The Mohican Mayfly (see image above) has featured in my mayfly box ever since Oliver Edwards released the pattern many years ago. For perhaps 3-4 years it’s popularity gained momentum, however it remained a pattern you could rely on with tricky trout, those that had seen ‘nearly’ everything. Then the fly was everywhere and lost its edge.
It remained part of my mayfly team however. The pattern is robust, needs little TLC when the hatch and rise are really on and is ideal for less experienced fly fishers, being nearly unsinkable. It’s nearly perfect, but fails my key rule of top guide flies, in that it takes quite some time (for me at least) to tie. For this reason, I pay someone else for that job. A fly that I’ve spent 30+ minutes tying, won’t get thrown into snag holes with quite the same conviction and when a client looses one, (as they inevitably will or they are not trying hard enough) it induces physical pain. Hence life is better this way!
This particular fly, had a rather special journey during May/June 2022. I fished or guided on days where mayfly hatches triggered trout to surface feed, from May 2nd until June 17th. The Mohican Mayfly produced fish throughout that time to the point where some ‘secret weapons’ were not called upon for duty. It seemed the pattern had recaptured some of it’s former magic! Perhaps it had lost favour with other anglers, I don’t know. It sure worked well for us.
This one fly is special. It was the first to be tied to my leader on May 2nd. I caught many trout on it, including my largest brown at mayfly time during 2022. It was also regularly tied to the leaders of clients, many of whom did well with it. Having been rescued from many branches, bushes, nettles (ouch), a client finally lodged it firmly in a tree branch on June 15th. I recover all the flies and leaders I can from snags, but I had become rather attached to this, not so little fly in particular. We were not going to part company and I would not leave it in a tree. I went into monkey mode and managed to rescue my feathered friend. However it had lodged deep into the branch and in freeing it, I snapped the hook at the bend. Part metal fatigue maybe, ham fisted clumsiness from me almost certainly.
So it now resides by my tying desk as you see it. This winter I will frame it with the picture of the brown trout, then it will take it’s place on my office wall of fame.
Tight Lines & Best Fishes for 2023!