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Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2010/4/16 12:25
From Pennsburg PA, Montgomery CO.
Posts: 67
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I just picked up some woolly Buggers and I have heard a lot of great things about them, but to be honest, how do you effectively use one of these? I imagine you would use this as a wet fly? Do you cast out and give small little jerks as you pull the fly back in, or am I completely out in left field with this? I am going to give it a shot this weekend, but I think I am going to try for warm water species rather than trout.

Posted on: 2010/7/1 21:23


Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2006/9/10 21:53
From Greensburg, PA
Posts: 13624
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Here is the last time we discussed this. Still holds true. The long and short of it is that it can represent many things and should be fished in a manner to mimic whatever nymph, fish, crustacean or whatever you wish to suggest.

http://www.paflyfish.com/modules/newb ... =ASC&type=&mode=0&start=0

Posted on: 2010/7/1 22:04


Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2006/9/11 13:05
From Lewistown
Posts: 3623
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My advise, would make sure you add split shot.
Commercially tied buggers are "lead-free." and are going to want to float; well at least until they become water-logged.

Posted on: 2010/7/2 12:02
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Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2010/6/25 10:15
From Gloversville, NY
Posts: 130
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If you tie, tie with bead heads.
If you buy them, buy them with beads.

If you need extra weight you can add it, but in the slower or shallower pools you won't need as much weight, and beads get the buggers under water.

When I first started FFing and Fly tying, the first things I started with were buggers. I still have my first fly I ever tied, it's a bugger.

They are versatile and anyone who tells you that they don't work would be lying, or haven't used them properly, and I don't know if they can be used in any wrong way. Worked when I first started to fly fish, they work now.

The best time is right after a heavy rain in a larger river, after the mountain runoff turns the water brown. The large pools.

Try it. It will give you enjoyment when you match the color bugger with the nymphs, fish, or crustaceans that are the best food in the water. Good Luck.

Posted on: 2010/7/2 12:20
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Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2007/1/2 11:55
From Bozeman
Posts: 19931
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I actually enjoy unweighted buggers. I've caught a lot of fish just splitshotting them. The unweighted fly will just kind of hover over the bottom in slow pools, as opposed to a rapid sink.

I've caught a ton of fish by fishing buggers still like that, and unweighted are the key. Give it a shot.

Posted on: 2010/7/2 12:22


Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2010/4/16 12:25
From Pennsburg PA, Montgomery CO.
Posts: 67
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Thanks guys for all the insight; it does help! I tried using a bugger this morning for a while but nothing was happening and there was fish rising all over the place, so I tied on a trico and BAM, I cuaght my first fish on a fly rod. It was a large bluegill, but it was still exciting to finally catch something. After that I was getting strikes all over, some were Bluegills and some were larger fish, but I couldn't tell exactly what they were. If the wife doesn't give me a hard time I may try it again tomorrow morning.

Posted on: 2010/7/3 9:35


Re: Woolly Buggers

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2009/2/6 18:59
From pittsburgh
Posts: 1146
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a tip on woolybuggers try trimming the tail a lil bit to prevent short strikes

Posted on: 2010/7/3 23:42
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Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2010/6/29 0:31
From Cody Wyoming
Posts: 28
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(part 1)Between this post and the one tomgamber suggested there's a lot of experience and wisdom behind their suggestions. I picked up a few pointers myself from the ole sages. I never tried an unweighted bugger like Jay suggested. The Wooly Bugger was actually one of the first flies I caught big trout on consistently when I was just beginning. I got my feet wet on the Colorado where buggers and stimmies are the main course during the summer and I hooked 3 of the biggest trout I'd ever seen in my life. Unfortunately they were in the fastest water I ever fished and I didn't know you were supposed to use an improved cinch knot instead of just a cinch knot... lost all of 'em. Out there my cousin's are big on fishing with 2 buggers under a strike indicator. We space them about 18" apart. I learned to dead drift them, casting them as far upstream as possible and mending the line just right so you won't get any resistance that would cause the buggers to rise on you. I had a lot of success on some Wyoming rivers that way too. Because those rivers a so deep they use tungsten beads and when I tie them up, I use a tungsten bead and wrap a layer of lead under my body. I use a thin layer of dubbing or peacock hurl to try to keep the body slender to help it sink faster. I have a lot of success with black, silver, gold and copper beads. Seems like olive has been the best producer with black right behind it. When the water is a little off color I like to add some Ice Dub to the body and sometimes I'll make a crazy/flashy bugger and use it as my point fly with an olive dropper.

Posted on: 2010/8/6 23:42
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Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2010/6/29 0:31
From Cody Wyoming
Posts: 28
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(part 2)-I experimented a lot this year with different bugger combos and techniques and hooked into a bunch of big fish stripping them down, accross and even up pockets and pools. I fished mostly without an indicator and I found out that if you want to catch a lot of fish with a bugger, you have to be willing to try different techniques and store in your memory what works the best in different situations. I had success dead drifting deep pools, stripping through pockets, swinging accross the current and through pockets, "plopping it near the banks", twitching it, stripping it with short strips, czech nymphing it... you name it... skies the limit. Putting a copper john as a dropper was a good combo too. It seemed the faster the water the better, and when the water got up to 1700 cfs and the water looked unfishable... I caught a lot of big fish with a double bugger combo right on the edges. Deadly!

Posted on: 2010/8/6 23:57
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Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2010/9/1 10:18
From Howard,PA
Posts: 22
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I too started fly fishing with buggers there truly is no wrong way to fish them I prefer a strip/twitch. Though many times I've had strikes as soon as It hit the water. When tying I also like to add some ice dub occasionally. I prefer a wrap of wire and no bead but that's just me. Also I've tied black bodies with grey tails taken from a spring gobbler kill. and have pretty good success with those on the upper bald eagle and streams in black moshannon. Haven't tried fishing one unweighted with a dropper but it sounds killer!

Posted on: 2010/9/1 15:17


Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2009/11/16 19:34
From Nazareth PA
Posts: 1044
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I like to tie mine with bead chain eyes. For some reason, I do better with eyes that a cone or a bead. I use the black chain for most of my buggers. Olive is also my best color to fish.

Posted on: 2010/9/1 16:03
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Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2008/10/25 14:19
From York County
Posts: 2129
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There really is no wrong way to fish a bugger, my son caught his first trout this year on bugger just letting it hang in the current, he's only four.

I fish them mostly in the spring when water is up and cloudy and also in the fall when browns are spawning and agressive. I use a combination of drifting into a pool from upstream to letting the fly sink and a few twitches then I'll swing it across the tail end of the pool before casting it again upstream to work another area of the pool. Always make sure your line is straight so you don't miss any strikes. Also big browns will sometimes miss and then nail a bugger again within seconds so keep it in the water if you miss a strike. I've missed a few that way, to see a big brown swirling around looking for it in a frenzy. I've also been surprised by sudden multiple hits and especially at the end of a pool when you are starting to pick up line for another cast upstream.

Olive is by far my favorite color. Olive beadhead marabou tail.

Brown and black are a tie for second.

Posted on: 2010/9/2 9:58
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Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2010/8/26 0:43
From Ohio
Posts: 5
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I second adding lead to the bugger. They can be hard to get down into the strike zone. I have caught a lot of different species with them also. Mostly trout, but when you get a 3lb smallie to slam it then that's a different story!

Posted on: 2010/9/4 0:56
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Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2009/9/9 14:52
From Bel Air, MD
Posts: 703
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The first wild brown I ever caught was on a bead head olive wooly bugger...a true staple to have in your box. They will take smallies in warm water as well, fished as a streamer. You can dead drift them, fish them on the swing, twitch and small strip, and any other way others have suggested.

Posted on: 2010/9/4 19:02


Re: Woolly Buggers

Joined:
2007/10/7 0:44
From philadelphia
Posts: 876
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personally,i like a wooly worm better than a wooly bugger.

Posted on: 2010/9/4 21:09



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