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Thread: Compara Hatch

  1. Default Compara Hatch


    I am starting to fly fish, after a 17 year layoff. It certainly feels good to be on the water again.

    I originally had the Al Caucci Compara Hatch book. In the 3 moves since 1997 I have lost or misplaced the book.

    I would either like to replace this book, which I know will be difficult because it is out of print. Or is there a book that covers the mayfly, it's stages and proper imitations so that I can tie them again.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Last edited by dogchaser37; 04-18-2011 at 09:27 PM. Reason: wrong date

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Compara Hatch

    Mark, welcome to the forum--- and welcome back to fly fishing.

    Where are you located? And how detailed do you want to get?

    The reason i ask is that there are some excellent online resources, especially if you live out west, like the entomology links on Westfly that will suggest patterns for many different stages of caddis and mayfly hatches. This is an excellent resource if you live out west or travel to fish western hatches.
    Entomology | Fly Fishing | Westfly

    For mayflies only, you can still get another book by Al Caucci and Bob Nastasi called Hatches 2 [ame=""] Hatches II (Bk. 2) (9781558210608): Al Caucci, Bob Nastasi: Books@@AMEPARAM@@[/ame]

    This book goes into a ton of detail about individual mayfly hatches and recommends different dressings of just a few basic patterns popularized by Caucci and Nastasi like the Compara Nymph, Compara Dun and Compara Spinner. To match a specific hatch, you'd just vary colors and size that are listed for each hatch. Major mayfly hatches in the East, Midwest and West are covered.

    The book goes into quite a bit of detail for each hatch--- this can be a good thing if you're into it-- or it could be a little overwhelming if you're not. Another book of this type is Caddis Flies by Gary LaFontaine, again going into fascinating or excruciating detail depending on your level of interest for different caddis hatches (covering East, Mid West and west) and a using a few basic pattern "styles" to match different stages of the caddis lifecycle with listing variations in color and size few to match specific caddis hatches.

    Both Hatches 2 and Caddisflies are a excellent sources of information, but slanted towards their respective author's fly pattern styles and a bit dated since they were both written before the popularization of other fly styles and/or don't include many popular and successfull patterns and styles of flies-- for example Craig Mathews (Sparkle Dun, X Caddis, Iris Caddis), Rene Harrop (Hairwing Dun, Henry's Fork Caddis and many patterns using CDC), John Barr (Copper John, Graphic Caddis, Barr Emerger etc.) and others. But you can easily take the info on colors and sizes for specific hatches listed in either of these books (Hatches 2 or Caddisflies) and convert them into other pattern styles if you wanted to.

    If you're looking for much simpler and more general overview type of book for major hatches of caddis mayflies and stoneflies, then something like
    [ame=""] Handbook Of Hatches: Introductory Guide to the Foods Trout Eat & the Most Effective Flies to Match Them (9780811731829): Dave Hughes: Books@@AMEPARAM@@[/ame] by Thomas Ames

    Another excellent resource for you is a free site called Troutnut which has excellent pictures and descriptions of many hatches (especially eastern mayflies and caddis) and descriptions of lifecycles.

    Hopefully this info will help a bit-- but let us know where you live and the general area you plan to do most of your fishing-- folks on here should be able to point you to some excellent resources, and suggest patterns to match some of the big deal hatches that occur in your area.

    And keep asking questions!
    Last edited by peregrines; 04-20-2011 at 02:39 PM.

  3. Default Re: Compara Hatch


    I live in CT, typically I like Farmington River and some of the smaller streams throughout the state, quite a few in the eastern and northeastern parts. I don't fish out west at all.......yet.

    I have heard about the Hatches II book, but I couldn't find any good information about what it contained. After what you have written, I will start with that book and go from there. While I have no desire to become an entomologist I do like as much information as I can get. I really like fly fishing with mayflies. I guess everyone loves to fish dries, and I do too, but nymphs rate a close second for me.

    Thanks for helping out, it is most appreciated.


  4. Default Re: Compara Hatch

    Hey Dogchaser:
    I live in NY but have fished the Housatonic in Ct. for years - and just recently (6 months) started making the 1 1/2 hour trek to the Farmington. I have Hatches 2 and that is a great overall book for info on mayflies....- but I'll say the farmington is one of the most unique tailwaters ever -...dry fly action exists year round and you have guys fishing sz 32's ??? and at times those fish are incredibly tough. Also...the same mayfly normally in size 14-16 in other streams may be 18-20 in that river - very unique. There are a couple sites that you can get info on the farmington and surrounding Trout is a great one Also - a guide named Rich Strolis has a site called casting shadows where he blogs about the farmington - gives videos of flies that work good there etc....Good Luck

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008

    Default Re: Compara Hatch


    For some reason the info I tried to post for the Thomas Ames book didn't show up in my first post, but it's an excellent vest pocket sized resource with info on a variety of the major new england hatches, with pattern suggestions for matching different stages in their life cycle (mayflies, caddis and stoneflies). Although it doesn't contain the wealth of information on mayflies as Hatches 2, it is an excellent book since you're in CT.

    [ame=""] Hatch Guide for New England Streams (0066066004246): Thomas Ames Jr., David B. Tibbetts: Books@@AMEPARAM@@[/ame]

    And check out those links Walter gave you too for the hatch charts for the Housy and Farmington.

    Good luck!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    quiet corner, ct

    Default Re: Compara Hatch

    If you live and fish in eastern CT (as do I) you should pick up this book. It's a wealth of local information. You can find it in fly shops or through Thames Valley TU.
    This book includes information on the more than 120 trout streams in Eastern Connecticut. Included are maps of all the watersheds, access information at road crossings, invertibrate life in the streams, number of fish stocked, and notes on the best locations to fish. Sales of this book help fund our conservation efforts.
    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements. --- Horace Kephart

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