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With winter looming, I'm now aware that my fly box is mostly full of marabou tubes and other boring monotony. So far I'm not terribly interested in tubes and intruders, but more irons.

Would some of you mind sharing photos or recipes of your favorite winter patterns? I need some inspiration to get myself to the tying table.

Cheers and bring on the rain.
 
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Coalbe,

I'm in the same boat as you. I've tied up a few General Practitioners on Tiemco 7999s size 2. GPs are a pretty cool pattern that a guy could get creative with while still sticking to the original theme of the fly. A pretty fun fly to tie as well. Looking forward to soaking a few of them around the Portland area and on the coast this winter. You guys really need some rain up there. My cousin and fishing partner who got me into this lives in Salem and he sent me an article about how its almost a record for no rain this late into the fall.
 

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Ghostrider: Since you're used to tying G.P.s, I suggest you balance all that orange by tying some Black General Practitioners. This was devised by Arthur Lingren, who has used it to take many salmanoids, and considers it his most versatile sinking fly for rivers. (See his book Fly Patterns of British Columbia.) On salmon hooks large to small, it uses all black materials, except the same golden pheasant tippets for shrimp eyes.
 

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Ghostrider: Since you're used to tying G.P.s, I suggest you balance all that orange by tying some Black General Practitioners. This was devised by Arthur Lingren, who has used it to take many salmanoids, and considers it his most versatile sinking fly for rivers. (See his book Fly Patterns of British Columbia.) On salmon hooks large to small, it uses all black materials, except the same golden pheasant tippets for shrimp eyes.
Yes! Black GPs are really cool. I will research the book you suggested. I will post a couple of GP variants that I have tied. Will look for some critique on them as well. Thanks for reaching out!
 

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I love being creative at the vise. Part of this addiction for me is tying up flies and letting my mind wander to the conditions I might face when on the river. I often visualize what river I will be on and what conditions the river will be presenting when tying flies for steelhead. It's been a fun journey for me so far. I can't get enough of the mystique associated with steelhead fishing! This fly is my version of a nightmare GP, lol.
 

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If I'm fishing more traditional bugs, these or a General Practitioner in Black, Purple, or Orange/pink.

I'm inclined to tie more in the form of the orange and yellow, as I think the palmered schlappen, tied in by the butt, creates drag in the back, helping raise the back of the fly on the swing, so it's swims in line, rather than ass sagging, as well as imparting some nice movement to the hackle tip wings.
 

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I'm more of a traditional iron guy, but have been known to throw around a couple shanks here and there :hihi:
Just started tying GP's again this fall after having a discussion with my river brother. We were talking about what we use to swing years ago and he mentioned the GP. I went to the bench later and tied up a couple two-tone purple GP's and a black GP with a hot pink tail. A little bit of flash and some amherst fibers for contrast and I think I have a couple of confidence flies.

I like Glasso style flies



Traditional Spey flies with added twists



The Gordon is one of my favorites on bright sunny days and the snow is melting



Snow Flies when the snow is flying



Dragon Teeth as the sun is setting



Dee's on heavy irons for those cold, crystal clear water days



I like to take a bit of everything




Mike
 

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Hey there C,

The materials (marabou/schlappen, bunny/schlappen, Finn raccoon/schlappen, Arctic Fox/Arctic Fox) seem to change, as did the move from irons to shanks, but my favorite winter color scheme is always the same: Black with a blue shoulder and some sort of a sparkling black or blue body. I added four clear/sparkle rubber legs (a “Squidro”) one winter, but that was a pretty minor tweak, as is the Krystal Flash I sometimes add over the wing.

I probably lash on that same basic pattern for 80% of my chilly-weather swing time.

Funny, but I have never done very well with orange or pink. On my small coastal streams, even an orange schlappen shoulder seems ostentatious.

I have played a bit with chartreuse in the shoulder. Need to do that more. The last fly I whipped up, just a few days ago, has a black Arctic Fox wing and then a shoulder of chartreuse AF spun in a dubbing loop. It looks dang fishy. Now if we would only get some water.

Keith
 

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I'm more of a traditional iron guy, but have been known to throw around a couple shanks here and there <img src="http://www.speypages.com/speyclave/images/smilies/hihi.gif" border="0" alt="" title="Hihi" class="inlineimg" />
Just started tying GP's again this fall after having a discussion with my river brother. We were talking about what we use to swing years ago and he mentioned the GP. I went to the bench later and tied up a couple two-tone purple GP's and a black GP with a hot pink tail. A little bit of flash and some amherst fibers for contrast and I think I have a couple of confidence flies.

I like Glasso style flies



Traditional Spey flies with added twists



The Gordon is one of my favorites on bright sunny days and the snow is melting



Snow Flies when the snow is flying



Dragon Teeth as the sun is setting



Dee's on heavy irons for those cold, crystal clear water days



I like to take a bit of everything




Mike
Love those Dee flies. What do you use for irons? I have to tie within a 1/2” hook gape restriction but would like to experiment with a dry line and long leader this winter.
 

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Love those Dee flies. What do you use for irons? I have to tie within a 1/2” hook gape restriction but would like to experiment with a dry line and long leader this winter.
Thanks Upstate :)
Those irons are the ugliest around ... Partridge CS10/3. I use the #2/0 and #3/0 and completely re-shape them. To fool around with the shank and bend and end up with an elongated version. Basically take a large wet fly iron and form it into a Dee iron. My thumbs hate me when I do this, but the results are worth it for me.

Does the re-shaping weaken the iron ??
I have yet to encounter a steelhead or an Atlantic salmon on the east coast to break one ... so fingers are still crossed :)

A #3/0 is the perfect length, makes for a 2.25" fly. I dress it sparingly, add long flowing hackles of heron, or sometimes turkey or BEP blood plumes for an Eagle conversion and loop it on a long, thin mono leader and these will sink to the stones with no tip. I'll use a full intermediate line with a light tip in faster currents to get down more if I must, but for the most part, it's a full floater. A very enjoyable way to fish :)


Mike
 

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It's just ordinary goose shoulder tied in like bronze mallard - both the orange and black. It's a little over dressed with mallard flank hackle for use in cold or slightly colored water. There is also a few strands of Everglow flash just for giggles. Things like this usually pop off the vise when I get tired of tying the same old same old.
 
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