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View Poll Results: What is your favorite early season fly, hook soze

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  • Stonefly nymph

    5 22.73%
  • Wet caddis

    2 9.09%
  • Gold Ribbed Hares Ear

    14 63.64%
  • March Brown streamer

    0 0%
  • Wooly Bugger

    4 18.18%
  • Royal Coachman

    1 4.55%
  • Hook size: 8

    2 9.09%
  • 10

    3 13.64%
  • 12

    7 31.82%
  • 14

    8 36.36%
  • 16

    4 18.18%
  • 18

    1 4.55%
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  1. #1
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    What are your favorite early season flies

    The first cast for me has resulted in a tangle, a lost fly in a tree, a fly stuck on a rock. Once in a great while there is the "bang" of a big trout taking that first offering. Which one, what size?

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    David Bershtein, www.handifly.com

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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    I would likely choose none of the above. Not sure what you mean by "early season", but I typically think of times like now into early April and we have pronounced hatches of LBS, BWOs, and pretty soon, Quill Gordons and blue quills followed closely by Hendricksons. I'd be more likely to fish an imitation of one of those hatches over some of the others you listed. One thing I learned long ago was not to decide which fly to tie on in advance. Get down to the water and let conditions dictate what fly(s) you will start out with and make changes from there.

    Hook sizes will match the hatch.

    A sinking fly is closer to Hell - ​Unknown

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    tomfly (03-12-2013)

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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    I agree with Rusty. I do not have a favorite at anytime of the season. I tend to let the conditions set the tone on what I think will work. If you are showing favoritism to a certain pattern or size of a fly. You are setting yourself up for failure. I can honestly say that my favorite fly is the one that catches fish at that particular moment in time. When the fish decide not to take it any longer, it is not my favorite anymore. I have learned it is not “the fly” but the understanding of “what fly?”

    "Hatchery fish have the same colors, but they always seem muted like bad reproductions of great art." Bill Barich

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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    you forgot early willy wiggler and BSM (baetis streamer midge) I like fishing them both in size 3

    "We are what we repeatedly do. Success, therefore is not an act, but a habit." ~Adam Frey

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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    Nice thread.....handjob.....

    Hell no and it aint over now.......

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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    can you please go into detail about your handifly invention?

    "We are what we repeatedly do. Success, therefore is not an act, but a habit." ~Adam Frey

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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    It is the early season now. I fished on monday and did great with a #18 tungsten bead u.v. high test hares ear tied with pink thread. It gave the fly a pink hue. Through the morning and when the Baetis(bwo) started hatching, I did very well with a quill body hackle stacker with a peacock thorax.
    But what Rusty said about going to stream and then tying on your flies once you have evaluated the situation at hand, is good idea that every fly fisherman should follow. Even more important is to do your homework before you even go. A knowledge of hatches will catch you more fish.


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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    I chose the GRHE from the selection since it is one of the flies that I do use in the early season (and mid, and late). I prefer the copper version which I call the Copperhead but GRHE is close enough. The LBS dry, grey and tan caddis dries, midges, and pheasant tail nymph are regulars during the early season conditions permitting. I also can't wait for the first Quill Gordons, Blue Quills, and Hendricksons.

    NJPB

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    Rusty Spinner (03-14-2013)

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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    When EBS have been active, a #16 black bunny stone dry w/ #18 black soft hackle (starling) on 36'' dropper fished up and across stream dry and then sunk and fished on a swing as it starts to drag.


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    Thursthouse (03-14-2013)

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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    There are a lot of early season styles other than match-the-hatch. When water is low and clear match the hatch may be needed to fool them. But early season opens other doors.

    The big gaudy wet fly approach: One early season approach is to use big colorful winged wets in the 6 to 8 range. The ones Brodheadscreek posted will do fine, but you don't have to go that fancy. You do need to get down though and may need a split shot or a sinking head. Think like a steelheader - a group that lives for big trout in cold water.

    Fan the water with bucktails: Tie on a bucktail and start covering water. Toss a streamer under downed trees, along foam lines and seams, across the head or tail of a pool. Bucktails are the old school choice, but wooly buggers, Shenks white minnows, and a whole host of other streamers in the 6 to 8 range will do. This approach allows you to cover a lot of water and see how your favorite streams are doing this year. Even flashes from fish chasing your streamer can help you plan later outings.

    Junk flies: Cold water trout (especially stockies, but the wild ones too) can fall for junk flies like worms (Infamous Pink Worm, Chamios worm), Green Weenies, Red Hots ( a green weenie in red), sucker spawn, CJ Nymphs (gold bead, pink marabou tail, peacock herl body, partridge or hen soft hackle collar), Pink Squirrel, and a host of others. You can experiment, but different local favorites have a way of catching more fish. Most of junk flies are easy to tie and fun to use. Even though you're using wild flies, it pays to change up now and again because even stupid fish get wise to a pattern after a while.

    Adams, regular or parachute 18 - 12: Most early mayflies are gray - hence the old moniker the "April Grays". You can carry BWOs, Hendricksons (male and female), Blue Quills, mahogany Quills, Quill Gordons, etc or have an 18, 16, 14, and 12 Adams and be right 90% of the time.

    In the spirit of full disclosure, I'm an old fart who thinks hatch the hatch all the time is boring and not as fun as mixing it up.


  14. #11
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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    Jeff,

    Don't be so hard on yourself. You are a very exciting Old Fart, and we are proud to have you as a member

    "Give a man a fish and he will ask for tartar sauce and french fries"

    Thomas Sowell

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    flyI4 is offline Fishizzle, I use worms but I'm looking to upgrade!
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    Re: What are your favorite early season flies

    It depends on flow. If its a low water spring, going small has always been best with an rs2 in an 18-22 being a good choice. If the water is high, I like going with streamers fished on a sinking line and slowing dragged in slower water tight to the bank. Also, early season stream choice should vary based on flows during a given spring. Higher water makes the Pa spring creeks and tailwaters more attractive. Low water allows for the freestones to warm up faster and they will fish better and earlier than usual during those years.


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