By: Rye Phillips
Hardly anyone uses Orange BorX O Fire around here. Most people on the West Coast use Red, Pink or Natural BorX O Fire to cure eggs. However, in the last few years orange has become my go-to bait. To perfect that bait further I’ve become accustom to mixing the orange and the natural and believe I’ve found the perfect egg for coastal steelhead.
The main reason why I use the orange is because when I fly fish with beads I (and the steelhead) really like the orange beads. Mixing the orange and natural create an egg that’s identical to that bead. When that cured egg drifts underwater it looks natural to the fish and attractive to me, which means I have confidence in it. I know it works because it gets bit many times daily on my guided trips.
Mixing cures is easy to do. I mix the two cures because the orange by itself is too strong; therefore I bring in the natural to tone it down a bit. I use the Borx O Fire because it toughens the egg and gives it a leather-like durability to rather than a wet, runny egg that a sulfite cure would create. For steelhead, I like a gummy, durable and leathery egg. And, while many anglers don’t, I dry them out for a long time because I don’t want them to dissolve quickly in the water.
While this process might sound lengthy it easier than you think. Let’s focus on making a great egg that works in all coastal systems.
Mixing For A Great Coastal Egg
Contents: Orange & Natural BorX O Fire, Liquid Krill, Ziplocs, Egg Skeins
Lay out the skeins on a paper towel.
Cut the skeins down the middle so there’s two equal halves.
Once I get my two equal halves I’ll cut them in half them again or leave them as they are and then cut them a little bit larger than bait-size pieces. I cut them to reflect whatever size is necessary for the watercolor and body of water I’m fishing. I do this prior to curing them so they are ready to fish when I’m done with the curing process.
I pre-mix the cure in a Ziploc. I start with natural and pour it into a Ziploc. I’ll use half a bottle for four skeins. Then I take orange (and if I’m using half a bottle of natural) and pour a quarter bottle.