USGS Stream Data

Kenai Rvr @ CooperLndg

  • Water Temp: 53.42 ° F
  • Flow: 4190 ft³/s
  • Water Level: 9.23 ft
USGS

Middle Kenai @ Skilak

  • Flow: 9040 ft³/s
  • Water Level: 10.12 ft
USGS

Talkeetna Rvr

  • Water Temp: 46.4 ° F
  • Flow: 8080 ft³/s
  • Water Level: 5.85 ft
USGS

Situk Rvr

  • Water Temp: 55.04 ° F
  • Flow: 478 ft³/s
  • Water Level: 66.55 ft
USGS
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Spear-It™ Hooks

Confession time; as a fly tyer I have an addiction to hooks.  Not just your “run of the mill” everyday hooks, but to really nice, custom, specialized hooks. Hooks that, like micro-brewed beer, are built for those of us that will spend a little more money for something special.

Cool looking hooks!

Cool looking hooks!

Even when I’m not shopping for hooks, I have to at least seek a glance at the hook rack; which is how I ended up with the new Spear-It™ Sickle Octopus style hooks. And not just a single package of a specific size; but four packages in a range of sizes. I just had to. I couldn’t help myself.

Spear-It Sickle hooks are not designed specifically for fly tying, although they are listed as a fly hook; but rather are designed to be use as a stinger, or trailing hook. Almost any short shanked hook will work as a trailing hook, although most tyers prefer an Octopus style of some sort. If you’re using something stiff to attach your trailing hook, you can position it so that the hook point rides up, with the hopes of minimizing snagging. The problem with a standard Octopus style is that the gape is usually big enough to have the hook point out away from the body a bit. (I’m not talking about offset bends, that’s a whole other design feature.) This new Sickle design seems to have overcome that design flaw. The hook point is in-line with the eye, and the bend is angular instead of a continuous curve.

ThreeHookCompareFor me, the draw was for my tube flies. Tube flies usually feature a short piece of flexible tubing called a “junction tube” at the back of the fly. It fits onto the rear of the rigid tube the fly is tied on and when you put the hook eye into the junction tube it holds both together while fishing. This keeps the tube fly from running up and down your leader at will. The sickle bend design keeps the hook point in line with the fly body (tube) once it’s in the junction tube. This, I thought, was a great design as I have a tendency to put flies in places that will catch any little hook point they can.

Spear-It Hooks_0001I gave the new hooks a basic field test this May in the Talkeetna River. I put one behind a tube Metal Head Sculpin, and then again on a tube Dolly Llama. I dragged them over, and through, enough rocks to scrape the finish off the bottom of the Sculpin helmet. Not a single snag and three fish. This from the same run I had lost three ‘regular” flies to early in the afternoon. To be fair, this was a pretty basic field test, and the flies I lost earlier were not tube flies. That said; it’s rare for me to be able to fish that type of structure with hanging a hook up somewhere on something.

I’m going to give these new hooks a shot whenever I can this year. The rainbows on the Kenai like to hide up against the banks and under the low hanging alders, just the place to give this hook design a rigorous test. Now all I have to do is tie up several of my favorite streamer patterns on tubes to replace the more traditional hooks in my boxes.

Spear-It Hooks_0006Spear-It™ hooks seem to be distributed by Spirit River, although I did find a very similar hook style listed as Matzuo’s Octopus Sickle™ hooks. Google also flagged a company called Maruto, they seem to use the name Spear-it on some of their hooks, but they’re a traditional octopus shape.

Watch for more on Spear-It™ hooks later this year after I’ve given them as much of a work out as possible.

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