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The Pass Lake Wet Fly: Tenkara Perfect Anthony Naples

As long as I have been fly fishing, since about 1992, wet flies have been constantly “rediscovered” in magazine articles. So I’m not going to do any rediscovering because I figure they’ve never really been gone.

If you’re coming to tenkara without a western fly fishing background, perhaps wet flies are new to you in name. But if you’ve been fishing tenkara kebari you’ve been fishing wet flies and probably even employing some of the same tactics that those old-time wet fly anglers used in Europe and America.

I won’t give a full discussion on wet fly tactics in this article, but I will give you some tips for fishing the Pass Lake after the tying instructions.

If you dig around a bit you’ll find various origin stories for the Pass Lake. Some say Canada some say Wisconsin or even Washington. I will say it seems to be a popular Wisconsin fly even now. In his book Upper Midwest Flies That Catch Trout and How to Fish Them: Year-Round Guide, Ross A. Mueller states that the Pass Lake was designed by a Clintonville, Wisconsin

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minister in 1938. And by the way that Ross A. Mueller book is a great little book. I personally came upon the pattern while living in Maine in about 1996. There was an article about it in a regional outdoor rag and so I tied a few up and hit the stream. I can still remember the first brown trout that I caught using it on the Little Ossippe River in southern Maine. The were small black stoneflies fluttering about and a rising trout under an overhanging branch that I couldn’t approach any way but from upstream. I tied on the Pass Lake, let it swing downstream and under the tree … and it worked its magic. The trout was hooked and so was I. I’ve fished the Pass Lake on and off in the intervening years but in the last couple of years my increased interest in fly manipulation due to my tenkara habit has brought it to the front of my fly box again. I don’t want to overstate it – but the Pass Lake works. It just plain works. I’ve fished various other winged wet flies but when it comes to versatility and effectiveness I have not had nearly as much

Profile for Tenkara Angler

Tenkara Angler - Summer 2016  

Tenkara Angler Magazine chronicles the tenkara lifestyle through entries about community, destination, tactics, gear, and creative essays. A...

Tenkara Angler - Summer 2016  

Tenkara Angler Magazine chronicles the tenkara lifestyle through entries about community, destination, tactics, gear, and creative essays. A...

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