söndag 7 april 2013


An Ephemera Danica Imitation

The Green Drake (A little messed up during to c:a 15 years
 of being stuffed in a cramped space)

          This is a pattern that became known and used a lot in the 80'ties here in Sweden to represent Ephemera Danica (the pattern can still be found in fly fishing stores and is most probably still being used) and as you can see this is not a tiny fly. The tying description is as follows:

          Hook: Mustad 94833 size #12
          Thread: Light Brown
          Tail and abdomen: Light golden badger hackle reversed
                                    and leaving 2 barbs on each side as 
                                    tails (It's a little hard to see the 
                                    extended body well on this picture
                                    but I think it's imaginable)
          Thorax: Fly Rite 22
          Wings: Hen saddle colored olive
          Hackle: Grizzle or badger

          This tying description is taken from the book "Flugbindning på mitt sätt" (Fly tying my way) by Lennart Bergqvist (A very good manual for fly tying of a lot of the insects found in Sweden).

          Anyway I've experienced that flexibility is a must if you want to be able to play a trout or grayling everywhere they are present and at all times possible. When there is a good hatch of Ephemera Danica (Green Drake) not even the smallest of fish won't give any attention to tiny flies (with some exceptions naturally). This is The largest of the mayflies found in Sweden. It's appearance makes it possible to come in contact with the biggest of trout even in small streams. Scouting your favorite streams for the places where big trout have taken their position will pay off when the hatch begins.

          So why opening this subject now, a pretty long time before it will appear (here normally in mid June or the beginning of July)? Well in some warmer places than here, sometimes it will appear in May and that's not so far away. Furthermore it might be good to make some preparations before they start hatching. Scouting out your favorite streams for big trout as mentioned before. There are many nice patterns that imitate this big mayfly now. I guess that the preferences are quite different when it comes to which fly to use. Many tips and patterns can be seen watching the video "Mayfly Madness". This video was made by Johan Klingberg and Ulf Börjesson. They scouted a lot of streams during three seasons making this video. Here comes two links to trailers of that video:



          Here (in the second trailer) you can see a wonderful trout being caught and released in a pretty small stream. Well that kind of rounds off this post so until the next one ...

Kind greetings,
Mats Olsson

onsdag 3 april 2013

An Illusion Of Life - One Of The Most Important Triggers

The Black Spider

          I've been fascinated by the starlings neck feather for quite some time. While reading older books about fly fishing it's inevitable to stumble patterns including this very feather. The Black Spider made known by W. C. Stewart in his book "The Perfect Angler", is a beautiful creation just to look at. The thin green sparkling barbs gives a very distinct illusion of life, being used on a dry fly or as in this case a spider. The fly above is tied like Stewart did, winding the feather together with the brown silk thread backwards which makes it pretty durable. I remember from Stewart's book that he mentions that this fly is somewhat overdressed but that it will be perfect after catching a dozen trout on it (might be wrong about the exact number but I think you catch my drift anyway). It certainly seems that the trout were more numerous at that time. I'm more than happy to take one trout to hand.

          How many of us haven't started out using flies that are so overdressed that the material used would be sufficient for five flies? In one of his books Vincent Marinaro wrote something like that about flies in the tackle stores. But after having caught a number of trout, that have chewed away some of the material, the flies become more efficient, why? I think that the answer is that they have become more lifelike; giving an illusion of life since the hook isn't any longer stuffed with material so it becomes almost static. I think that is the reason that CDC-flies are constantly gaining ground as a material used to tie flies. The material in itself is almost a living matter. I've been using flymphs as if they were regular dry flies and it seems to me that the trout take them with the utmost confidence that it's a food item. So in my opinion it's well worth taking into account to what degree our flies have an illusion of life that might trigger the spookiest of trout to take the fly. Well thats about it for now so until next post ...

Friendly greetings,
Mats Olsson