www.ralphsflybox.com

www.ralphsflybox.com

Saturday, June 27, 2015

Rainy Day Hot Fly

The "BIG" Foam-Butt Caddis



With the rain putting dampers on the recent fishing both local and on the northern streams, all that is left to do is replace the hottest fly for my summer to date.  Hopefully this rain will improve fishing through the remainder of the summer. 

The "BFBC"...or the BIG Foam-Butt Caddis is tied in larger fashion has been the ticket for pulling both the largest gills and bass to the top, crossing over in popper fashion as well.

Here is the pattern: 

(Tied same as the standard FBC)


Hook:  #6 Gamakatsu Stinger
Thread:  6/0 Black
Tail/Abdomen:  2mm x 1/4" Black Fly Foam
Hackle:  #10 Black Dry
Legs:  Medium Speckled-Brown Centipede Legs
Wing:  Ginger Elk Hair

Friday, June 26, 2015

Tying the Neon Moose

The Neon Moose



The Neon Moose is a Caddis Larva pattern. I fish this pattern very effectively alone under an indicator, but it excels as the bottom fly on a tandem rig along with a #14 C2C Nymph. The moose hair abdomen provides a realistic larva appearance, and the Chartreuse ultra-wire ribbing seems to be an irresistible trigger. It's been in my box for 4 seasons now and has been steady each year.


Neon Moose Recipe

Hook:  #18 Curved Nymph
Bead: 3/32 Black Tungsten
Thread:  8/0 Black Uni-thread
Abdomen: Moose Body Hair
Rib: Small Chartreuse Ultra-wire
Thorax:  Black Ice-dub
Coating:  Bug Bond



Sunday, June 21, 2015

Fathers Day

Fathers Day



We had hoped originally to visit some trout waters for the afternoon, however overnight thunderstorms had their own thoughts on how the day should go. Not to be deterred, a non-drainage or creek-fed pond was identified. Like expected, it was the only non-muddied water within a 30 minute drive. 




Both fat gills and Bass were eager to chase on top.  


For mid-day, the fish were more active and willing to look up than expected.



Being 100% sold on Tenkara, this was his first try at warmwater with the 12' rod. It proved up to the task and he adapted just fine. The 3wt Sylk level line and 6' 8lb tippet was just the ticket for the #10 Foam-Butt Caddis, even with a steady wind to deal with. He took quick to flipping the fly into the small pockets among the lily pads.

 Add to that my girls all called home from abroad, my wife cooked me breakfast, plus a huge steak for dinner and I found out I was to be a Grandpop to a soon-to-arrive grand-daughter....Life is good.  

Hard to beat that on Fathers Day. 

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Tying The Sulphur Crackleback

The Sulphur Crackleback

"Ed Story 1952"


The Crackleback has proven itself over scores of seasons and by several generations of fly fishermen. A favorite among many, it catches fish and is easy to tie. Its a must-have in any fly box be it warm or cold water. 

Crackleback Recipe

Hook: #18-#16 Standard Dry fly
Thread:  8/0 Olive Dun
Abdodmen:  Sulphur Turkey Biot
Shellback: Eyed-Peackock Herl
Hackle:  Greenwell / Furnace






Monday, June 15, 2015

Angler Under Glass

Vintage LLBean Angler-2 Reel



Recently, I was fortunate enough to find a mint condition never lined LLBean reel of 70's vintage.  The Angler-2 reel is a copy of the Martin model MG-7SS reel, re-dressed for LLBean. While these reels are not uncommon to find in expected used condition, seldom do you find a 40 year old reel that was built for fishing, yet had never even been christened with line. Let alone a fish.



This had me thinking. To pair this reel up with a modern graphite rod for it's maiden voyage would not only feel odd, it would simply be wrong. SO....turning to a 7' 5wt Glass rod I was hopeful the reel seat would accommodate the reel. Surprisingly, it was a perfect match, fitting better than the new reel in which I had originally purchased for the rod. It felt natural that this reel was paired with the style rod it was built for so many years ago.



Next was a line. I chose a late model Cortland DT5 line to complete the package, and headed for the closest water known to hold fish. 

I can honestly say this rig performed flawlessly. It balanced well and threw a line as far as I tried to throw it. With a #8 Foam-Butt Caddis on the terminal end, the reel was fittingly christened as it was designed to do. It brought a good number of smallish bass to hand, as well as a couple dozen panfish.  And I even put a few of the bass on the reel just so I could here it "sing" as they ran through the lily pads. Pictured above is the first fish hooked. I think this rig will stay together a long, long time. Even with all the state-of-the-art machined reels we have flooding the sport, this classic cast & painted reel shined on the day in simple perfection.

See you on the water

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Lulbegrud Creek P.H. Young Perfectionist

The new rod has arrived!


After 8 years of watching Lulbegrud Creek rods on the internet, and coming close several times to pulling the trigger, I finally called Dave for the 3rd time and the order went in. For years I went back and forth on who I would order through, yet always coming back to Dave Cottengim. But then....what taper? Too many to choose from! This spring however, I finally settled on a PH Young 7'6' #4 Perfectionist. Well let me tell you that Dave's work is unbelievable, and the wait is finally over. 


I matched the rod with a Cortland Retro II reel, and a Cortland Classic 444 DT4 line. On the lawn, she casts deadnuts straight and as smooth as anyone could ask for. 



I can't say enough good about the rod. Dave is excellent to work with and his guidance was invaluable. It was a long wait, but well worth it.


See you on the water!



Sunday, June 7, 2015

Home Waters

The Far-and-Fine on Home Waters



Had a chance today to get the Far-and-Fine out on the home waters of Fishing Creek. Always nice to get back up home. It was an odd day in several ways. The weather was perfect, I caught fish & I saw only one other fisherman on the water the entire day. 



It was also the first time christening the new net from Steven's Nets. Nothing but good things to say. I picked up the Model 27R and it is one of the finest nets I have found. Exceptional craftsmanship at a fraction of the cost of the Brodins found practically everywhere, yet these are built right here in the USA. The highest recommendation.




Started out the day on Nick's Run about 8am. Nothing happening in the pools, but the runs in between gave up two nice Browns. This one an even 16". Both fish came on a Squirrels Nest Nymph.


Moved upstream around 10am to mayfly meadows. Found fish in the pocket water upstream, with fish willing to take the C2C nymph.


Upstream of May Fly Meadows




The pockets brought a good number of fish, all about like the above. Aggressive and energetic on the line.



I hit the Orangeville Run last, about 12 noon. and while it took me a while to figure them out, things paid off with the nicest fish of the days.



This 17" fish took an M&M nymph as a dropper under a Squirrels Nest



This 18" Rainbow took a Golden Retriever. Once again, the Golden retriever brings the largest fish of the day.



When your backdrop is Fishing Creek, somehow it's always a good day on the water.

See you on the water!

Saturday, June 6, 2015

The Guinness Trout

The Guinness Trout



The Guinness Trout was the fruit of a joke brought up at a tying conclave. Mention was made that if we could tie a pattern that looked as good to the trout as a freshly poured glass of Guinness looked to us, they would not be able to resist it. After messing around at the vise, the Guinness Trout evolved. Only to prove later, that fish did indeed like it. Likewise so did I, and it has remained in my box ever since.  It's a heavy fly that I like to tight-line drift through those deep pools.


The Inspiration for the GT


Recipe for the Guinness Trout

Hook:  #10 Straight-Eye Streamer
Thread:  6/0 Rusty-dun Uni-thread
Tail: Tan Marabou
Rib: Fine Gold Wire
Abdomen:  Rusty Dun Tying Thread
Bead: Gold Tungsten
Hackle: #10 Furnace


Thursday, June 4, 2015

Tying the CDC Choronimid

The CDC Choronimid



This version of the CDC Choronimid has been with me for close to 25 years. It began tied for Northwest lakes using a red thread body and a peacock herl thorax. While that version still catches fish, this is the current version that has been in my box for more than 10 years now. It is my favorite and most productive Choronimid pattern by far.


CDC Choronimid Recipe

Hook:  #16-18 Standard Nymph
Thread:  White 8/0 Uni-thread 
Abdomen:  Red Micro Tubing
Flash:  Small Holographic Tinsel
Thorax:  Peacock Ice-Dub
Wing-case:  White CDC


Monday, June 1, 2015

Tying the Littlebird Wet

Littlebird



The Littlebird wet fly is a very productive pattern for me through most of the spring and summer hatches. An excellent search pattern when swinging wet flies, and also as a trail pattern behind a bead-head. When fished alone i do not weight this pattern, keeping it at or below the film. Excellent on skinny water.


Littlebird Recipe


Hook:  #16-18 Emerger
Thread:  8/0 Black Uni-thread
Tail:  2 strands of Pearl Crystal Flash
Abdomen: Adams Grey Orvis Spectrablend
Wing:  Starling Breast
Thorax:  Eyed Peacock Herl