Published Sep 24. 2006 - 15 years ago
Updated or edited Aug 8. 2015

Striper Humpy

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I know that this site rarely if at all addresses striper fishing but it is a site about open mindedness and I have learned a great deal from this site. I also know there are striper fly fishers visiting here. There is also a connection, I am interested in catching striped bass on trout dry flies.
I posted a dry fly pattern in the summer that works on stripers and I have another one that works.

There was a post on the Stripermoon.com web site about stripers popping on shrimp in the surface of the water. It is a common activity. Ken Abrames recommended a number of patterns that could work, some examples were a Gartside Gurgler, Steelhead Bee, or Steelhead Caddis. These are all waking steelhead flies save the Gurgler. The idea is twofold. One, the fly stays in the surface and creates a wake by keeping a taught line or adding tiny pulls or just dead drifting it. Second, even though looking at most of these flies one would not think shrimp but when the silhouette is viewed from below, voila, shrimp.

I thought of another pattern that could also work, the Humpy. It is a trout dry fly in sizes #6-14 for rough water and a steelhead fly in larger sizes. It stays in the surface like a cork especially when it is greased. It is a classic pattern that uses moose mane for the tail, natural deer hair for the hump above the shank, the body can be any color floss, the hackle is brown and grizzly and the tips of the deer hair hump are also part of the wing. I changed some of the recipe to suggest grass shrimp. I used natural deer hair for the tail, natural deer hair for the hump, light olive or chartreuse floss for the body and 2 dun hackles on a #4 salmon hook.

On the new moon, the last one of the summer, fall was ushered in with strong winds from the SSW at 15 knots with a SE swell on outgoing. The bay was rough, choppy and had small rollers. Perfect, I guess. I knew from fishing the prior two nights that stripers were popping on shrimp. So I fished this fly for about 80 yards of clam water as I headed towards a rip at the point of an island. Nothing, but I was not dismayed. I intended this fly for water preceding the rip at the point. It was very windy and the wind was coming across my casting arm. I would make one back cast and aim high to let the wind carry the fly about 55 feet and then I would let out more line while keeping the line tight. As this dry fly swung it entered the beginning of the rip and came to rest, SPLASH! It worked. And I left because the weather was too much and I did what I came to do. I caught a striped bass on a classic dry fly.

Martin Joergensen's picture

Re: Striper Humpy...

[quote:3851c880fa="Greased Liner"]I know that this site rarely if at all addresses striper fishing but it is a site about open mindedness and I have learned a great deal from this site. I also know there are striper fly fishers visiting here. There is also a connection, I am interested in catching striped bass on trout dry flies.[/quote:3851c880fa]

Well, we're not the prime source on stripers, that's true, but we do have [url=http://globalflyfisher.com/keywords/?keyword=striped_bass]a bit on the subject[/url]. And with the help of posts like this we will get even more. Very interesting! I have never heard of dry flies for striped bass. The few times I have fished for them have been with heavy sinking lines and large flies. But if they are at all like our cod - often targeted with sinkers too - they will on occasion rise to the surface and take stuff there.

Great to hear about something different!

Martin

Greased Liner's picture

I only use a floating line...

I only use a floating line when wading, sometimes I add a mini sink tip to get down to eight feet. If I'm fishing water during the day that is over 8 feet deep then I use a long section of T-14 on a floating head. The only time I use a fast sinking line is from a boat to deep water.
I mostly fish at night when stripers when stripers focus on the upper water column. Many of the patterns I use are between 6 to 8 inches and some much larger but when they feed on shrimp, isopods, juvenile crabs, worms, juvenile baitfish, then small stuff is needed right in the surface. And it is these smaller crustaceans that one will most often find in their stomachs. It is the most challenging fly fishing with plenty of room for creativity in tying as well as presentation.

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