Inch Worms & Sulphurs Are Here
Barry writes about summer fishing
Looking out of my office window, I realize that summer is coming fast. It's hard to believe that our spring fishing is nearly done. Everyone loves the early Hendricksons and we miss them already. The hatch was sporadic and the weather unstable, typical of early spring. Next was our march browns and they were early on Fishing Creek, but provided some nice dry fly action for those lucky enough to get out and catch the hatch.
What is starting now is probably our most dependable fishing in the way of insect activity. Inch worms provide exciting day time fishing, especially on warm sunny days, and evening sulphur hatches and spinner falls will last well into July. Angler's won't have to rush to the stream for the sulphurs, the flies often wait for the last bit of light to make their appearance and will continue well after dark. There will often still be flies on the water early the next morning.
Our favorite imitation for the inch worm is a black bead head sinking inch worm. Sight fish these flies whenever you can and use a strike indicator when you can't sight fish them. We like a comparadun for the adult sulphur and a poly wing for the spinner. These flies are available through our online store.
Summer is fast approaching and our summer hatches will provide some of the best fishing of the year. We hope you get out often to enjoy it. -Barry
Different Styles of Dry Fly Patterns
Thoughts from Head Guide, Jim Kukorlo
Hopefully the high and fast water days are behind us and its perfect timely coming into early June where we are expecting to see some of the best hatches of the season. Water levels are dropping nicely and the next few weeks could produce some great dry fly fishing.
Dry fly fishing by far is the most favorite form of fly fishing for most fly fishermen but it can also be the most challenging. After the first few days of any hatch the trout can become very selective. There are several different dry fly patterns to chose from. The Traditional Catskill Dry Fly, Compara Duns, Thorax Style and Parachutes are the style of dry flies that I tie and fish. Its important to have all of these patterns in your fly box to use in different water conditions and when you are fishing over selective trout. Lets take a look at each of these different styles of dry flies and when they work the best.
Traditional Catskill Dry Fly: These dry flies are probably the most commonly used patterns. They have been around for a long time and have caught a lot of trout over the years.
The traditional full hackle flies ride high in the water and will float very well. If the flies are poorly tied with tails too long or hackle too long they will float unnatural in the water and can twist your leaders.
Because they float well and ride high in the water they are great to tie attractor patterns with. Flies such as the Yellow Stimulator, Adams Wulff and the Royal Wulff just to name a few. These flies work well on size 8 and 10 hooks and they are the perfect fly to use when fishing the dry fly dropper method. Which is tying a tippet off the bend of the dry fly and attaching a nymph on the end of the tippet.
Thorax Style Dry Fly: Vince Marinaro introduced this style of dry fly in his book “A Modern Dry Fly Code” many years ago. Vince revolutionize the way we tied and fish dry flies with this method.
With the wings tied in the middle of the hook and the tails split the fly has a more realistic look of a real mayfly. The hackle is tied in an X around the wing and the body extends up to the eye of the hook. When finished you can use your scissors to cut a V in the bottom of the hackle which adds to the stability of the fly. I use this pattern a lot when I'm fishing is small runs and riffles.
Its has all of the things you want in a dry fly. Realistic looking, floats well and it's been a favorite of mind for more years then I want to remember.
Compara Duns Dry Fly: When fishing over selective trout this is the pattern you want to be using. Tied with the wings in the middle of the hook along with the split tails like I use in the thorax style dry fly. This fly has a lot good features and it's my go to dry fly pattern. Be sure to use micro fibers for the tail and coastal deer hair for the wings. With no hackle on the fly the body lies on the water surface giving it a more natural look of a real mayfly. You don't need expensive necks for hackles and the compara dun is easy to tie once you master the deer hair wing. I tie most of my mayflies using compara duns and thorax style duns. Time and time again I catch more trout and have less refusal using the Compara Dun then any other dry fly pattern that I use. Easy to tie and catches fish. Sounds like a winner to me.
Parachutes Dry Fly: Another very popular and effective technique to tie dry flies and one that I don't use a lot of and maybe I should. The parachute has a more tradition catskill look except the hackle is tied around the base of the wing thus giving it a parachute look. The fly body floats in the surface much like the compara dun and gives a very good presentation of a natural mayfly. A favorite among a lot of fly fishermen.Back to why I don't use it a lot. I find that the fly can cast hard especially in larger hook sizes. I don't think the hackle has much use because it's at the bottom of the wing and doesn't really touch the water so why use it. You get the same effect with the compara dun plus the compara dun is easier and quicker to tie. I like simple and easy. As a guide I can go through a lot of flies and as much as I like tying flies I would much rather be fly fishing.
I do however tie some of my tried and true go to patterns such as the Adams and Light Cahill. Parachutes also work well to use with the dry fly drop using a small nymph trailing off the back of the dry fly. The Parachute is the perfect fly to use when tying emerger patterns. If you use a curved hook the body will ride low in the surface film giving the fly a great emerging appearance. I think I just talked myself into tying and fishing more parachutes dry flies. We all have our favorite flies and patterns that we are successful with. Don't get hung up on one style or technique of dry flies. Having options could come in handy when fishing over selective trout.
Bighorn River Opportunity 4 nights/3 days
We have one room open for the Bighorn River for a part-week. August 28 – Sept. 1. 4 nights/3 days. This is trico time on the 'Horn. If you like fishing this incredible hatch, you will love the Bighorn in August. Call us or Denise at Frontiers 800-245-1950.