Thursday, January 25, 2018

I Need More Room In My Hook Drawer

About a month ago I asked a question...that question was did Sylvester Nemes ever create a soft hackle fly. I received a couple of responses and they both they were basically the same. The only flies that he created were Syl's Midge and a salmon fly called Salars Nemesis. The background was sketchy with a photo of the fly on the dust cover of a book authored by Nemes, a photo that sort of created more questions. Well I managed to find a fly tied by Nemes and I feel confident that I can now tie it properly...not so fast Alan. The color of the body material is somewhat different from his original. Now this could be from natural aging, or it's a color that he had dyed himself.

Now what this created was a quest to bring these salmon flies down to size to enable them to be fished for trout. I have over the last weeks tied a few of these flies on smaller hooks. My search for the perfect hook has been narrowed down to three. I tried to keep both the traditional salmon hook but finding a small size was a challenge. I selected two brands, the Partridge N2 low water salmon hook size 10...and the Saber 7055 size 8. Another hook that has worked is the TMC 200R size 8. I have fished a couple of these flies but an actual true test won't be done until the weather warms and conditions better.


Salars Nemesis tied on a Partridge hook.



Mickey Finn variant tied on a Saber hook.


Another variant, this is a Royal Coachman.


A no name fly, tied on a salmon hook.


A very subdued colored salmon fly tied on the TMC 200R hook.


Here are the three hooks that I used in the patterns above. Top hook, Partridge N2 size 10...Middle Saber 7055 size 8...Bottom, TMC 200R size 8.

Fun times are ahead. I can't wait.









30 comments:

  1. Those are showstoppers, Alan. Outstanding! I found Nemes when I was a teenager and I've been a disciple ever since. Love your theme and the choice of smaller hooks for these patterns.

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    Replies
    1. mike
      Thanks
      Mike most of us read some of Nemes works but I for one really took up fishing these flies at a later stage.
      That Partridge hook is sweet.

      Delete
  2. Alan, Really nice patterns. I am a fan of the partridge hook as well.

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    Replies
    1. Ralph Long
      Thanks
      Ralph I like that hook, pricey compared to the Saber. Belvoirdale has on in size 12, may check that one out.

      Delete
  3. Unless I'm mistaken, Sylvester Nemes created (or at least honed and gave name to) a particularly famous soft hackled midge pattern that takes cues from George Griffith's dry fly, but is regardless a fairly typical soft hackled fly that can be fished both wet and dry.

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    Replies
    1. RM Lytle
      Thanks
      Rowan you are correct...Syl's Midge is his also.
      I would guess there may be one or two more, but that info would have to come from someone who was close to him.

      Delete
  4. Replies
    1. George
      Thanks
      I appreciate your comment.

      Delete
  5. I can see I need to do some more reading. Nice flies Alan!

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    Replies
    1. Howard Levett
      Thanks
      Howard that's what long winter nights are for...especially for us seniors.

      Delete
  6. Beautiful flies, Alan. No one ties them better than you and trout will be on them before you know it.

    Best Regards, Sam

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    Replies
    1. Parachute Adams
      Thanks
      Sam I guess I figured it out, post accomplished.
      Can't wait to test them on some river come spring.

      Delete
  7. Fine looking flies, Alan. I especially like that Mickey Finn variant. Not a common fly here in OZ. A friend in the US sent me a large one that he had tied and the stocked rainbows at a nearby lake were queuing up to take it until I lost the fly on a snag.I like using old style wet flies like the Coachman, Wickham's Fancy and the March Brown but it's not easy to find them here. Too many Buggers and similar beasties that are popular and admittedly they do take trout.
    Cheers,
    Steve.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Steve Hynes
      Thanks
      Steve the Mickey Finn is a fly that does not get tremendous publicity here, but I'll bet it gets it's share of water time as well as fish. No question the "bugger" works...I've heard it referred to as being the best soft-hackle ever created. By the way the "Matuka" is one of Australia's finest flies.

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    2. I guess that the woolly bugger is a soft hackle on steroids!The matuka patterns are or were a popular fly here in OZ. The matuka is supposedly of New Zealand origin, it's name being the Maori word for bittern, the feathers that the originals were tied from. I still sometimes use the Red and Black Matuka, especially in lakes were there are a lot of European Perch.

      Cheers,
      Steve.

      Delete
    3. Steve, thanks for the clarification.
      The Matuka style is effective. I don't know why I don't tie them.....

      Delete
  8. Outstanding flies Alan,as always. I think you need to test drive those on the Farny!!

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    Replies
    1. TROUT1
      Thanks
      Pete I'm looking forward to doing just that. Perhaps mid May for a starting date. That Bridge pool is on the list.

      Delete
  9. Really well done, Alan. These lovelies should do very well for attracting the brookies you love to pursue. As for the hooks, I think that the 200R would make a very good rendition of a salmon hook if you heated the eye and bent it up a bit. This would allow you to "make" suitable hooks in much smaller sizes.

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    Replies
    1. William Shuck
      Thanks
      Bill I tried to bend that hook but it did not work out right. You suggest heating it first, that may work out better. I will try it.

      Delete
  10. Beautiful "Fancies", Alan. Could they have been designed to catch anglers with catching fish as an added benefit? One of my best memories is catching a Brookie, in the Poconos that jumped clear of the water and took a Mickey Finn as he re-entered the tea colored pool. Keep up the good work, Alan. Its appreciated.

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    Replies
    1. John Dornik
      Thanks
      John, Pocono's brookies and the Mickey Finn, you talk about going together. I'll bet there's thousands of great stories out there about the Mickey Finn.

      Delete
  11. Alan
    Beautiful patterns and nice work at the vice---thanks for sharing

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    Replies
    1. Bill Trussell
      Thanks
      Bill do you any of them would work on the Sipsey?

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  12. Lovely ties! I ordered salmon fly hooks (my local is out) last Sunday night for a different style (low-water steelhead Spade flies used for trout) and stumbled across older style soft-hackles (dabblers) that Steve illustrated over on his site. Looks like it is a good thing I laid in some salmon hooks!

    Between you and Steve Bird, I'm all excited for swinging new flies for early-season trout .... instead of nymphing. Let me say: I hate nymphing. Yes I do it and yes, it catches fish but I always feel like a kid with a bobber even with an indicator dry tied on ... My tight line nymphing skill requires little line out and that puts me in streams in the spring where i cannot safely wade. Thus, the indicator.

    This is going to be a good spring! Nice ties! Great snaps.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. spike
      Thanks
      Just wondering what hooks did you order.
      Steve has some beautiful patterns, one or two may make it into my box.
      Nymphing is something I never took to. Like you said it's productive but not "charming"....I can't wait 'til spring, it's going to be special.

      Delete
  13. Alan, I have to laugh at the title of your post, I have tried to simplify my fly selection and my selection of hooks. I now have 5 boxes with 21 spaces that are filled plus I'm working on a sixth. I'm not doing very well. I've come to the conclusion this just the way it's supposed to be. Your ties are beautiful, I exspecially like the variants. Those have brook trout written all over them. Thankyou for the post.

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    Replies
    1. Brad Basehore
      Thanks
      Brad I like you have tried to downsize and it works for a while, but the urge to get that one more size creeps in and you know what happens next. I will say you may have me when it comes to hooks as well as organization.

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  14. Wow Alan!
    I am still in awe of your tying abilities and the way you can bring together materials in such a pleasing way! Let's call this your style! Absolutely gorgeous on all counts! I particularly like the very last salmon fly you have pictured!
    Keep them coming Alan!
    Doug

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    Replies
    1. Dougsden
      Thanks
      Doug, Petrucci freestyle.

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