As some of you know my wife Laura ties flies. I have been teaching Laura how to tie flies off and on for the last few years and she has quickly developed her own unique style and way of doing things. With a little encouragement from me she began creating ideas which were all her own. Now Laura is quick to snap up new materials, ideas, flies and see how she can change things to fit the kind of fishing she enjoys. To me this is the beginnings of greatness, watching while someone's creativity and imagination grows. The pattern which follows is one which Laura developed on her own.
Laura recently took a trip to the Salmon River near Altmar, NY and had the good fortune of stopping into Melinda's Fly Shop. Melinda had been tying selling a very simple wooly type of fly which she said had been very successful for catching late spring steelhead which were running at the time. The original has a marabou tail, body brite material for the body and a glass bead. Laura picked up a few of the flies and was quite excited. When she got home and showed them to me and she asked my reaction I replied that I thought they were sort of trashy looking.
Laura's enthusiasm wasn't diminished in the least. For sometime these flies sat on Laura's desk, every once in awhile she would look at the flies and then wonder what she could do to make the flies fit in with the places she likes to fish. One night it occured to her that this would make a great trout fly if she made these flies in gold, with a gold bead and a brown tail. I suggested that she should add a soft hackle collar. Laura feels that the current version of the fly is the best design yet and that it offers some of the best features of streamers, attractor patterns and nymphs. Ever the skeptic, I nodded my head in one of my typical husband modes, as to say, " Yes, Dear, I am sure that you are right..... " Little did I know how much crow I would have to eat, as this fly caught fish, after fish, after fish, as this fly exceeded all of her expectations.
On the very first cast at Fishing Creek, PA, Laura caught a very solid 16" rainbow. ( To me it looked like a 14" fish, but then who was I? I didn't think it would work at all. ) The next night in the Freestone Angler's Bend pool, Laura proceeded to catch several other fine fish ranging in size from 10 " to 16" , all the while professional guides and their clients were getting skunked. To add a bit more crow to the pie she even yanked a few out of one of the pools I had been fishing behind the campgrounds with only limited success. A week or so later, Laura was attending a conference in the Atirondacks and called to report that The Gold Trash fly did indend work it's magic on Blue Lake crappies as well.
Since I like most other well intentioned anglers doesn't believe it either, here is the picture and the first fish that hit the fly after the first cast. I just happend to give that fly its name, maybe I should have called it the giant slayer ( or GS Wooly ) instead.
Above: Laura holding the first fish taken on the Gold Trash ( Note: the fly is still in the fish's mouth ).
Thread: Brown 6/0 Danville
Tail: Brown Marabou
Body: Gold Spirit River Body Brite
Bead: 3/32" or 1/8" Gold
Collar: Speckled hen back, light brown
Laura says that this is a pretty easy fly to make. She feels that most any tyer can do these without too much trouble. You begin by sliding a bead on to the hook. Next tie in a tail of brown marabou. Add the body brite and wrap forward. Strip on side of the hen hackle and tie in by the tip. ( Usually you strip the up side, this varies depending on which direction the vise is facing. If you are right handed, this is left hand side of the feather.) Make two hackle turns and tie off. Laura's favorite color is the brown and gold in a size 12 which is the most effective. Next time you see Laura at a show be sure to ask her about this fly.
-For more Info Contact:
Mike Hogue / Badger Creek Fly Tying / 622 West Dryden Road, Freeville, NY 13068