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Tying for spring

Joined:
2007/1/2 11:55
From Bozeman
Posts: 19932
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I almost feel like a question about the major spring hatches should be in the OT forum, but here goes.

I have seen such a wide variety of dubbing color selections for some major mayfly species. While I expect that kind of variety with olives, I was more curious what you guys select for your dubbing colors for some of the larger species.

What colors do you prefer for sulphurs? I have seen everything from rusty orange to pink to traditional yellow.

What about march browns? I have seen some pretty dark bugs, but think that their bellies are lighter and tie mine accordingly.

Green Drakes?

I have only ever tied a small batch of green drake duns. I tried lime greenish through creamy yellow. I need to compare against some naturals from the streams I fish for sure.

What about you?

Posted on: 2010/1/28 10:14


Re: Tying for spring
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2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
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Quote:

jayL wrote:
I almost feel like a question about the major spring hatches should be in the OT forum, but here goes.

I have seen such a wide variety of dubbing color selections for some major mayfly species. While I expect that kind of variety with olives, I was more curious what you guys select for your dubbing colors for some of the larger species.

What colors do you prefer for sulphurs? I have seen everything from rusty orange to pink to traditional yellow.

What about march browns? I have seen some pretty dark bugs, but think that their bellies are lighter and tie mine accordingly.

Green Drakes?

I have only ever tied a small batch of green drake duns. I tried lime greenish through creamy yellow. I need to compare against some naturals from the streams I fish for sure.

What about you?



Sulphers
I have medium yellow dubbing that I use for a base and mix a little med olive in it. I also mix a batch with a little orange in it. I tie some with an orange egg sac. Not dubbing, but a have some yellow quill that I also use for the body that works well.


March Brown
I use a tan dubbing mix that seems to match pretty well. I usually rib it with brown mono or thread. I tie emergers, compara duns and catskill style flies for MBs. The catskill flies I use to skitter a bit when the MBs are active.


Green Drake
Creamy dubbing with an olive cast with white thread or mono ribbing. A have a few extended body flies, but never found them to be more effective than the regular ties so I don't bother with them. I mostly use size 10 or 12 2x long dry fly hooks for GDs.


Seldom do I find the exact color matters that much to the fish, but I try my best to match it anyway. The exception being bright vivid colors (bright green caddis, bright green or yellow with yellow sallies for examples) where the color seems to trigger the fish.

BTW, good point about the underside of the fly. I flip the bug over and try to match that color with dries.

Attach file:



jpg  sulphur.jpg (68.21 KB)
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jpg  March Brown.jpg (92.38 KB)
53_4b61b10248de6.jpg 552X592 px

jpg  Green Drake.jpg (62.07 KB)
53_4b61b10fab7af.jpg 329X591 px

Posted on: 2010/1/28 10:45


Re: Tying for spring

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Sulphurs can really run the gamut as far as color goes - - from brite orange to a pale yellow...and anything in between. Even sometimes there is a bit of lite olive tint to the underside. And for pretty much all dries I like to tie them in a parachute style. I just think this style works well as far a silhouette goes. It also leaves a small footprint on the surface. You can also see them very well in lo-light if you use white poly for the post.

As for the other patterns, AF pretty much nailed it.

Posted on: 2010/1/28 11:19


Re: Tying for spring

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From Wilkes-Barre / Scranton Area
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Afishanado wrote:Quote:
Seldom do I find the exact color matters that much to the fish, but I try my best to match it anyway.


I always wondered this. My reason has been very well thought out on the subject. So here goes.

The fish are most likely positioned below the fly and the sun or light is above the fly. The bottom of the water you are fishing is a nonreflective surface.

So in essence the underside of the fly would be in a shawdow or not as brilliant as it really is.

Therefore, the exact color is more to appease the tyer/fisher than the fish.

Posted on: 2010/1/28 11:22


Re: Tying for spring

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Few of my flies look like the jpeg images I pull up when I google patterns or recipes. Unless I buy blended furs, Al Caucci has sold some nice blends in the past, I end up blending my dubbing.

The choice of dubbing makes a difference too. I find that Hairline will stay true to its "dry" color when it is wet, but Australian Opossum for instance seems to look much darker when it is wet.

I too look at the bottom of bugs a lot. Form March Browns (dark body, yellow rib) and Gray Fox (yellow/lt brown to natural blend) I have one standard tie that I have developed over the years that blends dubbing materials. For the sulphurs (cream to yellow to orange), I have to tie the in different sizes and colors to best match what I encounter in a season. No matter how much I blend and adjust, I can't get one fly to get the job done.

Posted on: 2010/1/28 11:30


Re: Tying for spring

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From Bozeman
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yea-who,

Wouldn't matching the exact color provide a shadow of the exact same color/brilliance?

If the fish were wearing sunglasses, but eating red bugs, I'd still tie my fly in red to match it, no?

Then again, I do see what you are saying. The shadow effect can mute some shades and cause less variation, and I agree that it's to appease the tyer in many cases. I enjoy being appeased.

Posted on: 2010/1/28 11:31


Re: Tying for spring

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Quote:


Therefore, the exact color is more to appease the tyer/fisher than the fish.


This is true a lot of the time. I know guys who fish various sizes of Adams for three different hatches and catch fish, or guys who take "junk" flies from friends and out fish their pals.

Sometimes we do way over think it, but I've had days when I've fished the "wrong" color fly, had a dozen or more refusals (even after throwing to different fish and spacing out my presentations), then changed my fly to a body color closer to the naturals (cast to the same fish, standing in the same place in the river, etc.) and took the fish on the first cast.

Posted on: 2010/1/28 11:52


Re: Tying for spring

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2007/3/25 16:25
From Central Jersey
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Jay- I highly recommend a book by Datus Proper called "what the trout said". I do not have access to it right now, but he took a lifetime of fishing experience and applied it to fly design.

He rates "behavior" as the most important aspect of fly design, more important than color. That is why a dun has to be fished drag free, while a caddis gets strikes being skittered. Trout hit terrestials (ciccadas, beetles) often as soon as they plop in the water. Sunken ants and tricos work great. All of these are situations where the immitation is showing the behavior the trout expects from the real insect. We have all experienced these situations.

Yes color does matter, and sometimes it matters alot. I fished the Yakima last fall and the trout were pounding Chernobles that were pink on the bottom but not tan or green. We have all been frustrated over a sulpher hatch. But on the same trip we fished a spring creek, and the olives were expected. My friend (a guide) mentioned that their olives were more green or more grey than mine, and east coast olives in general. I did not care, and neither did the fish. A reach cast, 7x tippet, fly first presentation on a CDC emerger matched the behavior the fish expected. I had a very good day.

JG

Posted on: 2010/1/28 12:01
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Re: Tying for spring

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the thorax of that green drake looks like a second face....crazy!

Posted on: 2010/1/28 12:20


Re: Tying for spring

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2006/10/18 15:46
From Patterson twp, Pa (Beaver Falls)
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This is all good info for those guys who are headed to the JAM. Sulphurs and March Browns should be on as 2 of the main hatches. I have some left from last year but def want to tie some better dries. One of these days I'll get that itch to start tying to fill my box... hopefully it hits before March.

Posted on: 2010/1/28 15:48
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Re: Tying for spring

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2006/9/21 0:02
From Pittsburgh
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When I first started FF, I used to see orange bodied sulphers hatching at kettle creek. And I tied some with orange bodies for there. However, when I started fishing limestone streams, the sulphers all were pretty much yellow there. And I tie all of mine now with pale yellow dubbing.

Don't know if you've ever been to kettle creek tackle shop. But the guys who owns it sells his own dubbing for every mayfly hatch there is. And his colors are right on IMO

Posted on: 2010/1/28 16:25


Re: Tying for spring

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2007/1/2 11:55
From Bozeman
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Thanks for all the info, guys.

I usually use fly rite dubbing from FFP as a hatch matcher, but will try the kettle creek shop as well.

For what it's worth, I got the pinkish sulphurs from spruce creek fly shop, and they were killer on the J and spring creeks during the jam. I did detect a pinkish hue or rosy glow in the naturals, to use the words of George Costanza. I haven't seen that any other time.

Posted on: 2010/1/28 16:30


Re: Tying for spring

Joined:
2010/1/2 15:17
From PA and NH
Posts: 716
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I have been tying alot of turkey biot bodied dries this winter and boy do they look like the segmented underbodies that were posted. The dark brown ones are even two-toned due to the dying process and give a nice varigated effect.I hope this is close enough to the subject matter that I won't get disapproving responses.

Posted on: 2010/1/28 16:35


Re: Tying for spring

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2006/10/18 15:46
From Patterson twp, Pa (Beaver Falls)
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Quote:

blueheron wrote:
I have been tying alot of turkey biot bodied dries this winter and boy do they look like the segmented underbodies that were posted. The dark brown ones are even two-toned due to the dying process and give a nice varigated effect.I hope this is close enough to the subject matter that I won't get disapproving responses.


As long as a response has anything to do with flyfishing, we don't disaprove anything here (most of the time). Unless it's about politics, sports, or the dark side of alternative fishing methods (pinning, spin or bait casting) it's never a big deal to put in your 2 cents. You'll learn to love this site and the ability to share what you want and enjoy the community!

Posted on: 2010/1/28 16:40
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Re: Tying for spring

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2007/7/6 16:10
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for sulphurs, i have a lot of confidence in a contrasting tail and thorax

Attach file:



jpg  100_0660.JPG (69.22 KB)
994_4b622ee0d6210.jpg 1024X768 px

Posted on: 2010/1/28 19:44



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