Welcome to 'just old flies,' a section of methods and flies that
used-to-be. These flies were tied with the only materials
available. Long before the advent of 'modern' tying
materials, they were created and improved upon at a
far slower pace than todays modern counterparts;
limited by materials available and the
Once long gone, there existed a 'fraternity' of anglers
who felt an obligation to use only the 'standard' patterns
of the day. We hope to bring a bit of nostalgia to these pages and to
you. And sometimes what you find here will not always be
about fishing. Perhaps you will enjoy them. Perhaps you
will fish the flies. Perhaps . . .
SENSORY ENHANCEMENT - ITS ROLE
IN TROUT SEARCH PATTERN RESPONSE
By "Old Rupe"
Archive of Old Flies
Have you ever sat in a "meat market singles bar" waiting
for the perfect "honey" to enter? The perfect brunette with long
legs and all the stuff to compliment the act.
Now you understand trout search patterns.
Trout during the course of a hatch
establish a search pattern due to the repeated passing of
the nymph, fly, spinner, or egg through their window.
After seeing enough flies they define a search pattern
much like you do in a singles bar. They only
hit on those insects that match the search pattern, like you do
in the singles bar, fat girls and other flies do without.
The hatch defines the search pattern
and the trout follow this lead in filtering out everything
that doesn't match the flies that pass over them. Woe is
the "honey" that enters the bar and doesn't "fit" the mold.
The same principle applies with the "presented artificial fly."
If it doesn't fit the pattern it just won't hunt.
"Honeys" have learned over the centuries that if they
walk in like the rest they won't get "taken." If they look like
the previous one hundred that entered the bar they just do without.
They just know they have to have an edge. It's this edge that
they work on 2-3 hours every day. Presentation is the solution.
She knows that she has to enhance her positive aspects.
This enhancement act works for "honeys" and it works for trout.
Short, dumpy "honeys" that are fat and
ugly, just don't go to the dance. In order for a trout fly to
succeed during a hatch it has to distance itself from the pack.
It has to stand out from the crowd. It has to not only personify
the hatch but have one or more characteristics that separate
it from the thousands of naturals that flood the trouts window.
It needs something in the search pattern that will cause the
trout to accept it over the natural.
The basic search pattern can't be
altered without diminishing it. Alter the size or general
pattern and the fly-fisher does without.
What then can the sharp fisher do?
The secret like the "honeys" found
out is "enhance what you already have." If a fly is green,
make it real green, if a fly is yellow make it real yellow.
In fact, like the Catskill tiers, a yellow fly becomes red.
Personify the fly without making it an example so garish
that it will scare your mother-in-law.
Augment the natural color so as to
enhance the chance that your fly will be "ate." If the fly
is green make your imitation greener. Try to present a fly
that elicits a more than natural response.
A super fly. A fly that the trout brain will see as a
better act. A building process that the trout brain will accept.
If green is good then greener is better. If yellow shines then
red or flourescent yellow should be great.
It is necessary to maximize the neural response of the
search pattern so as to separate the natural from the imitation.
In this case more is better. Brighter is better than dull. Key that
fact into the tying process and the search pattern that results is
able to stimulate the brain better than the natural. An enhanced
color is better than the evolutionally conceived "blend in" that
nature conceived in nymphs. Cross purposes here, my artificial
wants to stand out from the natural and catch trout where the
natural wants to blend in and be ignored.
The winning act is not to make the yellow too yellow
or the red too red and the green can't scare the bus driver.
Enhance the color but don't scare the fish. Separate the
naturals from the imitations by enhancing the color but
don't scare the object of the search.~ "Old Rupe"
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