March Brown Nymph - Light Version

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March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Postby DOUGSDEN » Thu Jul 28, 2016 8:35 pm

Good Evening Friends,
I wanted to share with you another pattern that has been a real killer for me especially on those fish (Bluegill mainly) that insist on living deep and out of the light! I tied this pattern a couple years ago and have been fishing it rather deep and have been scoring on some great 'gills in the 10-12" range! Here's the scoop!
I have always liked the look of the March Brown Spider and it's very simple construction. It has been a staple for me for many years. So, I thought why not carry this pattern down to where the big guys and girls hang out? I took the classic March Brown frame and applied some lead (or lead substitute) to the hook shank and came up with a pregnant looking March Brown Nymph. This one is the lighter version. The darker one will be next so please stay tuned to this station!

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March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Hook: TMC 3761 or Cabela's Model 22 or similar style hook in sizes 8-10-12.
Thread: Danvilles 6/0 orange waxed. There is a slight color difference in the waxed vs. the unwaxed. The waxed is a bit darker and thus a little more "traditional" such as silk does.
Lead or lead substitute: These are only suggestions but here's what works for me! For size 6 hooks, use .025. Size 10, use .020. Size 12, use .015. I have always underweighted my nymph patterns on purpose. These lead recommendations will make your patterns sink like stones! The lead is wrapped from one end to the other (a single wrapping) leaving just enough room at either end for a hackle collar at the head and a somewhat tapered butt on the other end! The lead wraps get a generous coating of your favorite head cement or adhesive to seal them and bond them to the hook shank and thread!
Body: Krystal Dub - Hares Ear flavor. The dubbing method used was this. If you have ever watched Dave Whitlocks method of applying dubbing to the hook.....that is how I did it! Not too terribly thick or heavy, just enough to cover the lead well. I also roughed up the body with a special velcro "scratcher" given to me by our friend Ruard J. Wow! Is that thing handy esp. on this type of dubbed body! I started out tying this patterns body with Pearsalls orange silk spun on my Clark style dubbing block in the usual way you would make a flymph body! The resulting body is more spikey and no less effective! Please try both ways!
Hackle: One turn,maybe two at most of the darkest, most well marked Hungarian Partridge that you can find! I have been tying them in by the tip instead of the stalk. I think it looks better that way!
Cement: Loon hard head in clear used liberally on the lead wraps and to finish the head!

Notes: I know it may seem blastphemous to tie and use such a classic wet fly as the March Brown as a nymph. But it works! If it did not, I would no longer tie it! Granted, I still love to fool my fish on or just under the surface of the water because that is the most exciting way! But, if you like to catch bigger fish (and who doesn't?), sometimes you have to visit them down deep and that is why this fly was ammended or altered with lead. Nothing else about the pattern has been changed other than the addition of weight! I am still uncertain exactly why fish take this pattern so eagerly. Skues and his nemesis Halford wrestled with this question for a long time. To me and my fishy friends, it is simply a good attractor pattern that looks like alot of things they may encounter and thus eat in the lower depths!
What are your thoughts about this? I am anxious to hear from you-all based on your experiences!
Yours in tying fun,
Doug
Fish when you can, not when you should! Anything short of this is just a disaster.
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Re: March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Postby letumgo » Thu Jul 28, 2016 8:59 pm

Doug,

Is this the same fly I was fishing earlier this spring? I think this is the one of the flies you sent me last winter. I had posted these images in the photo section a while back.

I have a lot of confidence in this pattern...for good reason.

Further upstream, I tyed on one of Doug's tan soft hackle flies to work the area around a fallen tree.
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As my fly swung near the tangle of branches laying in the water, my line suddenly stopped and I raised my rod tip. FISH ON!!!
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Tim saw me hook into this fish and immediately shouted down to me "Get him on the reel!" I cracked up. Tim knew I was fishing my Tenkara rod and had no such option. :lol: :lol: :lol: :D
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Re: March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Postby DOUGSDEN » Thu Jul 28, 2016 9:15 pm

Ray,
Yes, this is the same pattern but the ones I sent to you earlier were not weighted....I think? The slender abdomen gives it away! If you hold the lead diameter to a minimun (say .015 or .010 and again, I sometimes underweight them to this degree!), you can get away with a skinny looking abdomen....not mine, the flies! Larger hook, smaller lead = slenderness in the back end!
Excited about patterns and their catchability,
Doug
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Re: March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Postby tie2fish » Fri Jul 29, 2016 6:54 am

Like all of your ties, Doug, this has a really "buggy" look to it. No wonder it produces well for you. I suspect it would be very effective for smallmouth in larger sizes too.
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Re: March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Postby SenecaLaker » Fri Jul 29, 2016 11:20 am

Doug, that is a great pattern. There are a few metro detroit streams/drains that have some very large gills hiding in some of the overgrowth. Thanks for posting. It is amazing how adaptable some those fish are to grow like that in some of those conditions. I have a walleye trip scheduled with a few guys this evening but will see if i can get one of my sons to sneak out over the weekend. Thanks again.
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Re: March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Postby letumgo » Fri Jul 29, 2016 11:57 am

Dave - Good luck on your fishing trip. Please take along your camera and share some photos with us when you get back. ;)

PS - I'd like to hear more about those bluegills you mentioned catching. They are a lot of fun to catch on a fly rod.
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Re: March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Postby chase creek » Sat Jul 30, 2016 8:10 am

OOOHHHH! Heading for the vise now, Dave. :D
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Re: March Brown Nymph - Light Version

Postby tjd » Thu Aug 04, 2016 5:08 am

Doug,

That's a great looking pattern! Well-tied and practical, I'd love to try it on those big bluegills. Awesome fly, thanks for posting it!

Best,

Tim
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