"Rediscovering" Old Patterns

Discussion in 'Fly Tying' started by Thom Collins, Jul 6, 2013.

  1. Chad Lewis

    Chad Lewis NEVER wonder what to do with your free time

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    Thom, good question. My newest old fly is the McGinty. Great bluegill fly. Thanks to Atomic Dog for that one.

    I fish a lot of soft hackles these days, usually as a dropper. I notice the dropper gets the nod most of the time. Of course soft hackles are some of the oldest style flies in existence. Makes my mind gooey thinking someone standing in a river three or four hundred years ago was doing exactly what I do, thinking about the exact same things, looking at the same fish and possibly the same scenery.
     
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  2. GAT

    GAT Dumbfounded

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    Speaking of traditional, the latest issue of Fly Fisherman includes an article by Charlie Craven in regards to fly pattern proportions.... the GRHE is one of the examples used in the article. I know the traditional proportions for patterns and kind'a use them as a rule of thumb but as I tie fishing flies more than display patterns, I sometimes push the proportions envelope. ...I don't really think the fish give a ratz-ass about pattern proportions. At least I don't think they do...

    405005351.jpg
     
  3. Mark Mercer

    Mark Mercer Member

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    I some what agree Gene, except if you are tying a size 16 GRHE or a 18 BWO dry and you use larger then the correct size of materials you just end up with a size 12 or 14 fly tied on a size 16 or 18 hook, which kind of defeats the purpose of matching the size of something. Most of the time it probably doesn't matter as much with nymphs but I think it is a bigger problem with dries.....
     
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  4. GAT

    GAT Dumbfounded

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    I agree.
     
  5. Richard Olmstead

    Richard Olmstead BigDog

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    Early last year I was talking with an acquaintance, who grew up years ago in southern Colorado, and he asked if I had ever heard of a fly called the "JH Special." He said it was THE fly for the Gunnison river 50 years ago, when he was a kid. I started a thread on this forum to see if anyone knew anything about it (http://www.washingtonflyfishing.com/forum/index.php?threads/jh-special.65827/), and, after a few months, someone discovered the thread and sent in a couple of pics of a fly from an old fly box from that era and from that part of Colorado.

    This spring I tied up a few and discovered on a western WA lowland lake that they work for coastal cutts.

    D

    P4060057.jpg
     
  6. Guy Gregory

    Guy Gregory Active Member

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    The Renegade will no longer catch cutthroat.
     
  7. Jim Speaker

    Jim Speaker Active Member

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    When I was a kid my grandpa (Carl Nilsson) taught me to tie, and introduced me to the man that was Roy Patrick's friend, that took over his shop after his passing. (if anyone remembers his name I'd heartily thank you) I learned to tie at his kitchen table on a Thompson Model-A with a copy of the Patrick's Fly Shop pattern book. I found it disconcerting that when I walked in there as an adult, Jimmy knew nothing of that old pattern book and had never even heard of a Montana Bucktail. Never went back... not the same shop as it was - all about thousands spent on rod building materials these days was my take. No time for me and my Montana Bucktails that kinda sounded like what I might mean is a stimulator. Randall Kaufman developed the stimulator from the base pattern Montana Bucktail. Yeah, that's not what I meant. Go back to selling rod building stuff young man... make your dough... my small time needs re golden pheasant tippet, true orange dubbing, and such won't make your fortune. (huh? what's true orange? well it aint orange, pal... and you don't sell it)

    There was a saying in that old fly tying book that had been forgotten, referring to coastal cutthroat if my memory hasn't completely failed, it said: "If they won't take a Montana bucktail you might as well go home."

    Well... it's a fine old pattern. And, in my youth I believe the saying, as it was what I tied on when all else was failing - and it usually produced - or I'd go home.

    I was well pleased to find that my new bud and recent comrade on the little Deschutes not only knew of them, but to my utter surprise produced one from his box and started nailing coastal cutties on it. If a day on Lake Crescent hadn't already solidified our friendship, this miraculous production of a mostly forgotten but stellar pattern from his box with no ado at all, me gaping that someone on the planet actually knew of it - this produced a solid "RIGHT ON" from an old part of me that goes way back to grandpa's kitchen table and a thompson model A.
     
  8. Tim Cottage

    Tim Cottage Formerly tbc1415

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    Jim would you please post a picture of the Montana Bucktail. I'm not finding the pattern in Patrick's book, Tie Your Own Flies.
    Maybe its in another book by Roy Patrick.

    Thanks
    TC
     
  9. Jim Speaker

    Jim Speaker Active Member

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    [​IMG]

    Here's one I found online (I'm at work...) Kinda a sloppy tie, but this is the pattern.
     
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  10. Jim Speaker

    Jim Speaker Active Member

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  11. GAT

    GAT Dumbfounded

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    That's right. If you have any, you may as well toss them in the garbage. If it doesn't have CDC on it somewhere, there is no way it will catch a trout.
     
  12. Jim Speaker

    Jim Speaker Active Member

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    CDC is soooo last year... nowadays if it's not purple it will only offend the fish.
     
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  13. GAT

    GAT Dumbfounded

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    For awhile it had to be a "cripple" or fergetaboutit.
     
  14. bitterroot

    bitterroot Love vintage graphite!

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  15. Jim Speaker

    Jim Speaker Active Member

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    This thread has me wanting to tie some flies from my youth - can't wait for my Pacific Northwest Fly Patterns book to arrive so I can wax nostalgic as I tie Parmachene Belles, California Coachmans, Royal Coachmans, Carrots, etc. Heck I might even have to tie a Cow Dung just say I caught a fish on a Cow Dung!