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Amphibious Damsel

Amphibious Damsel

A fly meant to be fished both dry and wet. Amphibious Damsel I had tied this fly for a recent trip to some lakes with large numbers of damselflies hoping that we would find fish feeding on adult damsels.  After a day of mostly fishing chironomids and callibaetis nymphs, we were walking back to the trailhead along the shore when Curtis told me that he had done well in a certain bay last year with hoppers.  When we passed that bay, instead of a hopper, I tied on the amphibious damsel and decided to toss it out.  In three casts, I had three aggressive takes, even though I only landed one of them (rookie mistakes...).  After all of the aggressive fish had eaten, I decided to swim the fly right under the surface after letting it sit for about 10 seconds.  I lost count of the takes using this method, but it opened my eyes to a technique that I had not tried very much.  I knew that damselflies deposited their eggs under the water, but I never really tried to fish an adult this way.  

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Build a better bugger

Build a better bugger

Versatility meets durability Black Wooly Bugger I think that most fly fishers will agree that the wooly bugger is one of the most versatile flies that can be fished, and it it responsible for catching many different species of fish.  In this version of the bugger, I focus on making the fly have more movement in the water, and have better durability for multiple fish days.  I first started tying buggers like this when I would fish Strawberry Reservoir in Utah a lot.  There are HUGE Bear Lake Cutthroat with pretty big teeth in there, and if I didn't reinforce my buggers they would rarely make it past two or three fish.  This method is nothing new, but it is a simple way to build a better bug. ~Cheech Here is the video... New Updated Recipes: Midnight Fire Hook: Daiichi 1710 # 8 (+) Thread: Danville's 70 - Black (+) Tail: Black Wooly Bugger Marabou - Black (+) Hackle: Schlappen - Black (+) Body: Speckled Chenille - Midnight Fire (+) Rib: UTC Wire -

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Stoneflopper

Stoneflopper

what happens when a hopper and a stonefly become amorous? Tan Stoneflopper I carry WAY too many flies when I fish, and it's always a struggle to decide which boxes go in my main pack vs. which boxes stay in the backpack vs. which boxes stay home.  I guess it's a good problem to have, but sometimes there is so much happening on the water that it's hard to decide what fly to tie on.  I had just successfully hybridized the Royal Wulff, Madam X, Humpy, and cripple in the Grumpy Frumpy pattern, so why not try this with other flies.  Next on the list was something that would fish like a big leggy, foamy, buoyant bug such as a stonefly/hopper hybrid.  To the vise I went, and out came the fly now known as the Stoneflopper.  Testing done, and I knew that I had a fly that would puncture fish.  Field testers would send back images of flies that were chewed up like crazy , but still producing. Stoneflopper fish caught by angler Jake Taylor Stoneflopper photo cou

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Fly Tying with UV: Introduction

Fly Tying with UV: Introduction

Part 1: Introduction This is the first in a series of posts on flies we're going to feature that incorporate materials that have certain UV characteristics. However, before we get too far here, there are a few things to consider  to lay the groundwork going forward with these patterns: The impetus for this series of posts and flies is primarily the book by Reed F. Curry, " The New Scientific Angling - Trout and Ultraviolet Vision ". I found this book to be very informative and really opened up my eyes to some considerations in fly design that I hadn't really thought about. So based on this book, some discussion with some of the fly tying materials companies out there and some study we've done on our own, we believe incorporating primarily UVR materials into patterns here and there is something to definitely consider. UVR vs UVF: Read the book for a much better description. But in a nutshell, UVF or Ultraviolet Fluorescence is what most fishermen and

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LaFontaine's Emergent Sparkle Pupa

LaFontaine's Emergent Sparkle Pupa

A Great Fly from a Great Guy As the dog days of summer approach, they bring with them some of the best opportunities to fish the popular summer-time insect hatch, the caddis fly.  This post starts a multi-part series on caddis patterns, so what better to start with than one of the most popular and effective caddis patterns out there, created by one of fly fishing's all-time greats:  Gary LaFontaine's Emergent Sparkle Pupa.   Gary, who unfortunately passed away in 2002 from Lou Gherig's disease, was the consummate student when it came to insects, trout and fly fishing.  He was the author of several influential fly fishing and fly tying books and articles throughout his life.  His passion for observing, learning and analyzing the entire spectrum of fly fishing from insect hatches to trout light sensitivity is evident in the legacy he left the fly fishing world.  The Emergent Sparkle Pupa caddis pattern is just one example of this.  During his studies, much of it

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5 Tips for Tying Cleaner Flies

5 Tips for Tying Cleaner Flies

Tidy up your tying Stonefly tied on a jig hook I started tying flies about 14 years ago in a call center of all places.  I was a college student needing work and sat all day taking phone calls in Spanish, but most of the time I was wishing I was outside fishing.  With the extremely low call volume, there were a few team members who would fill the time doing things other than work, and one employee decided to bring in his fly tying kit.  I remember tying my first wooly bugger that was blue, red and black.  The tail was about 5 times too long, the hackle was too thick, and the head was super crowded.  I thought it was awesome.  Later that year I got a tying kit and started on my own journey to where I am now.  About 5 or 6 years in to tying, I decided that I really wanted to focus on good looking flies, and if a fly didn't come off right, I would cut it off the hook and start over.  I went through a lot of exacto blades that year.  I would take my time, and envision myself

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The Deflectinator: A Must-Have Bass Fly Pattern

The Deflectinator: A Must-Have Bass Fly Pattern

To conquer all bass in the tri-state area (the above must be said in the voice of Dr. Doofenshmirtz) Usually when I come up with a "new" fly pattern, it  Deflectinator: Olive/Black takes a while before I can definitively say "it's a keeper". The excitement of a cool looking fly is usually tempered by field testing where oftentimes the testing doesn't go as well as I would have hoped. This particular pattern was developed after a number of trips with my hard-core bass buddies that throw gear most of the time. We were throwing into very weedy and reedy spots that made it difficult to get a lot of my fly patterns effectively in front of the faces of the hungry/angry bass in those areas. So back at the vise, I needed something weedless, something not overly heavy and something that had as good, if not better, movement than the plastics the gear guys were throwing. (SIDE NOTE: I travel with and do fish baitcasters when I need to, so I'm no

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Snorkel Hopper

Snorkel Hopper

All Hoppers float... Right? Snorkel Hopper Several years ago I was in the middle of what seemed like the perfect fishing to work ratio.  See, I was laid off, so there was no work and mostly fishing.  It was late summer, the hoppers were abundant, and I could usually rely on catching at least one hopper out of each fishy spot in the river.  After the first fish was caught, the following fish were much more difficult to trick with my A-team stuff.  They would come up and give the foam offering a thorough look over before descending to the bottom of the small, but deep, hole.   So what we have here is a fish that is active enough to make it to about 6 inches under the surface, but not commit to eating that floating cheeseburger.  Time to get to the tying bench.  I had been fishing with good friend and certified Fishologist Bryan Gregson, who concurred that I needed to invest some time on the vise to create a super sink hopper pattern.   Tan Snorkel Hopper My inner

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Adamsbuilt Scissors Review

Adamsbuilt Scissors Review

A quality tool at a good price For anyone that follows this website and the tying snobbery that goes on from time to time, you'll no doubt know that we are VERY particular about the scissors we use. So we wanted to give a shout out to the guys at Adamsbuilt fishing . They carry a variety of good scissors at great prices. From their Razor scissors to their extra fine tip detail work scissors, you can find what you need to meet your tying needs. We ran through a variety of cutting scenarios and these scissors actually did quite well. In fact, I'd say they performed better than other scissors we've seen in the same price range. Net-net, you get a lot for what you pay for here, so if you don't feel like plunking down serious cash for the bigger names, these guys will work nicely. Date 6/12/13 FlyFishFood  Review Product Adamsbuilt Scissors Manufacturer Adamsbuilt  Reviewer Curtis Score Comments Quality 7 Performed well in m

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Why do you fish?

Why do you fish?

Different strokes for different folks Czech Nymphing in a beautiful canyon Is it about fun?  Is it about competition?  Is it about putting meat on the table?  Is it to go out and look good with high end gear? Cheech and Cheech Jr. I have gone through several phases of fishing my life, and I don't think there is one "phase" that trumps all others.  I completely realize that it might not be the same for everyone else, but for me, it's about being fun and exciting.  Right now, I'm infatuated with learning the different types of nymphing, and I'll find myself nymphing right through a nice hatch.  Three years ago, you would have found me spending every waking moment pouring lead jigs, tying skirts, and punching and flipping to largemouth bass with a baitcaster (note that the title of this post isn't "Why do you FLY fish?").  One thing that is constant for me is that I'm always looking for a better fly or lure.  I know that

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Salmon Fly Hatch Pursuits

Salmon Fly Hatch Pursuits

Big Bug Bombers If there's one hatch that a good majority of fly fishers aspire to time "just right", it's likely the Salmon Fly hatch. These big bugs, AKA Pteronarcys Californica, are the largest of the stonefly order (plecoptera -- which literally means "braided wings") and incite large migrations of fly fishers from around the world as hopeful hatch-matchers descend on the Western rivers that host these giant bugs and their legendary emergences. I've had the opportunity to chase these bug a few times in my life and it's usually more hype-and-hope than rope-a-dope fishing. But there are a few places I know of that can produce consistent enough hatches that's it's at least worth a shot or two every year. Last year, I hit the particular section of river and found a few bugs but not many fish interested. This year, thanks to a tip from a good friend, the stars aligned and we hit it good.  The first thing we noticed was how local

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Ninja Pupa

Ninja Pupa

This fly will sneak up behind you and break your arm. This jungle fish fell victim to the Ninja Pupa I had been on a caddis fishing kick one summer, and I wanted to some up with something that would fish great and that I could easily change colors to match the many varieties of caddis that hatch.  I don't even know how this fly came to be, but it just popped out one night on the vise.  All I know is that the fish eat it so I stopped messing with it too much.  The original version used several coats of head cement to give it the glossy effect, but now that Clear Cure Goo has blessed us all with Hydro, this fly is a lot faster to tie.  Other popular colors are amber and cinnamon.  The olive and amber bug are available through Rainy's flies . Dead drift it, swing it, fish it on lakes under an indicator...  This is a pretty versatile bug. ~ Cheech Ninja Pupa Recipe: Hook: Mustad C49S #14 Thread: UTC 70 white Bead: 2.3mm tungsten Body 1: .015 lead

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The Bearded Lady has left the circus

The Bearded Lady has left the circus

How big is too big? What respectable fish wouldn't appreciate the eyelashes? I won't bore you all by writing too much about how much I love to chase bass with baitcasters and huge offerings, but I do...  I was once fishing a lake that has a really good population of 2 to 4 pound largemouth and ducks...  yes - baby ducks.  I was flippin' a jig under some trees and hooked a nice 3 pound fish, and when I was taking the jig out of it's mouth, I saw two little duck feet hanging out.  HOW could this fish justify eating a 1/2 oz. brush jig if it had a gut full of baby duck.  I couldn't help but quote the movie Step Brothers... "I got a belly full of baby duck, and now you lay this  SH#$ on me?" Also, in the traditional gear world, HUGE swimbaits are all the rage right now, and anglers are throwing 7 to 12 inch lures at normal sized bass.  What this means for fly anglers???  There is no such thing as too big. The bearded lady is pretty big c

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