White Beadheaded Gold Ribbed Hare's Ear Nymph Fly should look scruffy. The body fibers should be teased out so they move in the water and suggest to the trout that these are legs and this bug is alive. It is a killer fishing pattern on reservoirs, rivers and chalk streams
BEADED GOLD RIBBED HARE'S EAR FLY PATTERNS. Hook size 10 12 14 16 18 20 - $US each
When the fish are feeding near the river bottom you need a fly to get down to that level fast. This is when you need a gold bead head nymph. The white color of this fly pattern helps with visibility. It is easier for the hungry trout to spot than an olive or black nymph in situations of poor visibility. The use of a reflective gold material for the bead also helps reflect any available light and catch the eye of any nearby trout. Use the white GRHE nymph in hook size 10 or 12 as a point fly in a team of three nymphs. When some nymphs molt their old skin as they grow in size, their body is white for a short time whilst their outer shell hardens and takes on a darker color. Whilst this process is happening they are vulnerable and do not move around but in fast flowing water many will get dislodged from their hiding place and be washed downstream. As they float past the nose of lurking trout they soon become fish food. As a young boy I would go bait fishing with maggots. We also used to chop up old rotting bits of tree to get at the "wood sawyer" bugs to stick on our hooks. Large trout loved them in still as well as fast flowing water. These natural bugs are not aquatic but the trout know what they are because some obviously must fall into the water from over hanging shrubs and trees or be blown in by the wind. The gold beadhead helps with the deception as most of these natural grubs have a slightly swollen section which is their head.
Too many fly fisherman concentrate on how pretty their fishing fly looks. I have found that some of the most productive fish catching flies have been the ones that are the scruffiest. The British flyfishing writer Mr. G. E. M. Skues in his famous book, "The way of a trout with a fly and Some Further Studies in Minor Tactics" published in London in 1921, devoted a section of the book to what he called "the hare's ear puzzle". He could not initially work out why a fly pattern dressed with a body of dusty grey fiber and ripped with flat gold wire that looked extremely rough, could be taken by a trout who was hunting for natural insects that had smooth olive green bodies. Instead of a throat hackle the traditional gold ribbed hare's ear nymph fly (GRHE) has long fibers of hares ear picked out with a dubbing needle between the terns of flat gold tinsel wire. This makes it one of the ugliest fishing flies in any fishermen's fly box.
Skues suspected that the GRHE nymph was being taken by trout, because they believed that this fly was the adult dun struggling to free itself from the nymphs shuck. The straggly fibers move in the water suggest life. This may explain why this fly pattern has always been one of the top killing patterns on reservoirs, rain fed rivers and chalk streams. When fishing this fly, I aim to cast it as close to the trout as possible to deny the fish time to make a critical examination of my offering. The art is to do this without alarming the trout.
Casting with a Gold Bead Head Nymph tips
Many of my fly-fishing friends and customers seem to have problems when casting weighted nymphs like a beaded Gold Ribbed Hares Ear Nymph. I receive e-mails asking for help and advice regularly. Most are along the following lines, 'Why is it that when I cast a gold bead head fly I sometimes catch the tip of my rod?
I thought I might share my standard reply in case you are having the same problem. Gold Beadheads are much more heavier that typical, non-weighted flies, so you need to change a few things to get the casting right.
You must pay attention to your leader make up. When things like this go wrong it normally means that you are using something like a 6lb leader straight through to the fly that is attached to a braded loop on the end of the line.
If that is the case the fly line should unroll during the cast beautifully, carrying the heavy fly behind it: as the unrolling motion hits the thing and probably longer-than-necessary leader the energy thin dissipates.
This means that because there is no controlled path from the leader over the heavy weight, two things happen: firstly, as the fly line turns over, the gold beadhead takes a nasty kick and dips towards the water; secondly as you make the next forward/back cast, the fly comes from very low, swinging from side to side, and hits the rod. Further the gold beadhead nymph lands in a heap at the end of the fly line when the forward cast is made.
Leaders are designed for two main reasons: to slow down the speed of the unrolling fly line to make a presentable cast, and to carry the weight/air resistance on the end of the leader to give a clean turnover.
These two factors require the leader to be a seamless join from fly line to fly. The fly line is tapered, the leader should be the same to help carry the energy to the fly.
All this means that you need a butt section that has a slightly smaller diameter (no less than two thirds) of fly-line level section that tapers down to the required diameter to accommodate the fly. Therefore it is best to use tapered leader.
Length is also critical. A leader that is too long when used with a heavy fly can be problematic. The heavier the fly, the shorter, stouter and stiffer the leader must be. I hope this helps.