I like to use a small bunch of ‘favourite’ patterns for the majority of my fishing on ‘home’ waters. These are flies I have developed confidence in, and include a mix of personal patterns, along with some well-known ties that I often ‘tweak’ to suit my needs. Rather than using lots of different patterns, I try to use less varieties, varying weights and sizes to suit the conditions.
However, there is also a part of me that is always wanting to try something new!
I love to look at flies used by other anglers, enjoy reading up on successful patterns and get excited when I see a fly that just looks good!
The Manic Fly Collection is full of terrific patterns. Many have been developed by successful anglers, predominately from New Zealand, for New Zealand conditions, but lots of them work extremely well in Tassie.
While the Manic range does include some well-known Aussie favourites (Gum Beetles, Red Tags and Possum Emergers to name a few), if you are lucky enough to fish Tasmania here a few of my personal favourites that have been excellent for me in Tasmania.
Bum Fluff Stimi
This is a ‘buggy looking’ fly that I have really enjoyed using both in NZ and Tas. Here in Tasmania I have found the smaller sized #14 Bum fluff to be great on local rivers. Looking a bit like a hopper, bit like a caddis and buggy, they just catch fish. They float well, and are capable even in small sizes of supporting weighted nymphs. While I haven’t given them a fair run up in the lake country, I am sure the bigger Bum Fluff would be an epic pattern out West too.
Kyle’s Deleatidium (#14 -#18_ has become one of my favourite nymphs to use in the rivers I frequent. In sizes #16 and #18 it has been a great fish catcher. The fly has an excellent profile, and its medium sized tungsten bead has just the right weight for the depth and flow of Tasmanian’s modest sized streams. Not being overly heavy for a tungsten nymph also gives it the ability to be supported by smaller dry flies.
CDC Thorax Dark Dun
Available in sizes #12 - #18, this is another ‘buggy’ looking pattern that just looks good on the water. I have had good success using size #12 of still waters, but the smaller sizes have been really effective for me on local rivers. I like flies that sit low in the water column, and with its clipped hackle, the CDC Dun does just that. High Quality CDC gives the fly excellent buoyancy and it holds up well after being eaten by fish. It is great little dun pattern.
Quill Spinner Black and Quill Spinner Rusty
Two great variations of this fly that have worked very well this season. The Quill spinners have claimed many fish for me when fish have been hunting Spinners on both rivers and lakes. Two of my best days this season were with the Rusty Spinner, fishing to trout locked onto Orange spinners. Fishing to sighted fish on a single fly rig during the height of the hatch to edge leapers, and then using a loch style set up later in the day, where it was constantly picked out of the 3 flies used.
Belinda’s Bitchslap Black / Red
I have been a fan of black and red flies for a long time in both wet and dry flies. Wet fly patterns like the Bloody Mary have been well known by switched on local anglers for many years on places like Bronte Lagoon, Little Pine and Arthurs Lake as great fish catchers. The black and red Bitchslap size #10 is a great point fly for places like the waters mentioned. With a red tungsten bead it swims deep in the water column and its nice long tail which gives the fly an excellent movement through the water.