10-19-2005, 11:03 AM
Lately i've had a spate of enjoyable bluegill fishing being interupted by some greedy Bass smashing my fish and this resulted in me taking the battle to the Bass. I managed to crane lift one greedy bass with a bluegill in its mouth onto the bank for a phot-op and release. But that's not REALLY flyfishing to me. So.......after thinking up a bluegill imitation fly, I tied something vaguely resembling a panfish from peacock sword feather tips and some other add ons. At first it was kinda on the HUGE-4-inches-long side so I shortened it a tad. Once again I'm casting spiders to the gills and Mr. Monster Bass smashes my 6 inch gill with fervor. Only this time, I'm READY! On the first bluegill caught I quickly get him to hand and release it ten yards down the bank from the Bass attack. Then I switch flies and cast it only to realize that I had yet to add weight to it or even wet it so it's just sitting there on the pond surface like a newly fallen dry leaf, not looking very fish at all. I pulled it in and splashed it on the water surface a few times to soak it and cast it again where the attack occured. WHAM! the big bass strikes and spits the fly. ZING! goes my adrenaline levels at this point and I hurriedly cast again and pay more attention to the fly action which is just below the surface and looking good. I give it some herky-jerky strips and it darts and wobbles and then I pause. The fly is made of two right side feathers so it is screwing and twisting in the water which puts a twist in the leader and tippet. I see the bonus results when I pause the fly because it is unwinding like a rubber band wound propellor though quite slowly and hopefully seductively to the bass. Sure enough ....WHAM! ... FISH ON!...I've got a fight on my hands now and the line on the bank at my feet quickly zips through my fingers and the fish is on the reel. What a bulldog on my line! It only lasted another minute or so and VOILA! my new personal best Largemouth Bass and one big smile. I did not weigh it but guess between 5 and 7 pounds. The peacock Bluegill imitator fly is a resounding success. Now I just wonder how long before I turn in my notice to my employer as I've created a fly that will make me rich........hmmm.....probably better not quit the day job just yet. lol! Guess I just needed to share some newbie enthusiasm. Now you can see my cheapie fly rig, too. The twice snapped and repaired SA 5 wt with matching graphite SA reel. Gonna go shoppin' for some rods and reels! And tie some more Peacock Bluegill Imitators! Enjoy the pix! I'll put the fly recipe onhere soon in the Warmwater Flies section.
The Bluegill Imitator all squished up...
One happy Fishhead and one NOT so happy fishhead.....
Mr Bucketmouth and me, Steve
and the release....
10-19-2005, 12:28 PM
all this took place during a tiny post work fishing window of 25 minutes at a pond near my home. About the tenth cast came the first and only bluegill and then the fly switch and in two or three casts the bass was on.
10-19-2005, 04:24 PM
NICE ! Very nice, Fishhead. You must be pumped to get it on your own creation.
One of the great attractions to flyfishing to me I when something comes togeather like that. a) observe fish eating something that you don't have B) play around with fly recipe to mimic the prey C) go back and test your 'solution" D) wallow in that moment when the fish tell you that you figured it out!
look forward to a picture and recipe of the gill fly too!
P>S I've GOT to move south!
10-19-2005, 05:58 PM
Now THIS is cool!
There are lots of posts that go through these forums about good fishing trips but this one is a cut above. Like Wee Hooker said, it's that process of discovery and success that's so damn rewarding . . . .
BTW, don't quit your day job. :hihi:
10-20-2005, 06:40 AM
Peter-"BTW, don't quit your day job." Too funny! I'm glad I can leave work AT work and don't travel unless it's pleasure (annual AK trip!) or vacation with the family. Being only 48 next month I figure there are a few more years to come up with that "golden idea" that gets me out of a 9 to 5 and into waders more often. Oh well.
WH- Yep, this happened 3-4 times before I made the fly and used it intentionally on the attacking Bass. This little pond is only a tad over half an acre and in the last couple of years did not fish it because it mostly had small panfish and I had caught a couple small bass in it. Didn't know the lunkers were lurking in the depths. The fly pic and recipe are in the Warmwater Flies section. This fly could be modified to look more like a panfish but it sure fooled Mr. Bass. IMO, it was probably the large flat profile of th efly that did the trick and the errratic swimming behavior of it when fished in a panic stricken herky jerky mode with some pauses to let it unwind the line twist. There are little minnows or bass fry at the water's edge and I do see fish attacking them, but this surprised me to have 6 and 7 inch gills getting hammered by the bass during their struggles while on my line.
PS- as far as moving south goes....come on down! Plenty of room, fish year round, humidity that will melt you in the summers, but not many trout. NC is a decent place to call home. We do have Bluefin off Hatteras in the winter months and plenty of saltwater action, Reds, Stripers, Bass, Crappie, Panfish all year long, Carp up to 50 pounds, big long nose gar, and some trout streams over in our western Mtns. Something for everyone.
10-20-2005, 08:17 PM
Great post, and the pics are particularly cool.
One suggestion - bite the cork, not the graphite!
Just imagine the double discomfort of the broken fibers in your yapper.
10-21-2005, 10:46 AM
Thanks, I did bite the cork in some of the non-posted pix and got pond water, fish flavor, and some grit in my mouth for it. lol! should have wiped the handle and my hands first. I did do a very lite bite on the rod shaft. In the adrenaline rush of the moment I was lucky not to slip into the pond or drop and injure the fish. hey, how about this one with the tippet appearing to come out of my nose!! har, har! now I wish I had at least measured the fish against my flyrod for a benchmark.....maybe next time we meet I will.
10-21-2005, 12:13 PM
Excellent. All the more satisfying to figure out a special situation, apply some fly-tying skills and nail a monster :smokin:
Where in NC are you? I'm headed down to the OBX to stay with friends for Xmas and plan to pack the 9wt for Stripers this year - I hear they hang out down there late December.
10-21-2005, 01:17 PM
Adrian- I'm due West of where you're headed by about 140 miles in a town called Wake Forest. We have good striper fishing in-land as well in the Kerr reservoir on the VA/NC border plus some spawning rivers in the spring. Haven't ever flyfished for them yet as I'm only two years into the game after many years slinging hardware.
It sure was a blast to think up a panfish fly that somewhat resembles the prey the Bass were after and the flat profile and strip imparted action were the ticket. Going to do it again this weekend. The fly is hard to cast when dry; like casting a big ole dry leaf; but when soaked it did okay. The swimming action was very seductive as I'm pretty confident the Bass were getting lateral line input from the struggling bluegills when they attacked and this fly while not massive or as freaked out acting as the jerky bluegills were does impart a spinning, skewing and fluttering motion to it when jerked smartly and with staccato stripping and pausing to let it unwind itself. My first fly was wrecked and took some tweaking to restore its appearance. I think better eyes may help too.