THREE-WORD THURSDAY: Skirmish. Yarn. Bolts.

Welcome back to Three-Word Thursday, where Fish Hack is spending the day in that watery office called the upper Rogue River, Hack’s home waters.

It’s what used to be called the Nov. 1 Massacre, but now it’s more like a skirmish.

Skirmish. Yarn. Bolts.

It used to be that each Nov. 1 the whole upper Rogue re-opened to bait fishing after two months of flies-only fishing for summer steelhead, Hack’s fave salmonid. On that day, steelhead feasting on loose chinook eggs behind redds quickly discovered that some of the eggs now have hooks in them.

Now, waters upstream of the Shady Cove Boat Ramp open today to bait fishing, with waters downstream of the ramp open to artificial flies and lures.

Normally, that would send the driftboat armada to the Cole Rivers Hatchery ramp to work their way down to Shady Cove blowing through all the roe they’ve accrued from chinook fishing this year. But much of that is changing.

The gorwing popularity of small yarn flies means Nov. 1 bait than ever. Tie on a yarn fly, soak in some egg juice and that’s not just as good as side-drifting real roe, it’s also better.

With bait, every time you get a bite or pull back on a pseudo one, your bait falls off. Or you think it fell off, reel in and realize it didn’t.

With a yarn fly, the egg-like artificial stays in the steelhead’s zone, allowing fewer recasts and lost water from re-baiting and re-casting.

And they’re legal throughout the upper Rogue, so there’s no need to stay in the bait water with all the egg-chuckers.

For you Fish Hack faithful, can’t wait for BOOK IT! Friday to lay out one of this week’s bets for you.

Tonight’s Kansas City at San Diego is a dog-on-dog farce best watched only by those who have an over-under of Nov. 2 on the firing of the Chargers’ Norv Turner.

Now, Hack’s normal adage is don’t bet good money on bad teams, but this is a rare exception. San Diego laying 7 1/2 is worth a few pesos, since K.C. is the only team the short-circuited Bolts can zap.



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  • Blog Author

    Mark Freeman

    I've underachieved as the Mail Tribune's Fish Hack since 1989. I can't help but find a few things to yuk about with pathetic regularity in the outdoors. My most treasured award? An OSHA citation for a messy desk -- Fire hazard. YEAH! Read Full
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