Monday November 12th, 2007
The 2007 Charity Auction is up and running. This year we're giving help to the monks and citizens of burma who just want to go fishing (ok, not the monks, and the citizens want to vote and control their own country, but I'm sure they like to fish too). Loops stickers, a dvd, flies and a pack are up for bid already and I'm sure there'll be more. Please, chip in where you can.
It's November and for the first time my river is going to be open through the winter. My hatch chart just came to a dead end with one small asterisk. *Chironomid hatches occur throughout the year.... Midges.
Falling in with Tricos and Caenis, I've generally avoided midges due to their size, rarely tying on flies smaller than a 20. BWO's, the big blood midges or occasional deep nymphing with BH thread body nymphs has been the extent of my tiny fly fishing. Well I know that asterisk isn't talking about blood midges, but luckily coincidentally Andrew's just passed on a book to me called Midge Magic.
I haven't completed it yet, but other than a glaring typo in the intro ("15 cm" instead of "15 mm") I like it. The nymph tying is simple, quick and revolves around the use of 6 strand embroidery floss (30 cents / 8m length at my local craft shop. $6 got me enough to create... 6/.3*8*6/.05 ... 19200 midges at 5cm each (only 1/2 that if I use 2 different colors for each midge). The single color is just a strand of floss tied down at the bend, wrapped up, then a couple half hitch in the floss form the head. A Rainbow Midge uses 2 colors tied in and wrapped for the abdomen, then a head maybe with a hitch or two of thread. The Diamond Midge has a tinsel body ribbed with floss and head. Good stuff, and the photo comparisons in the book are dead on. With a little tail I think it'll make a decent tiny mayfly as well.
Down to the river to get some samples, I scooped dirt and anything possibly edible to a fish. "What the hell is that? What's in there?" Shannon said as I walked into the living room with 2 big ziplocks full of gravel and muddy water in one hand and some plastic tubs in the other. "It's river!".
The little moving things got sucked up with a basting bulb and deposited into a dish. I ended up with a couple BWO's (far smaller than the imitations in my box), 2 dark midges, a couple green worms, a ton of tiny red worms, 1 big larva (which I wasn't expecting at all), and Bert the one-clawed crawdad.
Bert's kicking back in his tub of river right now. He might go back to the river tomorrow unless he turns into a pet. Some new hooks will come home with me (that's an 18 in the pic). Will they catch fish? Can I will myself to use 7X instead of 2X and a big crawdad streamer.... We'll see.
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