Thursday, March 28, 2013

The bluegill that got away! #yearofthebluegill

Last year, we didn't have a late winter or cold fronts in March that affected stream temperatures.  I definitely felt the cold today.  Right through my pants and long handles!  Especially, as I waded chest deep for fat panfish.

I caught several decent panfish but the one I really wanted to capture on my phone flopped his way out of my grip as I reached in my pocket.  Sure, this bass in the photo was near the top of my list but that bluegill is why I really went out this morning.

The fish are still holding in deep spots near the banks and holding tight to structure.  I was catching fish from against brick structuring and fallen timber.  They really aren't doing much in the riffles.  Every now and then, fallfish and small bass would scurry after my Boogle Bug as it drifted in the current.

#YearoftheBluegill is going to be a challenge.  In reality, I am doing the #YearofthePanfish.  I went to a location where I know large panfish can be caught.  The large ones that are bigger than your hand.  As stream temperatures warm up, I'm gonna be landing some fat pannies!  I love it when they hit like a bass and shake structure and slam the water.  I all honesty, even on a 3 wgt. today, I wasn't very impressed with those little guys - other than that large bluegill.  That bass I caught didn't fight much.

As I organized my fly boxes last night, I found myself placing smallmouth flies into them.  Today, I had to slow myself down.  I was rushing through my panfish holes and making my way to the smallmouth hangout.

I traded in the Blazer and am using a smaller SUV.  Therefore, instead of placing the kayak into the Blazer, I am going to put the kayak on top of my new vehicle.  And . . . I a have to keep a box in the back for my fishing gear.  After today's outing, I took off my waders and placed them in the box along with my muddy boots.  I also placed a towel over my seat.  The Blazer was 10 years old and was definitely more than used roughly.  Last week, I tried to access my favorite location but it was too muddy.  I had to turn around.  I am not used to passenger tires and AWD is not the same as four wheel drive.

That being said, I hope to hit new water on my kayak in the next week or so.  I do believe the bass will begin to move to their beds in April.  With the kids having only about 6 or 7 weeks left in school, my time hunting smallmouth is dwindling.

Tight lines!!!

Friday, March 22, 2013

How to make my Bread & Butter! Warm water fly tying.

Well, guess it's time to share my Juicy Foam Fly tying instructions.  I know - crazy name but this pattern works well.  It's been a best-seller for me and rightly so . . . because it catches those smallmouth and bluegills.  It's a durable pattern with a good presence on the water as it drifts through riffles and it can be chugged along the banks.  This pattern isn't complicated and it doesn't call for much in the way of materials. It could be a hopper but it could be much more than that too.  You can use many color combinations or add large nymph eyes too.  The indicator is optional.

  • River Road Creations Chernobyl Cutter
  • 2 mm craft foam
  • mono eyes (not necessary but if desired) - you could also draw on eyes or use stickey eyes.
  • rubber legs
  • I typically use a size 8 hook but have also used a Gamakatsu b10s #6.

You don't have to use a cutter to make these strips of foam measuring 1/2 x 1.5 inches.

Wrap plenty of thread around the hook shank.  You could dub the shank but it's up to you.  The fish don't care about the dubbing.  Tie in foam at the tip of the barb.  Size 8!!

Cut top piece of foam at the eye of the hook.

Fold the bottom piece over the top and tie in about 1mm from hook eye.

Cut legs any length you want - 2 legs need to be a bit shorter.

Tie in legs and indicator (optional).  Wrap thread around plenty of times.

Make sure you have plenty of thread around the shaft and around the legs so that when you apply glue, the body has something to cling too.  Make at least 3 half-hitches around the body between legs and over indicator.  If you are not comfortable finishing the fly off that way - wrap thread back to shaft and make some whip-finishes.

You can even add large nymph eyes or press-on (sticky) eyes.  I like to drift the Juicy Foam Flies for smallmouth and warmouth.  When fishing ponds, they are good to chug or slap on the surface of the water.  I use indicators for long drifts.

*No, this isn't a copy of any pattern.  There are those patterns out there who are similar and were created several years later.


Wednesday, March 6, 2013

ebay store - bluegill flies & bass flies - warm water fly fishing

If you want to buy flies other than my ebay listing, am working on this page.

I received an email today from someone that follows my blog.  He wants to purchase flies from my ebay store.  I guess it's time to relist them.  My apologies to anyone that has wanted to buy my flies lately.  Flies will be listed in my store in the next few days.  If you need to contact me, my email is and we can follow up with any pattern you see on the blog.

Above, you will notice my size 4 Packing Foam Beetle.  I can't wait to try it out.  Heck, I may even list it on ebay.  My father gave me some packing foam from a laptop.  How could I not make something from it??  You guys know me and my love affair with foam.

This little guy is a size 8 foam "popper".  If I can take a good enough photo, he may just be listed on ebay too.

I have been taking lousy pics.  If the lighting is off then the flash is too bright . . . so, I'm stuck right now in a photo slump.  This fly is size 8 and for #yearofthebluegill.  I am hoping to diversify my ebay lineup but cost factors in along with competition.

Again, sorry for not having my flies listed on ebay.  I will keep you guys updated.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Pencil Popper - (not mine) warm water fly tying

I follow texas_fly_fisherman_27 on Instagram.  He painted an awesome pencil popper.  I think he recently began painting these flies.  I gave him a few pointers and he can do a lot better than I could do it.  This is his shad popper.  I do believe the eyes are stick-on.  I'd use this pattern.  I suggested that he use Testor's paint and spray with a lacquer finish.  He posted one or two whiel tagging me so I could see them.  It feels good to help someone make good flies and he has put me to shame.

I will be putting some more tying instructions up soon.  Probably hoppers, lol.  I sold a ton of Juicy Foam Flies last year.  I will show tying instructions but figure to lose out on a few sales because of it.  Hopefully, the Juicy Foam Fly pattern will somehow become viral.  I've landed a lot of bass and panfish on that pattern.

I have to mention #yearofthebluegill.  Sure, I'll be targeting bluegill but most likely, this will be #yearofthepanfish.  I can find bluegill here and there but I know where to hit those fat warmouth and goggleye.