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Thread: Secret flies

  1. #21

    Default Re: Secret flies

    I do believe in fly fatigue. I see it on the river as the season progresses, therefore, I will do as many of you and tweak a few patterns. I also think you can fish the wrongs bugs correctly and catch more fish than if you fish the perfect bugs incorrectly.

    Depth, Speed, Profile, Color........

  2. #22

    Default Re: Secret flies

    First answer:

    Yes, I have secret flies especially on the Madison River.

    The logic behind my answer is this: To deny that there are no secret flies is essentially to deny that one fly works better than another. From experience, I know that is wrong.

    A common counter argument against "secret" flies is that it is "presentation" and not the fly. This argument is what is know as a red herring in logical argumentation. It may be true but it does not counter the proposition that fly selection matters.

    So then the question reduces to whether an angler somehwere may know of a fly that works better than other common flies for a specific situation. Of course there are.

    My Madison River fishing partner and I have fished that river for ever 15 years and we have a fly that we always use, that we invented that is not sold in any fly shop.

    To return to the original situation of European competitive fly fishing, there is a fly that is in every competitor's fly box, the "Frenchie". I would ask, what was the Frenchie before other competitors found out about it? It was a secret fly.
    Regards,

    Silver



    "Discovery consists of seeing what everybody has seen and thinking what nobody has thought"..........Szent-Gyorgy

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  4. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    northern Mississippi
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    1,182

    Default Re: Secret flies

    Ivan, my Belize guide, told me his secret.
    He soaks a Crazy Charlie in juice from a Queen Conch. Bonefish love conch. So when he has a slow day with a client, Ivan pulls out the fly and says, "Here, try this. It's my lucky fly."
    Says he's sold a bunch of them!

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  6. #24
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Los Angeles, CA / Pullman, WA
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    2,390

    Default Re: Secret flies

    This one is Top Secret...which is level above just plain Secret:

    Pat Dorsey's Hot Fly - January 2012 : Top Secret Midge


    PT/TB
    Daughter to Father, " How many arms do you have, how many fly rods do you need?"

    http://planettrout.wordpress.com/

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  8. #25
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Chicoutimi, Quebec, Canada
    Posts
    133

    Default Re: Secret flies

    I don't believe in secret flies. If trout are hungry, they eat anything. If there is a hatch, they will eat what resembles the abundant food source. I see way too many flies in the fly shops that do not resemble anything that I have seen in the wild. Yes....they all work when there is no particular hatch going on.

    One thing that I can say is that when I am using a good imitation during a hatch, my fly better float high otherwise the trout may ignore it.

    There is another situation that I have found frustrating is during late July when there is the huge yellowish mayfly hatch in my region. The fly is so big that it's useless to try to imitate it.....the trout seem to be able to detect that it is false.

    I have also found that the smaller the fly, the colour becomes less important. During late summer, my favourite fly is a size 20 spent ant (brown or black).

    My secret fly is actually a mini muddler tied dry with mottled turkey wings that make it resemble a caddis. The splayed deer hair at the front makes it look like a mayfly. It's natural brownish colour makes it look like 95% of the other bugs that trout see. I often add a tiny tuft of orange wool to represent the mayfly egg sac.

    I use 2 streamers about 90% of the time. One is a smelt imitation that I make in various shades of blue/purple and the other is the Tri-Color that imitates a tiny brook trout very well.

    Since I fish mostly lakes and ponds, my technique is to cast out the dry fly and just let it sit on the water. I add some twitches to the fly every now and then. In still water, trout move around. If there are occasional rises, I intercept the trout by casting where I think it will rise again.

    Sure, I do carry cream coloured dry flies, grey caddis with green bodies, brown mayflies with brown speckled hackles and a couple of other flies but they are used only when there is a particular hatch going on.

    When there is no hatch, I always start out by using a size 10 mini muddler tied dry and usually still have it on when my limit is attained.

  9. #26
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Western Montana
    Posts
    4,744

    Default Re: Secret flies

    Quote Originally Posted by silver creek View Post
    First answer:

    Yes, I have secret flies especially on the Madison River.

    The logic behind my answer is this: To deny that there are no secret flies is essentially to deny that one fly works better than another. From experience, I know that is wrong.

    A common counter argument against "secret" flies is that it is "presentation" and not the fly. This argument is what is know as a red herring in logical argumentation. It may be true but it does not counter the proposition that fly selection matters.

    So then the question reduces to whether an angler somehwere may know of a fly that works better than other common flies for a specific situation. Of course there are.

    My Madison River fishing partner and I have fished that river for ever 15 years and we have a fly that we always use, that we invented that is not sold in any fly shop.

    To return to the original situation of European competitive fly fishing, there is a fly that is in every competitor's fly box, the "Frenchie". I would ask, what was the Frenchie before other competitors found out about it? It was a secret fly.
    Exactly right on.

    What was the Royal Wulff before Lee shared it? The Renegade? The Compara Dun? If no one knew what a Compara Dun was and it was never used, it would be a lethal secret weapon. It fools more fussy fish than most any fly I use.

    If fly selection didn't matter and you gave one very competent angler with excellent presentation skills two flies during a PMD hatch, a simple parachute and a compara dun, neither fly would be any more productive than the other. I don't buy it.

    My "secret" flies are really patterns published in major fly fishing books but are unorthodox and "weird" looking so hardly anyone uses them. Fish tend to like them though.

  10. #27
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    sacramento,ca
    Posts
    418

    Default Re: Secret flies

    Quote Originally Posted by Diver Dan View Post
    It's not my policy to confirm nor deny the presence of any secret flies in any boxes I may or may not own.

    I SEE. SO WHAT YOU'RE SAYING IS,
    OH ! I GOTTA GO. I'LL GET BACK TO YA ON THAT ONE.
    MAYBE...

  11. #28
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Pittsburgh, Pa
    Posts
    159

    Default Re: Secret flies

    I believe everybody has their own "secret flies" but there not as much secret unknown fly but rather a persons confidence "got to" pattern.

  12. #29
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Boston, Mass.
    Posts
    2,970

    Default Re: Secret flies

    A mini-marshmallow sprayed with WD-40 behind a single turn of grouse or partridge hackle. Go ahead, try it, I dare you.

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  14. #30
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Myrtle Grove, NC
    Posts
    1,023

    Default Re: Secret flies

    Little stuff like blue wire on a pheasant tail, extra soft hackle on a caddis larvae, etc., seems to make a big difference when fishing next to 'store bought' flies. If every shop in town is telling people to use prince nymphs, copper johns, and rainbow warriors... it can be good to have some variants that are similar but different, especially in pressured areas where fish see the same flies all day long.

    I think fishing your own ties becomes a pride thing. I tie many patterns similar to well known versions, but very few are tied exactly as the store bought versions. Store bought flies are too flashy and too 'cartooned' if you get what I mean (in cartooning, features are exaggerated). My favorite 'secret' ties are made by imitating a photo
    of the real thing instead of copying a fly.

    An example, never seen a dragonfly larvae fly in the store:

    My version from the photo (and it slays!):

    A few guys laughed when they saw this fly, thought I was out of my mind... until I started hooking up on it.

    I know for a fact that my Canyon Hopper out-fishes store bought hoppers on our local creeks. Fishing a private trout lake a few weeks ago, my XL olive chironomids were clearly taking fish at a higher rate than store bough 'mids (I believe mostly because shape and color were spot on to the hatch that was occurring). Store bought 'mids were also taking fish at a good rate, but me and the kid I was fishing with were simply killing it on the version I tied (he ran me out, time to tie more!) The usual red or black snowcone just wasn't producing as well that day.


    None of these secrets last long on the internet though

    Instagram page @tblom77

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