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DryflyApril 12th, 2011, 9:24 pm
rochester mn

Posts: 133
So I've been fishing some big stonefly nymphs in streams that don't have stoneflys catching a few fish. Anyone have success on "odd" patterns ex. big rubberlegs on "technical" tailwaters or spring creeks normally small stuff is reccomended.
TroutnutApril 16th, 2011, 7:21 pm
Administrator
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2459
Fish don't keep a checklist of what bug species are known to inhabit their river. And they would never eat anything if they weren't willing to try new things, because there's a first time for every food.

Also, most of the time trout are feeding opportunistically on any food they see, not selectively on a single size/color/type of prey.

Combine those two concepts, and it makes sense that they'll try unusual big, buggy-looking patterns sometimes.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
JesseApril 18th, 2011, 6:18 am
Posts: 378
Haha try looking at it this way bra: Trout like humans have brains, theirs might be significantly smaller than ours but brains none the less. Humans have specific food types they would consider being their favorite, or most do anyways. A lot of times we eat the same foods regularly. Trout are the same id say depending on whats available to them in a particular stream/pond/lake/etc.. I love to try new foods, and day in and day out i will eat something that i haven't ate in a while. Trout are the same way. They'll see something and say, "Hmmm that looks good i will give it a try!" Or they might say, "Hmmm ive never seen that before lets try it!" And the crazy thing is thats the case a lot of the time because of their curiosity like ours.
Most of us fish our whole lives..not knowing its not the fish that we are after.
http://www.filingoflyfishing.com
OldredbarnApril 18th, 2011, 9:53 am
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
Trout are the same way. They'll see something and say, "Hmmm that looks good i will give it a try!" Or they might say, "Hmmm ive never seen that before lets try it!" And the crazy thing is thats the case a lot of the time because of their curiosity like ours.


Jess,

I think you've been out there fishing a bit too much...:) You need to step out of the sun and stop catching so many big fish. You are starting to sound giddy, "They'll see something and say..." No kidding. Them trout talking to you now, son?! Datus Proper used talking with trout as a literary device, but since I truely care for ya kid, maybe we should yank you to the bank so you can regain your bearings...

Besides I'm starting to become seriously jealous! Here I sit with my ankle chained to this "wage-slave" desk and there's your smiling face holding another hog somewhere...Show a little mercy to an old-fart.

Hey! On second thought. I guess as long as you are not talking back you'll be ok.

I'd wish you tightlines, but maybe you need a break...:)

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
JesseApril 18th, 2011, 6:24 pm
Posts: 378
Haha spence my man just trying to get some "out of the box" thinking going on ha.. I swear im not crazy. And the big fish thing, im just a lucky kid i guess! :)
Most of us fish our whole lives..not knowing its not the fish that we are after.
http://www.filingoflyfishing.com
EntomanApril 18th, 2011, 8:47 pm
Site Editor
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Hey Spence-

"What the Fish Said"... One of my favorite books back in the day. VERY thought provoking and a fun read. As far as talking with fish, you're right. Come to think of it, ol' Datus had a bit of a wild look in the eye... :)

Kurt
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
EntomanApril 18th, 2011, 9:50 pm
Site Editor
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Shane -

Sorry for joining in and not discussing the original point of your thread. How rude...
Anyone have success on "odd" patterns ex. big rubberlegs on "technical" tailwaters or spring creeks normally small stuff is reccomended.
Sure... Fish taking outlandish creations from the twisted minds of fly tiers is as old as fly fishing.

I remember a trip to one of the most technical spring creeks in the West that makes your point. It was drizzly and breezy (in other words miserable) and I was hungover. But my friend? He wanted to fish. He wasn't very good, and it wasn't very long before he had his leader cut back far enough that it could have been used to haul the boat back onto the trailer. He handed me a fly and asked if it would work. I have no idea what it was... Other than it closely resembled what a giant Zug Bug would look like if tied by a blind folded gorilla. I replied, "why not?", in the secret hope he would either quickly bore himself or get knocked out by that behemoth trying to complete a forward cast. Either way, I could see a much hoped for quick end of the day. Well, he flopped it out there, and after a couple of casts a 22" football of a fish grabbed the damn thing. With that leader, the only prayer the fish had was for my tyro friend's rod to break. That fish and I both did a novena to no avail. I had to fish the rest of the day, ducking in the boat mostly.

Another time I was in a very technical stillwater situation with Callibaetis eating "gulpers" driving me nuts. My brother tied on what can only be described as a #12 White Wulff with #6 hackle that he probably pulled from an old pillow.... Yep. Into fish immediately...

What you can take from this though, is that it's fairly unusual. In the final analysis, this is an odds game. My advise if you aren't in the mood to go technical (like me on a lot of days) use big stuff that mimics the "T-Bone steaks". Leeches, minnows and such. The dedicated streamer boys may go with less takes, but they usually get the biggest.

Unless of course, your big rubberlegs prove consistent.

Regards,

Kurt

"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
Jmd123April 18th, 2011, 11:02 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2351
Man, Kurt, you are becoming "Spence-like" in the length of your posts...something of course I have never been guilty of...

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
OldredbarnApril 19th, 2011, 10:17 am
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
im just a lucky kid i guess! :)


Jess,

That's right young man...I'm happy for you. Now don't forget to savor it! :)

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
OldredbarnApril 19th, 2011, 10:31 am
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
"What the Fish Said"...


Kurt,

Its "What the Trout Said"...Datus liked to speak with salmonids...Our buddy Jess is bilingual...:)

In 2004 I stopped near the Bozeman airport where the road there crosses over Hyalite Creek and paused a moment near the stream that passed through his place in the Bozeman valley and unfortunately where he drown in 2003...I'm telling anyone who really may be listening...There is a great deal of real knowledge about our hobby in that little book and anyone who idolized Vinny Marinaro as much as Datus did can't be all bad in my book...I'm just saying.

I don't want to be speaking "out-of-school", Kurt you know what I'm saying, but if someone passes up that text...Well...All I'll say is , you have been schooled. What you do or not do is all up to you. It was like a light going off and I sometimes feel sorry for the lowly trout for all the secrets Datus gave up about him...It's almost not fair! :)

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
EntomanApril 19th, 2011, 12:25 pm
Site Editor
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
You're right Spence, my bad about the title. Thanks for correcting the typo. Hope nobody tried to Google the title and got frustrated... My apologies if you did.

Anyway, what the author has to say about fly design is timeless. Heck, so are most of his insights for that matter. Too many propose their ideas as if they spring from whole cloth, so I also appreciate the diligent reporting of the shoulders he stood on. This can be tricky since you never want to bore the reader with unnecessary details, but he pulled it off very well. A mandatory read for anybody seriously interested in fly design theory or deepening their understanding of our esoteric little sport.

Kurt

P.S. Sorry to hear he passed on. Not sure how old he was but based on his bio at the time of publication ('82), it sounds like he lived a full life. Poetic to go out in the water with the fish he loved.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
OldredbarnApril 20th, 2011, 10:30 am
Novi, MI

Posts: 2587
Kurt,

We are getting really close to opening day here...It will be on the 30th of this month...So, I'm full of old fishing stories today (and other things according to Allan) warming myself up for fish camp next weekend...Your comment on the irony of D Proper's passing on his favorite home stream made me think of the following.

I was sitting on the bank with my good old buddy Bill, my mentor, curmudgeon of all curmudgeons. We were studying for the priesthood of the church of Highbrow Dry-Flydom of the Second Synod of the George Selwyn Marryatian School...so as usual we were sitting, waiting for "the feed"...He was the high priest, me a mere acolyte...Ok. He was the high priest, I was only slightly buzzed...

I turned to my friend and told him that my wife and I had met with a lawyer and finally got around to having our wills etc completed. I told him that I had added an addendum, a bequeath, that would give him all my fly fishing related gear and fly tying materials etc. if I were to pass on...He seemed lost in thought and was quiet for quite some time. He finally turned to me and asked, "Have I ever fished with you near the Whirlpool or Black Bend? Maybe we should head over that way later tonight ;)."

Spence

PS I did all that will & power-of-attorney stuff and gave all the power to my wife's twin for medical decisions etc...The whole she-bang...Within the month she moved to Phoenix!!! They get around to putting me on the respirator it may take her a day or two to get here to Detroit. I'm screwed!

PSS Where-in-the-hell is Gonzo?!
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
EntomanApril 20th, 2011, 12:54 pm
Site Editor
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Spence -

We are getting really close to opening day here...It will be on the 30th of this month...


Same for us out here! I usually skip the opening and head up to spend most of the following week. Can't wait!

They get around to putting me on the respirator it may take her a day or two to get here to Detroit. I'm screwed!


I wouldn't give it a second thought. If it gets to that point, you won't care. A FF'er on a resperator is like a bull without his nasties. The only purpose left is food for something. In our case, worms (at least for now, remember Soylent Green?).

PSS Where-in-the-hell is Gonzo?!


Besides getting ready like the rest of us, he probably bridled up Shadowfax for another quick ride over to the Great Library at Minas Tirith. I can see him blowing the dust off ancient monographs involving all things aquatic macro-invertebrate and pouring over them for absorption in that photographic memory of his. You know - eyeball placement, wing venation patterns and such.

Regards,

Kurt
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
FalsiflyApril 20th, 2011, 1:05 pm
Hayward, WI.

Posts: 655
PSS Where-in-the-hell is Gonzo?!


It may be that he canít get a word in edgewise, or heís laughing so hard the tears are blurring his keyboard.
Falsifly
When asked what I just caught that monster on I showed him. He put on his magnifiers and said, "I can't believe they can see that."
GONZOApril 20th, 2011, 5:44 pm
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
Allan's got it about right, but I like Kurt's explanation better. However, any Rider of Rohan knows that Shadowfax wouldn't tolerate a bridle.
EntomanApril 20th, 2011, 6:12 pm
Site Editor
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Ah! Your back!! How goes the White Tower? About "bridling" - just a metaphor for "getting ready to ride" in the form of a verb. Didn't mean it literally. Ok,Ok... So you whistled him up and hitched a ride. Even if he would allow it, you don't need reins anyway, right? A thousand pardons for the insult to your steed there, Gonzo the Grey. Please don't turn me into anything... "Unnatural"...
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
GONZOApril 20th, 2011, 7:09 pm
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
No worries, Kurt. Unlike Gandalf, my powers seem to be diminishing as the Grey transforms into the White.
Jmd123April 20th, 2011, 7:52 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2351
I'm with Kurt on the trout opener - it could be just a freakin' zoo around here. Then again, maybe I'll find a nice quiet little tributary to spend the day on and avoid the ravenous crowds of cabin-feverish trout maniacs. Then, once they leave to go back downstate for work, the mainstems get a lot quieter. And who knows what the weather is going to be like? Geez, I think everyone around here is still waiting for the main steelhead run to come in! Could be Hennies well into May...

Jonathon

P.S. We got at least two inches of snow overnight. I actually went to work today to look at a couple of properties for a prospective buyer (wanted to know about wetlands and buildability), and just a little ways north of here there was 3-4"...
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
MotroutApril 20th, 2011, 9:12 pm
Posts: 319
As far as fishing with odd patterns that don't seem to make sense given the season or the stream, I have at least one really good example.

The Current River in south-central Missouri is a spring creek, and an absolute bug factory. It has hatches of every kind caddis, mayfly, and midge that you can possibly imagine (well,actually some of you have pretty good imaginations when it comes to aquatic insects, but you know what I mean), and sometimes even big stoneflies. There are always plenty of nymphs for the fish to feed on, and scuds are also extremely prolific on the river. But what fly catches by far the most fish for me, including big resident browns that have been in the river for several years... Egg patterns. It doesn't matter what color, orange, peach, multi-color, its all good. And not just during spawning season. I rely on egg patterns to catch fish on that river as much in July as in January. Yes, the Current is a stocked stream, but the stretches where I fish, it is only stocked annually with brown trout (there are rainbows too, both wild fish and migrants from other parts of the stream) so the fish have learned to survive on natural food. And yet they fall for an egg pattern much more often than they do a Pheasant Tail Nymph or an Elk Hair Caddis. I will never understand why its like that, but that's just the way it is. Only when I really want to challenge myself will I decide to forgo using egg patterns there-you can get some good traditional nymph fishing there and even some excellent dry fly fishing (the fall Olive hatch there is about as good as it gets anywhere), but it is on the whole much slower than eggs. Of course there are odd occasions when eggs don't work at all, but it really is quite rare. I just got back from a trip there last weekend, and I was catching them like crazy on eggs. Then I tried just about every other fly in my box just for the fun of it, and not so much as a bump.

If I ever get down on fishing egg patterns, I'll just call them Fetal Emergers and then I feel all better:)
"I don't know what fly fishing teaches us, but I think it's something we need to know."-John Gierach
http://fishingintheozarks.blogspot.com/
JesseApril 21st, 2011, 9:54 am
Posts: 378
Thanks Spence and no worries i never have took it for granted and i never will. In a way i almost feel bad for the lady i hopefully one day marry, because i can't be fully committed to her because of the trout and various fish that i will chase with the fly rod haha. Just joking...kind of!

And more on topic ive seen my good friend and neighbor fish in the dead of summer with his reliable pattern; a size 2 hornburg.. If that will catch him fish at random than damn anything will ha!
Most of us fish our whole lives..not knowing its not the fish that we are after.
http://www.filingoflyfishing.com
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