This week Dwayne teaches us a little about flashers and talks about some old-school fishing he did earlier this week with his brother Darrell. Enjoy!
Probably the biggest tackle innovation in the last twenty years of salmon fishing is the flasher. For years the commercial trolling fleet have relied on flashers to produce fish, but it is only with the widespread use of downriggers by the recreational community that the flasher caught on with us “sporties”.
Essentially, the flasher imitates the kick of a feeding salmon’s tail, sending a far reaching vibration to distant fish who want to get in on any nearby feeding frenzy. They home in on the cause of the vibration and look for the food source, only to find a hoochie, spoon, or anchovy – which they naturally attack. And bingo! Fish on. These days, the flasher set-up is by far the most effective way to catch salmon.
The only drawback for us old school cut-plug herring guys is that the flasher tires the fish and can sometimes shorten the battle. Therefore, I leap at any chance I get to fish without flashers. And so, with my brother Darrell in town, we set out to do some damage with nothing but noodle rods, twenty pound test and a box full of salmon plugs.
Our first stop was the Green Can as the flood tide neared its midway point. We each tied on a 4” Tomic plug and dropped our gear down between 25 and 60 feet. Over the next three hours we fought coho after coho, and by the end of the tide we had our limit of hatchery coho. Most of the plugs we used gathered some attention, but our most effective by far was the 4” 602.
With the tide turning onto the ebb we headed for the Hump to continue our plug experiment while searching for Chinook. We tied on a 5” 639 and a 5” 600 and sent them down about 220 feet. By now both wind and tide were starting to push hard so plenty of throttle was required - but within an hour we had two Spring salmon in the boat and our fish box was so full that the door wouldn’t close. Both of these salmon put up a fight that had the Mustard brothers whooping like school kids. But with the wind now pushing 25 knots we decided we had plenty of fish and that a cold beer in the Tyee Pub would be our best option. Perfect end to a great day.
So, next time you are rigging up to go fishing, look past your flashers and hoochies, and tie on a couple of glow in the dark plugs, the fight you get in return will make you glad you did.
Until next week,
Tight lines and keep on fishin’