The FlyVolution Series
Photos and words courtesy of Rex Fey
I had never tied a hopper until a few months ago, and current creations are certainly not good looking ones like Gordon Van Der Spuy showed us at his clinic. I have, of course, modified his pattern but the general design of pattern is very similar. Instead of a dubbed body I use a deer-hair body for the Hotspot Hopper, as I do for the Para-Daddy. This gives the fly natural buoyancy so it floats high in the surface film as opposed to using floatant (or foam like my mate, Fred) to keep it on top. I have taken out the CDC as I don’t have any good quality stuff available and I really can’t stand the process of drying it whenever the stuff gets wet; which seems the whole time! I use a piece of orange or, in this case, white yarn. The fly is highly visible to the fisherman, and it always lands the correct way up and stays like that, unlike other hopper patterns I have tied that end up lying on their sides. Gordon actually fished it with me and caught his biggest ever brown trout of 17” on it in early September. Typical of him not to have a fly box with him and having to bum flies!
I landed two beautiful browns on this fly last weekend. One fish actually came all the way from the bottom of a 5m deep pool to take the fly off the surface. It’s an interesting story:
I had my fly sitting on the water a few meters in front of me as I crouched down on the edge of the pool. I was scouting out the far bank in the shallows for any movement when I saw this golden shape rising slowly out of the depths. It was a surreal experience watching that fish slowly rise to the surface. It took what felt like eons before it to reached my fly. And upon arrival it did what brown trout do best: it lazily sipped in the fly so delicately that it hardly made a ripple.
That is a take that I certainly won’t ever forget. It was perfect weather for the long but scenic hike into the valley. And of course sight fishing to Brown Trout using two different dry flies that I’d never used before.
It doesn’t get much better than that. Let’s hope this is a sign of things to come.