Hale Bopp Leech



HOOK: 3X long curved shank; e.g. TMC 200R or equivalent. Sizes 6-12


HEAD: Gold bead (optional)

TAIL: Marabou. Keep it long but sparse

BODY: Angora goat. Keep it wispy



The Hale Bopp gained quick popularity as a stillwater trout pattern. It imitates a leech or baitfish or just something edible. The fly also works well in rivers.

Most stillwaters have leeches, but very few north American species are blood suckers. They are naturally nocturnal, so trout don't see very many during the daytime. But when a fish spots one, it is usually interested, because a leech represents a good meal.

Most of the leeches that trout eat are only an inch or two long. While generally thin, their shape can change as the swim.



Good color choices: black, brown, olive, purple, bugundy, and red.


How to Fish

In lakes, use the count-down-and-retrieve or slow retrieve presentations. Vary the retrieve until you find what works best at the moment: slow and steady, fast, strip-and-pause, or quick, short two-inch strips. Also, a wind drift works well in lakes.

When pursued, leeches put the pedal to the metal and move pretty fast. For this reason, some anglers always retrieve their leeches fast, in the belief that a trout will see it speeding along and figure another trout is after it--thus inducing a strike response ("eat all the food you can before another fish gets it" seems to be a trout motto). There are times when this works, and times when it just spooks all the fish.



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