Most flies for these big bonefish are a size or two larger than the rest of the bonefish world, with most flies falling between a size 2 and 1 and even size 1/0s.
A. K. shares the goods on tying a killer green drake pattern.
Orvis's Hutch Hutchinson says: “The average Joe fishermen has been able to improve his casting before they go fishing.” Here's how to improve your fly-casting, and have a helluva lot of fun in the process. A fly casting course!
"The original idea was to build just two or three holes close to the store, but seeing the property—which offers land on both sides of the Deschutes—gave Hutch the idea for something much bigger."
The Ausable Two-Fly Challenge will be held on May 16 on the banks of the West Branch of the Ausable River. More than 75 anglers from as far away as Texas are expected to come to Wilmington, New York, to try their skills on the trout of this storied river flowing through the Adirondack Mountains.
A new striped-bass pattern that brought in an unbelievable catch—a found fly line and two striped bass!
WEB BONUS FEATURE FROM THE APRIL 2009 ISSUE!
- Photography by: A. K. Best
IF I WERE PLANNING AN EXOTIC TRIP TO someplace south of the equator, among the first patterns I’d put in my fly box would be Dark Spruce weighted streamers in sizes 2 through 6. I have an affinity for this fly partly because it’s one of the first steamer flies I learned to tie and, more important, because it always seems to work no matter where I fish it. To me an exotic trip equates to catching really big fish using big flies. Coq de Leon saddles solved the problem of tying large Spruce Fly streamers. The feathers have rounded tips and are long enough to easily tie size 2 or even larger, if you wish. Find one with furnace markings and dye it medium brown if it isn’t already dyed for you.
- Attach the white thread and tie in a small clump of pearlescent Krystal Flash. Lash the clump to the end of the hook shank and bring the thread forward to the starting point. Taper the tailing tips. Tie in the pearlescent Body Braid above the thread starting point, and lash it to the top of the hook, to the start of the hook bend. Bring the thread forward and wind the Body Braid forward to create a slight taper to the rear of the body. Tie down and trim off the excess.
The New Chrome
Only 60 years ago, West Coast steelhead streams churned with silver-plated natives. Waves of naturally reared steelies ascended their natal rivers, hellbent on reaching the same gravel beds from which they had emerged four or five years before. A modern steelheader need only read the accounts of such early anglers as Roderick Haig-Brown and Enos Bradner to appreciate how truly aggressive and plentiful these fish were.
The first steelhead fly that fell from the tying vise into my 10-year-old palm was a standard Skunk tied on a 2X heavy Mustad, down-turned eye, sproat, size 4 hook. The tail was an irregular clump of webby red neck hackle fibers, tied in too short, like the tail of the green Woolly Worm I'd finished a few minutes before. The body was medium black chenille over-wrapped with oval tinsel, one size too thin, followed by a thick black saddle hackle so spiky that the first four wraps were about four sizes too small; the fifth and sixth wraps grew progressively two sizes too big. The tips of those last wraps lay back beyond the ragged red tail when I preened them to clear a space for the wing.
The Absence of Color
I've been using black flies in salt water for so long I really don't remember the first time I learned about them-probably more than 40 years ago. Today, every couple of trips to the brackish-water world, I find a situation that, whether because of low light levels or murky water, it's best to cast a black fly.