Sunriver Anglers
P.O. Box 4273
Sunriver, OR 97707
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P.O. Box 4273
Sunriver, OR 97707
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Fly Tying Corner



Callibaetis Time

Tuesday - June 20, 2017
By Phil Fischer
For those of you who have followed this column for any length of time, you know that I target Callibaetis on our area lakes, a lot! This is the signature hatch in our Central Oregon lakes due to it predictability, and that it lasts from late Spring through the summer and into the early Fall. This year Callibaetis have returned like clockwork and are hatching in earnest in our lower elevation lakes, and will begin soon up high. It is Callibaetis Time...


UV Sparkle Soft Hackle

Tuesday - May 9, 2017
By Phil Fischer
The UV Sparkle Soft Hackle is a pattern I dreamed up after fishing the Crooked River some years ago. I had tied up a few orange scud patterns for a trip to the Bighorn River in Montana, and I happened to have a few leftovers in my box one day at the Crooked River. I tied one of these scuds on the leader and immediately started catching fish. It wasnít until a few years later that I learned enough about the Crooked Riverís entomology, thanks to John Anderson of the Central Oregon Flyfishers, when he clued me into the fact that aquatic sow bugs that were a key source of food for Crooked River Redband rainbows. The aquatic sow bug is orange in color, hence the success of my orange scud pattern. When I learned this, I sat down to the vice and began to experiment. I like soft hackles and tied a few versions that mirrored...


Goddard Caddis

Tuesday - April 4, 2017
By Phil Fischer
The Goddard Caddis is responsible for the largest fish I have taken on a Central Oregon Lake. One late afternoon I was chasing rising fish in an inlet to an unnamed lake. Callibaetis had been hatching all afternoon, but I knew I had no chance taking a fish on a Callibaetis pattern. There were simply too many Callibaetis on the water to have a glimmer of hope that a fish might discern my fake fly from the many natural insects on the surface of the lake. I decided to go contrarian...


Royal Trude

Friday - March 31, 2017
By Phil Fischer
This monthís pattern is a Royal Trude. It is a fly that resembles nothing specific in nature, but is an excellent imitation for many things. The idea for this monthís pattern was born on a hike last year near the Lava Lands Visitor Center, part of the Newberry National Monument and very near our home in Sunriver, Oregon. I was walking along one of the paths and noticed movement on the bark of a large ponderosa pine tree. As I looked closer I observed a very large beetle that was probably 2 Ĺ-3 inches long. Now most beetle patterns I have tied and fished in my life are typically a size 14-18 hook and at most Ĺ inch long. It dawned on me; we have some very big terrestrials hanging out in our forest and if one of these landed on the water, an opportunistic trout would dash to the surface to take in a meal of this size. Wouldnít it make sense to start throwing large beetle imitations? ...


Blonde Macaw Loopwing

Sunday - January 8, 2017
By Phil Fischer
All this December and January snowfall is giving me cabin fever and making me want to see Spring soon to get back fishing. But for the moment, Iíll have to keep myself from going stir crazy by tying flies. For this monthís pattern, I opted to tie a pattern that leans toward the artistic side of fly tying. This is a pattern I learned many years ago from my fly tying mentor, Andre Puyans. Andy tied a similar pattern called a Macaw Loopwing Adams that was the logo on his fly shop for many years. I made a minor deviation from his original pattern by using a ginger hackle instead of the more traditional Adams colors. I think youíll like it. ...


CDC Biot Caddis

Monday - December 12 2016
By Phil Fischer
I still have a long way to go to fill my boxes for next season. I might be making better progress, but with all the snow hitting Mt. Bachelor, skiing has been winning out over fly tying. Go figure! But nonetheless, I have been tying with an eye on early season. An early season hatch I target each year is the Motherís Day Caddis hatch on the Crooked River. And one of the better imitations Iíve tried is the CDC Biot Caddis. The trout canít resist this pattern when the Grannom, also known as the Motherís Day Caddis, get going on the Crooked River. ...


Callibaetis Biot Nymph

Monday - November 7, 2016
By Phil Fischer
This past fly fishing season wrought destruction on my fly boxes. Back in June I had full boxes of flies lined up in neat tidy rows in each box. I had spent the previous winter prepping for the season by tying all those patterns that I knew would perform well on our Central Oregon lakes. Last May I had every fly one might need for East Lake, Lava, Hosmer, Crane Prairie and others. But here in November the season is past. I am left with wonderful memories, pictures of nice fish caught, and the rubble that is now contained in my fly boxes. Everything comes around again and soon the snow will fly, meaning it must be time to once again reorganize flies and start tying for next season. ...


October Caddis Stimulator

Tuesday - October 11, 2016
By Phil Fischer
Have you noticed those big lumbering mothy-like bugs flying over the Deschutes or Fall River lately? Chances are you were seeing the adult October Caddis. This caddis emerges in late September and October throughout many rivers in Oregon and Northern California. WestFly, the well-known fly fishing and entomology website in the Pacific Northwest, nicknamed this bug ďthe Great Pumpkin of Western RiversĒ. It is a big bug, and for a few short weeks in the fall can be important to imitate, as these insects make a tasty treat for rising trout. A steelhead will...


Pale Morning Dun CDC Thorax

Tuesday - September 6, 2016
By Phil Fischer
This monthís pattern features a Pale Morning Dun CDC Thorax pattern. September brings a change of season in Central Oregon. This means cooler weather, sometimes unsettled conditions, and a prolific Pale Morning Dun hatch on the Crooked River. This pattern also works well on the Fall River and Metolious and other rivers during their PMD hatches, which occur earlier in the year than on the Crooked. But PMDís on the Crooked in September and early October can be amazing. It is a whole lot of fun...


Humpy (AKA Horner Deer Hair or Goofus Bug)

Tuesday - August 9, 2016
By Phil Fischer
This monthís pattern features an old classic, the Humpy. It is a pattern developed by Jack Horner, and was originally called the Horner Deer Hair. Later it was renamed the Goofus Bug, and even later still, became the Humpy. Over time is has become a very versatile pattern for fishing a wide variety of situations. Whatever you call it, this pattern catches fish!

It is not designed to imitate any specific insect. But what makes it unique, and effective is that it imitates many different...


Balanced Cinnamon Leech

Tuesday - July 5, 2016
By Phil Fischer
Sometimes you have to try different approaches to catch fish. One of my often successful alternatives during warm summer days, when the fish move to deeper waters, is to suspend a balanced leech under an indicator. A regular leech pattern hangs in a lifeless looking manner. But the unique nature of a balanced leech makes the fly look more lifelike and results in more takes.

Leeches are a very sizeable portion of a trout∆s diet throughout most of the season. They present themselves in an...


Crystal Beach Persuasion

Sunday - May 1, 2016
By Phil Fischer
The name Crystal Beach Persuasion was born out of the necessity of tying more of this pattern when our trip to Christmas Island was unexpectedly extended and we ran out of this fly. Our weeklong trip had been a fabulous experience and the fishing had been red hot for most of the week. We celebrated the first final night of our trip with a roasted pig, lobster, entertainment and beverages right on the beach of the Crystal Beach Lodge. That night we went to bed with smiles on our faces and...


Lionís Mane Damsel

Saturday - February 13, 2016
By Phil Fischer
I like the damsel hatch. It occurs mid-day on most of our local lakes in later June and is characterized by a very splashy rise form as trout take damsels swimming just below the surface film. Damsels look to find sticks, tules, anchor ropes, or any other object that enables them to crawl out of the water to hatch. They often swim just below the surface for some distance looking for these items latch onto. It is during this surface swimming action that the damsel is the most vulnerable to...


Callibaetis Spinner

Tuesday - February 2, 2016
By Phil Fischer
Callibaetis mayfly hatches start occurring on local lakes in June and will last through the summer and into early fall. The Callibaetis hatch is unquestionably the most important mayfly hatch on the Cascade Lakes in Central Oregon. Trout key on the nymph stage prior to the hatch, the emerger stage during the hatch, the dun stage on the surface, and spinners returning to lay eggs to begin the cycle anew. Fishing techniques for this insect vary, from nymphs fished beneath an indicator, to...


Chromie Buzzer Chironomid

Friday - January 1, 2016
By Phil Fischer
The early season features very limited bug activity. About the only active insects are midges, commonly known as Chironomids. In the mid-day sun these insects are active and a mild weather day can even bring some surface activity. But, for the most part, it is a subsurface game this time of year. In the past few weeks I have been tying up a variety of Chironomid patterns. One of the patterns I have been tying is the Chromie Buzzer. This fly imitates the midge subsurface as it is preparing...


Foam Damsel

Monday - June 1, 2015
By Phil Fischer
The other day I was on one of our high country lakes and about mid-day began to see the tell-tale slashing rise of a trout taking damsel nymphs along a line of tules at the edge of the lake. The rise form is a dead give-a-way that damsels are on the water. Often the trout will make a splashy swirly rise when taking this insect in the shallows. Most of our Central Oregon area lakes have good populations of damsels, and this time of year it is always a good idea to keep an eye out for this....


Chironomids

Wednesday - April 1, 2015
By Phil Fischer
This winter has been unusually mild and snowpack has been extremely light in the Cascades. As a skier, I have been dissappointed with the limited number of those great powder days that makes Mt. Bachelor such a wonderful destination. But there has been a silver lining. In Mid-March the Cascade Lakes highway opened from the South gate at Deschutes Bridge up to Elk Lakes. In our first year in Sunriver four years ago, the road didnít open until mid-June. As a fly fisherman, an early opening...


Blue Winged Olive Improved Sparkle Dun

Sunday - March 1, 2015
By Phil Fischer
Last week I attended the Craig Mathews Seminar hosted by the Central Oregon Fly Fishers and the Sunriver Anglers at the Riverhouse in Bend. Craig is a well know fly fisherman, fly tier, conservationist and former owner of Blue Ribbon Flies in West Yellowstone Montana. He has authored several books on fly patterns for the Yellowstone region and was a co-founder of 1% for the Planet, an organization that promotes contributing 1% of revenues from business to support environmental stewardship...


Sawyer Pheasant Fly

Wednesday - February 25, 2015
By Phil Fischer
The Sunriver Anglers held a recent trip to the Crooked River with a group of our newer to fly fishing folks, and expert fly guide, John Olschewsky from the Hook Fly Shop. We arrived at the Crooked River mid-morning, long before the sun peaked briefly over the canyon walls. It was a chilly morning, and multiple layers of clothing and hot coffee was the order of the day. Despite to temperature, the enthusiasm to get out fly fishing was contagious.

I spent some time with a good friend, Jim...


Mother's Day Caddis

Monday - February 9, 2015
By Phil Fischer
Itís April, and Motherís Day is just around the corner on May 11th. Have you thought about a gift for that special fly fishing mom? I have the perfect solution for you. How about a dozen Motherís Day caddisflies tied by you, along with an invite to spend a wonderful day on the Crooked River fly fishing during the Motherís Day hatch. Yup, almost sounds too perfect!

The Motherís Day Caddis hatches in great proliferation on many western rivers around its namesake holiday. Sometimes the hatch...


LBL - Little Black Leech

Tuesday - November 11, 2014
By Phil Fischer
I first learned about fishing leeches in Idahoís Henryís Lake some years ago. I had just bought a brand new Bucks Bag donut float tube and I was eager to try it out. I launched it near the Staley Springs Boat launch and kicked out past the weed line and started fishing. It was a pretty warm day and fishing was slow, almost to a point where the process of casting and stripping my Halloween leech, a Henryís Lake standby, put me into a trance. After an hour of gently kicking my way over to the...


CDC October Caddis

Sunday - October 5, 2014
By Phil Fischer
Have you noticed those big lumbering mothy-like bugs flying over the Deschutes or Fall River lately? Chances are you were seeing the adult October Caddis. This caddis emerges in late September and October throughout many rivers in Oregon and Northern California. WestFly, the well-known fly fishing and entomology website in the Pacific Northwest, nicknamed this bug ďthe Great Pumpkin of Western RiversĒ. It is a big bug, and for a few short weeks in the fall can be important to imitate, as...


The Purple Peril

Saturday - September 6, 2014
By Phil Fischer
This morning was a cool, crisp 30 degrees in Sunriver, with the distinct feel of fall in the air. I think fall is my favorite time of the year, as the days get shorter and the fishing gets better. After a short walk with our golden retriever, I came back into the house to a nice hot cup of coffee and sat down at my computer to see what was happening in the world. The first site I checked was the steelhead counts over Sherars Falls on the Deschutes River. Iíve been hearing reports of...


CDC Cinnamon Ant

Tuesday - August 26, 2014
By Phil Fischer
Itís August and hatches of early summer are starting to dwindle. But that doesnít mean you have to give up fishing with dry flies. Central Oregon has extensive of lodgepole forest environments near our lakes, and these host a myriad of terrestrials, such as ants, hoppers, termites, and beetles. For this monthís pattern, I chose a CDC Cinnamon Ant. This pattern reminds me of a day on Hosmer Lake when I forgot to bring my terrestrial fly box. And sure enough, there was a very good hatch of...


Black Trailing Shuck Caddis

Tuesday - August 26, 2014
By Phil Fischer
On one of our high country lakes last week, I was once again reminded of a cardinal rule of fly fishing; if it isnít working, change! About 11:00 in the morning the Callibaetis hatch began. And just as predictably I started seeing rising fish, big ones! I though to myself that I had this day nailed, as I had tied a number of my favorite Callibaetis patterns for this trip. I reached into my box for a Callibaetis Spinner, which is the bug I was observing on the water and tied it onto 4X...


Pull-over Callibaetis Spinner

Tuesday - August 19, 2014
By Phil Fischer
Callibaetis mayfly hatches are beginning this month and will last through the summer and into early fall. The Callibaetis hatch is unquestionably the most important mayfly hatch on the Cascade Lakes in Central Oregon. Trout key on the nymph stage prior to the hatch, the emerger stage during the hatch, the dun stage on the surface, and spinners returning to lay eggs to begin the cycle anew. Fishing techniques for this insect vary, from nymphs fished beneath an indicator, to wind drifted or...


Olive and Red Chironomid Larvae

Tuesday - August 12, 2014
By Phil Fischer
Early season in Central Oregon is Chironomid time on our many Stillwater fisheries. For this monthís pattern, I have opted for a very easy to tie Chironomid pattern that imitates the larvae form of Chironomids found in our local waters.

The genesis of this pattern was from watching a short video in Phil Rowleyís presentation to the Sunriver Anglers last year. He showed Chironomids wiggling in a small vial. What caught my eye was the olive color of these larvae, along with the reddish...


Cripple CDC Parachute Blue Wing Olive (BWO)

Saturday - March 1, 2014
By Phil Fischer
The moist cool days induced by this late winter pineapple express are perfect to be out fishing the Fall River and Crooked River with Blue Wing Olive mayfly imitations. BWO mayflies hatch mid-day on days like today that feature highs in the mid-40ís and light rain. Hatches can be intense and blanket the water with these insects. The BWO will float for an extended period on the surface, and waiting trout know that and intercept them willingly. But the hatch can also be a very frustrating one...


UV and Biot Callibaetis Soft Hackle

Saturday - February 1, 2014
By Phil Fischer
In mid-winter I dream of being on East Lake fly fishing Callibaetis. But since the lake is currently frozen over, and closed, this time of year my dreams are most vivid while at my vice tying up patterns for next summer. Today found me tying a favorite Callibaetis pattern for indicator fishing, or wind drifting East Lake: the UV and Biot Callibaetis Soft Hackle.

East Lake is well known for its long Callibaetis hatch starting in late May and extending through September. The weed beds...