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3 Flies for the Week: January 2

3 Flies for the Week: January 2

We’re back! Sorry for the lull in activity last week but it’s now the New Year and time to get back to the flies. Looks like we’re having another week of very stable conditions, which we’re very excited about.

On top of that, water levels on the South Platte are looking amazing and in turn the fishing has been amazing. Midges are the big food source as of late, but with the little extra water on the Platte we’ve been finding success on eggs, scuds, annelids, and small stoneflies.

Outside of our local tailwaters, our freestones are still fishing great due to the ample amount of open water. Rivers like the Eagle, Arkansas, and Colorado are producing a lot of fish. With the extra water in tailwaters and the continued success with the freestones we’re going to skip the midges this week. We’ve talked about them enough, let’s start the New Year with some “bigger” bugs!

This week’s flies might seem a little jiggy, but this is a good thing. I’m a broken record talking about it, but weight on flies is a good thing! It reduces the amount of split shot that we need to put onto our rig, which has many benefits that I’ve beat to death talking about. Enough of that though, let’s talk about the flies.

#1: Jig CDC Thrasher - Pearl sz16 3.3mm

The CDC Thrasher has quickly become one of the shop’s favorite jigged flies. This fly is built with flash, which is exactly why we like it. All that flash attracts fish from everywhere in the river, and even if they don’t eat it now their eyes are on your rig. The fly has the added bonus of a CDC collar that cloaks the fly once it’s in the water. This little bit of CDC actually goes a long way as it provides a very natural, buggy look to the fly. Kind of contradicting the ample amount of flash, isn’t it? Absolutely. This fly is living a double life, but it’s one that’s the best of both worlds so we won’t judge. Depending on the size of the fly, it can be fished anywhere throughout a nymphing rig due to its unique presentation. This week I personally would be fishing a sz16 as a lead fly on a freestone river, although fishing a sz20 as your second or third fly on a tailwater or freestone wouldn’t be a horrible idea. Try the other colorations too! I’m merely suggesting the pearl this week because it seems to yield the most fish for us. 

#2: Jig Hare’s Ear - sz18

I’m sorry, but I had to put this one on here. I absolutely love the standard Hare’s Ear and I go nuts over any slight variation of it. This version of the Hare’s Ear is a little different than most of the others. Taking a quick look you’ll see a cute little pair of rubber legs. This fly might look like it’s playing dress up to look like a Pats, but those legs actually go a long way. One thing most people tend to overlook is the fact that aquatic insects have legs, and the trout certainly know what their food is supposed to look like. Now I’m not saying that legs on a fly is a necessity, but sometimes having a fly that has them is a good thing. Heck, the day-to-day standards for most people have legs (i.e. pheasant tail, juju, copper john, etc.). This would be a perfect lead fly on the tailwaters, as well as a great second or third fly on the freestones.

#3: Jig Pearl Rib Perdigon - Fire Starter sz18 2.8mm

If you aren’t familiar with perdigons, you should be. These goofy looking flies seem to catch fish regardless of the conditions. Perdigons were designed to plummet to the bottom of the river and stay there to keep you in the strike zone for a longer period of time. Although this was intended to be done on a euro nymphing rig, we’ve found similar results on indicator setups as well. With this fly riding in the strike zone for a longer time it will inevitably pick up more eats than a weightless fly. This is due to the curiosity of trout.

Don’t believe me? Go watch a video of trout sitting in the current, they’re constantly picking at things as they go by. A lot of the time it’s not even food they’re grabbing, just picking things up out of pure curiosity. Trout don’t have hands, so they inspect things with their mouths. So, if your fly spends more time in their face they will eventually take a look to see what it is. Obviously not every fish will do this, but many will (that’s why the euro guys out fish everyone). I’ve never really found a color that matters for this, although I personally like the brighter colors because it seems to draw in more fish. I wouldn’t say this is an imitative pattern whatsoever, but if you had to label it something it could be a midge larva, annelid, mayfly, or small stonefly. Again though, this fly matches nothing but catches a ton of fish. 

Best of luck on the water this week and we hope these flies catch a fish or two for ya. All 3 of the flies are available on our website and in the shop. If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to reach out to Xavier on email at, or call the shop at 303-330-1292. Thank you!

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