How They used to be.

Deschutes River Morning fog. All Waters Angling Spey fishing & castin

We are not made of the same stuff anymore. Life has made us all a bit daft and weak. Spey fishermen have always been the kings of social distancing. Only these day with technology are we seeing that shift. The old steelhead hermit of the olden days wearing mainly wool and only friend in the world maybe a dog. Spending more time tying flies then on the phone. Spending more days fishing alone then sharing their water with anyone. Living off homemade stews living in a wooden cabin any logger would have been proud of. Keeping a journal to help keep the mind clear, and track of the days on the water successfully or unsuccessfully. Finding more meaning in the natural order of a single eco system than the persistent push of society. Driven by a zeal of the unknown and left to understand these truths on their own with no media or agenda to push. These off the beaten path river warriors, not only push the line of social distancing but may have defined it. I say that as they chose too, they were never ask. They were not ill, and if they were you wouldn’t have known. As sly as any fox, be tough to get them on a trail cam.

As a group I am not saying that these actions need be repeated again because they can’t, but we can all start showing more respect to other anglers. We can all worry less about posting a photo of every fish we have ever caught. We can take some page out of the book of Steelhead Angling pioneers by finding out for ourselves what these place and fish have to offer us by payment of what we are willing to give to them. The time and energy will always add up in your favor. We should all keep journals not stories. We should follow the model of knowing everything we can about the resources we fish, the animals and plants, flow and reactions, not just what sink top wallet I might need or what stone to cast from. There is a satisfaction in teaching and experiencing these thing on a personal level. That I believe most now will never know and other have somehow forgot. We all dream of that amazing steelhead experience. The ones who have lives it for themselves are the ones who understand. I am not calling anyone out, we can all become more patient and responsible for our on river actions. There are more of us coming and how we set the standard is what will define our future as anglers. Step back and review the past…there are days it helps. Hope everyone is gearing up. See you all soon.

Contemporary Thoughts on Modern Spey Casting

Here we go!!

***Now available to purchase online! Order your copy here ⇒

Well today is the day!! But unfortunately the tangible book won’t be here until tomorrow. I am ready to take orders via email.  If you’re a fly shop interested in carrying the book email me as well.

The book focuses on good fundamentals and how when done correctly Spey casting can be easy and fun. When simple problems occur they can compound. I am sure we can all relate.  I hope you all enjoy the book and learn something from it! Can’t wait to hear your feed back. Thanks

Travis Johnson

A Tip on Tips, and a Line on Lines

A fresh chrome winter steelhead taken on a full floating Skagit and light tip, directly behind someone fishing a multi-density Skagit line

Well my winter steelhead season is not done but we are well past the half way mark. I watched a lot of fishing for winter steelhead over the past 4 months. Saw some thing and made notes about the things I saw. On top of that I always keep a running tally of the fish and some stats the surround that’s the fish hooked. I would like to share my finding with you.

Meaty buck taken in shallow water on a light tip and floating skagit

Let start with what I see as a full time steelhead guide. I see that most anglers try to show up with and be the most prepared they can, this is very appreciated. Most of them have rods less than 2 years old and the news years model of lines, I would say 80% of them almost make it a point. I also see a wider selection in most anglers sink tip wallets. A range of T-11 to T-17 and sprinkle in a T-8 or old type 3. All good things to have.

Now here is where I see people either uneducated or not fully understanding what they are trying to accomplish. The new wave of Skagit lines seems to be multi-density lines where the front portion of the actual Skagit head sinks and then gets progressively lighter and at some point as you go back down the line reverts into a floating line. The sinking portion of these lines is anywhere from 8-15’. Now I have zero problems with these lines, I have more problems with how they are applied.

Knowing more about the rivers you fish in regards to flow and fishable pieces of water.

Now this is where I want to help you as anglers. I want to help you to understand the need and use of these types of lines. The thought process in using and purchasing theses types of lines is to either get deeper or slow the fly down by getting more sinking material below the quick surface current. Now on the river I guide deep is a relatively term. But if you want depth on the urban rivers of the greater PDX area then in my opinion you need be very selective of the runs you fish with very heavy tips and flies. On the other hand if your goal is to get the fly speed as slow as possible. Here is where is have seen the anglers gone a bit off. If your a guy who is after a slower fly then you can’t fish the same tip as if you are trying to get the fly deep. So if you want deep have a tip for that, if you want slow have a tip for that. It you want deep and slow…. have a piece of water for that!! With a line that sinks the tip below the surface current if you use the same tip you would on your floating Skagit line your most likely going to be too deep. For the sake of your next line purchase… have a plan for what your trying to accomplish with the equipment your buy.

Now the stats… 7 steelhead landed on floating Skagit lines behind their fishing partner using multi-density lines. On average the heavier setup lots 3 more flies a day… and I believe these lines can be an effective part of an anglers arsenal. But use them with a purpose!! Have fun and get on the water!!!