The happy, warm, fuzzy days of summer are gone, as are the free rising steelhead. It's time to get dirty, creepy and anti-social. Lying to friends and family about your whereabouts, listening to Tool, wading nips deep on your tip-toes to reach that pocket above a class 4 you just know there's one in, mobbing down a cliff on the off chance there may be one living in that tail-out, T-20, XL lead eyes, 6 inch long flies. Yup, the good stuff.
Winter fish don't come easy, you've got to be dedicated and willing to put in the time. Getting the skunk is inevitable, it's gonna happen, don't let that stop you. With the coastal rivers constantly in flux, time on the water is the key to winter success, learning where the fish hold at different flows is crucial. Winter waters hold their secrets tightly and so should you.
Wading and fishing a wild coastal river is as good as it gets for me. The beauty of both the rivers and fish that return to them are unbeatable. These are special places.
Eating good is another key.
One of the best lines I've heard from a gear guy in a long time, it's a long story and I don't feel like finger punching the whole thing, " I saw you was a fly guy and I thought, man, are we gonna have to kick sum's ass right now?" He also spouted off this gem, " Not all the steelheads in this river are ocean run, there sum that are indiggness or sumpin, natives I dunno..." Just know he was a good dude and one you'd want on your side.
Go fishing with high hopes and no expectations...
Rich & Bo