The North American Fly Fishing Forum


Go Back   The North American Fly Fishing Forum > General Fly Fishing Discussion > Warmwater Fly Fishing

Warmwater Fly Fishing Bass, Bream, Perch, etc...

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 01-10-2010, 03:06 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 13
aftonangler will become famous soon enough
Default Walleye on the fly

A post on a local board stirred up a sleeping giant in my anglers brain...

Hmmmm, there is more to these tasty critters than anyone in the fly world gives em credit for. Until I started typing up this response I never actually thought about the scope and depth of my walleye on the fly experience.

It has rekindled a need in me to explore this species more in 2010!

Anyone care to share?

here is my response from the other board:

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Walleye on the fly

This is a pretty cool topic actually...

Walleye might be the most misunderstood and underappreciated of all fresh water fly rod fish. IMHO.

I have had on and off success with walleye on the fly for the better part of three decades.

When I was a grubby little river rat growing up in Hudson, WI(on the St. Croix River) I used to just kick ass on the walleye during the 'Shad' fly hatch...some form of now long gone Hex. I remember we would get really excited when those flies would start showing up around the 4th of July. Sometimes getting so thick that they had to bring out the snowplows to clear the old blue I-94 bridge.

I recall being in the dug-out of the now gone little league field down by the boat launch in Hudson...and me and my pals eyeing up the thick spiderwebs in the mouldy corners of the dugout and seeing the mayflies and winking at each other between innings as if to say -
"Meet me under the Swing Bridge...at mid-night...it's gonna be a blood bath!"

At first my buddies and myself would fish the surface feeding walleyes twitching small rapalas and could generally get a limit in a few hours of after-midnight fishing around the lighted bridges and dikes making up the waterfront in The Hud.

Then I figured out that my yellow buggy whip Eagle Claw fly pole (as we called it then) would work...with big, cheap China tied flies that came in circular plastic boxes up at Mullers True Value Hardware...really gaudy assortments that looked like butterflies.

But the walleye found them richly enticing when poorly cast into the shadow lines and feebly twitched. Satisfying swirls came tight to headshaking butterballs and I could easily outlimit my spin-head pals much to their chagrin.

I actually was a walleye wizard long before I ever broke into the trout on a fly ranks...and puzzlingly never considered those successes as qualifying me as a real fly fisher.

Years later in the BWCA and Quetico I had off-the grid experiences again with Hex hatch walleye in the Solstice gloaming...paddling away from camp merriment after midnight to acres of swirling fish greedily harvesting big crunchy spinners from the surface.

After I came up with a fly called The Chronic Leech...
Click the image to open in full size.
-tight-

Click the image to open in full size.
-all_picked_out-

...walleye became almost too easy! Anytime the mayflies started hatching on a walleye lake and the gear anglers started to belly-ache about how the walleye could not be caught until the hatch was over I just grinned...and came in to the fish-cleaning house in the wee hours with a stringer full - all bloated with wriggler nymphs...all taken in an almost boring taking_candy_from_a_baby method of casting out...waiting for a minute and then starting a painfully slow handtwist retrieve and slow rod lift until I got a wiggle and then the satisfying full rod bender...

So easy a caveman could do it as long as he was willing to go out at midnight! And many times I'd catch a fish on every cast.

And that is just the bug eaters!

White marabou muddler minnows on floating lines fished at dusk and just after dark on the sandbars down around my namesake rivertown (Afton on the St. Croix)...wow! And on the Wisconsin River down in Southern Wisco the same thing - Sauk Prairie and the sandbars after dark wet wading and waiting for the walleye to move up onto the structure...then a slow surface struggle...a minnow feeding or wallowing on the surface snacked up by a fatty 'eye in a subtle swirl.

Pure Joy!

Then there are the crayfish eaters in the rocky riffles of boulder strewn rivers like the Kettle, Snake, Yellow, Jump, Namekagon, West Fork of the Chippewa...

June in the middle of the daytime...right in the fast and deep rapids tucked behind boulders just waiting to pound a deeply scuttled fly. Better than brown trout I tell ya! And oh what fighters those current fish are.

Anyone who says that walleye fight like a wet sock has never tangled with a rough and tumble river perch!

I have actually gotten away from targeting walleye lately...shame on me I am reminded in typing up this response. Images come flooding back and my taste buds tingle as I think about crispy golden brown fillets curling up like lobster in hot bacon grease.

There was also a productive time in my Montana State days when we would go up to Canyon Ferry and catch big walleye after big walleye wet wading on windswept shores employing the old Wisconsin River white muddler minnow technique...

The fish you see in the images above are by-product catches from this past season(my notes show we boated 27 walleye by accident while fishing musky!). Musky streamers get pounded by big walleye in June around submerged timber. Walleye - not the light-shunning, bottom-hugging variety we all think of. No! More like a big top end predator swirling up from below to take a HangTime streamer or a Beauford as a musky would.

Right up in the upper water in plain sight. ROAR!

Yes, misunderstood and underappreciated indeed

Click the image to open in full size.
Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 01-10-2010, 06:01 PM
Guest1's Avatar
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border
Posts: 4,752
Guest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

That's pretty much all I fished for this last summer and fall. The river I'm on has high banks and gets deep fast so I used a spey 15' rod. I clobbered 'em. It was awsome! I fished with clousers and a clouser style black marabou leech I tie. Best part of it was the size of the fish I caught. I got a lot of really big fish. In fact I never caught any small enough to eat. I calculated the average length of the Walleye I caught, and if I told you, you would think I was telling fish stories.
Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 01-10-2010, 08:18 PM
Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 13
aftonangler will become famous soon enough
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

Dayum Diver Dan

Those are really nice Walters!

Big Fall Walleye = Cool

Big Fall Walleye on flies = Bad Ass Cool

Thanks for sharing...now how about some more info on that there leech thingy?
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 01-10-2010, 09:21 PM
Guest1's Avatar
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border
Posts: 4,752
Guest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

I get them all summer long like that. The picture here is from July '08. It's also the blackest Walleye I ever saw.
Click the image to open in full size.
The fly is the bottom one. I tie lead hour glass eyes (med) on a Mustad 3665A size 4 hook. Cut the tip end of two Black blood quill marabou and tie in as a tail. I take the remaining portions of the feathers and loop dub them on without the stems using pettijean clips. I figure 8 the last bit over the eyes brushing the marabou back as I go. Pretty simple fly, but it clobbers 'em in the summer. In the fall I switch to clousers. We have an Emerald shiner run in the fall and they work better. I'm sure I could whack 'em in the spring too, but that's when I go after the big Pike. Then the big Smallies. I may give the Walleye a bit of my time this spring.
Click the image to open in full size.
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 01-11-2010, 05:18 PM
ant's Avatar
ant ant is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Berks, PA
Posts: 936
Blog Entries: 1
ant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to behold
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

Those are some great looking fish guys!

I was thinking about targeting walleyes on our local lake during the spring spawn and was wondering if I needed a special tippet b/c of their teeth like they have for pike?
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 01-11-2010, 06:27 PM
troutdoorsman's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Sparks NV
Posts: 687
troutdoorsman is a splendid one to beholdtroutdoorsman is a splendid one to beholdtroutdoorsman is a splendid one to beholdtroutdoorsman is a splendid one to beholdtroutdoorsman is a splendid one to beholdtroutdoorsman is a splendid one to beholdtroutdoorsman is a splendid one to behold
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

Nice pics guys! I sure miss going after Walleyes and Pike for that matter.
Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 01-13-2010, 07:48 PM
Guest1's Avatar
Banned
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border
Posts: 4,752
Guest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond reputeGuest1 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

Quote:
Originally Posted by ant View Post
Those are some great looking fish guys!

I was thinking about targeting walleyes on our local lake during the spring spawn and was wondering if I needed a special tippet b/c of their teeth like they have for pike?
Nope. Walleye teeth are for holding, not cutting. Just plain mono is all that's needed.
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 01-14-2010, 07:12 AM
ant's Avatar
ant ant is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Berks, PA
Posts: 936
Blog Entries: 1
ant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to beholdant is a splendid one to behold
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

Thanks Dan!
Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 01-14-2010, 01:06 PM
rmooney's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Posts: 366
rmooney is just really nicermooney is just really nicermooney is just really nicermooney is just really nice
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

you came up with the chronic leech pattern? thats awesome! i saw that fly at the orvis store yesterday in madison and i knew i saw it somewhere!
Reply With Quote
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 01-15-2010, 09:38 AM
HuronRiverDan's Avatar
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Monroe, Michigan
Posts: 2,584
HuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant futureHuronRiverDan has a brilliant future
Send a message via Yahoo to HuronRiverDan
Default Re: Walleye on the fly

Afton, Great post...It brought back a lot of memories from my younger days...I worked swing shift, and spent a lot of mornings chasing Steelies on my namesake river in SE MI. There were far more Eyes then Steelies but that was OK... Fished flies exclusively on my ultralight noodle rod and did very well on the flies; most days my buddy and I would catch a lot more then the jig fishermen, much to their chagrin...

Dan
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Walleye with a Spey Rod? Guest1 Member Introductions 6 03-21-2012 08:45 PM
Walleye Fishing stannard2 General Discussion 3 11-20-2009 08:48 PM
Walleye on a fly rod ???? tie one on General Discussion 38 11-20-2009 04:02 PM
Really big Walleye Guest1 General Discussion 9 10-22-2009 10:16 PM
Got Walleye? arfishinbear Warmwater Fly Fishing 3 12-08-2008 10:45 AM













All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:15 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
2005-2014 The North American Fly Fishing Forum. All rights reserved.