first year I have had more Spey fisherman than nymph fishermen in the boat, and I'm Loving it. Sure swinging brings less fish, but the fish it does bring are the Alpha Monsters Of the Run..the ones that were aggressive enough to slam the Intruder of their underwater world. If you haven't caught steel on the swing, you need to. Experience the pure aggression of this fine river predator, once you do, you'll be tempted to throw away your nymph gear, and spend the rest of the time searching for the TUG.

Good Coffee, Great Line!

A whole Pile Of Spey...put me in coach!

The most demanding clients yet!

But we made them happy!
Waiting for battle

A week full of loops like this!