Pale Evening Dun hatch ... I'm at a loss

Zak

WFF Premium
If you're open to it you could also try swinging a soft hackle through where you're seeing rises... something in a similar size/color; they may take it as an emerger.
Like a pale watery wingless, maybe.
 

Shad

Active Member
I started tying some Purple Haze recently, because I wanted to up my dry fly game. Those have been effective anywhere mayflies are moving, and in most places where they aren't, too. Got lots of attention during a recent evening dun hatch. I was fishing a size 16, which was about 2 sizes bigger (and a lot more purple) than the naturals.

Might be worth a shot.
 

kpb

WFF Premium
Craig Mathews of Blue Ribbon flies has good tying videos. Check out the Improved Sparkle Dun vid. Good info on how to stand up the wing and keeping things simple by using your tying thread for the abdomen.
 

East Coaster

Active Member
I know the focus of this thread so far as been the flies, but I didn't see you mention what size tippet you're using. You mentioned 5x leader and another 3-4 ft of tippet. You also mentioned catching fish in the riffles but not the calm, smooth water. If you're not using 6x or (even better) 7x, I'd try that - maybe you're not getting a natural drift and that might be why they are refusing your flies. Just a hunch. Good luck!
 

PV_Premier

Active Member
Best fly IME for this situation is a Quigleys Hackle Stacker in the pink color. Great crossover fly between an emerger and a parachute dry. Can be a nightmare to see in low light, tie it off the back of a bigger sighter fly with 12-14" of tippet and set on anything within a 12" radius of the fly you can see.

What you're probably seeing is actually PMDs not PEDs. They're very different bugs with a different appearance in the film.
 

Hendodesign

Active Member
I know the focus of this thread so far as been the flies, but I didn't see you mention what size tippet you're using. You mentioned 5x leader and another 3-4 ft of tippet. You also mentioned catching fish in the riffles but not the calm, smooth water. If you're not using 6x or (even better) 7x, I'd try that - maybe you're not getting a natural drift and that might be why they are refusing your flies. Just a hunch. Good luck!


I’m gonna have to bring my cheaters to tie up 6 and 7x ... I’ll give it a try. It’s one of those new challenges the river tosses at you and being someone who ties flies it was a natural first place to ask.
 

Hendodesign

Active Member
Craig Mathews of Blue Ribbon flies has good tying videos. Check out the Improved Sparkle Dun vid. Good info on how to stand up the wing and keeping things simple by using your tying thread for the abdomen.

There are a ton of great videos on his site. Thanks for the recommend.
 

Shad

Active Member
Craig Mathews of Blue Ribbon flies has good tying videos. Check out the Improved Sparkle Dun vid. Good info on how to stand up the wing and keeping things simple by using your tying thread for the abdomen.
I think the simple, small thread body is what makes the Purple Haze effective (I tied them in a few different colors for fun, and they all seem to work pretty well). We agree sparse is good. Thread's about as sparse as it gets.
 

Riogrande King

WFF Premium
From the size of the bugs that you've described you might be seeing Trico male duns coming off ahead of the next day's festivities. The little bastards do make for difficult fishing.

A ploy that I've found works whenever fish are on any tiny stuff at dusk is in the "so crazy it just might work" category- a size-14 black-winged trude. I have a bit of fluorescence in the tail which seems to assist in low light.

Can't tell you how many times this has amazingly turned the trick after hours of so-so fishing throwing patterns that better imitate whichever tiny duns are on the water.

Hold off on this until dusk when the water surface turns into a mirror and please report back.
 

Bob Newman

Active Member
That’s helpful to see. How do you guys tie in the wing and keep the body slim?

View attachment 251581
Picking the right deer hair is very important. The hair needs to be hollow so that you can compress it. If you have a local shop, look for hair labeled compara dun. For the size flies you are talking about the hair also needs to have short black tips. The black part is not hollow so by minimizing the length of the black tips you have more hollow hair.

The second most important thing is to not use too much hair.
 

Hendodesign

Active Member
Picking the right deer hair is very important. The hair needs to be hollow so that you can compress it. If you have a local shop, look for hair labeled compara dun. For the size flies you are talking about the hair also needs to have short black tips. The black part is not hollow so by minimizing the length of the black tips you have more hollow hair.

The second most important thing is to not use too much hair.

The one on the right was the last one I tied so I think I’m getting the hang of the right amount of hair and super light dubbing. And the hair that I'm using is comparadun deer hair. Learned on the one on the left that my loon uv flow definitely changes the color of the dubbing quite a bit.

930603EE-895D-4ED9-8D10-09DAD7D2AC81.jpeg
 
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steve s

WFF Premium
Those flies look great! When I’m fishing smaller dries on heavily fished waters, I like to start with a cripple. Something similar to a Quigley style cripple. I feel that it is something not quite as common as a standard style dry and maybe the fish haven’t seen as many and might be willing to rise.
 

Hendodesign

Active Member
Those flies look great! When I’m fishing smaller dries on heavily fished waters, I like to start with a cripple. Something similar to a Quigley style cripple. I feel that it is something not quite as common as a standard style dry and maybe the fish haven’t seen as many and might be willing to rise.

That's a great point. I feel with the increased pressure the urban river has received this season the fishing has not been for the faint of heart. I think the fact that I tie my own has helped me catch fish on every trip ... most of the time they are small but I've caught a few bigger trout on home rolled perdigon patters. I've just been really challenged by the dusk hatches and they all look to the surface. I occasionally get a greedy dink on a searching pattern, but matching these little cream suckers has been a PITA! In the end the river is forcing me to up my game. The collective knowledge on here has been incredible and glad Im not the only one who has been challenged with this.
 

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