Sunday, January 29, 2012

Tying the Chimarra Caddis Larva

Here you go folks, the Chimarra caddis larva pattern.  I tied a heck of a lot of these the last three days at the show, as part of my presentation included this February/March "must have" subsurface pattern.  Unfortunately, none of the fly shops that were at the show brought the essential ingredient - yellow flexx floss.


Hook: #18 Scud
Underbody: 6/0 Danville orange thread
Overbody: Yellow flexx floss
Head: 6/0 Danville tobacco brown thread
Tie some up and fish them behind a heavier nymph.   

Thursday, January 26, 2012

The Big Show and other good news!

We'll be at the Fly Fishing Show all weekend doing tying demos, presentations and book signings.  So please stop by my tying table and check the program for my presentation times.  I'll be doing a power point presentation on common hatches, their imitations and techniques on fishing them.  I've changed it up quite a bit from last year, and  will be spending more time talking about techniques and making the most of your time on the water.  As usual, it will cover the full spectrum from January to December. Hope to see you there.  For all the details, times and programs ckick on the link to the right under "Whereabouts".

The good news?  I'm in the process of finishing up my second book, and sure enough my editor called and said they are going to do a second printing of my first book - Fly Fishing New Jersey Trout Streams.  That's exciting for a lot of reasons; it means it sold very well in the first 3 years it has been out, and I get to edit/fix the miscues in the first edition.  The cover will be the same, but the photo in the trout silhouette is going to be changed to a photo by the photographer that is doing the pics for the book I'm working on now - JB McCollum.

Se you at the show!  And if you go, buy a bloody hook sharpener and use it.  I'll be happy to show you how.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Doubling Up

Generally, I prefer to fish only one fly at a time, as I enjoy getting lost in concentrating on that one fly and how and where it is drifting.  There is something about trying to remain in "touch" with that one fly as it drifts through an underwater lie, or maybe along the surface over a feeding fish.   That's not to say that I don't fish a two-fly rig when I think it is the best option, and that typically for me is most often in the wintertime.

With nymphs, the usual way to do this is to tie the larger, heavier fly to the end of your leader (this is the point fly).  To this fly, a length of tippet, 15-20" or so long, is tied either to the bend or to the hook eye, and a smaller fly is tied to the end of this (this is the dropper fly).   Depending on the weight of the point fly and the depth and speed of the water you are fishing, you can place one or more split shot either above the point fly, or below it.  When fishing fairly thin, clear water, I will often go with two small flies, my point fly being what I think is the heavier of the two.  For instance, I'll use a pumpkin head midge or weighted scud for my point fly, and the dropper fly will be a smaller zebra midge or caddis larva.

The key to fishing this or any other nymph set up, is getting the the proper amount of weight (flies and/or split shot together) to maintain a drag-free, down near the bottom, drift.  My goal when fishing nymphs is to keep as close contact as possible with the flies without imparting any unnatural movement.  I don't use a strike indicator to do this, but if that's how you normally fish nymphs, by all means fish the rig that way.  Do what works for you.   

Here's a couple of larger point flies - a weighted Vinnie's Isonychia nymph, and a Bead head Bird's Nest.

Here's a few smaller nymphs I like to use in the winter months, along with a favorite midge dry - the three nymphs clockwise from top: #18 Bead head Bird's Nest; #18 Chimarra caddis larva; and a Pumpkin Head Midge.  The two dries are #18 Mathew's Zelon Midge.

The Zelon midge is a great winter midge pattern that also works at other times of the year when small flies are the ticket to catching trout.  Sometimes a double rig using a Griffith's Gnat and a Zelon midge covers a midge hatch with great results.

And sharpen those hooks, you never know when the big one is going to take your fly. 

Saturday, January 21, 2012

And Now for Something Completely Different

This one's for you Mr. Q.  Turn it up!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Let's Go Winter Midge Fishing - Bring a Chair!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Corey Rossi, State Wildlife Official, Charged in Bear Killing Conspiracy

It's been a little hectic since the holidays, which has kept me away from updating here.  Despite being in Boston regularly and getting ready for the fly fishing shows, I have managed to get out on the water a number times.  Those times have been short, but mostly productive.  The rivers and streams in the area have been in very good shape with plenty of water and relatively good temperatures up until this week.  The long-term forecast looks good, so we should get out on the water this weekend and I'll do my best to bring you the results. 

I'll be back to making regular posts now...I think, but for now here's an intersting article that illustrates how screwed up our political system is.  No wonder Queen Palin dropped out of sight with all the skeletons in her attic. 

Corey Rossi, State Wildlife Official, Charged in Bear Killing Conspiracy Alaska Dispatch

Get out and fish!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Tying the Leadwing Coachman Wet Fly

We're bringing in the New Year with an old time favorite wet fly, the Leadwing Coachman. I fish this fly regularly, especially in the winter months, when it consistently takes fish. Although it's tied here on a standard dry fly hook, you can tie it on a standard wet fly hook or even a nymph hook. I typically fish it in tandem with another fly, tying it to the tag end of my tippet knot, which I leave about 5-6 inches long for this purpose. 

I don't worry too much about getting the wing perfect as it gets messy shortly after running it through the H2O a few times.   And, once a trout has had it in its jaws, it becomes a tight bunch of gray fibers that seems to attract the fish even more.

Although they look better with the head varnished, if you whip finish the head well, it's not necessary.  They work just fine with out it, and you won't be adding any fish detracting odor to your imitation.  Tie some up in sizes 12 and 14, and fish them with confidence.  You will be glad you did.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year

It was a warm, bright start to the year and the water was high, clear and cold but it didn't stop Mr. Q from getting his first trout of the year!  A nice rainbow that took a copper bead head Bird's Nest.

Thanks for stopping by - hope you all have a happy and healthy 2012.