THE THUMPER IS A FLY that was developed over 30 years of fishing the Skagit River with Tom Thumb and Humpy patterns. Eventually I merged these two patterns into the Thumper. The fly is incredibly buoyant and has an attractive silhouette with the forward wing. It has been successfully fished on the Madison and Rock Creek in Montana, the Elk in Fernie, British Columbia, and even used for arctic grayling in Alaska.
For years I wrestled with the fact that this fly is more a variant than an original. However, because of its usefulness and it silhouette, I looked for a name for it. I was driving with Jay Teachman to go fish the Lochsa in Idaho when our drive was beset by very bad storms. Jay said he would pay for a motel room to get out of the rain and wind and I demurred in light of his offer to pay. Nice room, but after 11 pm the persons above us were incredibly noisy love makers. This went on every half hour all night long and in the morning, we refreshed our baggy eyes with coffee.
It was then that Jay said that trying to sleep below ‘Thumper’ was less appealing than camping in the rain. Calling this Viagra infused tenant ‘thumper’ for some reason led me to think of the way the fly can ‘splat’ on the water and still elicit responses. Thus the name was born from such an ignoble experience.
Thread: light to match body
Hook: Tiemco TMC2312 #6-10
Tail: Black Moose Main
Wing: Deer or Elk