Fall Chinook Tackle Recommendations – the Basics


This is a bare bones set of recommendations for the angler who is about to head out and try a hand fly fishing for fall Chinook on the Oregon Coast.

We will be pleased to offer more detailed advice and tackle options if you drop by the Caddis Fly Shop — recognizing that the sport can get complicated. This blog post is intended to lay out the foundation for fall chinook fly fishing in such simple terms that it will allow most people to get started with a solid rod/reel/line/leader/fly set up and have a decent chance to hook a salmon on a fly.

Knowing that there are many exceptions to the advice I’m about to offer, here goes. (I am not mentioning brands here because we have a wide range of great rods and reels by many manufacturers.

Chinook rods: single hand 9 wt, switch rod 8 wt.

Chinook reels: saltwater safe reels capable of holding 150 yds of 30 Lb. backing under a fly line. This means a pretty hefty reel with a good drag system.

Chinook fly lines: I’d start with a RIO OUTBOUND Short Intermediate fly line. The next fly line would be the OUTBOUND Short with a sink-3 tip. The former line will meet a wide range of needs for the Chinook angler – the faster sinking line will come in handy when the water is deeper and the current or tide running faster.

The shooting head system is another very good option, and I’d start with a RIO OUTBOUND Shooting Head  fly line in Intermediate and Type 3 sink rates. If you go this route, you will also need to get a shooting line that goes between backing and shooting head. The RIO coldwater series shooting line is a good choice and there are others we can help you select as well if you call or email the Shop.

Backing: already mentioned, at least 150 yds 30 Lb backing.

Leader: Maxima Ultragreen – 9 ft long, in 12 Lb. or 15 Lb. test tippet.

Fly: Chartreuse Clouser of about 3″, Boss flies in flame orenge, black, and chartreuse green.


That’s it. The bare bones. Hope this helps assure the prospective Chinook angler that they have a decent set-up to begin the quest.

Jay Nicholas -Early October, 2016


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1 Response to Fall Chinook Tackle Recommendations – the Basics

  1. David Swart says:

    Nice article again,your right just the basics ,simple & straight forward.

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