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Here is a look at a old crappy bass pro fly box I am trying to fill with my first tied flies. Started tying in January. Hoping to have it full with some basic patterns by the spring. I currently have a 4 wt that I began fly fishing with last season after making the transiting from conventional tackle. Hoping that these sizes and patterns will be castable/fishable on my 4 wt. What do y'all think? Also, if you have any recommendations on some foundational patterns to add let me know!

Size 6 clousers

Size 8 chernobyl ants (someone on here recommended this pattern... I think Mark? Thanks for the rec very fun to tie! How'd I do?

Size 14 Pheasant tail nymphs (these still need a lot of work)

Size 14 Elk Hair Caddis (first couple attempts)

Next will be some bead head wooly buggers. What else do you recommend?

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Looks like you have a good start. The flies are definitely tied well enough to fool the fish you are after. Any type of small bass popper would help round things out. I personally like the small  Wapsi size 8, soft foam, "Perfect Popper" body, or the Rainy's, "Mini-Me" in the same size. They should cast well with a 4 wt, and can also be turned backwards to create a gurgler such as a sneaky peat. I like to up the hook size to a size 4  Mustad 3366 hook when using them for smallies. The wapsi poppers come with instructions for creating a very productive fly (it calls for the use of Sily Legs or Larva Lace) or you can just get creative.  It's also good to carry an unweighted streamer like a Murdich Minnow in a size 4 or 6 also. Have fun filling that box.

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On 2/7/2021 at 9:59 PM, Ryan S said:

 

Size 8 chernobyl ants (someone on here recommended this pattern... I think Mark? Thanks for the rec very fun to tie! How'd I do?

 

 

 

 

 

They look great.  I would suggest on anything tie one or two and fish with them.  Then you can make up more with adjustments if needed.  

I would add a couple olive buggers- some with cactus chennille anda  gold bead head. 

 

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On 2/7/2021 at 11:26 PM, John Gillio said:

Looks like you have a good start. The flies are definitely tied well enough to fool the fish you are after. Any type of small bass popper would help round things out. I personally like the small  Wapsi size 8, soft foam, "Perfect Popper" body, or the Rainy's, "Mini-Me" in the same size. They should cast well with a 4 wt, and can also be turned backwards to create a gurgler such as a sneaky peat. I like to up the hook size to a size 4  Mustad 3366 hook when using them for smallies. The wapsi poppers come with instructions for creating a very productive fly (it calls for the use of Sily Legs or Larva Lace) or you can just get creative.  It's also good to carry an unweighted streamer like a Murdich Minnow in a size 4 or 6 also. Have fun filling that box.

 

Awesome. Based on most of the recommendations I'm receiving the size 6-8 seems like a general good size fly for the 4wt. Thanks for the recommendations on the popper heads. I will start studying the murdich minnow. Nice looking pattern. thanks!

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14 hours ago, Mark K said:

 

They look great.  I would suggest on anything tie one or two and fish with them.  Then you can make up more with adjustments if needed.  

I would add a couple olive buggers- some with cactus chennille anda  gold bead head. 

 

Seems like logical advice fishing it before tying a bunch. I've mostly been tying a few in hopes of practicing and tying some that might fish haha.  Already seeing how much the fine details make the difference between a fishable fly and something that really looks nice to the angler. Already have a few ideas to make the ants more consistent. Some beadhead buggers are up next since I already have those materials. Thanks for your help Mark.

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The Chernobyl ant is a great summertime topwater fly that smallmouth love on the dead drift! The ones you tied should fish very well>

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Ryan, another necessity for your fly box is the bugle bug popper, imo even a superior summertime topwater fly to the ant. You might have to purchase this one however, as they are difficult to make on your own, or so I am told.

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2 hours ago, Bart Durham said:

Ryan, another necessity for your fly box is the bugle bug popper, imo even a superior summertime topwater fly to the ant. You might have to purchase this one however, as they are difficult to make on your own, or so I am told.

Could not agree more.  I can throw the smallmouth with my 4wt.

BoogleBug® - Premium Quality Cork Popping Bugs - The Best Popping Bug on the Market for You!

They are expensive.  Like $6 each maybe more. But they take a beating and they really catch fish.

 

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