March Brown Time

Spring is here. That means it’s March Brown time.

I saw a small hatch on the river last week. Here is one of them.

Western March Brown (Rhithrogena morrisoni)

March Brown Adult | www.johnkreft.com

I think it’s early, but our weather has been so mild I’m really not surprised. In fact, I was looking for them. I took one of my bug vials filled with Purel hand soap with me just in case. I’m glad I did. I take these back to my fly tying bench to match color and size.

March Brown - Vial | www.johnkreft.com

Western March Brown mayflies (Rhithrogena morrisoni) are in the #12 – 14 size range. If you look at them from above, they appear a medium to dark brown. But that’s not what the fish see. The fly’s abdomen where I live is a reddish-brown. They might be different in the waters you fish. And their wings are very distinct…brown and mottled or some fly fishers would call it cathedral window-like. 

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Sparkle Dun Mayfly

Sparkle Dun - PMD

This is a size 16 Pale Morning Dun Sparkle Dun Mayfly or PMD for short.

One of my favorite flies. It’s in the top 5 of many fishermen in the know. The Sparkle Dun is a Craig Matthews pattern from Blue Ribbon Flies. I tie this simple, yet effective fly in size 22 Blue Wing Olive up to a size 8 Green Drake.

The fly is designed to imitate an adult mayfly trying to escape it’s nymphal shuck. That makes it an emerger or cripple. I really believe in using flies to imitate the transition to an adult. Somehow, the fish know they don’t have to work as hard to eat them because they can’t get away quickly.

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