I was guiding a 509 area steelhead river 5 years ago at the beginning of November on one of those days that are perfect and make you realize why fall is the best time of year. There was a light haze in the sky, warm enough to fish in a hoody and not a soul on the river. About midway through the day we got a bite in a zone that we missed one in the day before, but our luck was better the second time, and we buttoned her up. Only about a 4 pound fish it was not the biggest steelhead of the day, in fact it was the smallest, but it was a beauty of a little tributary hen and fought like a wild fish should. When I went to unhook the fly from her mouth I noticed something that was not ours in the corner of it's jaw: a copper vibrax spinner.
|Yeah, that is not the fly we were fishing.|
|Brothers from another mother.|
The first two days of November this fall I planned on spending 2 days on the same river with my buddy Steve. After finding a couple of fish, Steve and I were swinging the run that the copper-eating fish rested in before we got her 5 years ago. Although I wanted to run the copper fly I tied for nostalgia, I opted for an egg sucker that I had much more confidence in. In this particular run there is a large boulder in the riffle above it that creates a nice buttery seam down the middle of the river. There is also a slow cut bank on the far side, and a boulder pile in the bottom left corner, which is where I routinely hook fish if they are there. About halfway through the run, and almost to the sweet spot, I let go of my running line at the wrong time and send my leech into the tree on the far bank (sounds cool, but really not that far of a cast). After a good firm yank and the snapping sound of 10lb maxima losing it's arm wrestling match to a tree limb, I reached for the copper fly as a replacement.