Bullies are bad? Part 1 November 03 2013, 0 Comments

Growing up, we were taught bullies were bad.  Aggressive, mean, and would often gang up.  That statement holds true, and when you’re talking sea run bull trout in rivers during the salmon spawn, well, bullies are just awesome!


While I do love salmon and their migration up the rivers, particularly chrome bright Coho, the rivers inevitably become full of stale, coloured salmon.  Often you’re fishing with many other anglers pounding runs with floats, row and spinners, and all for those same stale coloured salmon.  Not my cup of tea.  At times like these, a change can be just the tonic. 


A couple of weeks ago we got out to one of our local rivers and did a drift for the afternoon.  Mostly swinging and stripping flies, and while a Coho was always on the cards, we were after sea run bull trout.  An often-overlooked fish, seldom are they intentionally fished for, often being a bi-product of those cold days swinging flies for steelhead.  An annoyance almost.  This is unfortunate.  Sea run bulls can reach 15lbs and can be excellent fighting at a quarter that size.  They are aggressive fish that can be taken on a range of flies, either stripped, swung, or dead drifted, and will school up.  Use anything from your 5wt trout rod through to your 8wt spey rod and everything in between. 


This particular outing was stellar.  Almost every bit of water we hit was pay dirt.  Anything we threw at them.  Fat, fat fish, making pigs of themselves with their heads dwarfed by their chunky oversized bodies. The slow water on the inside seams of fast runs saw them ganging up, waiting to hit anything that came their way.  We caught bulls up to 10lbs, and had one of those days where you finish up with a big stupid grin on your face.  Sometimes you just want to know you’re going to get bites and catch fish…  Have you tried standing up to the bullies?



Look for part 2 of this post where we tie up and experiment with some new custom flies for more big bulls, and some interesting jig hook flies for enticing the odd coho!