Eye of the Guide


Tom Travis - Oct 08, 2012

Sysadmin Note
Part sixteen can be found here


July 9th, and tonight I am out alone, I believe that the Neil, the Editor of FAOL, is doing editor type work tonight. 7 P.M. but alas the weather may defeat my purpose as the wind and light rain continues to keep the creek quiet with no midges, spinners, or even caddis are presently moving and thus the trout are moving and feeding but rarely. Though I did get nice photograph of a double rainbow glinting over the house pond, except for one other angler no one else is left on the creek.

The rain had stopped and started diminishing any hope of a spinner fall, but at 7:40 P.M. the rain finally stopped for good. However, even the trout in the house pond are almost still. During the rain I did manage to take three trout on a small black midge pupa but now the trout are feeding only on occasion but with no rhythm. Possibly a small streamer or woolly bugger might produce results but that is not what I want to do tonight and there will be another evening.

With the three trout, the gentle beauty of rainbow and the flow of the water, along with the light play on the clouds and the mountains that backdrop, the creek the evening has been a complete success. Ah a light rain is once again falling and it's time to head for home.

Once again the trout were feeding on midges, and I can't stress the importance of midges on spring creeks enough. There isn't a month of the year whene trout are not feeding on one stage of midge or another.

After reviewing some fifteen years of fishing journals I have a couple other points which I would like to pass along to you. First, here are the patterns that I selected:

Red Lace Midge Worm

Hook:             TMC 2457
Sizes:              14-18  
Thread:           Red 8/0
Body:              Red Larva Lace Wrapped

Olive Lace Midge Worm

Hook:             TMC 2457
Sizes:              14-18
Thread:           Olive 8/0
Body:              Olive Larva Lace – Wrapped

Black Thread Midge Pupa

Hook:             TMC 2457   
Sizes:              18 to 22          
Thread:           Black 12/0
Abdomen:       Black 12/0 Thread Tapered
Thorax:           Dubbed Black Rabbit Fur

Black & Olive Thread Midge Pupa

Hook:             TMC 2457
Size:               18-22
Thread:           Black, 12/0
Abdomen:       Olive 8/0 thread
Rib:                12/0 Black thread
Thorax:           Dubbed Black Rabbit fur

John's Gray & Black Midge

Hook:             Dai-Riki 310
Sizes:              18-22
Thread:           Gray 12/0
Shuck:            Gray Turkey Biot
Abdomen:      12/0 Gray Thread – tied to make a tapered body, black thread rib on abdomen
Thorax:           Grizzly Dry Fly Hackle, 3 turns only
Head:             Black 12/0 thread

John's Black Midge                                                   

Hook:             Dai-Riki 310  
Sizes:              18-22              
Thread:           Black 12/0      
Shuck:            Brown Turkey Biot Trimmed
Abdomen:      12/0 Black Thread, tapered    
Thorax:           Grizzly Dry Fly Hackle, 3 turns only 
Head:             Black 12/0 thread

Tying Note: The hackle is trimmed off of the bottom so that the pattern floats flush in the film, and by mixing and matching the colors of the thread and the hackle you can imitate any midge found on the waters that you fish. 

As the pattern is tied (John's Midge), it is an excellent emerging adult pattern. Trim off the shuck and you have an adult midge.

Now, with all of the patterns you will notice a common theme, these patterns are simple and quick and they use the barest minimum of materials. Over the years the one thing that I have come to realize with midge imitations is that the simplest patterns are the most effective patterns. The more materials that you have to place on a small hook, the harder it is to maintain the proper shape of the imitation.

Furthermore, when I reviewed the notes that I made when I used the stomach samples to build an insect display, first those samples represented every month of the year for a fifteen year period. Secondly when dealing with midge worm imitations, I seldom found that the trout keyed to the size and seldom were the midge worms found in the stomach samples all one sizes. The conclusions are that sizes 16 and 18 are all you really need for midge worm imitations.

The next important fact that stands out is that the most important midge pupa sizes are 18, 20 and 22's. There are times and places where you can encounter some true size sixteen midges and on occasion you will also encounter some true twenty four or even twenty six size midges, however these smaller midges are mixed in with larger midges and seldom have I found the trout that selective during midge emergences. The stomach samples and the notes pertaining to them support this fact as do the fishing journals that cover fourty year period of fly fishing for trout.

Enjoy & Good Fishin'

Sysadmin Note
Part eighteen can be found here


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