Don's Fly Tying - the Thompson Hopper

[the Thompson Hopper]

My family and I spent two wonderful years in Kamloops back in the early eighties; my wife and kids for the convenience of smaller town living and myself for the exceptional fly fishing available in the area! When the lakes slowed in August, I still managed some exceptional dry fly angling in the South Thompson River below Walhachin. The Thompson rainbows, some very large, did not object to grasshopper winds that blew the insects into the river at that time of year. I devised a dry fly that worked quite well using a foam component for extra flotation. Let's have a look this creation that I call my Thompson Hopper.

[South Thompson River]



Start by tying in a length of brown rod thread to the hook shank for later ribbing. To help fly flotation, I now cinch in a piece of foam to the hook shank in tight wraps. Next overlay the foam with yellow wool hook bend to about 2/3 way to the hook eye. Follow up with spaced turns of the brown thread over the wool to form a rib. At this point I tie in a rubber leg on each side of the body and put a single knot in each leg near the end. In those early years I did not have the products that are available now such as White River Sili Legs but why not use a more modern material today? Now finish the front half of the body with turns of brown mohair. In the next step, I like to use elk for the wing for better durability but deer hair will do if you are not an elk hunter! The last step is to cut a piece of yellow foam about 1/8 inch wide and tie it in at the hook eye and back to cover the large ends of the elk wing. Tie off, cement and you have created an excellent river hopper fly!

Your comments are welcome at "dhaaheim at telus dot net"

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