Fly Fishing for Trout Home
User Password
or register.
Scientific name search:

> > Early dry patterns

PartsmanFebruary 2nd, 2019, 1:20 pm
bancroft michigan

Posts: 420
OK I am officially over winter, and with that proclamation Im wondering what are some of the really early dry fly patterns or some effective early season nymph patterns, Im sitting at the vise right now, and I have been tying some brown. drakes and Roberts yellow drakes, and some bwos. The bwos are size 18,20, and 22. Any good Hendrickson patterns I should be aware off? Of course this will be for Michigan trout streams, but I think the best patterns are universal in were they work. Anyways, I hope that big rodent is right and spring is just around the corner!

WbranchFebruary 2nd, 2019, 2:16 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733

In my neck of the woods the earliest dry flies are Early Black and Early Brown Stone fly's. They will emerge when there is still snow on the ground if it is sunny out. Then #18 tan caddis, and then Ep subvaria as long as the water temperature has been at least 52 degrees for 2 - 3 days.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
PartsmanFebruary 3rd, 2019, 1:36 pm
bancroft michigan

Posts: 420
Matt, thanks for the reply, really winter is getting to be to much, I have got to get out and fish, or just get away for few days. Im thinking Gates lodge and the holy waters, if I cant fish at can at least tie some flies and go get a good look around.

Thanks, Mike.
WbranchFebruary 4th, 2019, 5:10 am
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733

I guess I have just gotten used to not fishing in the winter. A big part of my acceptance of not fishing is that as I've gotten older I just don't have the anxiousness to go out in the cold to nymph fish. Zero interest. I re-live any one of thousands of really good days in nice weather and that tides me over. Plus I tie almost every day and since mid December I've tied about 250 flies.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
Jmd123February 4th, 2019, 8:00 am
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2611
RED QUILLS! Same fly as the Hendrickson, only the male of the species, and a very different looking fly. You'll see 'em come May! Make sure you're well stocked for caddis too, they can come out pretty early, and the golden-brown stoneflies too, which can be imitated by an EHC in the appropriate colors.

No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
PartsmanFebruary 4th, 2019, 6:12 pm
bancroft michigan

Posts: 420
That's kinda were im at Matt, but sometimes my brain sends signals to body that hey you can still do that, you want to don't you? Im spending a lot of time tying, and hoping for a early spring, thanks Jonathon, Im going to get some patterns for red quills and get to work.

Take care, Mike.
MartinlfFebruary 4th, 2019, 6:27 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
I have a lot of Hendrickson patterns I tie, but the comparadun seems to be the one that I often tie on. They work.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
RleePFebruary 5th, 2019, 10:56 am
NW PA - Pennsylvania's Glacial Pothole Wonderland

Posts: 398
MIke.. Do you folks get the early paraleps (blue quills to me, but may be known as tiny or "Little Mahogany" over there)? If so, some of them in an #18 may be worth having. Year in and year out, they've been the most reliable early hatch in my part of Pennsylvania especially on water where they overlap with the standard #18 Olives. Often times, I've been able to use a single pattern (#18 comparadun or parachute with a medium brown/gray body) to cover both bugs, particularly if the fish you are working over aren't hyper-sophisticated. The thing I like best about the paraleps is that due to the usual colder water temps or just their nature, they seem to take quite a while to get off the water. So, you often end up with a lot of fish that set up in the circling eddies and just stay steady and work them. This makes the whole thing a little like hunting woodcock. If you keep missing them, you can hunt the same half dozen woodcock all day as they tend to pretty much stay put.

But what I don't know is if your rivers have them or enough of them to matter. Might be worth considering, anyway..
WbranchFebruary 5th, 2019, 1:43 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733

Oops, I also forgot to mention the paraleps. Yes we get great emergences on the EB, WB, and main stem. Often they come out first but frequently they will overlap with Ep subvaria for a couple of weeks.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
IasgairFebruary 11th, 2019, 3:39 pm

Posts: 148
One of my favorite early dries is the Griffiths Gnat, size #20. The BWO's you're tying should do well too.

Midges sizes #20 to #22 are always a good bet, like Black Beauty, Jujubee and Rojo Midges.

If I see a hatch beginning, I'll also try in size #18, Para Adams, Blue Quills and some BWO Emergers. If things are tough, try using a size #20 RS-2, either black, brown or gray trailing your dry.
TNEALFebruary 26th, 2019, 10:08 am

Posts: 278
My para emerger series #12,14 for Hendricksons, #16,18 for paraleps (little mahogany), North Branch Drake in black for little black caddis and olive for olive caddis. If anyone if interested in patterns, pm me...

Quick Reply

You have to be logged in to post on the forum. It's this easy:
Username:          Email:

Password:    Confirm Password:

I am at least 13 years old and agree to the rules.

Related Discussions

TitleRepliesLast Reply
Re: Original paterns
In Fly Tying by Leakyboots
6Jan 15, 2017
by Jmd123
Re: A pretty day on the river
In Fishing Reports by Partsman
1May 26, 2022
by Taxon
Re: Tuesday
In General Discussion by Partsman
1May 31, 2018
by Partsman
Re: Such a classic spot.
In Fishing Reports by Partsman
3Jul 11, 2020
by Partsman
Re: Purple Patriot
In Fly Tying by Brian314
3Apr 25, 2020
by Brian314
Re: The more you know..
In Simuliidae Black Fly Larva by Phineartz
2Jan 17, 2019
by Jmd123
Re: Farmington Delivers me my first 2018 Dry Fly Trout
In Fishing Reports by Idryfly
3Apr 11, 2018
by Martinlf
Re: Grannoms
In the Caddisfly Family Brachycentridae by Grannom
11Apr 26, 2008
by Grannom
Re: Identification of a possible Cordulegaster Dragonfly Nymph
In Cordulegaster Dragonfly Nymph by IanB
6Feb 10, 2017
by Taxon
Re: A smorgasbord for our finned friends.
In Fishing Reports by Partsman
2Jun 24, 2021
by Jmd123