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Discussing fishing flies, trout flies, salmon flies, fly fishing gear and equipment, Idaho and Montana fishing rivers, NW rivers, fly tying and fly fishing trips. Over 50 years experience in fly fishing, best flies, fly tying, fly fishing techniques, fish stories, directions to rivers and lakes and great fly fishing tall tales with special communications from area guides.

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Monday, September 26, 2011

"YSF Stinger" Perfected

YellowStoneFly of the Idaho Fly Fishers Blog was recently fishing a river in south central Montana and it was a great hopper day. I was fishing one of my YSF Stinger Foam Terrestrials and my guide Wayne suggested twitching the fly occasionally to mimic a hopper when it is still alive in the water. Wham! Oh what a strike! After landing a nice 17 incher, I began to get more aggressive with my twitches. The results were the same.

After a full day of throwing large hopper patterns onto the water, my arm can get sort of tired. So I admit I do get lazy by 4 or 5 PM. This particular trip, I got so lazy that I sort of quit hopper fishing altogether. One of the other IDFFA members in another boat was streamer fishing with some success. So, again in my lazy mode, rather than change my fly, I began stripping the YSF Stinger with varying strips and intervals. Wham again! Could it be the fly or just one of those days where the trout would eat everything you’d throw at them?


Thinking back to a small stream I used to fish in the mountains of North Carolina years ago, I vividly remember one day, again at the day’s end, when I began stripping a hare’s ear rather than trying to “dead drift” the nymph the way it should be fished. Actually, I caught more large browns (over 18”) that day than the entire four years I consistently fished this stream. Again, was it just “that day” or did the flies action really make the difference?

If you really take a good look at the YSF Stinger, it does somewhat resemble a Marabou Muddler to some extent. So, maybe fishing it as one could make a difference. I have subsequently fished this fly on other waters as a streamer with like results. Another technique with this fly is stripping it for a few times, then letting it float on the surface and drifting it for a few seconds before continuing to strip. It will not sink unless you forcibly retrieve it.  Browns love this! They may even think it is a darting sculpin. Browns will notoriously come up, pound a sculpin with their snouts in an attempt to stun it, and return within seconds to eat. The trick is to leave the fly where it lays without getting the almost overwhelming urge to make another cast to the fish. Actually, smallmouth bass will do exactly the same thing.

My point is, occasionally be a lazy Idaho fly fisher and stray from your classic fishing techniques for more unorthodox methods. You may be surprised at the results. Fly fishing Idaho will get really great now that fall has arrived. Come and fly fish with us at the Idaho Fly Fishers Association. We would love to have the company, and don’t forget to leave us comments about this or any of our articles. We are always looking for good technique ideas to pass along to our other Idaho fly fishing friends.

Tags: "Fishing Trip Up Lightning Creek" 1921
            The Clark Fork River - Montana/Idaho 
            US Departments of Gaame & Fish (Links)









PS - Check out related posts @ YSF Stinger (tying instructions) and Hopper / Hopper Tandem Secrets (fishing techniques).

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