In a previous post Bill Trussell, "Fishing Through Life" blog inquired about soft hackle flies. In the post I was talking of fishing a sulphur soft hackle, and the success I had with it on that day.
So here I'll tell of the simple materials needed, and I might add inexpensive too. The hardest part of the fly is winding the hackle. That is something that can be overcome in short time with practice.
Above are the hooks I use to tie these flies. There is no order of preference and all work just fine. The first hook is a Mustad 94842, it has an upturned eye. The second hook is a Mustad 9641. This hook is made of a slightly heavie wire and sinks faster. The third hook is a Mustad C53S long curved hook. Its shape gives the look of an emerger.
These are the threads I use, Veevus 10/0. This thread is a thinner and stronger thread. I use various colors. Also used is French Oval tinsel for the rib. The rib adds a little flash as well as protecting the dubbed body of the fly.
For dubbing I use natural opossum fur, as well as synthetic dubbing. I find that the synthetic dubbing is easier to work with then the natural, but the natural gives the fly a spiky natural look.
On some of the soft hackles I'll tie in a bit of this material. It gives this nice UV shine to the fly. I tie in a strand near the head before I tie on the hackle.
This is the hackle. It's a hen back and it has the perfect hackles for these flies. All of the feathers are usable, and the cost is very low.
These are the completed flies tied on the hooks I told you of at the top of this post. The middle fly is tied with the UV ice dub and a fiber can be seen. This shows up well in the water and trout will key in on it.
I hope this helps, and gets you to fish these types of flies. They are very effective.
CLICK IMAGES TO ENLARGE
When fishing this soft hackle in tight quarters where swing retrieve is out of the question are you fishing the fly casting up stream with a high stick" retrieve"?ReplyDelete
Lovely looking pattern.
Ray in those tight quarters I'll drop the fly in front of me and allow the current to take it downstream. When I believe there to be enough line out I'll stop and allow the fly to hang in the current. Strikes can come at any point in the drift, but most come when the fly is moved at the end.
Nice flies Al!ReplyDelete
They work pretty well to John.
nice job Alan! I bet they would work for a caddis emerger too! Have you ever tried a partridge and yellow?ReplyDelete
I'm sure they are close enough to do that. Partridge and Yellow is a staple.
Soft hackles are very productive patterns, as you know. I really think the key to tying them is finding good quality soft hackle material to tie with. Hen necks are some of the best you can get. I usually use Partridge, but then again, not all feathers in a loose package are worth using. Good, clean, job here, Alan!ReplyDelete
Buying the whole saddle gives you a wide variety of feather sizes, and they are not very expensive.
Outstanding job at the bench, this is another pattern I will have to give a try. thanks for sharing
I'm telling you Bill they would work for you.
What size hook would you recommend for MA/CT brookie streams? I really enjoy your blog BT, thanks-Cliff
Cliff, I've taken brookies from small streams on some very big flies, flies so big I wondered what the fish was thinking.
But over all size 10 streamers, and for dries, wets I prefer size 14, but 12 and 16 are OK.
Alan, what's the trick for winding the hackle?ReplyDelete
There's one thing that I consider the most important, Do not put to much tension on the feather when wrapping. This takes practice to get the proper feel. Good hackle pliers are necessary also.
Nice ties Alan! great sulphur imitations.ReplyDelete
They have been working very well.
Great flies Brk Trt! They are very similar to a favorite fly of mine, the Killer Kebari. You cant beat a soft hackle and that little bit of flash is enough to catch a trouts interest with spooking it.ReplyDelete
Nothing overdone, just enough.......simplicity.
My first attempts at tying soft hackles turned out passable, but not very pretty. This helps.ReplyDelete
Most times even the poorly tied ones will work. It's that movement of the soft hackles in the water that draws the strike.
Those are fine looking soft-hackles, Alan. Sulphurs are finally are on the streams around here, and this pattern should be really effective now.ReplyDelete
Same here Walt. The last few outings they have been effective, now for the dries.
Alan, Your tying always makes me sit down at the bench.ReplyDelete
That's good to hear Kurt.