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**** Sunday, April 22,2018–Earth Day***

“They claim this mother of ours, the Earth, for their own use, and fence their neighbors away from  her, and deface her with their buildings and their refuse.”-Chief Sitting Bull – Hunkpapa Lakota Sioux

***Make every day Earth Day–Pick up one piece of trash daily ***

***April 2018 Playmate of the Month is here.*****

 

Today–Sunday April  8, 2018—It remains 7-10 degrees below normal for this time of year. and it seems like spring never arrived or winter refuses to leave. Forecast is for a few fifty deg. days later in the week.. Even tying up a handful of my must have Smallmouth bass for some people couldn’t warm my spirit.

Favorite Smallmouth Flies

Top to Bottom 1. YELLOW Foam Popper, – 2. Root Beer Fly   3.  Black Bunny Leech,  4. Bead Olive Wooly Bugger or Crystal Bugger   5. Chartreuse/White Clouser

These patterns are the ones I use 99.9% of the time. Despite carrying many other patterns these are the ones I count on.

 

mockingbird apple

 

Sunday April 1, 2018—Happy Easter

 

 Black Bunny Leech

 

 

 

 

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The Rabbit Strip Wet Fly

<°)))><  While tying several Splinter Mouse patterns I thought the rabbit fur trimmings would make nice dubbing for a nymph or wet fly. body. The gray- brown fur had eye appeal and I envisioned tying a soft hackle style wet fly with  dubbed bunny fur body and a partridge hackle.

              Ingredients& Ideas

I began thinking about that bunny pattern figuring forget the partridge hackle why not use a very thin strip cut from the original  bunny strip. I could wind it on like a wet fly hackle and tie in some of the some of the fur for the tail. A fly tied with only one piece of material. Once finished the fly would be aptly dubbed “The Rabbit Strip.”  

       The Rabbit Strip  Soft Hackle? Wet Fly

Thread: Tan

Hook:  Size 8 1x long wet fly (Mustad 3906B or equiv)

Tail:  Rabbit Fur fibers

Body:  Natural Brown-Gray Rabbit fur chopped and mixed    

Hackle: Thin Natural Brown-Gray rabbit strip wound on wet fly style

Rib:   Fine Gold wire(optional)

 

Things learned from tying this pattern are that it’s probably easier to cut some fur and spiral the hairs around the head for a collar then using a rabbit strip. Next, using a rabbit strip for the collar makes for a bulky looking head so only the thinnest strips will provide the desired look. Splitting a rabbit strip in half lengthwise can be is a tedious operation. Finally, this pattern is for standard size 10 or larger hook . The bunny strip hair is just too long for anything smaller and beside being more difficult to use and  the fly just doesn’t look good. I plan to tie a few on streamer fly hooks and see how it looks and also tie some in various colors of bunny strips.  I’ll update this post with photos when I do so check back soon.  The finished fly looks good to me and I know it will surely catch fish. What ya think?? <°)))><

Ray

**** March Playmate of the Month is here!

*****Congratulations to  musher Jessie Holmes of Nenana , Alaska for his 7th place finish yesterday at the 2018 Iditarod Dog Sled Race  and also being awarded Rookie Musher of the Year.*****

Today–Sunday…March 18, 2018 –><(((°>  My Rabbit Strip wet fly earlier gave me ideas for other patterns. How about a Crawfish pattern using rabbit strip fur?(Crawbbit) I had some rabbit strips in orange and rusty brown so here is how I used them.  

                               Crawbbits?

 

They may need a little refinement but i’m certain they’ll work. The rabbit collar flowing over the darker body should   give the fly some transparency which s always a good thing when trying to suggest/represent  water creatures.

I had thought this past week  was a good time to tie up some Foam Wing Caddis, Hornbergs and Fran Betters’ “The Usual ” Dry  fly pattern. However my fly tying area has recently become infested with mice.

 

They’re all over my tying desk.  I know from past experience the best way to rid my basement of these rodents is to gather them up then take and toss them into a pond or river. Fish, especially big ones have a fondness for mice regardless of color and are willing to gulp them down. —<°)))><

Today-Wednesday…March 14, 2018 –><(((°>  While tying several Splinter Mouse patterns earlier this week I thought the rabbit fur trimmings would make  nice dubbing for a nymph or wet fly. body. The gray- brown fur had eye appeal and I envisioned tying a soft hackle style wet fly with  dubbed bunny fur body and a partridge hackle.

                 Ingredients& Ideas

I began thinking about that bunny pattern figuring forget the partridge hackle why not use a very thin strip cut from the original  bunny strip. I could wind it on like a wet fly hackle and tie in some of the some of the fur for the tail. A fly tied with only one piece of material. Once finished the fly would be aptly dubbed “The Rabbit Strip.”  

                  The Rabbit Strip Wet Fly

Thread: Tan

Hook:  Size 8 1x long wet fly (Mustad 3906B or equiv)

Tail:  Bunny Fur fibers

Body:  Natural Brown-Gray Bunny fur chopped and mixed    

Hackle: Thin Natural Brown-Gray Bunny strip wound on wet fly style

Rib:   Fine Gold wire(optional)

 

Things learned from tying this pattern are that it’s probably easier to cut some fur and spiral the hairs around the head for a collar then using a rabbit strip. Next, using a rabbit strip for the collar makes for a bulky looking head so only the thinnest strips will provide the desired look. Splitting a rabbit strip in half lengthwise can be is a tedious operation. Finally, this pattern is for standard size 10 or larger hook . The bunny strip hair is just too long for anything smaller and beside being more difficult to use and  the fly just doesn’t look good. I plan to tie a few on streamer fly hooks and see how it looks.  I’ll update this post with photos when I do.  I believe the finished fly looks good and I know it will surely catch fish. What ya think??<°)))><

 

Tuesday March 13, 2018-><(((°> Yesterday mornings  TV morning weatherman  told of a Nor’easter bringing 12-18”of  snow and blizzard like conditions for  today. This meant certain  preparations needed to made to be ready for the storm .I stacked the back porch full with firewood then went to pick up much needed  grocery items like potato chips, soda and coffee. Then I cleaned out the chimney for my wood stove. One last item needed completion to ensure i was ready–go fishing for an hour or so.  If the forecast panned out and a foot or more of snow was dumped on us I probably wouldn’t get out for at least a week.

Storms Final Preparation

So I headed to my local brook to try for a few native Brookies. I only managed one in a little more than a hour. Pushing  7+” he was a nice one for this brook. As I slipped him back in to the 43 deg water I knew my final preparation had been completed.

 

Sunday March 11, 2018->Today<(((°>   As mentioned yesterday I did make it to the New England Saltwater Fishing show in Providence, RI . Al “the Guide” and I wandered aimlessly about for over two hours. Fly fishing gear was at a very minimal however if you were looking for that perfect Cod, Tautog or Fluke rod you would have thought you had died and went to heaven. Despite all this I managed to pick up a handful of fly tying  stuff I just had to have.. Upon returning  home I managed to tie a few flies one of which was a Master Splinter Mouse. I used this pattern to catch the biggest smallie of my life last July.  That Bronzeback was nearly six pounds  so I’ll make sure  to tie a few more.  I think this upcoming week is a good time to tie up more Splinter Mice, Foam Wing Caddis, Hornbergs and Fran Betters’ “The Usual ” Dry  fly  pattern.  That will get me away from nymphs and such. I plan on posting photos of these creations as I go along next week. So come back frequently to check.for photos and updates

Today-Saturday March 9, 2018-><(((°> I’m becoming “tied out” because yesterday I didn’t feel much like tying and only concocted a hand full.  Several  Olive Golden Retrievers  and Stayner Ducktails were tied

               Olive Golden Retrievers

Recently my post on the Stayner Ducktail has had many views so I decided to whip up several. Also last year at the East Outlet of the Kennebec River it caught a few brookies for me when fishing was slow. Unfortunately I then gave it up  to the bottom only to find it was my last one.

                 The Stayner Ducktail

The Stayner Ducktail is one of those patterns to try when fishing is slow and you’re undecided on what to try next.  ” I wonder if this will work ?” is a question that this pattern has pleasantly answered for me on the many occasions.

Later today I’m off to the New England Saltwater Fishing show in Providence, RI . There’s little on fly fishing at this event but it keeps you abreast of what’s going on in the salty world.

 Today-March 9, 2018-><(((°> I thought we had turned a page  last week  when I managed to get out several times with  50-60 deg air temps.  Seems I was wrong as  it’s been low 40s for hi temps this week with a small snow storm thrown in. While I didn’t fish, time was spent  tying flies.  Fly tying has been a life long hobby that I’ve always enjoyed and recently I’ve been doing more of it.  Not that I need any flies but  I think  you can never have too many-right?  Nymphs, streamers and soft hackle wets were what I mainly tied.

                                                              Favorite Nymphs

Of course there’s more Golden Retrievers, Maple Syrups, caddis larvae and even a few dries tied for good measure.

                                                                            Potpourri

I ‘ll be tying even more patterns as next  weeks forecast is for more of the same.

March 1, 2018-><(((°> These cuties are two of three caught in a little over an hour late afternoon today . Had several other hits and dropped a few more. Don’t know why they turned on today. Weather? 60 deg , overcast, and falling barometer? Then again, I fished  a slightly different fly then earlier outings.

20180301 152757

20180301 152208

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The fly pattern was a Size 12, Golden Retriever( Modified). I first tied & fished the Golden Retriever in mid-March of last year. It worked well the first time out. Despite it’s success early on  I seldom fished it throughout the year but when I did it usually worked catching brookies, landlocks and smallies on it.  This pattern very popular in the southern US. especially Virginia where  it originated. Here’ recipe for the original version.

The Golden Retriever –Originator Jim Finn

  • Hook: Size 10 or 12  3x long streamer hook
  • Bead: 5/32 Gold Bead
  • Tail: Tan   Marabou
  • Body: Peach Estaz regular
  • .Wire: 025 lead wire
  •  Thread: Red flat waxed nylon

Original Golden Retriever

The  front half of the hook  from the center to the bead is  wrapped with lead wire .  Once the tail s tied in the entire body  is then covered with tying thread to provide a solid base color. The Estaz is then wound forward  with enough spacing betweens wraps to allow the base color to show through.

Here’s the modified version I used . It was tied on a #12 2XL hook (Mustad 9671) using  an Olive Marabou tail , Olive Floss under body and Olive thread . I really like the way it looks when wet–Buggy!

DRY–Olive Golden Retriever –

 

WET- Olive Golden Retriever

 

I plan to tie several more Olive ones  and a few in  Brown . Perhaps one using peacock sword tail and herl underbody .Don’t want to get too carried away!

In like a Lion
Ray

 

Today-  February 27, 2018-><(((°> This handsome little guy was jealous that a red headed Falltish was posted on my Raysfly blog last week  so he hopped on my fly with hopes of having his picture being posted also.   Today’s water temp at my little brook 42.5 deg.

Today-  February 27, 2018-><(((°> Today’s Catch–No Brookie’s but he’s a native.

27 February, 2018

 

This handsome little guy was jealous that a red headed Fallfish was posted on Raysfly last week  so he hopped on my fly with hopes of having his picture being posted also.   Today’s water temp at my little brook 42.5 deg.

Today Feb 21, 2018

Today’s Catch–No Brookie’s but he’s a native.

****Make  every day Earth Day–Pick up one piece of trash daily ****

*** February Playmate of the Month is here!

***February Moon(Lakota)   Cannapopa wi — Moon when the trees crack due to the cold

***** Checkout my February 2016 post

°)))><  Today–Sunday…February 4, 2018 <><(((°>Yesterday I attended the Connecticut fly fishers association annual expo up in Hartford, Connecticut. It’s a small show, mainly local vendors and shops, displaying their wares and telling tales and selling merchandise, it was a good way to spend the day, or at least part of it, this was all anticipation of today’s spectacle, a great event where millions have looked for. Its Super Bowl Sunday a time that I used to enjoy in years gone by but in today’s era it has become more of a show, party time  and marketing scheme than anything else. I heard today’s viewers of the game will be privileged,  privilege because it’s in the mill that they will actually broadcast the presentation of  our country’s color and playing of the National Anthem. This viewing  by the TV audience will be  unlike the regular season games where major networks went right from the commentators booth to the kick off  and  skirted the presentation of our national colors and singing of our national anthem. This I guess was an attempt to avoid displaying those players who have elected to take a knee during the playing of the anthem and displaying of the colors in  an attempt to push forward their own personal and political agenda. This act of shame and disgrace by these “role models” has no place in football or anywhere else, The NFL  in attempt to keep its public image in tact did not show the players kneeling or anything else prior to each game on major networks. However last weekend at the the New England vs Jacksonville Conference Championship game they did broadcast the showing of  the colors and singing of  the national anthem. They actually show several of the football players behavior during this pre-game tradition. During the singing of the national anthem  the New England quarterback was shown with his head hung looking at the ground with arms at his side, while one of his staff members next to him was looking up proudly at the colors with his right hand over his heart. This is as it should be, however the proper way for one to act  when  honoring  our country is becoming slowly forgotten. All this aside I hope everyone enjoys today’s  game. I for one have elected not to be a lemming and have decided to spend this evening down my basement  tying flies and  might even fix up some tackle.

 Never Forget to Properly Honor  those who have fallen and the flag they represented.  

°)))><  Today–Friday…February 2, 2018 <><(((°>……Ground Hog Day. Phil spoke early this morning.

“What’s the weather gonna be,? The  picture below this is what I see!!”

                                                        “6 more weeks of this”

 

<°)))><  Today–Thursday…February 1, 2018 ><(((°>……Well, we’re well into winter  and February is upon us.  While  early January was colder than normal, the weather  moderated  mid-month leaving the remainder of the month seasonable. Tomorrow   February 2, 2018  is Groundhog Day and we’ll get  highly accurate insight into the remaining winter weather. Here in the United States on Groundhog Day, Punxsutawney  Phil and several other of nature’s furry prognosticators will provide great  insight into the upcoming weather.

     what’s the weather gonna be??

After  analyzing past, current and future data they’ll quickly and  wisely predict if winter will continue its cold, icy grip for the next 6 weeks or if an early spring is in the future. So what will it be?? One of the two photos below at my Raysfly Camp is what they’ll forecast.

                                                                  More of this??

 

                                                      Hopefully This!! 

September Moon  called  Corn Moon or sometimes the Harvest Moon.  Moon under which  Native Americans harvested corn and other crops.

Today-Saturday…September 30, 2017  ><(((°>. Just returned from a five day fishing trip “upta” Raysfly Camp  with Al”The Guide”. We had a great trip and fishing was good . Here’s ‘The Guide” in action on day one.  There would be more videos on this trip but my action cam went swimming on day two on the Moose R.  I did manage a few videos on the final day. We caught both landlocks and brookies while fishing the Roach ,Moose and Kennebec rivers. We spent most of our time at the Kennebec R.  East Outlet. The fish were taken on a handful of patterns both wet and dry.

 

 

Thursday…September 14, 2017  ><(((°>. Flies of September (so far) Got to love September, It’s my favorite time of the year. Fishing picks up and both salt and freshwater fronts begin peaking. Here in Rhode Island it’s time for stripers and False Albacore while up in Maine brookies and Landlocks begin entering rivers and streams on their spawning runs. I just returned from five days “upta” my RaysFly camp in Maine. The Kennebec R. East Outlet is less than an hour away from my camp and the Moose and Roach Rivers are about an hour and 10 min .   I didn’t fish the Moose R. this trip and spent my time at the Roach and East Outlet.   Looked forward to fishing the Roach R. for the first time. and see if I could figure where to fish and flies to use.  I recently bought an inexpensive Action cam and wanted to take some video if I could figure how to use it.  One of my Landlocked Salmon was a real jumper and another never jumped and was a real head shaker who stayed deep and shook his head violently much of the fight. Of course all good things must come to an end so it was time for one last fish then call it a day. The salmon on the Roach R. went for a # 10 Bead Head Hare’s Ear Soft hackle. This same pattern accounted for several foot long landlocks  at the East Outlet of the Kennebec R.

 

       BH Soft Hackle Hare’s Ear
                  Dry and Wetted

Bead Head  Soft hackle Hare’s Ear—(as dressed by Ray Bondorew)
Hook:  size 10 or 12 1XL wet fly hook i.e Mustad 3906B
Tail: Brown hen Neck Fibers
Body: Black Chenille, Small or medium depending upon hook size and shank length or
Black floss which is more in line with traditional streamer patterns
Ribbing:  Fine Gold wire
Hackle(Collar): Soft Brown Hen neck hackle

However, nothing can beat surface action. My special fish for this trip came from at the East Outlet  when I managed to raise  18″  salmon to the surface to pick off a # 12  Foam Wing olive caddis I had concocted to fish for native brookies locally at home.

             Foam Wing Caddis Salmon

I wanted a fly that was nearly unsinkable while fishing small brooks where roll casting is a must.  This fly also took  several small brookies on the Roach R.

Foam Wing Olive Caddis—(as dressed by Ray Bondorew)
Hook:   Size 12 dry fly hook i.e Mustad 94840
Tail:  None
Body:  Olive poly yarn
Hackle:  Natural CDC palmered or wound like standard dry fly.
Wing :  Tan/beige 2mm craft foam 1/2″ sq. piece folded  and trimmed to shape. Tied in last over hackles.
Hackle:  Natural CDC palmered or wound like standard dry fly.

 

Streamer flies also produced and several foot long brookies at the East Outlet fell for  the Black Ghost and Montreal Whore  patterns.

                          Black Ghost
                                   &
                     Montreal Whore

 

 

Sebec R. Smallie

Sebec River Smallie Milo, Maine

Fly: Black Bunny Leech

 

Bass Fishing

Wednesday, July 26, 2017–>>Back to Maine for more Smallmouth fishing.

 

Smallie->Sebec River  Milo, Maine

Fly: Black Bunny Leech

Tuesday, July 18, 2017–>> Ii returned home from Maine over the weekend. Yesterday I teamed up with my two good friends Al’ “The Guide’ and Joe “The Catcher” for my first saltwater outing of the the year.

“Al the Guide”

My Smallmouth was far bigger”

 

The stripers were small but everyone caught fish. By the size of the bass perhaps I should go back to my Maine cabin and stick with smallie fishing.

Thursday–July 11. 2017–>>>How much does a 21.5″ Smallie weigh? ?Taken on the surface on the third cast today.

Al”The Guide” says fishing is great along the rocks of Narraganset RI

Ray

21.5″ Smallmouth ,  Sebec Lake , Sebec Maine

Fly:  No.4  Yellow Splinter Mouse

Nine is Never Enough

     Nine is Never Enough

    Each year during the first week of March, I undergo a metamorphosis.  Transforming from an argumentative, irritable cabin fevered maniac to the likes of a happy excited child who anxiously awaits Christmas Day.  Opening Day of trout season is coming on the second Saturday in April and resembles Christmas in many ways. Both have a Santa, presents and sometimes even  snow. My Santa will be dressed in green with a D.E.M. patch on his jacket.  His sleigh will be oxygen generating tank truck overflowing with  Brook, Brown and Rainbow Trout, presents fresh from the North Pole hatchery.  To receive  these presents being really good  just won’t  do, I must be prepared!   Many  preparations are in order if I’m to have my creel stuffed with these presents.

    I begin by checking the calendar for when Easter Sunday occurs.  Hopefully it occurs before Opening Day.  This year it doesn’t,  what a bummer. Just knowing that I cannot fish from sunrise until nightfall on the second day of trout season begins to stress me out.  Now I’ll be on edge on the second day and be obligated to arrive home around noon or  hopefully just as my family pulls out of the driveway en-route to Easter dinner at my mother’s house after they’ve given me up for lost.  Next, I examine my rods for worn and frayed windings and grooved guides.  Those in need of repair are meticulously rewound with super glue and matching Mylar tape.  The reels are next, after dismantling them I lubricate their innards and polish the drags for silky smooth operation.  Then I check the first five hundred yards of backing on each spool for rot, a hatchery breeder shouldn’t  take me out beyond that.  Each extra spool, all twenty of them are closely examined.  They hold every type and color of fly line imaginable.  They include a Ninja Turtle Green sinking line that sinks thirty feet in one millisecond, a Neon Smurf Blue floating line that suspends itself one micron above the water’s surface and a bottom dredging Brown Bullhead taper. There’s also a special forty-two and one half-foot Mercury filled shooting head.  This head is more fluid than lead core, and if it should break the fish will be poisoned and die, but I can say the place needs to be reclaimed anyway.    Next I remove the tangled mass of tippet spools from my Kevlar designer vest that I  saw on the TV fly fishing  program “Say Yes to the Vest.” At first I’m  unsure of what I have as it resembles several miles of tangled Japanese monofilament drift net.  After carefully rewinding each spool I once again  take an oath that this will never happen again.  From the mess, leaders from 0x-1ft. to 12x-24ft. are returned to their individual compartments in my leader wallet.  I then remove each fly box from my vest and scrutinize their contents a closely as Scrooge counting his shillings.  Each pattern is examined as I think of where and when it will be used and question  if I have enough of them.  The sixty year old Perrine wet fly boxes, whose contents are about the same age, are normally in order. Boxes with Case Caddis, some made with bird gravel and glue  and others with bits of tree bark, leaves, and twigs cemented to the hook always seem to be in ample supply.  If only Super Glue was around sixty years ago I could have made a million of these collectors’ items.

Case Caddis

 Boxes containing classic Catskill dries, extended tail and standard dry flies, nymphs, streamers, and midges  both wet and dry are all accounted for.  One box intimidates me.  It looks empty but close examination with fifty power reading glasses reveals one dozen #28 twenty-eight black gnats on gold-plated hooks.  They’re surely enough to last the season. Hopefully I won’t have to tie one of them on, or worst tie one up.  During the inventory any shortcomings are noted and written down so as not to forget.  After all, the one fly I  forget to tie will be the only fly the trout will want on Opening Day.  A check is then made to ensure there’s  sufficient quantities of the proper materials and hooks are on hand to tie these “Killers”.  If materials must be ordered will they make it in time?  Probably not, so I overnight express them.  The added expense will be worth the peace of mind.  The list of flies to be tied is then placed in the jaws of my fly tying vise for safe keeping, at least here it will not get covered over by the piles of tying materials on my desk or be discarded.

    I notice the list is short and has only nine patterns on it, some of only one size.  How can this be?  I must have overlooked something.  For a good many  years the list has remained the same length and years of trout fishing has dictated what I really need.  The remaining flies fill boxes that stuff my vest and make me look good.  They also serve as a safety device. Should I fall in and need to be rescued, I can be easily  plucked from the water  and brought ashore with an electromagnet. My bulging vest, with the outline of each box clearly distinguishable, identifies me as a real trout fisherman.  I sometimes think I should be the one to advertise vests and waders and  in such magazines as Fly Fisherperson and Rod and Creel.

    As I begin tying the flies on the list I must remember the “Bondorew Law of Fly Tying”.  The law states, if you tie any fly, always tie three of them.  The first one will probably be lost in a tree, the second lost to a trout leaving you with just one of the right fly.  To me, having just one of the right fly will change the way you fish.  The fear of losing it will make you more cautious, tighten your casting style, and cause you to fish in places that are easy to fish and probably don’t hold any.  With this in mind, always remember to tie at least six of any pattern.  This will leave you with three extras to fish with.  If your lifelong fishing companion should want one of the right fly point him to the tree that has his in it.  Should you stick your one and only killer in a tree, remember  to never pull straight down on the leader and line to free it.  Just loop some extra fly line around the culprit branch with your rod tip and pull on the looped line.  This should break the branch and rescue your prize.  If the fly line should break, you probably needed a new one anyway.  I always carry a ten inch mini chain saw in the large pouch on the back of my  fly vest to expedite such rescue attempts.

Most of the flies on the list are not new.  They are variations of standard patterns tied with either different types of materials or slightly different colors.  The sacred patterns included on the list are as follows:

——————————————————————————————————–

Black Ghost marabou

Black Ghost Marabou

 Black  Ghost Marabou—(as dressed by Joe Adamonis)
Hook:  size 4-10, 3x-4xl streamer hook i.e. Eagle Claw Model L-058S, Mustad Model 38941
Tail:    Soft Yellow hackle Fibers
Body: Black floss which is more in line with traditional streamer patterns or Black Chenille, Small or medium depending upon hook size and shank length

Ribbing: Silver  Tinsel/Mylar Small or medium depending upon hook size& shank length
Wing: White Marabou
Throat(Beard): Soft Yellow hackle fibers
Origin:   First tied in 1927  by Herbert L.Welch of Mooselookmeguntic, Maine for  Rangely Lake area salmon and squaretail trout.

This fly is a personal favorite. Not only does it catch fish for me but also appeals to my eye. Flies that have a certain eye appeal have always worked well  for me over the years.   This is one of a few fly patterns that can claim universal acceptance.

                                                                                                    

The Black marabou

Black Marabou

 

Black Marabou
Hook:  size 4-10, 3x-4xl streamer hook
Tail: Soft Yellow hackle Fibers or marabou
Body: Black Chenille, Small or medium depending upon hook size and shank length or
Black floss which is more in line with traditional streamer patterns
Ribbing: Gold Tinsel/Mylar Small or medium depending upon hook size and shank length
Wing: Black Marabou
Topping: None
Throat(Beard): Soft Yellow hackle fibers or marabou
Origin: Unknown – I began tying this pattern in the late 1960s, but can’t recall what inspired me to tie it this way

 

CardinelleAs dressed by Alec Stansell (Favorite Flies.com)

The Cardinelle

The Cardinelle

Hook:  size 4-10, 3x-4xl streamer hook—Thread: Fluorescent red or Orange
Body: Fluorescent Cerise or Hot Pink wool /yarn (floss can also be used)
Underwing:  Fluorescent Orange or Red Hair
Wing: Cerise or Hot Pink Marabou tied full
Throat(Beard or Collar): Soft Yellow hackle fibers
Origin:  Late 1960s Worcester, MA designed by Bill Chiba and popularized by Paul Kukonen

 

Black Wooly Bugger—I’ve omitted the photo for this pattern because if you don’t know what one  looks like then you probably shouldn’t be reading this.

Hook:  size 6-10, 3xl streamer hook
Body: Black Chenille  or Black Sparkle Chenille
Tail:   Black Marabou
Rib/Hackle: Palmered Black Hackle

*** Black is the most popular color however brown and olive are equally effective

 

Gray Nymph

Gray Nymph

Gray Nymph

Hook:  size 8-12 Std or 1XL Wet Fly hook such as Mustad Model 3906 or 3906B
Tail:   Soft, Gray or Bronze blue dun Hackle Fibers

Rib: Optional ->Fine silver wire

Body: Dubbed Muskrat Fur
Hackle:   Soft, Gray or Bronze Blue Dun Hackle  Collar                                

Origin: Click Here to see how this pattern came about.

 

Hare’s Ear Nymph

Hare’s Ear Nymph

Hook:  Size 10-14 2XL    Rib:     Optional ->Fine Gold wire

Tail:  Stubby Hare’s Ear Guard
Rib: Optional ->Fine Gold wire
Body: Hare’s ear dubbing– guard hairs and all
Hackle:   Gray grouse hackle fiber beard

 Origin:   1960s  Jim  Quick-From his book Fishing the Nymph            

 

 

Zug Bug (As dressed by Joe Adamonis)

            Zug Bug

Hook:  Size 10-14 2XL    Rib:     Optional ->Fine Gold wire

Tail:  Peacock sword
Rib: Flat silver tinsel
Body: Peacock Herl
Wing Case: Mallard flank
Hackle:   Brown  hackle fiber beard

 

 

Nearenuf

          Nearenuf

Hook:  size 12-16 Std or 1XL Dry Fly Hook

Tail:  Two or Three stripped Grizzly hackle stems
Body: Stripped Peacock quill
Hackle:   Brown and Grizzly Dry Fly hackles mixed
Wing: Lemon Barred Wood Duck

Origin: Late 1960s H.G. Tapply  and his Tap’s Tip column  in Field & Stream magazine

 

Black Gnat Midge

Black Gnat Midge

   Black Gnat Midge

Hook:  Size  20/22 Dry Fly Hook-(Turned-up eye best)

Tail:   Black hackle fibers
Body: Black Floss–Alternate  Black poly
Wing: Gray Mallard
Hackle: Black Neck hackle

 

While tying each pattern I pause to release the trout it has just caught. I’ve never tied a fly that did not catch at least one lunker while it was in my vise. I’m confident with this selection as they have done well by me over the years, and will continue to ensure that I’ll catch more trout than the average bear in the woods. These nine patterns  are my cure all’s, but I must remember that the trout I seek can become very selective, and sometimes will only dine on such gourmet items as; Corn, Velveeta cheese , party marshmallows and cigarette butts. At such times even my Killers won’t work. If you tie these flies , fish them with confidence and leave them on for a while. A fly fished without confidence e is unlikely to catch  many fish  for one simple reason. It will not be in the water long enough before a different pattern is tied on. Always remember ‘ It’s not the fly but the driver. “

The last item I check is my waders, but this I save for Opening Day. Thirty degree water temperatures have a way of telling you things no other leak test can. . You probably won’t delay repairing them if they need it, and what wife would  say “No” to buying a new pair while visiting you in the pneumonia ward.   Finally I check  that  Lava soap and toothpaste  are in my vest. Lava soap can be used to remove the sheen from your leader and help it to sink. It will also remove the fishy odor on your hands from the all the trout you have released. Toothpaste can also be used for a leader sink, and to brighten your smile when you return home at the end of a hard day of fishing. You will need a bright smile when you tell your wife, “Let’s not go out tonight, I have  a lot of flies to tie for tomorrow”‘ Never let your wife or girlfriend see the list presented here, for she too will know, you really only need nine.

 

Copyright Ray Bondorew 2016

 

****   I first drafted this article in the early 1990s. The early version was published without pics in the Rhoddy Fly Rodders newsletter. Each year I’d re-read it and tell myself I should do some proper editing  and make it more presentable. This went on for years until just recently when I finally decided to either do something  with it or just shelf it for good.  To stop procrastinating  was a major hurdle for me and if nothing else clearing that hurdle gave me a sense of accomplishment. Hopefully you’ll enjoy it.