With all of the talk surrounding our film Modern Nymphing lately, I thought I would switch gears for a post and tell you about my favorite spey fly from this last fall. Two autumns ago I decided I'd better give spey fishing a shot after moving to Oregon in February 2015. At the end of October 2015 I went out with my good friend Paul Pagano for my first swing outing. My grade school friend Mark Hammond also joined us from Utah. I've done a fair bit of improvised single-hand spey casting on my own over the years which helped my learning curve. After a few dozen Snap-Ts I had the motion and timing down well enough to try and be effective. That first outing was a slow day with Paul landing the only steelhead, but I really enjoyed the opportunity to shoot some line and hope for a grab as my fly tracked around each corner.
The next week my friends Connor Murphy (steelhead bum stuck in Colorado) and Gilbert Rowley (Modern Nymphing filming and editing guru) came up for a few days of steelhead fishing. We spent the first day swinging and the next couple of days nymphing a smaller river. Gilbert was nice enough to shoot a few casting sequences at the beginning of the first day. Happily for me, about 20 minutes in I locked up with my first steelhead on a Spey rod. The sequences at the beginning of the tutorial video are Gilbert's handy work capturing these events. I was fortunate enough to get my second steelhead on the swing later that day and I enjoyed several more successful Spey days before the river got frigid and the swing bite became difficult as December neared.
A stellar steelhead caught on a Magneto Night Club by Jeremy Hull.
Through all of the great trips last fall there was one fly that was attached to the end of the line during the more successful days. That fly was the Magneto Night Club. I came up with the fly before my first Spey outing with Paul. During 2015 I only used it on that first day out and the copies I had tied sat in my box for the most part until 2016. The fly is my effort at making the Hoh bo Spey fly quicker, cheaper, and easier to tie. Because, I fish a lot of heavy sink tips when the water is cold, I run into a fair amount of rocks and lose my fair share of flies. It's a lot easier to continue to fish this way if I'm not worried about losing a fly because it took 5-7 minutes to tie instead of the much longer times commonly required by a lot of other Spey flies. By using materials that are quickly wrapped without using compound dubbing loops or adding individual fibers, I've made the Magneto Night Club easy to tie. Since it is quick to tie and still retains it's steelhead magnetism, It's a win win to me even though it may not have the elegance of many more complex Spey patterns.
Chasin tail with a Night Club
The recipe is below with purchasing links for each of the materials (except for the front hook for which you can use any old long shank hook that you might have lying around). I know many of you have really enjoyed the materials bundle option we've sold on the site. Unfortunately I have had to discontinue them for now because I had to manage all of their inventory componentsmanually with my current site hosting format. This led to a lot of mishaps and a ton of extra time input. I hope I can add something similar in the future as I look at growing the site and moving to a new platform down the road. Until then, I hope you'll find the direct add to cart links below the recipe easy enough to use.
- Front hook: any old long shank hook you have lying around
- Trailing hook: OPST swing hook or Owner SSW
- Tailing connection: Cortland hot pink backing
- Thread: Fl Hot pink or orange Veevus power thread
- Rear hot spot: Fl. dark pink Semperfli straggle string
- Body: Hareline black krystal hackle
- Hackle: Purple Spirit River UV2 marabou. Could also use Nature's Spirit marabou.
- Flash: two strands of Opal mirage flashabou on each side of the body