Yes, I know, we are all beyond the Woolly Bugger. But really, as a stillwater flyfisher you most probably fish one every time out. This pattern (the Little Fort Leech, http://www.littlefort.com/toc.html) is a basic black WB but the fly honestly outfishes the basic black so much that I have to wonder if the red tuft of marabou enhances its’ effectiveness. I first bought a version of this fly…the original I guess..at the Little Fort Fly shop about fifteen years ago. I fished it then on the Lac des Roches near Little Fort, BC and it was great. I have sense used it for years and it always produces in sizes 6 to 10. I have experimented with hot orange, hot green and purple. I can’t yet say if they are as effective as the red highlight. For now, red is the ticket. I am going to reread my earlier post re UV markers for certain feathers and perhaps try yellow or chartreuse as I noted they displayed more ‘flash’. All this may be moot depending upon the depths and available light. Blues/Purple may do better for the deeper waters? My steelheading studies make me recall colors fading with depth and available light. Anyway, this fly works on stillwaters, reservoirs, ponds AND rivers. Last fall while swinging this exact fly on the Deschutes R. near Harpham Flats for first light steelhead, I caught a gorgeous, large redside trout with this exact fly. I have not fished WB’s and other streamers on rivers like they do in say Montana. But, the early morning success has made me reconsider the option. As for stillwaters, this and the Minnow Bugger are my go to search patterns.
The Minnow Bugger; originally found at the Sunriver Flyshop. Owner, Robert Gaviglio, introduced us to it and touted it as a great fly. Well, he was right! The Little Fort Leech,the Minnow Bugger and the Calico Bugger are a great threesome.
The Calico Bugger was created from a boa from a craft store, a multi-colored boa. The tail colors of gray, tan, brown and black are a perfect blend of colors. This fly has been successful on many occasions on lakes east of Merritt, BC.