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Hare’s Ice Dub Nymph Step-by-Step:
With panfish season right around the corner, I thought it might be time to restock one of my favorite little nymphs for targeting bluegill in South Lousiana. A play on the classic Hare’s Ear nymph, this fly is dubbed with a natural/synthetic blend (Hare’s Ice Dub) affording added flash not found in the original. The addition of a dubbing loop collar also provides a “buggier” appearance similar to both the Guide’s Choice Hare’s Ear and Rosborough Hare’s Ear. Combined, you have just the type of flashy, buggy nymph that bluegill love.
Tied in a #14 for this tutorial, this pattern can be tied as large as #8 and still remain effective.
|Curved Nymph (3xl) #14||12/0(Black)||2.7mm Tungsten (Gold finish)|
|Hare’s Ice Dub (Black)||Ultrawire (X-Small; Gold)||Hare’s Ice Dub (Black)|
|Hare’s Ice Dub (Black)|
Step-by-Step Tying Instructions:
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Tips and Tricks
- Creating a dubbing loop – Admittedly a bit of an intimidating process for new tyers, dubbing loops are an important technique for both nymphs and baitfish patterns. They’re also a technique that is better learned through observation than following written instructions. As such, I’ll refer anyone looking to learn the technique to this short video. It is one of the more succinct explanations I have found. And one I think is quite helpful. Of note, I highly recommend the use of the plunger-style hackle pliers for spinning your loops. While there are some great tools out there for creating these loops, they’re substantially more expensive and offer minimal added benefit.
- Tightline Nymphing – I’ve fished this nymph as part of a hopper-dropper tandem in shallow, flowing waters and with an indicator setup when the bluegill are deeper. One of my favorite techniques, however, is tightline nymphing around cypress knees. Forgoing a traditional cast, simply flip your nymph as close to each knee as possible and swing the fly back towards you. If there’s a fish positioned around the knee, you’ll know almost immediately.
Proof of Concept
The 9″ blugill pictured here is a prime example of this patterns effectiveness in the stained/dirty waters of south Louisiana. Tightlining the nymph among roadside cypress knees, this bull actually rose up from submerged tire as I swung the nymph through the knees. Easily the best of the day, it was one of six (including a few red spotted sunfish) taken from a single set of knees.