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Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly

... the Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly Pattern

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly – Ready to Swim or Balance!

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly Pattern ..

Ahhhh night shifts! 3:30 AM and all kinds of crazy shite is going through my head.

Every now and then a balanced leech flashes by and then is gone … lost in a smorgasbord of bizarreness. I get my sleep deprived mind to latch onto the leech next time round and I shake my head like a rainbow to try and concentrate on what the back of my brain is trying to convey to me. I kind of gather that I should be tying balanced leeches but things are still fuzzy.

First off I never have tied a balanced leech one as the only leeches I use under an indicator are size # 12 or #14 micro leeches and they seem to work just fine as is. Then I think back to an incident from a few years ago. I was flying out of Vancouver early the next morning so I got a room at the airport hotel. I was down at the hotel lounge crushing a few Rumbies and reading a flyfishing magazine to kill time when I looked up to see a guy heading right for me. He stops and asks if he can join me. He had brought a rum for me so it was only polite to wave at the chair across the table. He continued with, “I see you’re reading a fishing magazine. I’m a die hard fisherman.” Long story short he’s from Ontario and is an avid bass and walleye fisher-dude. I had laid the magazine down open to an article on balanced leeches and he asked,” What exactly is a balanced leech?” I proceeded to tell him that you put a bead on a pin and tie it sticking forward from the eye of your jig hook so that when the fly is tied that it balances and hangs horizontal. He looked a little puzzled so I added that it was fished under an indicator. He says.” Ya I do the same thing … a jig under a bobber for Bass. The only difference I see is my jig and pig has a pork tail and that has a marabou one.” I was about to correct him and tell him it wasn’t anything like that but the more I  thought about it they were the same.

Now I’m about as far from a fly fishing purist as you can get but I wonder if that guys comment may have deterred  me from tying balance leeches a little bit. As I’m pondering this a picture of a leech is forming in my head that’s,”Not quite right.” And so with some wildly firing synapses the Bi-Polar Leech was born! One minute this leech is balanced, calm, cool, level headed and just hanging around. But a second later it’s unbalanced skittering, stripping, diving and shooting all over the place. Sounds Bi polar to me.

This step by step is more about the technique of tying than the materials used so please feel free to tie it with your favorite leech materials and colours. Here’s how I tie it …

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly | Tying Materials:

Bipolar Balanced Leech FlyHOOK:  Togen Wetfly 1X Short #8

BEAD:  Togen Cool Beads

TAIL:  Strung Marabou

BODY:  Hareline Dyed UV Polar Chenille over the Marbou

WIRE:  Ultra Wire Large

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly | Tying Instructions:

1) Pinch the barb and slide your  bead on.

2) Secure the wire and wind down to the bend in the hook.

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly

3) Tie in your marabou at the bend and pull out of the way.

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly

4) Wind the wire forward to a point about a third of the way down the hook securing over the marabou on your first wrap.

5) Secure the wire on the top of the hook with lots of wraps of thread not unlike tying for a post on a dry fly.

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly

6) Twist the marabou into a rope and wind forward, around the wire to the bead.

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly

7) Wind your thread back down to the tail and tie in the Polar Chenille.

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly

8) Wind the thread back up to the bead.

9) Wind the chenille forward around the wire to the bead.

10) Secure and trim off the excess & whip finish.

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly

Now at this point it looks pretty messy but a quick run  under a stream of hot water to align the fibers will sleek it out quite nicely! 😉

Just tie this leech on normally if you intend to cast and strip or troll the fly …

... the Bipolar Balanced Leech fly in regular swimming mode!

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly – Swimming Mode

… and if you want it balanced simply pull your leader back over the fly and secure with the wire wrapped twice around the hook!

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly ... Balanced mode!

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly – Balanced Mode

Here’s a few other colours to consider …

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly - Black Olive & Brown

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly – Colour Options

Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly | The Video …

And if that wasn’t enough, Brandyn took a liking to this neat little creation and recently added a how to tying video 🙂

And that’s the Bipolar Leech folks! You can go from casting and stripping it to a balanced leech presentation without changing your fly!  This fly may not be for everyone but it got me tying balanced leeches and hopefully it gets you to the bench as well!  So tie some up and go have some fun!

Gord FlyGuys Northern Division
Keep Calm Fish On

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About Gord

Fly fishing the great white north! I mainly fish the lakes, rivers and streams of North Eastern B.C. for Rainbows, Lakers, Brookies, Bulltrout and Grayling.
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3 Responses to Bipolar Balanced Leech Fly

  1. Ira says:

    Innovative, very innovative! I decided that I wanted the same ability to do both an inline presentation and a horizontal presentation, so I started tying some of balance leeches on regular jig hook, but with a cut off hook with an eye for the “pin” part of the fly. That way I ended up with two eyes and I could tie off accordingly. At first I tried using the cut off hook as the inward eye behind the regular hook eye, both on the top of the fly and on the bottom. When it was tied in on the top my hook up ratio decreased but in either case it was difficult to cut off a hook shank long enough to secure it correctly so at times, fish would pull the eye right out of the fly. That’s when I started using the cut off hook as the top eye and then I didn’t have any more issues with pulled out eyes. I stopped tying this altogether though when I by accident started using a regular balance leech as an inline pattern and to be honest it just worked better. Now I tie most of my streamer patterns as a jig or as a balance pattern, no need for the extra eye.

    I do like though how you can use this technique on any hook. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Ira says:

    I thought about one more thing you might want to consider. When strapping down your tippet you might want to pinch it so the hook point rides up versus down. I found when I was using my double eye approach that when the hook point was down my hook up ratio decreased.

  3. Gord says:

    Good one Ira never thought of doing that but it gives you the option. Hell you could even pinch the leader down on the side though it might not stand up to heavy casting.
    Thanks for that.

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