Your Favorite

Discussion in 'Fly Swaps' started by lastcall, Jun 23, 2004.

  1. lastcall Member

    Posts: 176
    Bellingham, Wa, USA.
    Ratings: +6 / 0
    Your Favorite "Go To" Fly

    I am in the Beginners "When all else fails, I use this fly" swap. I really do not have a fly that fits the requirements. So I need some help. What is your favorite? I really don't want to pick a recipe out of a book, magizine or web site. I would like to use a recipe that someone considers a go to fly.

    Thanks in advance for the help and suggestions.

    Ed Dahl
  2. Stephen Rice Senior Member

    Posts: 1,479
    Wasilla, Alaska
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    unfortunately most of my "when all else fails, I use this fly" are in magazines, recipe books and web sites. Although it does depend on the species. what kind of fish you talking about??
  3. Bright Rivers Member

    Posts: 513
    Bellevue, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Gotta go with a parachute Adams or a royal trude.
  4. luv2fly2 Active Member

    Posts: 1,568
    Ratings: +28 / 0
    i think elevation has a bit to do with it. just got back from the mountains and the sixpack was in the basin the wooly bugger might be the ticket. on the elk river in bc a dry fly will be the best. on the ocean maybe a clouser?
  5. ceviche Active Member

    Posts: 2,312
    Shoreline, Washington, U.S.A.
    Ratings: +42 / 0
    I assume "Go To" Fly means "There-is-no-hatch-going-on-that-I-can-discern-what-shall-I-do?" fly.

    Olive and black woolly bugger--gold-ribbed for sunny days.
    Olive peacock Carey Special for when the above fly fails.

    Muddler minnow
    (Yeah, and try to tie that!)
  6. Mike Etgen Not Quite A Luddite, But Can See One From Here

    Posts: 1,433
    Port Orchard, Washington, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    New River Mike

    For stream-searching for trout, I'd agree with the Carey Special and add the BH Prince Pheasant Tail and/or the Gold-Ribbed Hare's Ear. All textbook flies, I think, though I haven't yet tied the Prince.

  7. Luke Filmer Member

    Posts: 245
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    When all else fails... I use a black leech pattern I have developed that I strip irregularly, and slowly on the bottom. If they are in there it usually gets a reaction.
  8. Curtis King Fish Magnet

    Posts: 219
    Richland, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I just have to throw in my 2 cents worth. If you want "the" go to fly, I suggest a bead head olive wolly bugger with a marabou tail. Why? First and foremost they have a lot of action because 1) the bead head allows you to use a drop and rise presentation and 2) the tail flows with ease helping to entice strikes. They can be dropped and moved very slowly, or stripped very fast. They can be fished on floating or sinking line, and one VERY big advantage is they can be trimmed to mimic other bugs. Example: I was fishing Quail lake and spotted a 24+ rainbow. I tossed my bugger at it three times without notice, then by coincidence a damsel fly landed on my arm. I took out my scissors and trimmed all the palmered hackle except near the bead so that it looked like the damsel. It had not even hit the water when the trout freight trained it. Bass love them too. If you could only carry one fly, the olive wolly bugger would be my recommendation.

  9. Randy Diefert aka: Longears

    Posts: 575
    Coupeville, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Olive or black Carey bugger. Great searching pattern. second Red Doc Spratley
    Long Ears
  10. Jerry Daschofsky Moderator

    Posts: 7,717
    Graham, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +659 / 5
    Mine has always been a bunny leech. Either in black, olive, or pink (yup, pink for just about any species actually).
  11. boxcar Scott Willison

    Posts: 268
    Bellingham, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +7 / 0
    Ouch! A question like this is really tough on a guy that routinely brings no less than 5 or 6 fully stuffed boxes with him to any given destination. It's that perpetual fear that one day I will encounter a situation where the trout refuse everything but that one magic fly tucked into an obscure corner of nymph box #3 or I stumble upon a mystery pod of summerruns determinedly slurping little PMD's...Of course I have yet to encounter anything of the like in nearly 20 years of fishing, but yet that irrational fear hovers over me like a stink. I know... I need counseling.

    Anyway, to answer your actual question, it does sort of depend on where I'm fishing and what I'm fishing for. It has been said that the venerable woolly bugger has caught just about every fish that swims (indeed I've caught trout, bass, salmon, steelhead, even tarpon on them), but that doesn't necessarily mean I'm going to tie on a bugger first thing every time. For trout fishing in most western rivers I like a BH Prince or Lambroughton's Flashback Caddis as a point fly with something smaller, like a Lightnin'Bug, Copper John, or Pheasant Tail as a dropper. That is, unless something more specific appears to be going on hatchwise. In a lake, if I cannot surmise any visible hatch, my general go to fly guessed it, some sort of woolly bugger, usually black or olive.

    If you're looking for one fly to tie for the swap, my personal favorite would be the Flashback Caddis. It's a great buggy river pattern with all sorts of fish appeal.

    Hook: TMC 3671 or 5262 for a longer shank (#12-#16 wt.)
    Thread: Brown or Black
    Head: Gold bead
    Tail: Hungarian partridge
    Rib: Copper wire
    Shellback: Silver tinsel
    Body: Rabbit or Squirrel SLF dubbing (color of choice)
    Legs: Hungarian partridge tied on each side
    Thorax: Darker shade of rabbit or squirrel SLF dubbing

  12. Zen Piscator Supporting wild steelhead, gravel to gravel.

    Posts: 3,076
    Missoula, MT
    Ratings: +13 / 0
  13. cmtundra New Member

    Posts: 514
    Tacoma, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    I'll stick w/my go-to's for river trout, since that's mostly what I do.
    Dry--Golden Stone/stimulator (Parachute Adams is a close second)
    Wet--Pheasant Tail Nymph

    Good luck tying a golden stone. I haven't even attempted that one yet.
    Chris B.
  14. 2 Much Fishin New Member

    Posts: 239
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    For lakes my go-to fly this year is a fly called the half-back. If you search I am sure you can find it somewhere. It has saved my day more than a few times this year, it is a simple tie and like I said I have caught a TON of fish on it.

    As far as streams go, I am not the person to ask, I dont really fish them.
  15. XstreamAngler ...has several mistresses.

    Posts: 667
    Seattle, wa, King.
    Ratings: +1 / 0
    It is known as the "Jebus" fly, over the years it has evolved into my "go to" for all trout species, lakes, ponds, canals, streams, creeks, rivers, bogs, and spawning beds. Reel men believe in Jebus!

    "A stinky finger makes stinky flies" Drunk guy, Big Hole River MT., 2003
  16. Ron Eagle Elk Active Member

    Posts: 1,740
    Yelm, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +110 / 0

    If I told ya, then I'd have to come up with new bonus flies.

  17. Denny Active Member

    Posts: 4,046
    Seattle, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +46 / 0
    Gotta be a bugger.

    The toughest choice is trying to decide olive, brown, or black, not necessarily in that order. :thumb
  18. worldanglr Member

    Posts: 787
    Duvall, Washington, USA.
    Ratings: +6 / 0
    I'd have to say it depends on where I'm fishing, but most of the time lately it seems to be a Spring Creek Special in either black or olive.


    Unique one on one fly fishing field courses...

    "Our battered suitcases were piled on the sidewalk again; we had longer ways to go. But no matter, the road is life."

    - Jack Kerou
  19. Old Man Just an Old Man

    Posts: 21,601
    Dillon, Mt
    Ratings: +1,653 / 0
    My go to fly is a Elk Hair Caddis,a Stimulator,a humpy,Adams. Or what ever they happen to be biting on at the time. Dry fly fishing the only way to go.:thumb :thumb :thumb :thumb :thumb :thumb Or is there any other way:dunno

  20. Kent Lufkin Remember when you could remember everything?

    Posts: 7,136
    Not sure
    Ratings: +1,225 / 0
    I fished Rattlesnake tonight and went to my go to fly: a no-bead gold ribbed hare's ear. By the time I got off at about 8:45pm, the GHRE had bagged 7 of my 8 fish, including two 16"+ triploids.IMHO, the key to the GHRE is to NOT tie it with a bead head. I think fish that get a lot of pressure have become wary of bead heads and other flashy stuff.