New Favorite Flies for Chum Salmon
Picking up where we left off in the last issue, we continue with the Favorite Flies series, this time with new flies on Salmonfly.Net for Chum Salmon. The "dogs" are running late in some parts of Washington, even into January, so if you are fly-fishing for them now, perhaps you would like to try a few of these. If not now, then come back to the archives next year for some ideas for flies to tie and put in your box….
I included the Pooch Persuader, originated by Jim Taylor because it looked to me to be a promising fly to fish for estuary chum salmon. It was, in fact a good choice for some of the early estuary fishing I did this fall for Chum, proving itself in a local Puget Sound estuary creek when the tide was outgoing.
Bunny Winged Salmon Leech, a John Gilbert fly, can be found in Fly-Fishing for Pacific Salmon II, by Les Johnson and Bruce Ferguson. It is mentioned there as a fly for Coho, thought the version shown is purple. This one, in chartreuse has brought me some success for Chum Salmon.
This version of the Bunny Winged Salmon Leech (Charteuse/Orange) has actually been more successful for me with the Chum run this year then the straight chartreuse version. I don't know if it makes a difference at all to the Chum, perhaps it is just coincidence or maybe the water color, but the orange mix has seemed to work more often as an attractor.
This color variation of the Bunny Winged Salmon Leech (Chartreuse/Red) is shown simply to demonstrate the versatility of the fly by using different color combinations. All of these have been tied for Chum, but the fly illustrated in Fly-Fishing for Pacific Salmon II as Coho Salmon fly. It is quite easy to tie as well.
Iliamna Floozie is another fly that I found in Fly-Fishing for Pacific Salmon II and included because it looked to me to be a promising fly for Chum. It was tied by Robert Triggs as a variation of the Pink Floozie, a Ted Gerken fly for Silvers. I have not tried it yet, because quite frankly, I've been too happy with other flies, but I know it will work for Chum Salmon too.
I designed Green Swimmer as a low-water fly for Chum Salmon, when chum are holding in tailouts during low-water conditions. I purposely wanted a fly that would not be weighted down and ride deep, but would "swim" into the current. This year, I have not had the right conditions to use it, but I suppose it could also be fished with a sink tip line or split shot in deep holes or runs.
Porcupine, Red/Green is another fly that could be tied in a variety of color combinations and used for different salmon species. This one just happened to be tied for Chum salmon. It is another fly, as well, that is quite easy to tie so you don't have to spend hours at the bench tying up a bunch.
That's it for now. Each month, we'll be presenting new "Favorite Flies" and targeting different species, so there will always be new flies and fresh ideas to look forward to in addition to the ones submitted by contributors. As always, Salmonfly.Net invites other contributors to submit their flies or ideas. That can be done by filling out and submitting the form on the page, Showing Your Flies or Photos on Salmonfly.Net.
Happy Fly Tying,
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