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Thread: Favorite smolt patterns?

  1. #1

    Default Favorite smolt patterns?

    I'll be fishing the Naknek in lat June... what are your favorites?

  2. #2
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    Most any clouserey (number 2)lookin thing will work, I like lots of white in mine (in a pinch a #2 white flesh fly does well) and usually use a fair amount of bucktail instead of furr to keep em pushin water. Some of the blue and green crystal flashes look really nice, just put a chunk on each side and back with a bright white hair belly. Put a barbell on the head and a nice lead wrap (first of course).

    Also, that time of year there is a fair amount of last years flesh coming down (depending on the year) so those help (off white and brownish). And, lots of Naknek fishermen like to use articulated purples and blacks that time of year as well. Having a little of all of these will help you figure out what's going to work that day.

    If things slow way down, a bead never hurts to try either, go for light oranges and pinks as there can also be old eggs. (and a resident fish in AK will almost never pass on an egg)

  3. #3

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    my favorite is a pencil popper.

    nothing like watching a 27 inch lake camp or rapids camp naknek bow crush your fly up top

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kodiak Commando View Post
    my favorite is a pencil popper.

    nothing like watching a 27 inch lake camp or rapids camp naknek bow crush your fly up top
    Are you fishing that like a waking fly or "popping" it like a bass popper?

    Thanks,

    L

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Catch It View Post
    Most any clouserey (number 2)lookin thing will work, I like lots of white in mine (in a pinch a #2 white flesh fly does well) and usually use a fair amount of bucktail instead of furr to keep em pushin water. Some of the blue and green crystal flashes look really nice, just put a chunk on each side and back with a bright white hair belly. Put a barbell on the head and a nice lead wrap (first of course).

    Also, that time of year there is a fair amount of last years flesh coming down (depending on the year) so those help (off white and brownish). And, lots of Naknek fishermen like to use articulated purples and blacks that time of year as well. Having a little of all of these will help you figure out what's going to work that day.

    If things slow way down, a bead never hurts to try either, go for light oranges and pinks as there can also be old eggs. (and a resident fish in AK will almost never pass on an egg)
    I was thinking a selection of clousers tied with and without lead... my un weighted clousers have an epoxy head with a painted on eye.. how long would you tie these critters???

    Thanks,

    L

  6. #6
    Premium Member Wyo2AK's Avatar
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    Have a decent selection of clousers/thunder creek in the 1&1/2 to 2 inch range, and then some on the larger size.

    I've been messing around with some new smolt patterns tied pseudo-spey style with marabou/mallard and ostrich/mallard. I'll post a picture when I get home this evening.
    Pursue happiness with diligence.

  7. #7
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    My basics are number 2's with a long shank, but I usually have a few articulated ones (just over two inches) but also tie up some #4's so that I have something different avaailable.

    The unweighted ones should do a nice job of riding up high and skimming below the surface. When I'm fishing smolt I usually end up trying several different tacts depending on water depth, temperature and light levels. I just keep tinkering until I get some decent action. Also, if things are really hot, that's when I often just try something different, knowing that there are active fish around so at least that part of the equation is filled out.

  8. #8
    Member ak_powder_monkey's Avatar
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    I like deer hair minnows
    I choose to fly fish, not because its easy, but because its hard.

  9. #9

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    I'm a pearl zonker man myself. Olive, blue, and a handful in white...can always use a marker to get the color you want when you run out of blue or olive.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by TradBow View Post
    I'm a pearl zonker man myself. Olive, blue, and a handful in white...can always use a marker to get the color you want when you run out of blue or olive.
    Tradbow: I like that zonker idea.... what length would you tie up?

    3", 4"?

    L

  11. #11

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    2 4 and 6's. You can use the zonker tape or use a heat gun for the body. Definatly make more white and bring a couple of markers!

    They do get turned off by them after awhile....I typically go to some kind of olive black or tan/brown damsel, stone, or even a scud (white/pearl), just something different. When the birds start showing in any numbers (spring) you'd better be throwing a smolt pattern of some kind. When the fish go into a lull is when I start tossing something else. Works quite well.

    I do carry a few thundercreeks though I havent had much luck on them.

    A conehead zuddler is another good one to have...I know it's not a smolt pattern just one of those things, in the down times when the smolts arent moving, can produce a few fish.

    Here's that hot melt zonker...

    http://reelflyfishing.com/modules.ph...=print&sid=452

  12. #12

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    I might add..if you make the hot melt zonker, once you get the body down pat....make a bunch of bodies..THEN go back and tie your flies...it'll save you a ton of time!

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by TradBow View Post
    2 4 and 6's. You can use the zonker tape or use a heat gun for the body. Definatly make more white and bring a couple of markers!

    They do get turned off by them after awhile....I typically go to some kind of olive black or tan/brown damsel, stone, or even a scud (white/pearl), just something different. When the birds start showing in any numbers (spring) you'd better be throwing a smolt pattern of some kind. When the fish go into a lull is when I start tossing something else. Works quite well.

    I do carry a few thundercreeks though I havent had much luck on them.

    A conehead zuddler is another good one to have...I know it's not a smolt pattern just one of those things, in the down times when the smolts arent moving, can produce a few fish.

    Here's that hot melt zonker...

    http://reelflyfishing.com/modules.ph...=print&sid=452
    THANKS A BUNCH, that is certainly one b@d@ss looking streamer.

    L

  14. #14

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    Lots of strings, and pencil popers for sure.

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    THe fish there smarten up real fast after the season opens in June. Some days the only thing I was able to get consistent fishing with was a gummy smolt. They do twist the heck out of your leader and line so a small barrel swivel is needed.

    Poppers are pretty fun when you can get them on the surface. My one complaint with pencil poppers is that many of the commercially available ones have hook gapes that are too large and they often cause some pretty good hooking injuries to fish eyes.

    I always did better with slightly sparser patterns as well. But when the bite is on, pretty much anything will work.

  16. #16
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    Take a size 10 nymph hook, tie in some deer hair so the tips go forward past the eye from the base of the hairs (hair stacker to align the tips helps). Now tie in some bead chain and fold the hair back over towards the bend, it will make a bulge like a head. Tie it off (some people like a band of red thread). It's simple and works well for small fry patterns. Sparse is the word. It's in the AK fly fishers book. Get that book and it will cover most everything you ever need to know about AK flies.
    River Runnin

  17. #17
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    Does anyone have any pictures of any smolt? This could be invaluable in choosing the right fly (I understand that the different species will look somewhat different, if you have some pics that would be awesome!).

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by bairdi View Post
    THe fish there smarten up real fast after the season opens in June. Some days the only thing I was able to get consistent fishing with was a gummy smolt. They do twist the heck out of your leader and line so a small barrel swivel is needed.

    Poppers are pretty fun when you can get them on the surface. My one complaint with pencil poppers is that many of the commercially available ones have hook gapes that are too large and they often cause some pretty good hooking injuries to fish eyes.

    I always did better with slightly sparser patterns as well. But when the bite is on, pretty much anything will work.
    How does the swivel affect casting? Do you tie it in before the last piece of tippet?

  19. #19
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    Default swivel

    I never noticed it all when casting. When fishing 'bows chasing smolt on the Naknek, I'd usually make some sort of a tappered leader with a fairly long stiff mono butt section that tappered down to 8 to 12 lb flourocarbon tippet depending on how spooky the fish were. The longer butt section helps with turning over the heavier or more wind resistant flies. If I was fishing a gummy minnow or what ever they are called I'd add in a very small ball bearing barrel swivel before the section of flourocarbon. Just make sure the swivel is rated to a higher breaking strength than the tippet. I only had the swivel fail once after multiple days of use fighting a fair number of fish. Total leader length would range from 5 to 12 feet long, depending on the conditions (ie, wind, fly weight, casting distance, fish spookiness etc), but usually were around 9'.

    Talking about this makes me want to go back and fish it again.

    Of course, some "purists" will tell you that using the gummy smolt is cheating!

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