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Whitlock's Hare Sculpin


Top: Dorsal view - Bottom - Profile

Finally got a name on this pattern! This was a REALLY cool pattern I came across at Kingfisher Fly Shop in Missoula, Montana while fishing out west during 2002. The fly looks UNREAL, that is it truly looks ALIVE in the water. The pattern rides clouser-style, with the hook bend up, so it's a great pattern for bouncing the bottom with; very FEW snags! A monofilament weed-guard could be added to further prevent snags with this large fly. This pattern was too large for most of the Steelhead I came across in the fall, but the Chinooks should REALLY dig it! I'll be fishing this pattern A LOT come next fall!

The tie is surprisingly easy once I figured it out. Insert the hook right-side-up. First, wrap the hook shank down and start back up with white thread. Approximately 1/3 away from the eye, tie in the gills (red marabou or hackle), then tie in the pectoral fins (pheasant body feathers, stripped to size). Yes, the GILLS are tied in first, behind the pectoral fins (don't ask, I didn't come up with this pattern!). Wind to 1/4 away from the hook eye and tie in the presentation eyes. Wind forward and half-hitch or whip finish but do NOT cut the thread off.

At this point we're going to add the upper rabbit strip, which is cut to roughly 1.5 X the length of the hook shank. I use the Magnum Cut vs. Cross Cut strips (Ideally you want strips even a bit wider than the Magnum Cut...but that involves cutting your own.) Remove the hook from the vice, and line the dark rabbit strip up along the shank...you are going to want to figure out where the hook should come through the rabbit strip so that the strip settles at the base of the hook bend. Once you've figured out where this is on the strip, pierce the strip coming through the back side (furless side) and bring it down to rest on the shank.

You can then reinsert the hook it the vice, right-side-up. The dark "upper" rabbit strip will be beneath the hook shank. Tie in the strip at the front of the fly. Next we take our white rabbit strip and tie it in topside, along the back of the shank. The white strip is cut slightly shorter than the dark strip...roughly 1.25 X the length of the hook shank. I also like to trim down the front portion of the white rabbit strip to maybe 1/8" in length.

At this point we can whip finish the head of the fly after we have securely wrapped down the two rabbit strips...this is a large head and that's OK! Finish the head with Flexament or other Flexible-drying product. So now what you have is the fly with the dark strip in place, and the white strip tied in and loose. To FINISH the fly, liberally coat the hook shank, lead-eye tie down, and skin-sides of both strips with Flexament. Line up the strips and press them together, sandwiching the hook shank, eyes, fins and gills between the two strips of rabbit. Now you should have something that looks just like the flies below (show from the dorsal view and profile). These flies take a lot of abuse and continue to look great.

Hook - 2 or 6
Eyes - Lead Hourglass Presentation Eyes, Size Sm
Gills - Originally Red Hackle (I subbed Red Marabou)
Pectoral - Ringneck Pheasant Body Feather
Upper Body - A Dark Rabbit Strip (Magnum Cut- on a size 6 cut the strip in half down it's length)
Lower Body - White Rabbit Strip (Magnum Cut- on a size 6 cut the strip in half down it's length)
Thread - White, ideally 3/0 but 6/0 will work.

Some additional tie variations with weed guards (add them in when you first tie down the hook shank, and thread both the 30lb. mono and hook point through the hole in the "upper body":

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