Tuesday Tutorial:Parachute Adams

Yeah, yeah, you already know how to tie a parachute fly. You do it all the time. You know they work. You’ve got them in your box and maybe one day you’ll use one. But you don’t, do you? Lots of anglers this time of year get so focused on the potential for big stonefly eats that they forget the other hatches going on at the same time. Things like grey drakes, march browns, BWOs, and so many midges. But you just got to try that new skwala pattern you’ve been salivating over all winter, dontcha? Here is some real from the river talk from this weekend. We floated a busy section of the Bitterroot, and passed half a dozen boats that were busy throwing the single big foam fly with no luck. In our boat we spent some time in the morning nymphing and found fish but got sick of watching the bobber, so we went to the dries. But not the skwala. Why? There were midges hatching in enough numbers to coat the waterline on the Clackacraft. There were a few smaller mayflies getting off the surface, and there were fish eating emergers in the slow stuff if you took the time to anchor and observe. Yes, there was enough skwalas roaming around to get excited about, but we’d seen boat after boat full of anglers having no success, so why go the same route? Slow down and watch. Sometimes we forget that part of the equation when we’ve spent all week scrolling through fish pictures and thinking skwala, skwala, skwala. We spent the day getting fish in all the likely places, on a simple griffiths gnat and a parachute adams, and went home happy. Yes, we got a nice fish to eat a skwala in the right place, but most of the action came from fish eating the much more available sub-hatches. And that’s why you should get to work filling those empty slots with a few of every size parachute adams from 8 to 18. The fly works. It can be colored up with a magic marker on the river. It can be clipped and stripped and seen from a boat. It covers multiple hatches in different sizes, and it’s a no-brainer. When multiple hatches are overlapping, like spring in Montana, it should be your go-to fly. Take the guesswork out of fishing. Try the adams.


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