Sometimes Bigger is Better…Fishing Big Flies Can Pay Off Big Time!
by Ron Pecore, Senior 5280 Angler Guide
Several seasons ago, I was up on the Blue River fishing alongside a fellow guide named Billy. We were in the Shale Hole along with a few other guides. I was not fishing at the moment, but rather was chatting with Billy about guide work. While talking, I noticed his rig had a size ten soft hackle pheasant tail on top with a little blood midge trailing below. In the 30 minutes I stood there talking with Billy, he landed 3 rainbows in the 20 inch range…each trout on the big soft hackle fly! I was amazed. The other guides around us caught a few small fish but nothing like what Billy landed. Ever since that day, I’ve never been afraid to tie on something big with my rigs.
My trip yesterday with clients serves an an excellent example of the big fly magic.
My client Rich was set up with a big Rubber Legs Stonefly followed by a worm and an olive emerger. His first, and biggest, fish of the day was a 19 inch male bow. The fish smashed his rubber legs almost as soon as it hit the water. The point here, big fish often want big food. Throughout our day, most of the big fish all hit the stonefly or the worm patterns. The smaller fish ate the worm or one of the small emerger patterns we trailed.
With seasonal pattern variations, nearly all the nymph rigs I build for guided trips will follow this type of formula..something big on top trailed by a medium bug and finally something small on the bottom. Give this simple fly sizing strategy a try. The big fish just may be the ones smashing your big bugs!
Tight Lines, Big Bugs, and Big Fish!