Soft hackles! - Spey Pages
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post #1 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 10:57 PM Thread Starter
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Soft hackles!

Had a couple of big days swinging soft hackles. I can’t think of a more fun way to catch trout. I was using the #4 rio trout Spey. I’ve got to say I’m loving this line! I had two 20+ fish days, though not a lot of big fish, it was a hoot! I also caught some pretty cutthroats.
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post #2 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-12-2019, 10:58 PM Thread Starter
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A few more pics
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post #3 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 12:20 AM
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Softies are so cool! I've been a believer ever since the first Syl Nemes soft hackle book came out in, I think, 1975. We became partridge hackle disciples after finding they just totally fooled trout during the prolific caddis emergences on our home river. They also do a great job imitating swimming mayflies and just look buggy. Swinging 'em on a 2 hander is just added fun. Met Sylvester at the San Mateo Expo show many years ago and he gave me a half dozen tiny soft hackles. Still have them. Thanks Syl.
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post #4 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 01:28 AM
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The Partridge and Orange and Partridge and Yellow have been good to me. Lately my hot fly has been a weightless soft hackle pheasant tail. So simple.
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post #5 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 08:54 AM
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I very rarely use anything else but softhackles for trout, unless I'm swinging or fleeing a streamer.
Syl's patterns are gold, as are his books !!
Have a look at the patterns of Poly Roseborough, in particular the Casual Dress.


Mike
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post #6 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 09:53 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the heads up on fly patterns. Always looking for new patterns.
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post #7 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 09:54 AM
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I love soft hackles. Just finished reading the 2nd edition of Dave Hughes book on wets and soft hackles and learned a few new tricks.
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post #8 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-13-2019, 04:09 PM
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i fish soft hackles drifted and then swung . so simple and therefore possessing a certain beauty . trout , steelies and smb have all signaled their approval . plus it takes like 5 minutes to tie one up . (-:
thanks , jim
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post #9 of 24 (permalink) Old 07-16-2019, 12:34 PM
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Agree with all of the above. Probably 70% of my trout fishing is with a softy or something very similar.

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post #10 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-15-2019, 10:41 PM
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A question for you soft hackle pros.
When swinging two soft hackles, how far apart do you have the dropper from the point fly, and how long is the dropper.
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post #11 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 03:46 PM
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Woody,

This is only the way I typically do things and others may have alternative ideas. No right or wrongs. That said, this is how I often setup. Point fly 18" to 30" from the dropper (mostly about 24" unless I'm dealing with atypical circumstances). I like to keep droppers fairly short, say in the 6" to 8" range as I'll tend to get more tangles with a longer dropper. Often I'll just palomar knot an 18" to 24" tag off the bend of the hook for a trailing fly. Less tangles and setup time that way (read LAZY). Things can get pretty messy in a net with a long dropper. Dave Hughes "Wet Flies" 2nd Ed. is a great resource as is the on-line blog Soft Hackle Journal (SHJ). Just the flies presented in the SHJ is worth the time, and Steve is a wonderful writer. Should be mandatory reading for anyone even remotely interested in the topic.

SOFT~HACKLE JOURNAL
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post #12 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 06:20 PM
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Tom,
I have viewed the SHJ and been inspired by some of the flies and I will try and track down "Wet Flies" locally.

I agree it is the easiest method to attach a second fly (trailing) off the bend of the first fly but have experienced slightly less hook sets using this method. Not sure if the tippet on the hook bend pushes the fly out of the fishes mouth when the fish takes the first fly.

I will try the 8" dropper method initially and gauge results v tangles.

Thanks for the reply.
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post #13 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-17-2019, 08:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by woody-wood View Post
A question for you soft hackle pros.
When swinging two soft hackles, how far apart do you have the dropper from the point fly, and how long is the dropper.
45cn or 18 inches, and use a slow soft loop to cast when handling a long spey cast, but 20cm when dealing with a close in 3 fly leader, which is closer to a nymph rig.
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post #14 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 10:47 AM
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What about for the closer fall or early winter months. Do the soft hackles still work for you guys or do you end up fishing heavier streamers?
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post #15 of 24 (permalink) Old 09-19-2019, 04:30 PM
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Stravic,

Yes on both counts. I tend to use streamers and soft hackles year round on my home river. Both work great. Caught an absolute pig of a rainbow this past Sunday on the brown/orange soft hackle in the picture. Only about 19" long but truly built like a football!

Now if you really want to get high tech try tying on a streamer, big and noticeable, and run a soft hackle off the bend about 18" below. Hmmmmmmm, did I just divulge one of my secrets?
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