Showing posts from March, 2012

Ready to troll some really big flies while kayak fly fishing for spring chinook

One of my quests this spring is to catch a spring chinook on a fly from my Hobie Outback kayak. In this quest, I have my Okuma Guide Select 12 weight, Okuma 10/11 Integrity fly reel loaded with 300 yards of PowerPro braided line, a Rio T20 sinking head, an 850 grain SA deep water express sinking head and, arriving today, a set of salmon trolling flies. I posted the details of my quest on the Northwest Kayak Anglers with a mention that I would even use "gravy" if the opportunity arrived. That comment generated the most posts and a good discussion of what constitutes fly fishing. With the arrival of these flies I expect the use of any "gravy" will be limited and likely not necessary. I am excited to see how these flies react in the water. They are designed to run behind a flasher or dodger that would create more movement of the fly. Since I will be running them without  such hardware, I am hoping that the fly will at least spin, especially since I plan on using

Kayak fly fishing while pedaling a Hobie Outback backwards

When I was looking at the Hobie kayaks earlier this year, one of my primary goals was to use the drive to pedal backwards while fly fishing in the kayak. From the first time I fly fished from my little Otter kayak, I realized kayaks offered the potential to fish water unavailable to the those in float tubes and pontoon boats, the type of personal boats most fly anglers use. The primary advantage of pontoons and float tubes is the ability to  keep tension on the line when a fish grabs the fly (I talk about this in an earlier post). At Henry Hagg lake outside Forest Grove, I had my first opportunity to really test the mirage drive in reverse. I was quickly rewarded with a beautiful wild fish. You can see the video at my YouTube channel by clicking here . When I caught the fish, I was able to feel the take immediately, keep tension on the line and feel in control of the boat the entire time. The drive easily fit the slot in the kayak but I had to reverse the pedal settings so that I

My Hobie Outback Kayak with the Mirage Drive gets wet

The first voyage with my new Hobie Outback proved a wonderous kayaking experience. I spent the previous week modifying my new boat in anticipation of this first trip. Once I launched, put in the mirage drive and started pedaling, a new world opened up. I was quickly going 3 and 4 miles per hour both up and downriver. I was able to turn on a dime and basically went anywhere I wanted. My first trip was in the bay off the Milwaukie boat ramp. I pedaled for an hour looking for sturgeon on the finder but saw only salmon. When I did find a group of sturgeon on the bottom of the river, tossed the anchor. My modifications worked flawlessly and I was quickly anchored in the Willamette. I tossed the line in and immediately got hung up on the rocky bottom. I unhooked the anchor release line, retrieved the fishing line and easily went back upstream and retrieved the anchor. I decided to try another location downriver and again easily anchored up and started fishing. What amazed me was the tr