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Hares Ear

fly tying hares ear nymph trout fly

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23 replies to this topic

#1 McFlyLures

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Posted 12 October 2018 - 11:01 AM

The hares ear is a fly that has been around for ages, however its still as effective today as it was many many years ago when it was created.  The simplicity is really what makes this fly so popular.  Its very easy to tie with a very small amount of materials, yet still catches fish!

I have no clue where this fly comes from, and no matter who you talk to, the answer changes. Everyone will say definitely they know, but someone else will say no thats not correct. So as much as I would love to give you an origination story, anything I say will be thought of as a complete utter lie and Bull... sooooo no originaton story for this one, sorry guys!
 
More frequently you see these tied with a tail made of rabbit fur.  They would clip a small clump, tie that in at the tail, then dub the body, then tie in a section of turkey wing or pheasant tail fibers for the wing case.  I find using the Pheasant tail to start with at the tail negates an extra step, so its much easier and quicker to tie.  Also I think it looks better as well, and for me fishes a bit better.  So its a win win.  
 
Not only is this fly easy to tie, but it also looks really good.  Its really cool that you are using the same dubbing throughout to create the abdomen and the thorax, but dubbed in different degree's of tightness to create a different look.  The abdomen when dubbed tightly really does have the perfect "bugginess" look to it.  And the thorax when dubbed loose will be perfect for looking like legs of nymph.   This is really one of my favorite nymphs to fill a box with because its not only effective, looks great, and can be tied to mimic a wide variety of bug species, its very easy and quick to tie, and I can fill a box in a matter of a few hours.  It also looks equally as nice with a bead head, and as different sizes as well.  Heck, for really small ones try tying with a finer dubbing.  
 
Speaking of a wide variety of bug species, these are more than likely made to mimic baetis or mayflies, however I know they can mimic caddis as well.  Some people even tie these with slight alterations to look like stoneflies.  They are very versatile.  


 
As always I am providing a list of materials used on this fly
 
Hook:  Firehole Sticks #633 size 6
Thread:  Veevus 6/0
Tail/Wing case:  Natural Pheasant Tail
Ribbing:  I used Gold flat tinsel, but round or oval tinsel will work better (or even gold wire)
Dubbing:  Natural color Hares Ear Plus
Resin:  Solarez "Thin Hard" UV Resin 

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#2 redietz

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Posted 16 October 2018 - 07:24 PM

 

 

No one really knows where this fly comes from or who originated it.  Some will say Izaak Walton in the late 1800's, but we really don't know exactly.  What we do know is that this fly works, and works wonderfully!   

 

That would have been a true miracle!  Isaac Walton would have been 300 years old in the late 1800's. And he didn't really fly fish.  OTOH, Charles Cotton (who wrote the fly fishing section of The Compleat Angler)  did probably use it.

 

Nice video.  I agree with you about the PT tails.  It's easier, and what I recommend in the beginner's tying class that I teach.

 

A bit of historical trivia:, throughout most of its history, the Hare's Ear was a winged wet fly, not a nymph. For the first half of the 20th century, writers recommended cutting the wing short to use it as a nymph.  I'm not sure what genius figured that you could just leave the wing out and replace it with a wing pad, but it took 40 or 50 years for anyone to see the obvious. (It still works as winged wet, BTW.)


Bob


#3 McFlyLures

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Posted 19 October 2018 - 04:28 PM


 
 
No one really knows where this fly comes from or who originated it.  Some will say Izaak Walton in the late 1800's, but we really don't know exactly.  What we do know is that this fly works, and works wonderfully!   
 

That would have been a true miracle!  Isaac Walton would have been 300 years old in the late 1800's. And he didn't really fly fish.  OTOH, Charles Cotton (who wrote the fly fishing section of The Compleat Angler)  did probably use it.
 
Nice video.  I agree with you about the PT tails.  It's easier, and what I recommend in the beginner's tying class that I teach.
 
A bit of historical trivia:, throughout most of its history, the Hare's Ear was a winged wet fly, not a nymph. For the first half of the 20th century, writers recommended cutting the wing short to use it as a nymph.  I'm not sure what genius figured that you could just leave the wing out and replace it with a wing pad, but it took 40 or 50 years for anyone to see the obvious. (It still works as winged wet, BTW.)

Dude well either way none of us were from the 1800s so we only can get our info from the web or books, apparently the 5 different websites I found this info at (all said the same thing) were wrong...

Glad you liked the video, and yeah the pt for a tail is way quicker for sure!

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#4 chugbug27

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Posted 19 October 2018 - 05:25 PM

So, I couldnt help myself and googled "Izaak Walton hare's ear." I found a lot of sites suggesting the fly traces back to Colton and Walton in the 1600's, and one saying it may have been popularized in the 1880's by Frederick Helford. I wouldn't bother posting that here, but I just can't swallow your missive about how none of us lived in the 1800's so who can say what's true. Is that really what we've come to?
cb27

#5 McFlyLures

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Posted 19 October 2018 - 08:05 PM

Chug, geeze man! What I meant is that all I have to go off of is what others, and websites tell me. I made a mistake, but really not really. I found false info and thought it was true. I will just remove the history of the fly. Man, you all are perfectionists. Someone makes a small mistake and you all cant wait to just flip out. Dont jump down my throat for a mistake, thats all Im saying. Lol. I will change this. Peace!

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#6 redietz

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Posted 19 October 2018 - 11:10 PM

So, I couldnt help myself and googled "Izaak Walton hare's ear." I found a lot of sites suggesting the fly traces back to Colton and Walton in the 1600's, and one saying it may have been popularized in the 1880's by Frederick Helford. I wouldn't bother posting that here, but I just can't swallow your missive about how none of us lived in the 1800's so who can say what's true. Is that really what we've come to?

Cut him some slack on this.  It was a tying video, not a history lesson.  Much of my own interest in tying (and fly fishing in general) is the history, but it's certainly not everyone's.  I may comment from time to time to add a historical perspective, but it's only to add info, not to criticize.

 

The fly's association with Halford is a slightly negative one indicating how little caddis flies came into his thinking.  He insisted that for upwings (mayflies) you need to have an exact imitation for each species (and one for duns and one for spinners) whereas his advice for fishing caddis hatches was pretty much "just fish a hare's ear" regardless of the species.


Bob


#7 chugbug27

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Posted 19 October 2018 - 11:39 PM

Alright, I did fly off the handle a bit. And I do genuinely appreciate the lightheartedness and easy access qualities of your videos, McFly. It was just your comment about how none of us lived in the 1800's, so who's to say what's true, just rubbed me the wrong way. A couple of years ago it probably wouldn't have bothered me, but I guess I've grown a bit testy and impatient with that sort of thing of late. I do apologize. It's really got nothing to do with you.
cb27

#8 McFlyLures

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Posted 20 October 2018 - 09:42 AM

All good chug, yeah I really didnt mean any harm in the comment. What I meant is there is no way for someone living today to know something that long ago, without someone handing down information, or looking on websites/books. And apparently websites, books and hand down info can be wrong. Thats all I meant.

The problem with this type of conversion (online forum) is much is missed. Much of our communication is non verbal. Therefor many of my, and others, meanings behind what we say is lost. My grandma used to say, its not what you say but how you say it.... and I find many times Ill say something on here with good intention, but its taken the wrong way. So yeah no worries man.

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#9 McFlyLures

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Posted 20 October 2018 - 09:48 AM


So, I couldnt help myself and googled "Izaak Walton hare's ear." I found a lot of sites suggesting the fly traces back to Colton and Walton in the 1600's, and one saying it may have been popularized in the 1880's by Frederick Helford. I wouldn't bother posting that here, but I just can't swallow your missive about how none of us lived in the 1800's so who can say what's true. Is that really what we've come to?

Cut him some slack on this.  It was a tying video, not a history lesson.  Much of my own interest in tying (and fly fishing in general) is the history, but it's certainly not everyone's.  I may comment from time to time to add a historical perspective, but it's only to add info, not to criticize.
 
The fly's association with Halford is a slightly negative one indicating how little caddis flies came into his thinking.  He insisted that for upwings (mayflies) you need to have an exact imitation for each species (and one for duns and one for spinners) whereas his advice for fishing caddis hatches was pretty much "just fish a hare's ear" regardless of the species.

I love that you know the history, I personally lack on that. I started tying because I love fishing. Wanted to improve on the flies that I bought in shops. And in a naeive way thought I could maybe save a few bucks tying my own (hahahahahahaha). Anyway, yeah I never really studied up on the history of flies, only the ways they are effective for catching fish. Although that being said I am interested in the history so I appreciate your correction on this. Its really hard though to get correct information. Every time I try to give a history lesson on a fly, I always am corrected. And in fact many times it seems like everyone has their own opinions on the history, so no matter what I say it seems like someone is going to get mad or think Im dumb for saying what I say. Lol. Any recommendations for getting the info of any specific flies history?

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#10 redietz

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Posted 20 October 2018 - 10:03 AM

 

 

 Any recommendations for getting the info of any specific flies history?

Not really.  There are just too many different traditions  -- Catskills vs Rocky Mountains vs Maine vs Northern England vs Southern English chalkstreams, etc all of which believe they are the mainstream of the sport and the only ones with a history worth paying attention to.  The same fly may have been invented multiple times in multiple places.


Bob


#11 McFlyLures

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Posted 20 October 2018 - 10:40 AM


 
 
 Any recommendations for getting the info of any specific flies history?

Not really.  There are just too many different traditions  -- Catskills vs Rocky Mountains vs Maine vs Northern England vs Southern English chalkstreams, etc all of which believe they are the mainstream of the sport and the only ones with a history worth paying attention to.  The same fly may have been invented multiple times in multiple places.

Ok so what your saying is, no one really knows 100%? Hahaha. I had a few guys on here mad at me that I didnt give the history on a few flies, then when I do, I always get it wrong, or at least someone thinks its wrong. Just really hard to make everyone happy. Hahahaha. No matter what I do, Im gonna piss off someone with my videos. Oh well. At least 97% of the people that watch my videos like them... And that right there (in which there is no way I can please everyone) is exactly why I tend to get testy when someone corrects me. I just dont have the time to deal with all the haters. I have over 17,000 subs and get 150k+ views a month on the channel. You can imagine all the random hate comments I get. Haha. The web is full of professional jerks, so yeah. Haha. Its either I learn to ignore it (or even just throw back a hateful comment without caring about them or what they say). Or its that I get ulcers and work 200 hours a week to try and please everyone and guaranty my failure. Lol. And you can guess which rout I chose??? Hahahaha

Thanks for the help man. Maybe one day I can sit and pick your brain about all the original flies in their history

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#12 mikechell

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Posted 20 October 2018 - 11:38 AM

I just dont have the time to deal with all the haters. 

 

Don't deal with them, then.  If you don't respond, then they quit trying. 

Not all negative comments, however, are "haters" ... like Redietz and Chug, who had a legitimate complaints.  Their comments didn't get "heated" until you responded with serious negativity of your own.

Your issue is you seem take offense when you're proven wrong ... and that automatically makes them a "hater" in your world.

 

I am not trying to re-open the wound ... just observing the course of this thread.


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#13 chugbug27

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Posted 20 October 2018 - 12:13 PM

I found one for you. (The Compleat Angler by Izaak Walton). A bit tedious (aren't we all, sometimes), but given it was written in 1653, it's kinda fun stuff if you can get past the very dated narrative techniques. You might skip to chapter IV on catching trout with a fly. Thats the only chapter that drew me in, anyway. There's a caterpillar fly he calls the Palmer flie, which one of the new tyers on here just posted as his first or second tied fly. I couldn't see any reference to a hare's ear per se (maybe it's in another part of the book, or maybe I missed it, or maybe it's called something else and was tied so differently back then I can't quickly recognize it), but maybe you can find it. There are other chapters on many other fish, too (salmon, Pike, carp, and bream in chapters 6-9), but I can only take so much of fly fishing history...

Anyways, here's the link

http://www.gutenberg...98-h/9198-h.htm

A lot of the really old books are available on line, here's a great bibliography (towards the bottom) with links to what's available free online.

https://en.m.wikiped..._of_fly_fishing

More than a bit daunting, for me at least. But I've looked at a few and it's fun. So much is different now, and yet there's so much that hasn't changed at all.
cb27

#14 McFlyLures

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Posted 20 October 2018 - 07:12 PM

I just dont have the time to deal with all the haters. 
 

Don't deal with them, then.  If you don't respond, then they quit trying. 
Not all negative comments, however, are "haters" ... like Redietz and Chug, who had a legitimate complaints.  Their comments didn't get "heated" until you responded with serious negativity of your own.
Your issue is you seem take offense when you're proven wrong ... and that automatically makes them a "hater" in your world.
 
I am not trying to re-open the wound ... just observing the course of this thread.

Nope your right, not all negative is hate. However its tough when you get like 25-50 hate comments a day on your channel to distinguish. And when I say hate, I mean full language, I should go kill my self type hate. Obviously these are just people going around looking for people to pick fights with. But yeah man. It is almost a full time job sifting though the terrible stuff and curse words trying to keep my channel family friendly. Good examples are, when my dog died last year I did an update video telling everyone what happened and that I would be taking a week off the channel. And I had 4-5 people say things like I suck and its what I deserve, or good your dog was too good for you, and stupid crap like that. Of course these had other hatful stuff in it. Or of course every few hours comments like Im gonna sue you, kill you, find you and murder your family come in. So sometimes Im just on edge when people tell me something negative. Already in fighting mode so to speak.

Usually Im pretty thick skinned but when you get that 24/7 your skin starts thinning. lol. Then of course no matter what I post here someone has a problem with it. 9/10 times I get a comment its negative and most of the time they are giving constructive criticism, but dang. I mean I rarely get a hey good video there is always a but... haha. Which is good, thats why I post here, I want to try and improve but I would every once in a while have someone achnolage that my 5-7 hours spent on each tying video is worth it and not a heap of garbage! Hahahaha. But again back on defense mode, which I have a tendency to do, and Im not directing it at you Mike, your all good. Really not directing it at anyone else in this feed. And not really in the forum, just explaining my frustration thats all.

That all being said, I still have about 90-95% of comments coming through on my channel as positive and that the videos are well done, Fly is good, etc... so at least I know Im on the right track that out of 17,500 people subscribed to me, around 16,500 think my videos are good. Hahahaa.

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#15 McFlyLures

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Posted 20 October 2018 - 07:17 PM

I found one for you. (The Compleat Angler by Izaak Walton). A bit tedious (aren't we all, sometimes), but given it was written in 1653, it's kinda fun stuff if you can get past the very dated narrative techniques. You might skip to chapter IV on catching trout with a fly. Thats the only chapter that drew me in, anyway. There's a caterpillar fly he calls the Palmer flie, which one of the new tyers on here just posted as his first or second tied fly. I couldn't see any reference to a hare's ear per se (maybe it's in another part of the book, or maybe I missed it, or maybe it's called something else and was tied so differently back then I can't quickly recognize it), but maybe you can find it. There are other chapters on many other fish, too (salmon, Pike, carp, and bream in chapters 6-9), but I can only take so much of fly fishing history...

Anyways, here's the link

http://www.gutenberg...98-h/9198-h.htm

A lot of the really old books are available on line, here's a great bibliography (towards the bottom) with links to what's available free online.

https://en.m.wikiped..._of_fly_fishing

More than a bit daunting, for me at least. But I've looked at a few and it's fun. So much is different now, and yet there's so much that hasn't changed at all.


Thanks for the info and site references

Fly fishing and fly tying videos
www.McFlyAngler.com






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