Dolly fishing is taking off as more and more pink and chum salmon push into the freshwater. The pink salmon run this season has been better than expected and you can find pinks in creeks all around Juneau. Montana Creek, Cowee Creek, Fish Creek, and Sheep Creek all have healthy amounts of pinks. There are a smattering of chum salmon in all these creeks with Sheep Creek having by far the most.
When chasing Dolly Varden this time of year, it really pays to look for chum salmon. While Dollies will hang around a school of pinks, they definitely prefer the company of chum. Chum eggs are a favorite of Dollies. Some of the best fishing so far has been at Sheep Creek due to the concentration of chum salmon. You can fish a variety of streamers with fairly good success, but beads are far and away the most effective method for catching Dollies. Mottled Troutbeads in Peachy King, Peach Roe and Montana Roe are a few of the best colors. Both 8mm and 10mm sizes have their moments.
Softbeads are super effective as well. As the name indicates, they are made of a silicone material that is soft and feels more like a real egg and trout and Dollies are more apt to grab them and hang on tight. The rigging of Softbeads is slightly different than traditional beads, but it is still quite easy. For a short primer on Softbeads and how to peg them, check out our How To Peg a Soft Bead video.
Montana Creek has a lot of pinks from the mouth all the way up to the Back Loop bridge. Above back loop and into the canyon section there are a few salmon but the numbers haven't really built to the point where the Dolly fishing gets hot. In another week the Dolly fishing will be cranking in upper Montana. Cowee Creek has salmon all the way up to the Glacier Highway bridge and beyond. Dolly fishing as been quite good in Cowee as well.
Now for a few shop notes:
With coho season just around the corner, we'll once again be having our "First Coho Caught on the Fly on the Road System Contest." Stay tuned for details. Prizes, as always, will be marginal, but the fame and glory associated with winning is immeasurable.
Turning to coho gear and tackle, you may have heard how difficult getting any outdoor gear has been in 2021. We won't get into all the reasons behind the shortages, but suffice it to say, we have been working all the angles to get the gear you need to be successful out fishing. And right now the shop is really well stocked on 8 weight Sage & Echo rods, reels and lines. So if your reel was on its last legs at the end of coho season last year, your line is looking sad or this is the year to upgrade your coho rod, now would be a good time to check out some gear. We have our best selling Getting Started Rod & Reel Package ready to roll and it now features the new Echo Boost Blue rod which is a fantastic coho rod. Whatever your budget may be, you can rest assured that we have the absolute best gear at that price. Your business, as always, is greatly appreciated.
And finally, if your collection of Dolly Llamas for coho is in need of replenishing, we have a good supply of Dolly Llamas in stock. And if you are a fly tyer, we have Dolly Llama Tie Twenty Kits with everything you need to tie coho Llamas in the best colors!
Have a great weekend and we will see you on the water!