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Flies Questions about flies. What flies work and don't work. Complete fly talk...

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Old 06-14-2017, 09:46 AM
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Default Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

Will be spending some time up there in a few weeks. I've heard a few mentioned, grey drake being one. What are other options to cover the possibilities?

Appreciate any suggestions.
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Old 06-14-2017, 10:52 AM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

I'm heading to Grayling this Friday afternoon for a week. I'm hearing sulfurs, brown drakes, isos, yellow sallies and hex to follow shortly. Rain is predicted so I'm hoping the rivers don't get too high.
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Old 06-14-2017, 11:11 AM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

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Originally Posted by Redbrook View Post
I'm heading to Grayling this Friday afternoon for a week. I'm hearing sulfurs, brown drakes, isos, yellow sallies and hex to follow shortly. Rain is predicted so I'm hoping the rivers don't get too high.
Of those, I wonder what are the predictable faves...? I'll be on the Boardman...
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Old 06-14-2017, 12:01 PM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

You might have Jerry (aka hairwing530) tie some flies up for you, he lives in Grayling, MI so he should have a good idea what works up there.
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Old 06-14-2017, 01:02 PM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

I've got some of Jerry's flies and I plan on using them to hook some monster trout! I understand trout will come from miles around just for the chance to suck down one of his flies.
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Old 06-14-2017, 01:51 PM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

Thanks for the comments, guys. I do have some of Jerry's flies, and I will check to see which ones may be suitable, which goes back to my original question...one way or the other I would really like to reel in a nice brown...!
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Old 06-14-2017, 03:08 PM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

Quote:
Originally Posted by lanyard View Post
Will be spending some time up there in a few weeks. I've heard a few mentioned, grey drake being one. What are other options to cover the possibilities?

Appreciate any suggestions.
Tie the Flex Hex flies designed by Wisconsin guide John Nebel to match the largest mayfly in the USA, the Hexagenia Limbata. We have huge Hex hatches on a local stream and the Tomorrow River referred to in the article is in the next county.

Photo of a Hexagenia Limbata Dun

Click the image to open in full size.

Spinner

Click the image to open in full size.


The Flex Hex is the best pattern for this hatch that I have been able to find and I've tried a number of them from traditional patterns tied on straight hooks to extended body patterns tied on shorter hooks. Both have problems hooking up on all takes.

The problem is that the naturals are so huge that "stiff" patterns are often pushed out of the way on strike. Unlike the natural which folds up, the stiff tail and body of traditional patterns do not and the fly just gets pushed out of the way unless it is a perfect take.

The Flex Hex solves this problem by putting a mono to mono loop hinge in the middle of the pattern and even smaller fish can take in this pattern. It actually fold ups and offers less resistance than the natural.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.


I've modified this pattern to a parachute which produces a more realistic impression on the water and which can easily be changed into a spinner by cutting off the post. The naturals have a mottled brown body with a yellow abdomen and the cross hatched brown thread on yellow mimics this.

Parachutes are best tied with one size longer hackle than the traditional hackled flies and getting hackle that is long enough for a flex hex is difficult. Modern genetic capes have longer feathers with denser hackle but the hackle length is shorter. I use my old Metz necks from the 1980s for the size 2 hackle that I use for this pattern.

So don't throw your old necks away. Modern necks are better for almost all patterns but some large flies like Flex Hexs and the Borger Blue Damsel can be tied with the longer less dense fibers of older necks.
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Last edited by silver creek; 07-30-2017 at 04:29 PM.
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Old 06-14-2017, 09:18 PM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

Quote:
Originally Posted by silver creek View Post
Tie the Flex Hex flies designed by Wisconsin guide John Nebel to match the largest mayfly in the USA, the Hexagenia Limbata. We have huge Hex hatches on a local stream and the Tomorrow River referred to in the article is in the next county.

Photo of a Hexagenia Limbata Dun

Click the image to open in full size.

Spinner

Click the image to open in full size.


The Flex Hex is the best pattern for this hatch that I have been able to find and I've tried a number of them from traditional patterns tied on straight hooks to extended body patterns tied on shorter hooks. Both have problems hooking up on all takes.

The problem is that the naturals are so huge that "stiff" patterns are often pushed out of the way on strike. Unlike the natural which folds up, the stiff tail and body of traditional patterns do not and the fly just gets pushed out of the way unless it is a perfect take.

The Flex Hex solves this problem by putting a mono to mono loop hinge in the middle of the pattern and even smaller fish can take in this pattern. It actually fold ups and offers less resistance than the natural.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.


I've modified this pattern to a parachute which produces a more realistic impression on the water and which can easily be changed into a spinner by cutting off the post. The naturals have a mottled brown body with a yellow abdomen and the cross hatched brown thread on yellow mimics this.

Parachutes are best tied with one size longer hackle than the traditional hackled flies and getting hackle that is long enough for a flex hex is difficult. Modern genetic capes have longer feathers with denser hackle but the hackle length is shorter. I use my old Metz necks from the 1980s for the size 2 hackle that I use for this pattern.

So don't throw your old necks away. Modern necks are better for almost all patterns but some large flies like Flex Hexs and the Borger Blue Damsel can be tied with the longer less dense fibers of older necks.
Fantastic visual and resources, thanks...
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Old 06-15-2017, 05:16 AM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

Quote:
Originally Posted by Redbrook View Post
I'm heading to Grayling this Friday afternoon for a week. I'm hearing sulfurs, brown drakes, isos, yellow sallies and hex to follow shortly. Rain is predicted so I'm hoping the rivers don't get too high.
We just got back from there and those are exactly what we had. Browns drakes were almost done on the upper north branch. Sulfurs were bringing up a lot of fish in the evening late (9:30 to 12). The rivers were low and need a good shot of rain. North branch was getting warm. We did not see any hexes.
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Old 07-30-2017, 02:54 PM
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Default Re: Which Flies for the Hex...Northern MI

For the really big browns night fishing is the ticket and general color, size and shape, and floatability plus ease of tying a bunch are the tickets to big smiles. Also, forget delicate leaders.

I can't tell you the number of times the hexes have swarmed upstream over my head towards the faster upper waters for egg laying. And usually, just as the light was failing to full dark. The sound of the big bruisers feeding in thin water is memorable too.

DDB
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