Watch for more information to be added as the page evolves. Cul-de-Canard CDC is an incredibly buggy material that is very useful for dry fly, emerger, and nymph patterns. It has amazingly buoyant properties and when treated right can float for hours, even when you are catching fish. Standing alone or paired with other materials, CDC is by far a favorite material as far as how buggy it looks and how effective it is when trout fishing.
Yakima River Aquatic Insect Hatches
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Add to Wishlist. USD Buy Online, Pick up in Store is currently unavailable, but this item may be available for in-store purchase. Sign in to Purchase Instantly. Product Details About the Author. About the Author Henry Ramsay has been a fly tier and fly fisherman for over thirty-five years. We worked up on the pods of fish from below, taking turns casting to the rising trout. She hooked the fish solidly, and it sped downstream.
When she was finally able to move it into quiet shallow water, I could see the brilliant golden flanks of a big male brown with bright buttery yellow flanks at least twenty inches long.
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The trout had taken the upper fly. It was just different enough to draw his attention. Edward Ringwood Hewitt had originated the pattern and the technique to fish it on his home water, the Neversink River in upstate New York. Hewitt was cantankerous and secretive about the details of the pattern and the method of presentation. The fly was tied on an extra-short-shank hook with stiff hackle at least three times the normal size. There was no tail or body, only hackle. The front hackles were tied with the dull side toward the back of the hook and the back hackles facing forward so that the tips of the hackles met in the middle of the short hook.
He included a couple of photos of Skating Spiders that I used as examples to tie up a few patterns. The technique was to twitch the fly so it would skate and jump across the surface of the water. I had trouble making the fly work properly until I realized that I had to grease the entire leader. If the leader sinks below the surface, twitching the fly will only pull it against the surface. I later realized that the skating method works best on a fairly stiff tippet.
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He tore after the fly with a slashing strike. I pulled the fly away from him, but he came after it again. When he finally grabbed it, I struck so hard that I left the fly in the fish. I tied on another spider, and it moved another trout. The technique was a lot like fishing a streamer on the surface. If I could get the right action, the trout charged and slashed at the fly, often knocking it out of the water.
The trick was to let the fly land on the water, let it drift a short distance, and then give the line a quick twitch, which made the fly jump across the surface on the tips of the hackle.
To a trout, movement means life. To give the Skating Spider the proper action to entice slashing strikes, you must grease the leader and twitch the fly with a tight line by lifting the rod. Schwiebert also pointed out that skaters work best when the trout are accustomed to seeing an occasional big insect fluttering across the current.
Skaters gained popularity on limestone streams as good imitations of the eastern green drake. In this case, he used the brown and orange hackle skater to mimic the adult craneflies. Today Skating Spiders are not commonly used on spring-creek waters. The large, stiff hackle used in tying them is hard to find. I tie them on a size 14 hook with hackle suited to a size 6 or larger if I can find it.
Common Nymphs of Eastern North America
If you enjoy trying something different, and you enjoy tying your own flies, give Skating Spiders a try. To fool selective trout, you may want to use a terrestrial, even if you know they are feeding on aquatic insects. In this situation trout are much more likely to focus on emergers and cripples in the surface film.
This can really be a frustrating experience because sometimes you can see the trout sliding back and forth just under the surface feeding steadily but never taking a dun.
Even the best anglers only take an occasional trout when they get this selective. When trout are selective and there are a lot of mayflies or other aquatic insects on the water, I like to switch to a terrestrial. Even though trout see heavy concentrations of the same species of mayfly at specific periods, there are beetles, ants, crickets, and other terrestrial insects drifting in the currents throughout the day for months on end. By midsummer, the trout have become conditioned to seeing these terrestrial insects. Trout look for positives, not negatives.
Unmatching the Hatch
They see so many terrestrial insects throughout the season that they instinctively respond when they see one. These types of food forms are soon imprinted on their tiny brains, sort of like a secondary selectivity which will likely cause a positive response no matter what else is on the water. Trout really seem to show a taste preference for them. Instead, he tied on a size 16 flying ant pattern, totally ignoring what the trout were actually feeding on, and he caught fish. I fished with Ken often. He was a fine angler with the skills to take matching the hatch with dry flies to its highest level.
However, there were times when he wanted to set his own fishing standards instead of trying to duplicate the presentation of a tiny insect to a feeding trout. This fat Wyoming cutthroat took a beetle imitation when the surface of the water was covered with pale morning dun mayflies. It is surprising how easy it is to see a black beetle or ant on the surface, but I also tie some of my small terrestrials with a tiny bright yarn indicator on the top of the fly.
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It is important to remember that a trout is a primitive creature, possessing little more intelligence than the insects he feeds on, but his senses are superb. He survives on instinct. His vision is so keen and his feeding so exact that we can never fully achieve the perfect deception. No matter how precise my imitation, I cannot be assured a trout actually took it for what I intended it to be.
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