Fishing soft hackle flies in stillwater

#16
Some great looking flies there, Mark!

As to how to fish soft hackles – one reason I like using them is the incredible variety of ways to present them. Whatever the fish want to see that day, your soft hackles can do it.

At a gin-clear lowland lake last week they wanted it slow and realistic. A slow hand-twist retrieve with an occasional pause to let it sink was the trick. Took me all morning trying various retrieves to figure this out, but once I got their attention, it was a fish on every cast.

I guess what I'm saying is...try everything. Heck, even a totally unrealistic fast strip, or trolling like the devil is on my heels, have both worked in the past. Watch what's happening on the lake. If a hatch is on, they might take it rising or falling. If damselflies are out, cast out from near a reedy spot on the shoreline and walk it in like a nymph coming up from the depths to emerge.

Soft hackle wet flies are some of the most versatile patterns in the box.
 

Kent Lufkin

Remember when you could remember everything?
#18
Yes I was wondering if your close to shore wet flies meant damsel nymph size or midge size?
Jay, I don't have much patience for bobber staring so I'm a cast-and-strip kinda fisherman. One of my favorite patterns is a peacock and partridge on a size 12 hook.

K
 

Topstoy

In search of Trout
#19
Very nice, nice to see this shared info and advise on presentation. So many folks want to hold their cards very close to there chest. This helps broaden my options, thank you!
 

bakerite

Active Member
#20
One of my favorite flies from my childhood was a peacock herl Carey special. they seem to work form size 8 long shank all the way down to 14 or smaller. On the small ones I sub partridge for the pheasent rump. These work great and imitate almost anything from dragonflies to chironimids.
 
#21
Hey mark what is that material you used on the body of that last fly? Exuse my ignorance but I am new to tieing. Some times I still can't believe fish are taking Flys that I tied.
 

Drifter

Active Member
#22
Red tungsten bead - light partridge soft hackle feather from a cape -
shinny clear christmas tree tensil from a fabric store tied with white thread so it is light colored.

The picture is not good, that clear shinny body has depth that makes it look like you can see right in it! you can also change thread color to darken or turn it different colors from underneath. by it's self it has a light green-olive hue. tungston softy\'s 005.jpg THIS FLY SHOWS HOW CLEAR IT IS MUCH BETTER.
 

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Kcahill

Active Member
#26
LOL, I said they liked orange and partridge. I didn't say they would all be big. Glad you got to fish them. Hope they serve you well.
lol im not complaining, i was surprised on the takes though. They really went after those things, I guess with the dragonfly's hatching right now they figured they were dragonfly nymphs.
 
#27
Who could know what goes through the mind of a fish, but if they were taking it hard, it tells me that they are taking it as something that looks good to eat. Softies could represent so many things. The bottom line is a fish on the other end of the leader.
 

Drifter

Active Member
#28
I am heading over to eastern oregon again next week to fish a few lakes. last trip there was a tan and brown chironomid that the fish loved at thief valley res. and I only had like three flies to match the hatch with me, well fishing for a week and a half with very little flies took it's toll on the flies and on me!

So I tied some tan and brown in different colors so that I can change up on them and also tied some with soft hackle thorax's, over east some of these fish like a dubbed with legs look on they're mids so tied some up in different forms. I also tied some black and brown softies for mids and calibeatis hatch matching on a different lake. just thought I would share! I had not done many brown mids and ran into an epic hatch of them and was unprepared darn-it -NOT THIS TIME!
boise la grande trip 087.jpg boise la grande trip 086.jpg

Normally I would tie very thin mids but this hatch had a very fat body and shorter then usual! the legs and thorax were tan and the body was brown with tan rib. hope the fish like them!
 
#29
I am heading over to eastern oregon again next week to fish a few lakes. last trip there was a tan and brown chironomid that the fish loved at thief valley res. and I only had like three flies to match the hatch with me, well fishing for a week and a half with very little flies took it's toll on the flies and on me!

So I tied some tan and brown in different colors so that I can change up on them and also tied some with soft hackle thorax's, over east some of these fish like a dubbed with legs look on they're mids so tied some up in different forms. I also tied some black and brown softies for mids and calibeatis hatch matching on a different lake. just thought I would share! I had not done many brown mids and ran into an epic hatch of them and was unprepared darn-it -NOT THIS TIME!
View attachment 15653 View attachment 15654

Normally I would tie very thin mids but this hatch had a very fat body and shorter then usual! the legs and thorax were tan and the body was brown with tan rib. hope the fish like them!
Those bugs look right nice, Mark. I am betting that you will take quite a few. I hope so anyway. Looking forward to a report when you get back. Good luck and tight lines.