Friday, July 22, 2011

Shannon's Streamer

I've been talking to other folks on several forums about them. Let me tell you, if you've never used one, you're really missing out because these flies are really effective. Many fly fishers catch smallmouth bass and other game fish with them, but they also work great for freshwater drum, catfish, gar, and many other fish. I've personally used these flies many times and landed boatloads of drum and cats. Throw in a few carp and suckers too. They're quick and easy to tie, plus you can tie them in many various sizes and colors. I tie three different versions of them for the sake of versatility. One of them is weightless, one is weighted with lead wire attached to the hook shank, and the other utilizes bead-chain eyes. I prefer the bead-chain version myself because it gets down a little deeper, rides hook point up, and has an awesome darting action in the water that fish go nuts over. If you get some time, check out the link below and tie a few of these great flies up. I'll also include a couple pictures of the versions I tie. 

Lead wire weighted version.

Bead-chain version.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

7-20-2011 - Auglaize River

To tell you the truth, I'm not sure which was hotter today, the fishing action or the weather. I was out and about doing my rounds, (Restocking my flies at some local bait stores.) and I had no intention at all of going out again because it was so hot out. Well, it cooled off a little in the evening, and against my better judgement, I decided to head out to the old hydroelectric dam on the Auglaize River. I packed up my 8 weight and took plenty of water with me because it was still pretty hot out. I wasn't thinking and grabbed my spare reel by mistake which has my patched up line on it and I had just realized it once I had gotten all the way to my spot. I was kind of bummed out because I really wanted to test out my new line.

The river was up a little bit more from the last time I was there because there was some rain and stormy weather down south (Upstream) a few days ago. I had one of my new Mud Bugs on and started casting towards the dam where there was some moving water. I immediately had a sharp take and hooked into a small 2-4 pound carp. After several runs and a surprisingly long fight, I had finally gotten the carp worn down and he was ready to land. Unfortunately, I also had forgotten one important thing. The net! So, I took a leap of faith and tried to grab him, but he came off of the hook and I had to watch him swim away. I hate it when that happens, but I'll get another one sometime.

I will admit I was a little disappointed losing a nice carp, but the channel catfish kept me plenty busy. (I will tell you right now, if you've never caught a good sized catfish on a fly rod, you're really missing out! The same goes for carp. Actually, any "rough" or "trash" fish for that matter. Buffalo, quillback, drum, and gar are amazing fighters as well.) Keep one thing in mind though when it comes to fly fishing for catfish; they tear flies up. Their small sandpaper-like teeth and strong jaws can tear apart feathers, chenille, and dubbing, so check your fly often.

I ended up catching 5 nice sized channel catfish and a bluegill. Strangely, the bluegill was hooked through the nose. I must have got him right when he was going after the fly or something. I ended up calling it a day after being soaked with sweat and getting attacked by gnats and other small and useless bugs.

I look forward to my next outing because I'm working up several more patterns and I've got a great feeling about them as well. So far, the Dubbin' Craw and the Mud Bug have definitely earned their keep in my warmwater fly box. I'll leave you with some pictures for now and until next time, tight lines!

The Mud Bug strikes again!

Channel Catfish taken on a Mud Bug. He did not want to let go of it either!

Bluegill taken on a Mud Bug.

A very greedy channel cat.

Friday, July 15, 2011

7-15-2011 Maumee River - Independence Dam

Wow, what a great day of fly fishing! I went out to the river for about two hours this evening to do some more fly fishing. When I arrived, I did not expect to get anything because the water was a bit higher and a little more murky. I decided to wade out to my favorite spot and try it out anyway. I tied on one of my new prototype flies called the Mud Bug. After several casts, I had a solid hit, but missed it. Several more casts resulted in a small, but feisty freshwater drum who put a nice bend in my 8 weight. I made a couple more casts with no luck, so I decided to start casting towards another area. I had a nice sized channel catfish that immediately smacked the Mud Bug after just a few twitches of the line. Shortly after, I had another hard hit and set the hook. I thought for sure that I had hooked a nice smallmouth bass because I seen a brownish colored fish leap from the water. (Even this far upriver, they're still catchable.) It turns out, it was a channel cat who was pretending to be a bass.

My arm was starting to get tired from heaving the giant 8 weight around, so I decided to call it a day. As I was heading back, I decided to make a few casts to some fish I seen surfacing. I believe they were some carp-like fish. (Buffalo, quillback, etc.) After casting, I let the fly rest for a second because I had to check my phone. I went to make a cast and set the hook into something. I thought I was snagged on the bottom until the snag started fighting back. After an awesome fight, I found out my "snag" was a very hefty channel catfish who fell for my Dubbin' Craw I had just tied on. It was an excellent day to fly fish. Plus, I had the pleasure of speaking to a gentleman who informed me of a great unknown spot where buffalo like to swim. I might be getting out there soon....

Until next time, tight lines!

Freshwater Drum taken on a Mud Bug.

Channel Catfish taken on a Mud Bug.

The Channel catfish who thought he was a bass. Taken on a Mud Bug.

My "snag."

Quite a hefty channel catfish! He fell for the Dubbin' Craw!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Dubbin' Craw now available!

I just wanted to post a quick update to let folks know that the dubbin' craw is now available for purchase through our website. It comes in size 8 and your choice of olive and black, or rust brown. Both are great additions to your warmwater fly box. I personally tested these patterns alongside several other local fly fisherman and have posted the successful results. Thanks for viewing and tight lines!

Olive and Black

Rust Brown

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

7-13-2011 Maumee River - Independence Dam

Quillbacks are nothing but trouble. Plain and simple. I went down to the Independence Dam on the Maumee River for yet another round of warmwater fly fishing. I had a lot of strikes, but I just couldn't make many connections. I assume most of the strikes were from gar because they were everywhere around me. I saw many of them surfacing. I wish I had some rope flies with me today because I would have caught tons of gar. I did manage to connect with a nice freshwater drum. I lost another fish I never seen, and I lost another quillback. The quillback from the Maumee are very talented when it comes to jumping off of the hook. But this quillback ruined my fly line. It had some size to it and as I was fighting it, it ran my line across a sharp rock and cut into it. The core of the line is still intact and I should still be able to get some use out of it until I can pick up a new line. I wrapped some fly tying thread around it to help fill in the cut, and then I covered it with a little bit of zap-a-gap.

For flies, I used a black bead-head woolly bugger and a dubbin' craw. The drum took the bugger, but the unknown fish and the quillback took the dubbin' craw.

Freshwater Drum caught on a black woolly bugger.

Monday, July 11, 2011

7-11-2011 Auglaize River

The verdict is out! The dubbin' craw has been tested and produces excellent results!

We had some storms roll through earlier in the day and I was debating on whether or not to even try to get out. I broke down and ended up heading out to the old hydroelectric dam on the Auglaize River. I didn't stay very long because it was unbelievably hot and muggy. I threw several flies out, to see what kind of competition the dubbin' craw might have. Nothing was biting, so I tied on a dubbin' craw and WHAM! It got whacked by a nice sized channel catfish who decided to inhale it. The cat put up an awesome fight for his size. As I was releasing the catfish, I noticed a good sized carp with his head partly out of the water nibbling on scum. He was no more than 10 feet from me. The water level is literally even with the apron of the dam, so getting close to him wasn't an issue. I must have spent about 20 minutes messing around with him. He would go down, then come back up and munch some more. Finally, he was right by my fly and I gave it a few small twitches. I seen him look at it, then he slowly went over and inhaled it. I set the hook and he didn't even realize he was hooked! Then, all of a sudden the fight began. It took a very, very long time to get him in. I swear I almost lost him a few times. Landing the fish was another story. Thankfully, there was an area where the water goes about 6 inches over the ledge and I was able to get him up onto the ledge. It was a pain with no net, but I got him! I usually use an 8 weight for this kind of river fishing, and I mistakenly grabbed my 6 weight. The biggest surprise is that I had a torn up leader and a wind knot from fighting the catfish. Now that's luck! Here's some pictures from the adventure!

Channel Catfish taken on a dubbin' craw.

Carp taken on a dubbin' craw.

Not very clear, but you can definitely see the fly!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Dubbin' Craw

Well, as promised, here's my latest creation, the dubbin' craw. As I stated before, it's a fairly quick and simple tie for the beginner and expert alike. I tested it on some panfish and had promising results, but I'm very excited about getting out to the river and testing it on some carp and drum. It bears a strong resemblance to some of my most productive carp flies. First off, let's take a look at the materials needed before we get into tying instructions.

Hook: Eagle Claw model 084. Size 8.  (Just a standard el-cheapo hook that you can get at Wally World.)
Eyes: Small bead-chain eyes
Thread: Uni-Thread black 6/0
Body: Any brown dubbing fur will do nicely. I used brown rabbit.
Tail: Rust brown rooster neck feathers
Hackle: Same as above.

Easy huh? Well, tying is even easier. Just tie in your eyes, then wrap towards the bend of the hook. Take about 4-5 small feathers and use them as your tail. Tie in your hackle as well, and create a dubbing loop. Dub the body up the hook shank and stop right behind the bead-chain eyes. Wrap your hackle forward, then tie off and trim right behind the eyes as well. Next, take your thread and form a small, neat head right in front of the HOOK EYE, not the bead-chain eyes. Whip finish and cement. You should get something like this: (Sorry about the photo quality, I had to use my cell phone because my good camera is missing.)

So, there you have it. The dubbin' craw. I'll be heading out sometime to do some more testing, but I have high hopes for this little bad boy.

Tight lines!

Friday, July 8, 2011

7-8-2011 Private Ponds

I said I wasn't going to, but I ended up going to the ponds this evening. The bite was pretty slow this evening and I only landed two fish. Both of them were bluegill. The last fish was caught on a fluorescent fire orange/hot pink woolly worm. But, I was able to get out on the water and test out a new pattern I've been working on. It's also what I caught the first bluegill on. It's called the dubbin' craw. It's a fairly straight forward and easy pattern to tie. I'll post the recipe on my next update. Here's a couple pictures from today.

Bluegill #1 caught on a dubbin' craw.

Bluegill #2 caught on a woolly worm.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

7-6-2011 Maumee River - Independence Dam

Today I decided to run out to the Independence Dam State Park to do a little fly fishing on the Maumee River. The river is somewhat clear (Using Maumee River standards, of course.), and low. I decided to wade out to a few of my favorite spots on the river. There were lots of rising and tailing suckers and carp. I was armed with my trusty 8 weight and I was using a size 10 bead-head black woolly bugger. I spent about twenty minutes casting to these fish and I was getting no luck at all. I started to feel like it was going to be a waste of time. Casting was an issue as well. I'm sure most of you fly fisherman know how great your casts can be when your standing with your feet in an awkward position and you lose your balance while casting. With no success, I decided that it was time to move on. I started getting more hits and eventually landed three fish. A decently size quillback who decided to leap off my hook while I was getting my cell phone out for a quick picture, a crappie, and a freshwater drum. I guess if you're a local like myself, "sheephead" would be a more appropriate term. I was pleasantly surprised to catch a nice little crappie in the Maumee. I've caught them before, but I have not caught a lot of them. I believe I need to tie up some more woolly buggers for the next trip out there. Well folks, thanks for reading. Until next time, tight lines!

Maumee River crappie caught on the fly.

Freshwater Drum taken on a woolly bugger while fly fishing the Maumee River.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Reservoir panfish

This whole broken foot thing really cramped my style. I decided that today was the day to get out. It was the first time I've went out since I broke my foot. I've been itching to get out on the water and throw some flies. With that being said, I headed out to our local reservoir for a short trip to help get back into the groove of things. I stayed for about half an hour and I ended up with one bluegill and three green sunfish. I was using a size 12 gray and yellow popper. The three green sunfish were pretty small, but the bluegill was pretty decently sized. I apologize for no picture of the third greenie, but he looked just like the other ones I caught and I had everything packed up already. The reservoir in Defiance is still pretty new and was stocked a few years ago. Plus, there's been additional stocking since then, so most of the fish in there haven't grown very large yet. 

Bluegill caught on a popper.

Green Sunfish

Yet another Green Sunfish.

Friday, July 1, 2011

6-29-11 Northwest Ohio Private Pond

June 29, 2011

I decided to go out on a fly fishing trip in the evening because it was so nice out and I had a hunch the fish were biting. My hunch paid off because I got set up and tied on one of my new woolly worms I tied up a few days before. The bass, bluegill, and crappie were striking right and left! I managed to get 15 in about an hour. The bluegill were spawning and on their beds, which meant they were extremely aggressive. I was a little confused at first because it's a little late in the year for them to be spawning. I realize that it makes perfect sense now because of the harsh, cool spring we had. I was using a size 6 woolly worm that had a fluorescent yellow body and a hot pink hackle/tail. I'm very thankful I had more than one in that color because I had a large channel catfish break my tippet off at the bank.

Unfortunately, I had a little accident at the pond that left me with a broken foot. I stepped in a small drainage hole and fell. Now that I'm laid up, I'll have some more time at the vice to fill my fly box and supply my local bait stores I go to. Here's some pictures of the fish from that day.


Another hefty bluegill.

Largemouth Bass. Notice the fly?

Those good old woolly worms....

Today, I want to discuss one of the most effective flies in my fly box. The woolly worm. Basically, a woolly worm is a smaller, shortened version of the famous woolly bugger fly. While the woolly bugger is more widely known, the woolly worm works just as well as it's big brother. Bass, panfish, carp, drum, and cats find this fly irresistible. My fly shop sells these by the ton around here. Well, not figuratively speaking, but you get the picture. They're very popular. Why? Because they work. Plain and simple. My personal best largemouth bass was caught on a size 6 brown woolly worm. You can tie these flies in all sorts of different colors and sizes, but size 6 and a hot pink tail/hackle works like magic. You can use nearly any color for the body, but different species of fish like different colors. For bass and bluegill, a combination of chartreuse green or fluorescent yellow and hot pink works great. Crappie on the other hand, love white and hot pink. Smallmouth bass and rock bass seem to love red or orange bodies and the hot pink hackle/tail combination. For drum, cats, and carp, I've had my best luck with a purple body, and a yellow hackle/tail. With that being said, go grab yourself some of these dynamite little flies and head to your favorite spot. You'll have something on the end of your line. Tight lines!

If you're interested in any woolly worms, here's the link to our online store.

Auglaize Fly Shop

A warm introduction

First off, welcome to the new blog of Auglaize Fly Shop! Located in Northwest Ohio, we'll be discussing fishing reports, fly tying, and general fly fishing techniques for catching warmwater fish. We'll generally be focusing on fly fishing for bass, panfish, catfish, carp, freshwater drum, and many more species of fish! Many pictures will also be included to help you relive our fishing adventures with us. So, be sure to check back often and subscribe if you wish! Until next time, tight lines folks!

Yellow Bullhead caught while fly fishing.

Freshwater Drum on the fly!


Largemouth Bass