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Warmwater Fly Fishing Bass, Bream, Perch, etc...

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Old 01-13-2012, 01:10 PM
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Default Go-to smallmouth flies

While I get out and chase the occasional bass, pannie or northern, I really don't have much smallmouth knowledge aside from a few float trips in the BWCA and a few local rivers I had so much fun though that I would like to make them a regular target. If you had to list your top 3 flies for chasing smallmouth, what would they be? What colors do you find work best? Just looking to learn a bit, and would really like to tie a few flies larger than the normal 16-20's I've been on the last month or two.
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Old 01-13-2012, 01:18 PM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

If I had to limit it to just 3 flies they would be
Chartruse Sneakey Pete
Brown and yellow Wooly Bugger- Beadhead or not
Chartrues over white, or blue over white Clouser Deep Minnow.

This past season though I had some great luck on a Kent's Stealth Bomber
and on as close to Dan's Crawfish as I could tie. He's much better at it than I am, but the smallies around here have never seen the real thing so I was able to fool a few on my butchered version.

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Old 01-13-2012, 01:20 PM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

Muddler Minnow
Black bugger
Any type of popper (black)
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Old 01-13-2012, 01:52 PM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

Popper (black or yellow), 3" white streamer, simple crayfish pattern; if I could only have three...

Dan
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Old 01-13-2012, 02:28 PM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

I love fishing for Smallmouths! They're my favorite freshwater fish!

I've done well on a lot of different flies. For me, my primary "go to" flies depends on where I'm fishing, as I've fished some tiny streams & some large rivers for them, so I choose different types of flies for different water.

In smaller streams, I'll use a large stonefly nymph that I've done well with, a Clouser style leech pattern, or on the surface, foam bodied flies such as Triple Deckers, or Chernobyl Ants. The stonefly nymph is tied in size 2, and the pattern recipe is on my blog, the others are tied from size 6 to 2. I usually tie the stonefly nymph in black, or olive variations, but have tied it in other colors. The Clouser style leech is tied with Ostrich herl & some flash, very full, and usually in black. The flash I add is usually Flashabou or similar, in copper, bronze, and or black. ( I often mix the flash.) I may add some electric blue too sometimes, but only a couple of strands.

The foam flies are tied in hopper colors,(tans, browns, greens) white or black.

In larger waters, I'll use the above flies, but more on the larger size, plus Clouser Minnows, primarily in baitfish colors like olive & white, gray & white, black & white, plus chartreuse & white. I use Deceivers quite a bit too & in the same colors, and both of these in sizes from 4 up to 2/0 & 4-5" long. Smallmouths will eat the big flies!

Another pattern I really like is the Murdich Minnow, and in particular a variation that Joe Cornwall ties.(The pattern is described on the Fly Fish Ohio, Fly Fishing and Fly Tying Multimedia Magazine website. There's some other good patterns there as well!) Here's the direct link to the Murdich Minnow article: http://flyfishohio.com/Murdich_Minnow.htm

I also like a Sneaky Pete variation, and I make them in 3 colors, chartreuse, white & black. Except, I prefer splayed neck hackle tails on mine with some added flash, and all will have a black collar. I make them big too, from size 4 up to 2/0. I use straight shank worm hooks on a lot of my flies for bass!
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Old 01-13-2012, 03:20 PM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

a few of my favs-
chartreuse sneaky pete
orange cone head rubberlegs bugger
chartreuse/white clouser


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Old 01-13-2012, 04:16 PM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

For a river: stick of dynamite
For a stream: half stick of dynamite
For a creek: quarter stick of dynamite
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Old 01-13-2012, 04:20 PM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

Thanks for all of the insight here guys. Some good info has been posted already. The patterns listed, for the most part, are patterns I fished as well.


Lancer - Do you prefer to tie your sticks of dynamite with or without rubber legs?
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Old 01-13-2012, 04:45 PM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

With, scares the fish less.
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Old 01-14-2012, 07:35 AM
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Default Re: Go-to smallmouth flies

I prefer to mold C4 into the shape of a minnow pattern.
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