For the past five or six times I have been out over my
lunch hour I have been using some flies that were sent
to me by various folks. For the most part I will not
tell you how I did with them because this has not been
a fair test. We got some rain and the water has come up
about a foot or so. The places that are not muddy have
algae blooms in them. Most of the flies that I use are
not doing well right now during this time period.
The one fly that I have had success with is a Jelly Bean
by our own Jim Hatch. We have swapped some flies and these
are the ones I got. There has not been much of a breeze
for the past two weeks during the middle of the day. It
does pick up later in the afternoon.
I have been able to find water that was flat. It might
be colored, but any disturbance on the surface would show
up better than if there were any waves on the surface. The
first one I tied on was a black body with a white marabou
tail in about size 12, I think. I cast this out about 15
feet, just out from the edge of the weeds and let it set
until all the rings from the fly landing were gone. I
waited about another minute and then twitched it. The
rings had barely moved when I saw the slurp and hear
the neat sucking sound of a gill taking a bug off the
surface. I waited a second or two and then set the hook.
It was a nice gill that did not like the idea of being
on the end of the line.
I had been casting to the west on the little settling
pond. I turned toward the east side of the pond and made
a left-handed cast. I am starting to get proficient
enough that I actually do this while fishing. Also it
keeps the fly out over the water and away from those
weeds that jump up and grab flies. Maybe we need to
get some geneticists that will work on putting that
gene from plants into fish so we could have them jump
a few feet up out of the water to take the fly. I know
those weeds jump up and get the fly, because I never ever
let my backcast drop.
Back to the fishing. I let the fly set again until the
rings were gone. Just as I was starting to get ready to
twitch the fly another gill came up and slurped it in.
This fish decided to stay at the surface and fight. She
threw water all over the place, but stayed on the hook,
until I could get her in my hand. This was a nice plump,
eating size gill. I let her go back into the pond.
I cast straight out into the pond on the next cast. When
I am fishing in a place where I cannot move very much,
I like to scatter my casts around. I think that the fish
are less likely to spook if you do that, instead of
casting back to the same place each time. At least
it works for me.
Since the water is deeper out in this area, I decided to
make a little more disturbance in retrieving the fly. I
let the rings disappear after the Jelly Bean landed. I
then started bringing it in with a slow steady retrieve.
This made a little "V" in the water as the fly moved along.
I thought this might be easier for any fish that were in
this area to see. The fly had moved about six feet when a
little bass launched itself at the fly. This fish moved
the last two feet toward the fly splashing on the surface.
The temptation was great to set the hook too fast, but
the voice in my head was screaming to "WAIT, DON'T HURRY."
This is one of the times I listened and managed to hook the
fish. This bass was about a foot long and was an aerialist.
She jumped five times before I got her in. I think she spent
more time in the air than under the water.
I cast to the west again just a little farther than I had
before. The fly had just hit the water when it was sucked
under. This fish felt a little different as it wanted to
go deep and to the center of the pond. I played it for a
few minutes and finally got it close enough to see what I
had on the line. This was a large green sunfish. There are
not many of them in this pond, but the ones that are there
are usually large and have an attitude. They are great
fun on the fly rod.
I alternated my casts for the rest of the time, that day
getting a fish on about every other cast. It took some
time to make each cast, but if that is what it takes to
get the fish to bite that is what I will do.
On the other days I have picked up a few fish with this
fly each time I use it. I also tried some other flies
and some of them worked also. It is fun way to spend an
hour during the middle of the day.
Thanks to Jim for the fly. It has been a
Fly of the Week here on FAOL.
Hope you can get out on the water. ~