Ladyfisher

This Week's View

by Deanna Lee Birkholm

February 9th, 2009

Outside the Square Box

Every once in a while someone will post something on the Bulletin Board which is just so terrific. DShock put some links up from the annual Mustad European Tying Contest. The flies are just wonderful. Really quality tying. I was pleased to find one of the winners of the Mustad contest was also one of the winners of the FAOL Atlantic Salmon and Steelhead Fly Tying Contest here that past couple of years. How neat is that?

One of the winning flies in the Mustad Contest stopped me flat.

"Bass At Work" Open Division, was tied by Andreas Weiss, Germany. What a delight, and obviously, Andreas was not thinking INSIDE the square box.

Funny how ones mind works. That fly immediately brought to mind some terrific flies the late Al Campbell tied for the Intermediate Tying series here on FAOL.

Quoting from Al, "Perch are common in South Dakota lakes. For any number of reasons, many of them get sick or injured and die. Since many of those sick or injured fish become dinner items for larger fish, it makes sense to tie a fly that looks like a sick or injured perch. If bluegills, crappie or sunfish are the predominant panfish in your local lake, this week's pattern is easily adapted to those species as well."

"If you spent any time at all watching dying panfish, you probably noticed that they rarely swim upright like a healthy fish. Instead, they usually wiggle along on their side. This is the dinner bell for any hungry predator fish. Why spend any extra energy chasing down healthy fish if there's an easy meal lying on its side in front of you?"

Now for the really outside the box thinking.

From the archive of the Mustad Flies here on FAOL, by Jeff Pierce: "Jeff's EGGstravaganza is a super egg cluster imitation. This is one of my 'go-to' flies for steelhead and big brown trout when the salmon are in the tributaries spawning. While I have caught several coho and chinook salmon on this pattern it is truly a killer steelhead and brown trout fly. What a sight to see a 14lb brown trout come six feet to engulf this fly in clear water. Obviously, this pattern is most effective when there are loose eggs washing down river. While fishing for the trout and salmon with this pattern I have also caught big walleye, largemouth and smallmouth bass and carp as well."

Fly tying is just one of the many aspects of fly fishing. You can take it as far as you want - or tie up a batch of flies a couple times a year to refill your fly boxes.

But while you are tying, let your mind drift just a little. Isn't there a fish you'd really like to catch? Do you know 'exactly' what it will take? Why haven't you tied it yet? ~ DLB

If you would like to comment on this or any other article please feel free to post your views on the FAOL Bulletin Board!

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