here’s a saying that many of you may have heard regarding fly color and its relation to pacific salmon species. “If it ain’t chartreuse, what’s the use?” Although not always the case (pinks, purples, and other bright colors have their days), it can be agreed upon that Chinook salmon in particular like chartreuse. In today’s world of social media and its endless grip ‘n grin photos, we’ve all seen a chartreuse mop hanging in the corner of some chrome behemoth’s jaw. Here are three flies for kings that cover a wide range of water conditions. We've put them together in a set we call the Chartreuse Fly Chinook Equalizer Set.
The Skagit Minnow in chartreuse and white: A big fly for big fish
This fly is a whopping 6 inches long, but is completely unweighted. It is perfect for fishing dirtier high water. Chinooks, just like any other anadromous fish, will tuck in close to the bank during times of high water. The Skagit Minnow is perfect for this. It is easily visible, has great movement, and will fish all the way into the beach without hanging up.
Bjorn’s Stinger Prawn in chartreuse and white: A fly for most all conditions
Bjorn’s Stinger Prawn although large, isn’t freakishly large like the Skagit Minnow. It is a good fly for swinging through your more “classic” gravel bar type runs. It has just enough weight in the form of a small pair of lead eyes to break surface tension and keel it so it swims true.
Big Bunny Leech in chartreuse: For clearer water and spookier fish
It’s hard to imagine on days where the grabs are so hard you feel as if your shoulder has been dislocated, but chinook can become shy and even more finicky toward flies when the water becomes lower and clearer. For days like these, a less obnoxious, smaller pattern is best. The Bead Head Big Bunny Leech is about 3 inches in length with a much smaller profile than the Stinger Prawn and Skagit Minnow. It has excellent movement; the rabbit strip breathes life when in the water. It also lacks any flash to it which makes it more appealing to fish that may be put off by a strobe light swinging across the current.