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Thread: Flyfishing for kings

  1. #1
    Member Theone2's Avatar
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    Default Flyfishing for kings

    Anyone know some good flies and tips for catching kings fly fishing???

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    Member joefish00000's Avatar
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    all that i can say is think BIG.heavy leader, (i prefer not to use a tipet for kings) big ESLs and bunny flies,and a sturdy rod/reel.(i use a 10wt or a spey rod)

    good luck
    (you will need it)

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    Member salmon_bone's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joefish00000 View Post
    good luck
    (you will need it)
    I have seen grown men cry after fighting a king on a fly rod

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    Default Tips

    Fat Freddies have been my go to fly for kings, I tie them in a kinda washed out orange color. I've heard bunny flys and ESLs work well too. The method I use is pretty simple, it depends on how fast the stream is flowing and how deep it is but I normally cast either straight across or at a forty five degree down stream then I mend it and let it get down deep and do a dead drift. I just use a sink tip line with a tapered leader thats from 40# to 20# and it seems to work fine. Hope this information helps! Any Q's just send me a PM.

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    Member Theone2's Avatar
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    So the kings will actually bite on the flies??

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    Quote Originally Posted by Theone2 View Post
    So the kings will actually bite on the flies??
    Yes, but you have to get it within inches of their heads. Rarely they will go after a fly. You can if you have no luck doing a dead drift strip it in to add in one foot increments to add to the drift or you can go up stream from a holding school and let it drift past them then strip it in from behind them. Basically its 90% your presentation and the other 10% your fly with maybe a little bit of luck in there.

  7. #7
    Member fishNphysician's Avatar
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    Default Going for the big GRAB.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Theone2 View Post
    So the kings will actually bite on the flies??

    Quote Originally Posted by OneMoreCast View Post
    Yes, but you have to get it within inches of their heads. Rarely they will go after a fly.
    Wanna bet?

    Kings will take swung flies very aggressively. Some places moreso than others.

    To trigger that instinctual predatory response, you want a BIG gangly tentacular fly dressed a bit on the sparse side.... lots of profile, but not overdressed with lot of dense bulk. Big, yes.... but sparse and translucent is the ticket.

    Remember you still have to cast the thing.... and you have to sink it too. Too much material on the fly impedes both.

    Lead eyes will help to sink it, but don't go overboard 'cause you still have to cast it. Too much lead and you won't be able to cast it.

    The Intruder by Ed Ward and Jerry French is the prototype fly "style" that serious king anglers have modelled their pet patterns after.
    These flies are best tied on tubes... or on shanks with a "stinger" loop. A short-shanked octopus style hook completes the package.




    Here's a great tying vid explaining the concept of BIG profile with minimal material.



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kBXxtIL3Xb8

    Here's a video about king fly selection by George Cook.



    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vG17oReGuFE


    As for leaders... nothing fancy. A short 3-4 ft piece of straight 15-20# is all you need.... anything longer defeats the purpose of the heavy sink tips required to fish kings. If you are really worried, a short 6-8 inch piece of bite-tippet can be incorporated for sharp teeth, but you better be a good knot tier as that's just one more spot for potential failure.

    As for rods, 12-14' double handers are all the rage, and they will certainly make casting heavy leaded flies and tungsten sinktips a joy. But those with strong wrists and elbows can also succeed with a 9-10' single hander... it's just gonna be a lot more work.

    Here are some of the top guns in the industry and their preferred king outfits.

    Ed Ward..... http://blog.deneki.com/2009/01/ed-wards-king-rig.html

    George Cook..... http://blog.deneki.com/2008/12/georg...-king-rig.html
    http://blog.deneki.com/2008/12/georg...ng-quiver.html

    Dec Hogan..... http://www.deneki.com/2008/12/dec-hogans-king-rig/

    Tom Larimer.... http://www.deneki.com/2009/08/tom-larimers-king-rig/
    "Let every angler who loves to fish think what it would mean to him to find the fish were gone." Zane Grey
    http://www.piscatorialpursuits.com/uploads/UP12710.jpg
    The KeenEye MD

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    Default Purple Death

    A few years back, I tied up some "Purple Death" that Brad Hansen designed. I used it pretty effectively in smaller streams. Search the Alaska outdoor journal site. They've got quite a few recipes but the purple death really kick some but. The only negative is casting a 10 wt. all day will wear your shoulder out.

    There use to be a legend of a guy that fly fished the Kenai for kings pretty successfully. He drowned in the Kenai while fishing it.

  9. #9
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    Smile Fly Fishing for Kings: fun but frustrating

    I spent a week chasing Alaska kings on the fly a few years ago. We were fishing a combination of small clear creeks and small-to-medium glacially tinted creeks so it was a mixture of blind fishing to rolling fish and sight fishing to fish 20' away.

    In the murky water the guides recommended floating lines and long leaders, dumbbell eyed two-tone marabou leeches, and then some more split shot on the leader. Casting was a nightmare, with 30 to 45 degrees upstream the aim. My 10 weight took many a direct hit from the jigs (er, "dumbbell leech") and/ or split shot. (I winced at every thwack.) The retrieve was straight across current in 6" quick strips. Fresh fish came in mouth-hooked. Most others were fouled. It was frustrating but we took fish up to 30lbs.

    In the clear water, you could dead drift much more lightly weighted yarn and flesh flies. With practice, you began to put the fly on their noses. Every 10 casts or so I could drift one down the pipe, resulting in a few firm hookups (and pulling it out of their mouths or briefly hooking up for the rest!). My best this way went 48" and was maybe 40lbs. I put a purple and hot pink yarn fly down his gullet on a dead drift. It was merry hell fighting it in an 80' wide creek.

    My fishing buddy showed me pretty conclusively that a dead drift plus a couple of soft twitches entice Kings to take (and move short distances to the fly) in clear water. We discovered this later in the tour and I'm keen to try it again. I had two fish the entire week swim more than 1' to the fly. One of them came 8'-10' and then I blew the hookset ... argh!

    By the end of the week, I was fishing sink tips with a 3' section of 40lb Maxima as my "leader" with 2' of 20lb Maxima knotted to it as my "tippet". I doubled the 20lb and joined it to the 40lb butt with a blood knot. This was a stronger connection than either a Surgeon's or two uniknots.

    * * * * *

    In short it's possible for a novice single handed fly guy to fairly hook and land kings on a fly. It's a lot of work and a lot of fun, and it certainly helps to try this where fish are bountiful and the target waters small enough that a 50'-60' cast is all you need.

  10. #10
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    Default

    I have had many kings chase down and strike a fly, that being said my two favorite patterns for them are, the Orange Whistler and the Green Butt Skunk tied king size.

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