Simple Hopper

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The Hopper season is officially upon us beginning Aug 1st. These big bugs are on the water coming from the weeds, grass and over hanging vegetation along the stream. They can make for explosive feeding opportunities and in some cases, trigger trout strikes from across a pool. Most of the patterns I have seen are moderate to extremely difficult to tie and as such, are not fished by the average angler.  I have come up with a simple hopper pattern that anyone can tie and fish easily.  I encourage you to fish this "Simply Hopper" pattern, and let the results speak for themselves...Earl Schenberg


Hook:TMC 2302 Size:
Thread:6/0 or Ultra 70 to match color of hopper
Dubbing:Yellow, tan or green, tapered up body. (Any floating material)
BodyClosed cell foam, width sized to hook.
Collar:Deer Hair

Tying Instructions

  1. Start with a thread base on the hook.
  2. Cut a strip of foam and tie on the hook leaving a one inch over hang on front and rear. Body should be well tied to the hook shank and end at the hook point. Super glue can be used, if need, for larger sizes.
  3. Trim the foam at the rear in a rounded shape which extends to the end of the hook.
  4. Dub a tapered body up the foam body to the head. Stop two hook eyes from the front.
  5. Prep and stack a tuft of deer hair and attach at this point. Size it to extend to the end of the foam body. Let the deer hair flair and trim off the front portion very short as it will be covered by the foam.
  6. Attach one or two legs on each side at the same tie in point as the deer hair.
  7. Bring the foam back over the deer hair to form the head, bind down, whip finish and trim short at the tie down point.
  8. Apply cement and trim the legs and it's ready to hit the stream. With a little practice you will be tying this pattern quickly with out a hitch.

Fishing the Simple Hopper

It is best to drift this fly close to the bank or under overhanging trees and bushes where trout lie to get away from the heat of the day and the direct overhead sun.