Saltwater Fly Fishing

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Saltwater Fly Fishing
Top Dorado Rods
Ocean Shooting Heads
Hex Hatch
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Saltwater Fly Fishing Action at Loreto, Mexico copied from Baja Big Fish
Bruce & Laura living large in Loreto...
The Baja Big Fish Company Shop in downtown Loreto will be re-opened on June 11, 2009 inside the Medeterraneo Restaurant on the Malecon in downtown Loreto. Also, in appreciation of our pre-booked clients this summer, your dinner at Mediterraneao or Texas BBQ after your first day out fishing is on us!
Dorado have been a consistent catch for fly anglers since June 6th. It has just gotten better and fish have increased in size. Expect dorado to run between 10 to over 40 pounds. We are still going a long way for them, about 25-40 miles but we're finding fish. Closer in only 3-5 miles off Isla Coronado dorado are becoming more frequent but they're smaller only reaching to 15 pounds. So far there has been very little structure off-shore but this is changing. When the sargasso breaks its anchor from the submerged rocks along the shoreline on which it grows, it floats to the surface and gets carried with the current. The current brings it to the coasts where it piles up on beaches and rocky shorelines. As spring progresses and the weather changes so do the currents. These currents take the sargasso from the beach and carry it out to sea. We are seeing sargasso still growing on the rocks.

Dorado have been caught this past week at Bajo de las Boyas, San Bruno, Menceneraios. Lack of sargasso has been reported offshore but there is sargasso closer to the shorelines. There is also still a lot of sargasso continuing to grow below the surface that has not yet broken its anchor. I am hoping this will gradually break off and we get to see some sargasso paddies offshore late into the summer. There's so much in front of the town's waterfront right now I'm thinking of going snorkeling with scissors pretty soon.

The squid are in! Conventional anglers are catching them on the way out to the fishing areas and using them for bait. They can troll squid strips or cut bodies for Dorado or billfish. It is very effective. The following description is of the vertical chumline that is used by fly anglers when Dorado are scarse. We haven't had to use it lately but this describes the technique as you never know when it will come in handy:
What we [fly anglers] would do with the squid is, well first find the fishing spot. Then cut the squid up into chunks and then start your vertical chum line. Toss pieces every few seconds for as long as it takes. It may take several minutes to half an hour. This is a good time to set up your fly gear and review the flies, knots, etc..

After a period of time the captain will start to toss out a few sardinas. This is done sparingly. What often happens is the Dorado suddenly appear. What you have just done is made yourself into a piece of offshore structure. Your brought the fish up and your boat is their shade. The sardinas you tossed out makes them think that your boat really is a sargasso paddy because this is exactly what happens. There's almost always small fish under a sargasso paddy and below it larger fish (Dorado). So until that sargasso is more frequent this is what we'll need to do.

Out among the Dorado (and just about everywhere else) are Sailfish and plenty of them. At times it will look surreal with groups of Sailfish sunning, marlin jumping at a distance then tailing sailfish again. Conventional anglers will throw a live bait in among them and allow it to free swim. Usually it gets interest. Flies are another story as so far we haven't had any fly anglers lucky enough yet. Trolling would easily bag one but that ain't fly fishing. Yes there's plenty of Sailfish here and they should stick around at least through September.

Marlin are being caught further offshore near the Dorado but are less frequent than the Sailfish. The species that have been caught so far are Stripers and Blues. A few Wahoo in the 30-50 pound size range have been landed. With the anglers that have caught Wahoo so far trolling live bait (mackerel) or large lures (Mirro) were the methods. Since we're catching billfish very readily again, we would like to remind you that our policy is no take for all billfish. We have an agreement with our captains to release all billfish safely.

Currently few have been fishing inshore because most have been enjoying the Dorado fishing offshore. Bait has also been a setback as there has still been too much along the shorelines. Fish like Cabrilla, Pargo, Roosterfish, Jack Crevalle are eating their way through thick schools of the sardinas whose populations have exploded this year. So a fly isn't really much competition for that kind of buffet which is partly why we're just passing the shorelines on our way out to the offshore now.

Bonita and Skipjack are off Isla Carmen in good numbers feeding on squid. You can get into them about 100-300 meters off Punta Tintorerra. They will take flies like the bullcandy or a clouser. You will need to cast out then give a fast strip. The best tactic is to keep casting and retrieving the fly and let the fish come to you. Their schools move very quickly and eventually one will move right under you. It is too difficult to chase them around.

You gotta' love'em !!!

Eight Top Rods For Dorado
If you are going to take a fly rod to the Sea of Cortez, make it a 12-weight. Your second rod should be another 12-weight. Your third rod might be a 10-weight, in case you encounter smaller dorado or want to fish for Roosterfish or Pargo. Normally you don't have to scale your tackle down in size to make dorado sporting. Many dorados run 25 to 40 pounds and have great athletic ability. Also you will probably encounter sailfish and marlin which will range from 50 to 150 pounds. A 12-weight rod is certainly not too light for them. Most casting is not long distance. You want your rod rigged to load easy and throw big flies from 30-60 feet with accuracy. We like 460-550 grain lines on 12-weight rods and 350-450 grain lines on 10-weight rods.
Dorado have an allure. Dorado come in all sizes, and in every stage of growth they are spectacular game fish. Rods for small tarpon of five to twenty pounds are best fished with 10-weight rods. Twenty to forty pound fish will require 11/12 weight. If you are fishing the Sea of Cortez, figure on getting shots at Sailfish and Marlin as well as dorado. Twelve weight rods are the most popular size for larger dorado. A dorado rod needs to be very durable. It also needs to be well balanced and easy to cast with. Casting for dorado requires that a rod will play both the long and the short casting game and be able to deliver a fly with pinpoint accuracy at all ranges. The list of rods below have all been used successfully on big dorado. Be sure to work out with any "big-game" rod for several days be for you go on your trip. This isn't like throwing emergers to sippers in a back eddy. Muscle tone helps. As you are reading this, each of these rods is with our group in Loreto.

Sage1290-4 Xi2/strong>

Length: 9'    Line: #12     Pieces: 4

This is a serious fly rod for most any blue water situation. A 500-grain shooting head or a WF13 line makes this rod enjoyable to cast. The Xi2 has some serious butt power.
Rod weight:  5 1/2 Ounces.

Item Series Line Wt. Action Handle Price To Top
1290-4 Xi2 Xi2 12 Medium-Fast L $730 Sale Over

Sage 1090-4 Xi2

Length: 9'    Line: #10     Pieces: 4

Rod weight:  4 1/2 Ounces.

Item Series Line Wt. Action Handle Price To Top
1090-4 Xi2 Xi2 10 Medium-Fast K $690 Sale Over

C.F. Burkheimer 1290-4SW

Length: 9'    Line: #12     Pieces: 4

Description: Rated as 11/12/13 this is a work horse rod for big fish, such as sailfish, big dorado, marlin and tarpon.  This rod is easy to cast with a TT12 or TT13 Bermuda Triangle Taper or a Rio Leviathan 500 or 550-grain line.  The extra long handle gives leverage while the battle rages. This is the perfect rod for big dorado and sailfish.
Rod weight: 6.5  Ounces
Item   Length Line Wt. Price To Top
CF1290-4SW C.F. Burkheimer Fly Rod 9 ft 12 $725 Sale Over

C.F. Burkheimer 1090-4SW

Length: 9'    Line: #10     Pieces: 4


Description: Rated as 9/10/11 this is a work horse rod for permit, big jacks, small tuna, rooster fish, stripers, medium size tarpon, Chinooks, dorado and a host of other saltwater scrappers.  This rod is easy to cast with a TT10 Bermuda Triangle Taper or a Rio DeepSea 400-grain line. 
Rod weight: 5  Ounces
Item   Length Line Wt. Price To Top
CF1090-4SW C.F. Burkheimer Fly Rod 9 ft. 10 $695 Sale Over

Winston B2X1290

Length: 9'       Line: #12     Pieces: 4   

The rare big-fish rod that excels at long, short and medium ranges. Powerful, but pleasant and controllable.  Extremely accurate and as light as they come.  Our favorite lines for this rod are:  SWTB12F, SWTBLT12FI Royal Wulff Bermuda Triangle Taper and Rio DeepSea 400 grain, casts a Rio Leviathan 550 line with ease. This is Patty's favorite blue water rod.
Rod weight: 5 Ounces.

Tested By Us.

"This is the best rod of its type we have ever used."
Item Series Line Wt Action Handle Price To Top
1290 B2X 12 Fast Full Wells $730 Sale Over

Winston B2X1090

Length: 9'       Line: #10     Pieces: 4   

The rod for permit, black skipjacks and bonito, which can be 100 feet away one second, and 30 feet off the boat the next.  Our favorite lines for this rod are:  SWTB10F, SWTBLT10FI Royal Wulff Bermuda Triangle Taper and Rio DeepSea 300 grain and 400 grain.
Rod weight: 4 1/4 Ounces.
Item Series Line Wt Action Handle Price To Top
1090 B2X 10 Fast Full Wells $690 Sale Over

G. Loomis FR10812-4CCGLX

Length: 9'    Line: #12     Pieces: 4   

The big dorado rod or big anything for that matter. This rod got a workout during our 2008 trip to Loreto and it quickly became my favorite big fish stick. Claimed to be, "The most powerful 4-piece fly rod in the business!"
Item Series Line Wt Power Taper Handle Price To Top
11292 Cross Current GLX 12 Stiff Fast 130 $770.00 Sale Over

G. Loomis FR10810-4CCGLX

Length: 9'    Line: #10     Pieces: 4   

A real powerhouse of a rod for big fish, big flies and windy conditions. Permit on the flats or the wrecks, Dorado on the ocean, striped bass or bluefish in the bays. A great all around heavy-duty fly rod.
Item Series Line Wt Power Taper Handle Price To Top
11290 Cross Current GLX 10 Stiff Fast 130 $730.00 Sale Over

Ocean Fishing Shooting Head Set-up
If you are going to the Sea of Cortez or anywhere along the Pacific Coast of Mexico, having the ability to fish your fly at many different depths is and advantage. With the weight restrictions on passenger luggage imposed by many airlines, carrying a selection of heavy saltwater reels may not be an option. Having your reel rigged with a shooting line and carrying a selection of shooting heads saves money and weight. My 12-weight outfit consists of four heads and a shooting line. This set-up consists of a Rio Powerflex Core Tropical Floating shooting line, Airflo Tactical Shooting heads in 460-grain floating, intermediate, type-3 sinking and a Rio 500-grain Big Boy head. With these heads you can fish from the surface to depths of 40-feet. We have used similar outfits for billfish, dorado and shore line fish such as roosterfish and bottom fish. All of the heads are contained in a Mangrove Outfitters Shooting Head Wallet.

Ocean Shooting Heads
Item/font> Description   Price To Top
SAL-HD-12  Shooting Head Wallet with four shooting heads and shooting line   $179.95 Sale Over

Hex Hatch Matcher Flies
Hex hatches are big trout food.  Hex's  are to our local lakes what Salmon Flies are to the Deschutes River.  They have the power to bring the largest trout to 
This trout gobbled a Mark's Hexagenia, Emerger/Cripple. the surface where they can be caught on dry flies. Hex on the Radar

There are four stages of this hatch that the angler should be aware of: nymph, emerger, dun and spinner.

Hex nymphs can start leaving their burrows as early as 7:00 in the evening and a nymph fished along the bottom can get some strikes. Major feeding activity at the surface is the last hour at dark.
More about Hexagenia Hatches

Hexagenia are the largest mayflies which occur in the Northwest. Their nymphs burrow into silt of pure lakes. These hatches occur late June to early August.
Order The Top 5 Hex Fly Set With FREE Shipping!
Hex photo from: Hatch Guide For Lakes by Jim Schollmyer 
Hexagenia photo from "Hatch Guide for Lakes" by Jim Scholmeyer, Click Here for more Information.

Offered Here are 10  proven patterns for curing any Hex Hatch Blues.

Silvey's Hexagenia, Nymph
This deadly nymph pattern was developed by Brian Silvey in the late 1980's for the hatch at Lost Lake.  It has since become the standard Hex Nymph for the Pacific Northwest.  It is effective both deep or shallow.
Underside of real Hex Nymph
The underside of a real nymph.
Silvey Hex Nymph
Item Description Size Price To Top
12120-04 Silvey's Hexagenia, Nymph 4 3 for $5.95 Sale Over

Hexagenia Emerger
This fly looks like the nymph in the surface film.  The emerging dun is just starting to emerge through a split in the back and the top of the head.  This crude looking fly has proven to be both very effective and extremely durable.  the yellow foam back is easily visible as it supports the rest of the fly which is awash and mostly submerged.  
Developed by Mark Bachmann.

Mark's Hex Emerger

Item Description Size Price To Top
02116-08 Hexagenia, Emerger 8 3 for $5.95 Sale Over

Mark's Hexagenia, Crippled Emerger
This pattern  was developed by Mark Bachmann in the early 1990's for the hatch at Timothy Lake.  It replicates the sequence when the dun is nearly out of the shuck or an emerging dun that is hung up in the shuck.  Either way trout like it.  Fish it in the film with the body greased.

Hex Crippled Emerger

Item Description Size Price To Top
2028-08 Mark's Hexagenia, Crippled Emerger 8 3 for $5.95 Sale Over
2028-10 Mark's Hexagenia, Crippled Emerger 10 3 for $5.95 Sale Over

Ultralight Hex Emerger
This pattern was recently developed by Mike Huffman for the mid-west and is very new to the Pacific Northwest. This is a emerger pattern to match the largest sizes of Hexagenia.

Ultralight Hex Emerger

Item Description Size Price To Top
02100-02 Ultralight Hex Emerger 2 3 for $6.95 Sale Over
02100-04 Ultralight Hex Emerger 4 3 for $6.95 Sale Over
02100-06 Ultralight Hex Emerger 6 3 for $6.95 Sale Over

Hexagenia Cripple, Quigley's
This fly is designed by Bob Quigley to replicate the activity of the nymph hanging beneath the surface as the dun is first breaking through the back of the shuck. This is a very effective fly during the first part of the hatch.  Grease the top part of the fly only and let the rear 2/3 of the fly dangle below the surface.

Quigley's Hex Cripple

Item Description Size Price To Top
99100-06 Hexagenia Cripple, Quigley's 6 3 for $5.95 Sale Over
99100-06 Hexagenia Cripple, Quigley's 8 3 for $5.95 Sale Over

Hexagenia, Comparadrake
This is a standard dry fly Hex Dun pattern that was probably developed by some keen tier from the mid-west. It works well in the Pacific Northwest or anywhere where Hex's are light colored on the belly.  This fly works best during hatches of smaller sub-species of Hexagenia. 

Hexagenia, Comparadrake

Item Description Size Price To Top
2027-08 Hexagenia, Comparadrake 8 3 for $5.95 Sale Over

Hexagenia, Paradrake
This pattern  was developed by Mark Bachmann in the mid-1980's for the hatch at Lost Lake.  It is  lightweight and easy to cast.  Cast ahead of cruising fish.  Give the fly an occasional twitch.  This fly works best during hatches of smaller sub-species of Hexagenia.


Hexagenia Paradrake

Item Description Size Price To Top
2020-08 Hexagenia, Para Drake 8 3 for $5.95 Sale Over

Ultralight Hex Dun
This pattern was recently developed By Mike Huffman for the mid-west and is very new to the Pacific Northwest.  We know you are going to like it.


Ultralight Hex Dun

Item Description Size Price To Top
02101-04 Ultralight Hex Dun 4 3 for $6.95 Sale Over
02101-06 Ultralight Hex Dun 6 3 for $6.95 Sale Over
02101-08 Ultralight Hex Dun 8 3 for $6.95 Sale Over
02101-10 Ultralight Hex Dun 10 3 for $6.95 Sale Over

Hexagenia Foam Dun
You wanted a dun pattern that floats high and is extremely easy to see.  Here it is.  This one floats because it is lighter than water, even when it is wet.  Works best on water that have larger varieties of Hex.

Hex Foam Dun

Item Description Size Price To Top
99105-06 Hexagenia, Foam Dun 6 3 for $5.95 Sale Over
99105-08 Hexagenia, Foam Dun 8 3 for $5.95 Sale Over

Hexagenia Hairwing Dun
This pattern is floats lower and has subdued colors.  It seems to work best where smaller varieties of Hex are expected.  Can also be trimmed into an emerger in an emergency (Such as losing your last emerger pattern to an unusually large fish.)

Hex Hairwing Dun

Item Description Size Price To Top
2025-04 Hexagenia, Hairwing Dun 4 3 for $5.95 Sale Over
2025-06 Hexagenia, Hairwing Dun 6 3 for $5.95 Sale Over

More Hex 
Giant Hexagenia Mayflies are a very important part of the food chain in some very special Cascade Mountain Lakes.  Hatches of these big bugs brings the largest trout to the surface.  Because of their 
Lost Lake, Oregon
secretive nocturnal nature, Hex hatches are just now beginning to be understood.  
Hexaginia Limbata...whosa....whata? Are there more than one specie of giant burrowing may fly in our local lakes?  It would seem so.  We have found two distinctly different sizes and at least one color variation.   Some of our local lakes can be fun at dark.   If you want to know more about Hexagenia hatches click here.  

Lately some serious fly tiers such as Mark Bachmann, Bob Quigley, Mike Huffman and Brian Silvey have given the Hex hatch a lot of attention.  The Fly Fishing Shop has put together the most extensive selection of Hex Hatch flies in the region.  
Offered below is a set comprised of well tested patterns.  Some are old favorites, others are brand new.  There are 3 each, 15 flies in all.

Brian Silvey Hex Nymph.
Silvey Hex Nymph
Mark Bachmann Hex Cripple/Emerger.
M.B. Hex Emerger
Bob Quigley Hex Cripple.
Quigley Hex Cripple
Mike Huffman Hex Lightweight Dun.
Ultralight Hex Dun
Mike Huffman Hex Lightweight Dun.
Hex Paradrake
Item Description Size Price To Top
HEXXSET Cutting Edge Hexagenia Hatch set of 15 flies Various Set for $29.95 Sale Over

The Fly Fishing Shop HOME. The Fly Fishing Shop, Welches, OR

1(800) 266-3971

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Fish long & prosper,
Mark & Patty