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Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Tying the Pettis Egg


I hit the Lower Yuba River with two newer friends, Frank Rinella and Tom Page. They are both guides in the area. The day seemed to be perfect with some overhead clouds and not the bright sun that we have been becoming used to in the past weeks. I could tell when we got to the put in that Keith Kaneko was already on the river and probably had been on it for awhile because it was about 8:15 and he was nowhere to be seen. He's been hitting the river pretty early which by the way is probably a good idea. As we were getting ready to go Dave Sloan from American River Flyfishing showed up with a couple of clients. This turned out to be it for the day. 2 guide boats and ourselves. There were of course wading anglers in many locations.

We did our shuttle to the Maryville Gun Club, which was nice for me as I am not a member of that club and have not fished down that far for years. I usually pull out at Sycamore Ranch which is upstream.

We started downriver with Tom rigged up with indicator and nymphing rig. Frank rigged up with no indicator as he likes to tight line his rigg as it works the water column. The nymphing was tough and even with changing a myriad of nymphs, eggs, streamers etc. We just could not find the fish or what they wanted all morning. Frank hooked up and landed a nice fish at about 11:00 or so. Shortly later Tom had a big down and was fast to a heavy fish. The fish was dogging and we started to think. Sucker? Sqwawfish? Sure enough. It was a big one though.

We fished the river hard and when we got closer to Hammond Grove Frank hooked a nice fish that went aeriel a couple of times. Frank played the fish steadily and we netted it. This was a fish that at first looked to go 20 to 21 inches but was quite a bit larger and was very thick. Tom quickly took a photo and we released the fish without really measuring it. Tom thought it went 5 or 6 pounds. All I know is that it was a slab.

All in all I think we had 5 or 6 fish in our hands, but there were a number of hookups with fish on but unable to keep on for very long.We had the best luck with eggs even though we've been hearing that it had become a mostly bug bite lately.

In the past month or so, I've been fishing mainly with a "Pettis Egg" that has a "Spirit River" burgandy colored plastic bead with "Cascade Egg Yarn" pulled over it in differnt shades. I'd been having good sucess with this pattern. All of a sudden it just doesn't seem to be working. Frank likes to use "Troutbeads" in different colors and keeps changing them up to find the color and size that works. He apparenttly is on to something. It also goes to show that if you put an egg in front of a trout or steelhead it will probably gobble it up.

All in all a great day with new friends. Can't beat that.


Pettis Egg Pattern

Products for this fly:
• Tiemco TMC 2457 Hooks
• Uni 6/0 Tying Thread
• Spirit River Plastic Egg Beads
• Cascade Egg Yarn

Step 1 Slide the bead onto the hook.

Step 2 Start your thread behind the eye of the hook and coat the hook shank

Step 3 Take a clump of Egg Yarn and push it over the eye of the hook so that the eye of the hook is directly in the center of the clump of yarn. Make some thread wraps to tie the clump of Egg Yarn in directly behind the eye of the hook. The clump should be thin enough so that when it is pulled back, the glow of the bead will still shine through a bit. It will take a few flies to get the proper amount of yarn right.

Step 4 Wrap over the butts of the Egg Yarn and slide the bead up to them. Then In one wrap move the thread to the other side of the bead and coat the shank of the hook with thread back to directly above the barb of the hook.

Step 5 Using your fingers, sweep the Egg Yarn back over the bead. It will be almost like turning the clump of Egg Yarn inside out. The yarn should be completely encompassing the bead.

Step 6 Once the Yarn is pulled tight back over the bead, move the yarn forward slightly with your left hand and it will balloon out. Make several wraps around it with your thread and you will get nice round egg.

Step 7 Clip the end of the yarn as tight to the thread wraps as possible and whip finish at the back of the fly. When tied properly you should be left with a very round egg and be able to see the glow of the glass bead through the egg yarn.

Fly Pattern from American Fly Fishing Co.

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Have any Questions or Comments? Let me know, Clay.