It’s Not the Fly, It’s the Tie: Patterns that Kill with Bamboo Fly Rods on the Upper Sac!
If you fish with bamboo fly rods chances are you may be a bit of a crank. You want things to be just so when you fish the Upper Sac. Choosing the right fly is one of the rituals.
The right fly is all to do with size, shape, and color. Not.
There is one iconoclast in fly fishing, and that man is Bob Quigley. He set the dry fly men on their asses. Look at Bob Quigley’s flies. Not “Quigley Cripples” or anything else that might end up in the fly bins of your local store with Quigley’s name on them.
Look at the flies that Bob Quigley ties himself. The pattern is the score. The vise is the piano. The person tying is the pianist. It is in the subtleties that genius emerges. When Bob Quigley ties a bug, the genius is apparent.
Watching him tie is an “ah-hah” moment. When you get it you get it. It’s not the proportions, it’s not the size or shape or color. It is the sum of the whole of the parts: It is the attributes of the tie.
I have a dozen flies or so tied by Bob while he spent time at my shop. They are reference flies. They have been tied by one of the greatest men in modern dry fly history, and the man, Bob Quigley, knows how to fish.
These flies have the attributes of patterns that kill. What they represent, how they float, how they react on the water, are so close to the naturals that the trout can’t tell the difference.
Are Quigley’s flies the silver bullet for success on the Upper Sac? Yes.
Are Quigley’s flies what fly fishers with bamboo fly rods should use? Of course!
Most fly patterns are derivative. A nice copy of a nice fly. Or a copy of a copy. Not so with a Bob Quigley fly. Herein lies the genius. When Bob is at his vise, he ties and sees how the fly will behave on the water. The thousands of hours Bob Quigley has spent on dry fly water are unequaled by any other tiers. Tough waters. Fall River. The Wood. The Williamson. Tough waters. And his ties produce.
Buying any of Bob’s videos will help any dry fly man with a bamboo fly rod. Getting some of Bob’s flies will help you break the code when it comes to ties that kill. Marrying Bob’s techniques with the bugs you see on the Upper Sac will allow you to have the bug that the fish want.
And contrary to what the guides say about fish needing to “look up”, rainbow trout are always looking up on the Upper Sac. It is how they survive in their hardy environment.
The dry fly man, with bamboo fly rod and flies that kill, is the alpha male on the Upper Sac.