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Claret Dun
        Hook:  Kamasan B405 #10 or #12           
        Thread:  Uni-thread 6/0 black
        Tail:  Brown cock hackle
        Ribbing:  Copper wire, very fine
        Body:  Claret sealís fur
        Wing:  Grey partridge neck feather      
        Hackle:  Brown cock hack clipped underneath

Claret Dun
First Season at Cressy
Ray Brown in Tasmania
Brumby's Creek Cressy

Now that I am residing in Cressy I will have the opportunity to do some exploring.  Since I have been down here I have mainly been concentrating on fishing the streams such as Brumbyís Creek, the Macquarie River and sections of the North Esk River.

Some new patterns have evolved.  One thing I was not prepared for was the extent of the hopper fishing down here in late Summer/Autumn; early on Brumbyís was almost impossible if you didnít fish a stick caddis.

Yesterday I went exploring on the east coast of the state.  After leaving Scottsdale I drove towards Weldborough/Pyengana to look at the Weld and Georges Rivers; nice little streams flowing through pasture.  The Georges River looked a bit overgrown with willows but I had heard that both streams contained good populations of free rising trout.

On to St Helens and Georges Bay, home of the east coast game fishing fleet, absolutely a beautiful place.  I thought I might go back to Cressy via Gladstone/ Bridport so I travelled up to towards Ansonís Bay, had a look at Eddystone Lighthouse, a few casts on the Bay of Fires beach then on to Gladstone.  Just out of Bridport you cross the Great Forrester River that was very similar to the Onkaparinga back home in South Australia, just deeper and no Southern Black Bream, I am told.  I chose this route as I had already explored the upper South Esk, Ringarooma and St Patricks systems. This is something that I had not done for years.

I knew the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia, the trout country of Victoria, the Snowy Mountains and the Monaro; in 40 years of fishing there I had covered much of the famed and not so famed areas.

In the middle reaches of the Macquarie River I didnít see the red spinner hatches that I expected; the fishing was okay and I picked up many good fish on dun patterns.  Caenids were prolific in the early morning on the midland rivers, hard to fish, but great fun if you get on to a few nice fish.  I have included a few of the patterns that have been successful down here last season.  As with most of my flies in the past, I prefer natural material but a recent visit from Muzz Wilson helped with a few of the ideas relating to hopper bodies, as well as some super realistic mayflies.

Caenid [1]
                    Hook:  Kamasan B 401 #18 or #20
                    Thread:  Uni-Thread 8/0 Black
                    Tail:  2 or 3 long cock hackle fibres
                    Body:  Grey Muskrat dubbing
                    Rib:  None
                    Thorax:  Black dyed mole fur
                    Wing:  Calf tail
                    Hackle:  None

Caenid Dun 1
Caenid Dun 2

Caenid [2]

Hook:  Kamasan B401 #18
Thread:  Uni-Thread 8/0
Tail:  2 long cock hackle fibres, separated
Body:  Grey Muskrat Dubbing
Rib:  None
Thorax:  Black Dyed Mole Fur
Wing:  Turkey flats as post for parachute    hackle
Hackle:  Grey Hoffman saddle

Both these patterns require long leaders, calm conditions and, of course, sipping fish.  The best method to fish them is to put them out and leave them for the fish to find; you will know when that happens as there will be a reaction from the trout, a slow sipping rise or a short rise followed by a bow wave.  I have seen fish come freely to the caenid only to reject it; other mornings they take the fly confidently.

Hopper [1]
        Hook:  Kamasan 830 #6 or #4
        Thread:  Uni-Thread 6/0 Light Cahill                
        Body:  1/8 tan foam cut to shape
        Wing:  Amherst Pheasant tippets dyed bright yellow
        Head:  Coastal deer hair tied bullet head style
        Legs:  Bright orange [large] rubber legs

Brown Hopper
Yellow Hopper

Hopper [2]

Hook:  Kamasan 830 #8 or #10
Thread:  Uni-Thread 6/0 Light Cahill
Body:  1/8 yellow foam cut to shape
Wing:  Golden Pheasant tippets
Head:  Coastal deer hair tied bullet head style
Legs:  Orange [medium] rubber legs

These two patterns we fished on the lakes at Miena with fantastic results, just another method of Shark fishing.  Even on Arthurs Lake the fish responded to these large hoppers.

I tried a little Krystal Flash in the wing as an under wing but it made no difference in the long term.  Slim seemed to be the silhouette the fish wanted.  Fished out over the flats on the western lakes, these flies drew responses from some serious fish.  Quite a few times a couple of fish appeared to have a look at the fly; a take was always imminent where there was completion.

A fly that did well early season was a Rickís Stick Caddis; easy to tie.  Fished static the fly was a great producer in the streams before things settled down.  I mainly fished it on a greased line, only about 3-10cm below the surface.  Most of the fish that took it were sighted fish, sitting fairly shallow over the weed beds.

Rickís Stick Caddis
Hook:  Kamasan B830 #12
Thread:  Uni-Thread 6/0 Bright Yellow
Tail:  Same as body
Body:  Equal parts of chocolate brown, black, olive, yellow and orange BMS dubbing blended and tied in tightly along the hook shank
NOTES:  Easy to tie, highly effective.   It is important to tie with the brightest yellow or chartreuse thread as possible.  The body needs to be about as thin as a match, no more.

Rick's Stick Caddis

Throughout the season on Brumbyís the trout are notoriously hard, whether they are sipping caenids or slashing a fluttering caddis, most nights in summer they were pre-occupied with a small dark caddis.  Sometimes behind the weirs there would be dozens of rises; one of the best places I found was below the third weir, down to where the overflow from the Springfield Fisheries entered the creek.

I discovered a Cul de Canard product that was sold in a rope; I think it was Henryís Fork Hackle from Montana Fly Company.  This turned out to be a great find as it produced an effect that caught a lot of fish in Brumbyís over the summer.

When the larger Long Horned Caddis made their appearance, the old time tested pair of Leonard Wrightís Fluttering Caddis and Goddardís Caddis did the trick.  Both are fished on a long leader and fished with a bit of movement and both will evoke takes when slowly jerked up stream across the current.

Cul de Canard Caddis

Cul de Canard Caddis
Hook:  Kamasan B 401 #12 or #14
Thread:  Uni-thread 6/0 Tan
Body:  Light hareís ear Cul de Canard wound tightly
Wing:   Dark brown Cul de Canard rope, one turn around the hook shank
NOTES:  Very simple, highly attractive to trout.  I fished it along the edges, out of the stronger flow.  Drag is an ever-present problem that is not always evident in the flyís behaviour.

We all love to cast to fish that are on the Duns; I suppose thatís what fly fishing is about.  Sight fishing, dun fishing is a visual thing; first you spot the gulls, then the duns.  Amongst them you start to notice the swirls and then finally you see a fish clearly roll over a dun that was only seconds before drifting along the surface in the breeze.  Pretty exciting.
On a river it is pretty much the same only maybe the gulls are replaced with fantails or swallows.  I fished the Macquarie a bit last season, with both duns and mayfly spinners.  The results were fairly good; I didnít see any hatches but had some wonderful fishing to rising fish on a couple of patterns that represent the local mayflies.

Parachute Orange Spinner

Parachute Orange Spinner
Hook:  Kamasan B405 #12 or #14           
Thread:  Uni-thread 6/0 black
Tail:  Brown cock hackle
Ribbing:  Copper wire, very fine
Body:  Orange dyed condor substitute
Wing:  White turkey flats tied as a post     
Hackle:  Brown cock hackle wound around the post as a parachute hackle

With the new season almost upon us itís time to tie up a few flies for next season. Down here in Tasmania the season opens early August, we wonít have much time.
Early season on Brumbyís can be very good; wet fly fishing around the flooded margins of the low land streams can be very productive.  Any of the Matuka type flies will suffice.
Woolly Buggers are very popular; I normally wait for the first mayflies of spring to get enthusiastic and then hit the low land rivers with a vengeance.

Contact Ray


Mob: 0427 643 773
All flies tied by Ray Brown
Photography Mick Hall