Posts Tagged ‘fly pattern design


Fly Tying & Fishing: Small Fly~Bigger Hook?

Would a wisp of a size 24 fly body on a size 18 hook fool a fish? Would a size 16 fly body on a size 14 hook to the trick? I wonder how many of you have experimented with a slight deviation from the norm of tying: match the size fly pattern to the size hook? Does a small fly pattern have to be on a small hook to fool the fish?

This 'Big Grey' by BooRod is an example of a smaller pattern tied to what I would say is a bigger hook.

I recall reading years ago in an old Steelheader’s gear book that attracting fish was, in the end, the attractor ‘positives’ outweighing the detractor ‘negatives’ in the fish’s assessment of the morsel. Does the bigger hook detract from that smaller attractive fly pattern you attached to it? Maybe worth an experiment or two. More hookups with smaller fly patterns? This may not be suitable for gin clear waters and scrutinizing fish, but at least worth a try in the more troubled waters where fish have little time to decide.

Even the simple Egg Pattern (Gummi Egg by JMKratt) is more often than not tied on a bigger hook.

And, Ed Herbst of South Africa sent this reminder to me re the Goddard Smut.

“Goddard’s ‘go-to’ flies for when trout are sipping tiny midges from the surface are his “Goddard Smut” (for the full fledged adult)”. How simple a design but effective. How often we complicate our tying.


Woolly Worm: Serviceable Beginner’s Pattern to Tie/Fish

Whether it is Woolly or Wooly, the Worm’s turn appears to have passed for the ubiquitous Woolly Bugger. From a beginning fly tier’s perspective this is a simple, but effective pattern to tie. I suggest staying with the original chenille or some of the newer sparkle chenilles. The pattern can have the ‘hot butt’ red tag (or other hot colors) but you can go for a natural hackle barbs/fibers tail as well. Short of a few panfish, carp or lake fly fishers, you will seldom encounter this pattern any more.


I would suggest, beyond the hot colors style, to tie up the pattern in black, brown, green and yellow with black, brown or grizzly palmered hackle. Natural colors on size 6-12 hooks with a 2xl-3xl shanks. The fly can be more than an ‘attractor pattern’ as it is so frequently referred to these days. You will notice the patterns above do not have the bead head. They could, of course, or have weighted wire wrapped around the shank. You can forgo the weight and use a weighted fly line to sink the fly into the appropriate zone.

Whether the Woolly Worm was inspired by the frequently seen Butterfly Caterpillars or not, it is a fuzzy morsel to be used for all manner of fuzzy, enticing morsels.

Whether Dragon, Damsel, Hellgramite, Stonefly, large Caddis Pupa, Caterpillar or ‘attractor’ the pattern can be mixed and matched with natural to hot colors, slender or chunky, weighted or unweighted the pattern is simple to tie and versatile in its applications.


Fly Fishing & Tying: Good Entomology Basics


I have posted re this site some time back. In review, it has very good, clear info re insect stages that will assist in fly pattern design and recognizing stages on the water.


Fly Pattern Design (A reflection of your psyche?)

A Mini-Bugger~SwittersB

A Mini-Bugger~SwittersB

When you take the steps to start tying flies, you take a class, buy books, go online and study, go to fly tying shows-expos and undoubtedly learn about the basic patterns that are considered proven fish catchers. Proven based upon success and proven because they were, over time, matched to the food chain of fish. Makes sense, so we all tie pheasant tails, hare’s ears, elk hair caddis and PMD’s. Great done. Identify the 20-30 mandatory patterns and tie each in the required stages and sizes. Perfect…Done. Jesus Cristo! My head hurts. My brain is fogging over more than usual. 

Perhaps we could do a little bit of that, and then let the ol’ ADD take over and create, based upon those general tying skills, entomology we can grasp, and the search for the unique. Trout flies tend to be toward the doctrine, which is carved in stone. Steelhead, Salmon, Pike, Bass etc. tend toward the exciter-stimulation. The kill instinct….the reflexive smack.

Regardless…learn the skills to tie regardless of your mental bent or allegiance to tradition. Then decide traditional pattern ‘slave’ (geez, is my bias showing?)….renegade hodgepodge of ineffective patterns, out of which comes a gem…..or somewhere in between. This may vary depending upon your life’s state, whether you are healthy, employed, getting any or just flitting from steelhead to Spring trout patterns. I say live a little….

Parachute Mayfly w/ Hot Post for Visibility~SwittersB

Parachute Mayfly w/ Hot Post for Visibility~SwittersB

Below @ “The Past” you can search back to 2008 month by month

August 2020

Please visit MUNCY DESIGNS (click)

Welcome to SwittersB & Exploring. Please Share, Comment & Like Away!

Please subscribe just below. Use the Search box to search topics.

Enter your email address to subscribe to the SwittersB blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 4,238 other followers

The Past

231!!! Countries Visiting SwittersB~Thank You!!!

free counters

Blog Stats: There are lies, damn lies and statistics

  • 4,833,595 Visits/Views (WP Original Stat~Pre Flag Counter Stats)

%d bloggers like this: