September 27th, 2004
The Premiere OnLine Magazine for the Fly Fishing Enthusiast.
This is where our readers tell their stories . . .
By anglerdave (Dave Rosset)
I have to admit that I like woolly buggers.
So much so that there are times that I have
to force myself not to use them. If there was
a 12 step program for habitual Woolly Bugger
chuckers, I'd be one of the first to sign up.
Hello! My name is Dave and I fish Woolly Buggers.
What I can't figure out is why outside of the
warm water environment Woolly Buggers don't get
much respect. After all it's probably one of the
first flies everyone including trout fisherman
learn to tie. And invariably when someone asks
what's you're favorite fly? Or if you had only one
fly...? The woolly bugger seems to be right there
with an Adams, or a Cahill or Elk hair caddis. Or
even a Gold Rib Hares Ear. In their book Flies
and Fly Fishing for Bluegills by Terry and
Roxanne Wilson the Woolly Bugger is on their list
of favorite flies. In fact, they mention that of
friend of theirs fishes it almost exclusively for
bluegills. My kind of guy.
Still there are those who snub their nose at the
woolly bugger. You know the guys I'm talking about.
Mention a Woolly Bugger to an upstream and dry guy
and you're sure to get a look of disdain. And let me
tell you, those down stream and wet soft hackle folks
are almost as bad. I just don't get it. Why I'm sure
I even saw one of those guys trying to qualify for
the Great Outdoor Games use a woolly bugger. Although
I think he was trying to be sneaky about it. When asked
what fly he caught it on all he said was that it was
something that he had found in his box that based on
the current conditions he felt would be the most
productive pattern. Yea right. I'll bet it was a
Woolly Bugger and he was just too proud to admit it.
And as far as books are concerned, I've yet to see
any written specifically dedicated to the old W.B.
Well I have a few suggestions. The Woolly Bugger in
Fast Water. Thirty Years of Woolly Buggers. Standing
in a River Fishing a Woolly Bugger. Or how about.
Down and Dirty with a Woolly Bugger? Of
course there are those that are far better writers out
there than I am, so I have provided you with the titles
and you can build from there.
I like tying Woolly Buggers. They're easy and don't
require a whole lot of skill. This in my case is a
blessing. You can tie them in all different sizes
and color combinations. Weighted or un-weighted. Of
all the combinations I have tied and tried my favorite
and the one I have the most confidence in is a black/olive
tied on #8 9672 Mustad hook, with .020 lead wrapped on
the shank and some crystal flash in the tail. I like
fishing with and have had so much success with this
particular fly that I have had to force myself to
not fish it from time to time.
On a recent vacation out west, I had some apprehensions
about doing any fishing. I even tried to get out of it
by suggesting to my wife that since this was our vacation,
I didn't want to take time away from doing things together
by me going fishing. Not being much of a trout guy my
real reason was so as not embarrass myself on a stream
or river. Fortunately or unfortunately, depending how
you look at it, my darling wife insisted that I should
bring along my fly tackle.
Because we had decided to visit Yellowstone National
Park, it was there that I decided I would if time
permitted do some trout fishing. In all honesty, I
thought myself a fool if I did not fish in one if
not several of its famous streams and or rivers.
Fortunately for me it was terrestrial time so fly
selection would be relatively easy. It was after
wandering into one of several of West Yellowstone's
fly fishing shops that all my apprehensions fell
away like leaves falling from the trees in autumn.
On every stream conditions board hung on the wall
of every shop we went into, right up there listed
with various hopper patterns was Woolly Buggers!
Hooray! I was safe and I had some in my fly box.
So it was there in the early evening as the sun
was setting that I found myself, standing in the
Madison River fishing a Woolly Bugger waving a stick.
~ anglerdave (Dave Rosset)
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