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  1. #1

    Default Advice on filling fly box

    I'm going on a 3 day fishing trip in a month.

    But, in the hopes of avoiding buying a lot of flies, I'd like to tie as many useful ones as I can before I go.

    I made up a wish/goto spreadsheet to help me stay on track since I tend to explore (wander) with materials when I'm at the vise. Egads! The total amount of flies was near 500!!!!!

    For some of you that's nothing. But I've only been tying for a few months and have a few patterns (woolly buggers, crystal buggers, kreelex, thin mints) that I can tie decently.

    So,if you didn't have all the time in the world, how would you prioritize your tying?

    Would you reduce the quantity, say tie 2 instead of 3 of a pattern or reduce the combinations (tying copper and gold bead heads vs gold, copper, and nickel and silver).

    Meaning would you go for DEPTH (quantity) or BREADTH (variety) of patterns.

    Also, is there REALLY a difference between a size 6 and size 8 of the exact same pattern (color marabou, color chenille, color hackle, color bead)?

    If there isn't, then maybe I can skip some sizes...skip 6 and 12 and just tie 8 and 10.

    The closest fly shop will be an hour away. Not far but I'd rather not waste time. I'm bringing my fly tying materials and tools also so I can tie some in the evenings but was just wondering what everyone else does.
    "...all snobbery is defensive..and as important as fishing seems, the most important thing about it is, it's just fishing."

    -- John Gierach

    Art: http://www.gravenfish.com

    My TU:
    http://massanuttentu.com

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Pocono Lake , Pennsylvania
    Posts
    3,173

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    Do you know this body of water ? If you do what's going on there at the tome of year you are going ? Is it more of a nymph type situation or is ther some good streamer water?
    If I know I'm going to a place that I did real well last time I went with a Copper John I'm going to have a dozen and a two or three of other nymphs.
    If it's my first time and I'm blind fishing with no information I may have more of each pattern as well as streamers etc. Also no knowledge more variety. Also things that have worked consistently in similar waters I'm going to have s bigger selection . Bottom-line everything is based on what I know about this place at this time of year and this determines what and how much.
    "I was born to fish" Lee Wulff
    "There's more B.S. in fly fishing then there is in a Kansas feedlot." Lefty Kreh
    " It ain't over till it's over." Yogi Berra
    "Your not old,you've simply acquired a patina." Swirlchaser

  3. #3

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    I haven't fished this water. I'll call the shop I booked it through and ask them what's going on in the first week of April. Good point.
    "...all snobbery is defensive..and as important as fishing seems, the most important thing about it is, it's just fishing."

    -- John Gierach

    Art: http://www.gravenfish.com

    My TU:
    http://massanuttentu.com

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  5. #4

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    SGF, it's interesting to read your post. One of the presentations at the Pleasanton Fly Show today was by the Tenkara guy, and Tenkara says you can get by with just four basic patterns, that it's more about presentation than pattern. I don't know that I'm buying that, but I like to keep an open mind on just about everything, so I'm going to watch my stepson fish the Tenkara method and see what happens.
    For a three-day trip, unless you are fishing really light tippets, fishing for really big fish, fishing where you will be losing flies to snags constantly, I don't think you need to get too carried away on the quantity.
    Looking forward to hearing your trip report a month from now.

  6. #5

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    jsquires - also good things to consider. From what I've seen on the site it's pretty open water and I typically don't fish a lot of dries and tiny tippets. Mostly streamers. Along with a call to the shop I'll keep this in mind.

    Glad you mentioned Tenkara. My wife got me one for Christmas and I'll be taking that along. I have exactly 4 patterns for tenkara. We shall see!
    "...all snobbery is defensive..and as important as fishing seems, the most important thing about it is, it's just fishing."

    -- John Gierach

    Art: http://www.gravenfish.com

    My TU:
    http://massanuttentu.com

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  8. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    quiet corner, ct
    Posts
    8,529

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    On-line hatch charts are pretty common for the more popular waters all over the country. That will narrow down the number of insects that you're likely to see to a very few.
    In a month around here that would be little black stoneflies..... and that's about it.
    Jackson River Hatches

    I like to tie a minimum of 5 flies of each type
    I find that for me that it takes a couple of tries to tie a really good one, but by number 5, I'm getting bored.
    Besides if you have 5 and they happen to be the fly of the day, you can afford to lose 3 and still have 1 to fish with and 1 more to bring home to remind you that you need to tie more
    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements. --- Horace Kephart

  9. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Presque Isle, Maine
    Posts
    724

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    I would definitely call the shop your going through, I'll bet they could narrow it down to a few patterns.

  10. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Prince Edward Island, Canada
    Posts
    862

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    Quote Originally Posted by shotgunfly View Post
    jsquires - also good things to consider. From what I've seen on the site it's pretty open water and I typically don't fish a lot of dries and tiny tippets. Mostly streamers. Along with a call to the shop I'll keep this in mind.

    Glad you mentioned Tenkara. My wife got me one for Christmas and I'll be taking that along. I have exactly 4 patterns for tenkara. We shall see!
    The more I am thinking about Tenkara the more I think I may be heading that way. Can't help but think of the Japanese folks of old patiently, quietly, and meditatively navigating their ways up the streams, one hand holding their robes, while they dab their flies here and their.

    I'm being a little facetious but which set up do you plan on starting out with?
    "Whale oil beef hooked !"- Traditional east coast fishermen saying

  11. #9

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    Quote Originally Posted by noreaster View Post
    The more I am thinking about Tenkara the more I think I may be heading that way. Can't help but think of the Japanese folks of old patiently, quietly, and meditatively navigating their ways up the streams, one hand holding their robes, while they dab their flies here and their.

    I'm being a little facetious but which set up do you plan on starting out with?
    I bought a setup for my stepson for Christmas. He fishes small Sierra streams quite a bit. I have no idea as to models on the rods; I just went with the recommendation of the guy in the fly shop.
    I have a booth at the Pleasanton Fly Show and I noticed in the events brochure the Tenkara USA guy was doing a seminar and casting lessons, so I sent my stepson over. He said the seminar was full - which is interesting - and the techniques are intriguiging. Seems to me to be a perfect setup for a backpacker headed for smaller streams - very light, very compact, and very reasonably priced. I think it will have its niche.

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  13. #10

    Default Re: Advice on filling fly box

    Quote Originally Posted by noreaster View Post
    The more I am thinking about Tenkara the more I think I may be heading that way. Can't help but think of the Japanese folks of old patiently, quietly, and meditatively navigating their ways up the streams, one hand holding their robes, while they dab their flies here and their.

    I'm being a little facetious but which set up do you plan on starting out with?
    My wife got me (at my request and at the recommendation of one of the ambassadors, Tom Sadler) the Ito.

    I have both the traditional line and a level line. For flies I have the Ishigaki, Takayama, Oki and Amano.

    The official Tenkara USA Summit is actually being hosted here in May. Hopefully I can make it.
    "...all snobbery is defensive..and as important as fishing seems, the most important thing about it is, it's just fishing."

    -- John Gierach

    Art: http://www.gravenfish.com

    My TU:
    http://massanuttentu.com

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