The Ramblings of a Fly Fisherman

The GFA or “Clod Hopper”

This is the General Foam Attractor (GFA) or sometimes called the “Clod Hopper” depending on which resource you are finding these in.  It is a simple pattern and very easy to tie.  However, don’t let the basic nature of this pattern fool you.  It is highly customizable as far as color and size and it is a prime candidate for a “hopper and dropper” rig.  If you find yourself on a river where smaller trout are taking hoppers and the Charlie Boy just has a little too much bulk to set the hook, try one of these on for size.  A slimmer profile and wider gape could provide more consistent hook sets.
The Clod Hopper or GFA

Muddy Water

I don’t know about the rest of you, but when I see a stream that has become murky due to runoff, I typically either head for the nearest bar for a couple of beers or return home to plan a fishing trip for another day. However; after talking to a few guides over the last month, I have been informed that in these situations, all is not lost. There are a few things to consider that could really salvage the trip and provide a pretty effective fishing day.

1. Surface patterns in most cases will be useless, especially small ones. Stick with wet flies like streamers or nymphs.

2. Color will be important. Darker colors will show a better contrast in muddy water than lighter colors. It will be best to use black and olive variations of streamer or large nymph patterns. Some of the guides that I spoke with actually recommended two-tones as well , as these attract a lot of attention.

3. Fish the edges. Often trout will congregate within the overhanging brush or grass along the sides of a stream or within cut banks while the water is muddy. There are better natural opportunities for them there due to increased visibility and terrestrials being caught in the runoff.

4. If the first three suggestions prove to be unsuccessful, head further upstream. Often poor water conditions are caused by a tributary bringing deposits into the main river. Water conditions above that particular area may prove to be better.

At the Tying Bench!

I spent a nice relaxing day indoors today after a week of long hours and little sleep.  As always, those days are perfect times for practicing my tying and improving on the many techniques that I have learned over the last year.  Today, I wanted to concentrate on the Charlie Boy Hopper.  I know that I have tied this one in the past, but after attending the show last weekend and seeing the latest demonstration of it there, I thought that I would revisit the pattern and see how well I can improve.   If you compare my first attempt to this one… it is like night and day.
The Charlie Boy Hopper - IMPROVED!



The Jujubee Midge

Well, I just returned from the Fly Fishing Show this weekend and have tons of great information to share with you.  However, first I’d like to show you my first pattern attempt from Charlie Craven’s new book.  His first chapter covers the Jujubee Midge.  Now, I have been using this pattern for a number of years and can certainly agree that this is another great fly to have in your arsenal.  It is a little more involved than many other midge patterns, but it is by no means a difficult one to learn.  I have had success with this one on the Big Thompson, all along the South Platte, Steamboat, and on the St Joe River in Idaho.  Tie them in a number of colors and be sure to give it a try.

The Jujubee Midge

The Fly Fishing Show - Denver, CO - January 7th - 9th

In case some of you were not already aware, this weekend “The Fly Fishing Show” will be held at the Denver Merchandise Mart on January 7th, 8th, and 9th.  It looks like there will be tons of instruction on casting, tying, as well as pointers for fishing various river systems including some here in Colorado.  I recommend that you attend.  I will be there Saturday.