Flys for chinook - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 03:44 PM Thread Starter
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Flys for chinook

I've never fished for Chinook with a fly rod but this late in life, I'm going for it. I'm heading south, way south, like the Lake District in Chile south. This is not a big river and I will be fishing at or close to tidewater so chrome is what I expect to catch. I tie on tubes. What patterns should I tie?
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 04:26 PM
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Something chartreuse and wiggly with a stout hook!

Nate
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Bring the swing.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 05:18 PM
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Originally Posted by Tom.B View Post
I've never fished for Chinook with a fly rod but this late in life, I'm going for it. I'm heading south, way south, like the Lake District in Chile south. This is not a big river and I will be fishing at or close to tidewater so chrome is what I expect to catch. I tie on tubes. What patterns should I tie?
Hey Tom. Something baitfishy, large Chartruese/Blue with plenty of silver flash. I use a Tiemco 600SP 2/0 hook as well. Good luck man!

Don’t forget an all black variation as well. Great change up color
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-14-2020, 08:59 PM
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First, I must say Im a bit envious. Ive been chasing chinook for over 30 years with a fly and its hard to beat a Clouser minnow when you are close to tidewater. If had one color combo to choose it would be chartreuse and white, but in dirty water chartreuse and black can be a killer.

Good luck!!!

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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 07:04 AM
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Okay Tom, that sounds like a lot of fun ... you made me look into Chile as a destination
Some good advice for offerings listed above, but don't forget something in hot pink .... every fish likes pink worms
You staying at a lodge or is this a "do it yourself" gig ??


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Have you Swung a Spey Fly today ??
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 11:29 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you all for the advice. I will be going to the Marlborough fly fishing show on Friday and will stock up on some of the materials I might not have. I will take everyone's advice.

Mike,

I heard about Chinook invading some of the rivers in Chile and Argentina a few years ago and was reminded of it when looking for a place to go with my wife for her 65th birthday. Not to be too selfish but she did mention Patagonia so I immediately wondered about the fishing opportunities. There are a couple of upscale lodges that advertise their Chinook fishery but I settled on a small camp that only admits four rods. Since it is late in the booking season, they offered a price I can't turn down. I had to convince her that this was going to be a wonderful place to celebrate her birthday. She gave that offering a bump but the hookup has to wait to the end of this month. She has limited fly fishing experience but she will be fine and there is a guide to help her learn. The scenery is spectacular and if we rent a truck, we can visit some of the surrounding national parks as well. Things are really cheap in Chile due to the exchange rate. The round trip flight from Santiago to the Lake District costs $33. No, I didn't leave off a zero.

I started wondering about other salmon and found that the only species of salmonids that have successfully invaded Argentine and Chilean lakes and streams are rainbows, browns and chinook. I had sort of expected to see atlantics and cohos since they are widely farmed but it turns out they have not established self sustaining populations. That led to this technically dense but fascinating paper on why this pattern has developed.

I've got to land her before I can begin to land my first chinook on a fly. Any further suggestions would be appreciated.
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 01:31 PM
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I would use a 9/10 wt rod and bring a spare line or two. I like switch rods for the smaller rivers I fish but a Spey rod is also good if your fishing larger water.
mike
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 04:35 PM
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Late in the year? Could be tougher to catch a chromer.

I would go prepared for heavy discoloured water as well as low clear water.

For the former, big flies. Big tube flies.

For the latter, small flies. Sparse nymphs tied on stout #8 and #10 hooks. Dark grey/brown stonefly. Hare's Ear. Maybe something creamy white. I used to use Eagle Claw 1197B hooks. Ernest Schwiebert used those hooks for pancora patterns for resident trout. They were essentially dark olive Woolly Worms tied on #4 to #8 1197B hooks.

Will sea-run brown trout be co-migrating with the 'springs'? Fuzzy Wuzzies in different colours might work for both. They are simple New Zealand trout patterns with some history in South America. Simple works well for springs.

Thanks for the link to the paper. Despite all the outfitter advertising suggesting the contrary, I knew that Atlantic salmon had not been able to establish themselves.

Must admit I am a little surprised that escaped farmed Coho salmon were not able to establish self-sustaining runs. They can be relatively aggressive colonizers though wimpy in other regards.

Dragging the wife along, eh? Two recommendations in that regard.

First, a rough English translation of a very popular saying in that area. In Puerto Montt there are two 'stations': the train station and the wet station (season). Works better in Spanish. Insight: it can be very wet. Bring lots of rain gear.

I believe the original expression is: En Puerto Montt hay dos estaciones. La estacion de tren y la estacion de lluvias.

Second, do you both like to eat shell fish and sea food? If so, you MUST visit Isla Chilo to the immediate south of the Lakes District. The shell fish are to die for. Isla Chilo can be popular with both Argentinian and Chilean tourists.

Enjoy and report back please.
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 06:56 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Enso,

Sounds like you know your way around down there. We are stuck with the Spring Break dates of the academic year for this trip. If things go well, I might do a DIY trip next year. I can rent a 4x4 for $300/10 days and there are plenty of little hotels and camp sites it seems.

We do like shellfish and expect to eat some clean cerviche being that far south. If I recall from the paper, they speculated that the cohos had a more restricted genome perhaps due to the limited stocks that were drawn from for aquaculture. It all fits back into the more scientific posts to the recent Oregon Greed thread.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 07:16 PM
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Tom, You are welcome.

If you confined by a school or college schedule, personally I would target the Christmas/New Years break. It could be early for Chinook, I don't know. But it is definitely not too early for trout and sea-run browns especially if you are willing to accept lower expected catch rates in exchange for bright, hot fish.
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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-15-2020, 10:14 PM
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this fly has been one of the best for me personally
... runs close too and At river mouths with some decent flow at dusk and dawn ive had some wild nights. Glow for fresh (great lakes is my only experience but this fly comes from the PNW so it works out there too) chinooks' is lights out. the great lakes spin guys just line the river mouths with glow spoons every year. The fly is a lot of work but if your anything like me you'll have the trip on your mind. which leads to prepping,tyng and tinkering for days and days. this will help with that and you'll get a
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''Fish on''
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 12:56 AM Thread Starter
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That guy is fast and it still took him 45 min. Lot of stuff going on that shank. I have most of the material he is using. I bet you kick the nearest rock when you lose one to a snag.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 06:23 AM
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That guy is fast and it still took him 45 min. Lot of stuff going on that shank. I have most of the material he is using. I bet you kick the nearest rock when you lose one to a snag.

I forgot to mention make sure your tying all your trailer loops with care. Jerry french said he's seen loads of store bought flies have the trailer pulled by specifically chinooks in Alaska. im sure you know this but chinooks are legit equipment breakers wound tight backing,small backing knots,

oh yeah losing one hurts! Though it goes both ways as having a fly like this instills a great confidence. You know that puppy is in that deep fast run doing a decent job. I mean the gnarliest runs where pnw chinooks apparently hang out ( ive never seen it just listened to legends talk about it online and in books). Just down there giving off a insane swimmy action. even if it was somehow spinning or even fouled it'd still have some mojo with those materials (half kidding) lol . There's a lot less sun down there and there's a faint glow with a epic swimmy profile just irritating all the chinnys. Intruding on there personal space actually making them losing a tiny forward progress. move it or eat me Annoying ass bright thing coming through!

If your not into making it ill add a honorable mention (see the Picture below video)... the fly is called ken morish's trailer trash chartreuse and blue. The recipe just in other colours

best of luck if you go!
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''Fish on''
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 09:22 AM
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Your reel and gear will be most important.

I use a Danielson Control now with 400m of Hatch 68lb Dacron (it’s smaller than 20lb standard Dacron) another 50m of 50lb shooting line and 25lb-30lb maxima with a stout 2/0 saltwater style short shank hook........this is so I can put the heat to the fish and not worry about my leader or hook giving out. These fish are not leader shy and if you get a real trophy, you’ll be glad you went heavy or else you simply won’t land it. 1/0 stinger hooks will bend out on a long battle. 20lb can snap too, though it is really strong......I’m not sure why you would ever go less than 25lb test unless you are in some super low clear water maybe?? I dunno

The tube fly will provide a stronger hook hold, especially with a ‘free swing’ junction connection.

You’ll have a blast!! Let us know how it goes
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 01-16-2020, 10:59 AM Thread Starter
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As of this morning, it looks like the wheels are coming off the trip. When the outfitter discounted the price all but two of the slots were snapped up. It may still work but I can't commit until my wife has a better perspective on her professional commitments. If we miss these slots, we might go anyway, scout the area out and do a seat of the pants exploration of the streams where possible. The good news is the trip will cost $8,000 less.

Anyway, thanks to all who offered some great advice.
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