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  1. #31
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    Oct 2007
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    I'd say some certainly do take when they are running but the chance of intercepting such fish with a fly / spinner / bait fished down and across is quite slim. It's far easier to catch them when they are stationary as you will probably get 3 or 4 chances of a take from an interested fish when fishing down a pool and taking a step or two between casts.

  2. #32
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    Mar 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart1108 View Post
    Do salmon take a fly when running or only when resting in pools in between
    Yes definitely, but you won't catch it where you've seen it, someone above you may.

  3. #33

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    The rapala comes into play when fish are running! Natural colours like black and gold when there's clarity, garish colours like firetiger for coloured water

  4. #34
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    Jun 2008
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    Quote Originally Posted by liphook View Post
    The rapala comes into play when fish are running! Natural colours like black and gold when there's clarity, garish colours like firetiger for coloured water
    What skagit do you recommend given the O.P.s question?
    Respect My Authorita!!

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
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    Aberdeenshire
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart1108 View Post
    Do salmon take a fly when running or only when resting in pools in between
    The simple answer to this question is yes, but with rivers being widely different in size, depth and flow, the solution to catching is far from simple.
    My personal experience of running fish relates mostly to the Spey, well known to be a relatively shallow river. The Tay,for instance might require a different approach, and spate streams, different again.
    If you catch certain conditions on the Spey, fish are very catchable. You are looking for a falling water after a fairly big spate, with the colour dropping out.
    Fish tend to run on a tight line, probably only a few yards wide, and generally quite close to the bank. River features such as croys or gravel banks might move this out a bit.
    What you want to see is a fish show. Only a little head and tail or a small splash. If you see a couple more show on the same line, that's your fishing zone.
    Forget long casting, your fly will be in the right window, fishing effectively, for a very short time. This is short line stuff. Floating line is all you need.
    Your fly wants to be fishing just a few inches down. Size, maybe just a size up on what you would use if the water was lower.
    Forget wading. Ankle deep would often be too deep. It's surprising how shallow you can take a fish. Sometimes a rod length out in less than two feet of water. I once saw an 18lb fish taken in not much more than a foot of water, almost under the overhanging grass of the bank.
    Be aware that the running lane may change in the same day if the water is falling fast. The key is to watch where the fish show.
    Short line, fairly square is the way to fish, keeping your fly fishing effectively in the taking zone as long as possible. I have cast in front of fish that show, and caught a fish. You think you have caught that fish, and that may be so, but there would probably be others with it, so you couldn't be sure, but a fish is a fish.
    There may be other rivers similar, but the Spey is the only river I can think of where I've seen these defined running lanes.
    Spate type rivers I've fished tend to produce fish at necks and tails, these have probably paused for seconds, but the steady water in the middle of pools can produce, and I would think these are running fish.
    Where ever you are, the key factor is being lucky enough to be there when a substantial number of fish are running. Not quite like winning the lottery nowadays, but not far off!
    t.c.

  6. #36
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    Dec 2012
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    Alaska
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart1108 View Post
    Do salmon take a fly when running or only when resting in pools in between
    Based on what I have seen (Pacific Salmon Species) over the past 15 seasons on rivers of Alaska they are more likely to take a fly while holding in a specific area. I've had the unique privilege of witnessing thousands of Pacific Silver on the move through channels and while the fish were mushing up river my fishermen flogged away at them with everything you can think of, flies that is...... Never had a taker.

    Once they stop whether it be in a pool or hugging bottom in a long run they may grab pretty well. Any more when I'm in the right place at the right time and see them on the move I just watch them to see if there is any perceivable interaction as they swim. None that I could name. Here they appear to be moving against the current at perhaps 2 mph as they go upstream and they are not distracted by a fly swinging across the channels. This is not to say that none will ever bite while on the move but I've probably thrown a fly at a thousand of them with no catches...

    Just this past Monday I was fishing a long deep run, there was no evidence that salmon were present until my first cast. The run is a favorite hold for them that's why I was there, in all I got 7 of them within a fairly short time. Fly was a simple pattern called Thor which is a traditional steelhead pattern. I was fishing for trout which also live in this run.

  7. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hardyreels View Post
    Based on what I have seen (Pacific Salmon Species) over the past 15 seasons on rivers of Alaska they are more likely to take a fly while holding in a specific area. I've had the unique privilege of witnessing thousands of Pacific Silver on the move through channels and while the fish were mushing up river my fishermen flogged away at them with everything you can think of, flies that is...... Never had a taker.

    Once they stop whether it be in a pool or hugging bottom in a long run they may grab pretty well. Any more when I'm in the right place at the right time and see them on the move I just watch them to see if there is any perceivable interaction as they swim. None that I could name. Here they appear to be moving against the current at perhaps 2 mph as they go upstream and they are not distracted by a fly swinging across the channels. This is not to say that none will ever bite while on the move but I've probably thrown a fly at a thousand of them with no catches...

    Just this past Monday I was fishing a long deep run, there was no evidence that salmon were present until my first cast. The run is a favorite hold for them that's why I was there, in all I got 7 of them within a fairly short time. Fly was a simple pattern called Thor which is a traditional steelhead pattern. I was fishing for trout which also live in this run.
    7 salmon when your fishing for trout? Not a bad day then?

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