Tim Holschlag’s Signature Subsurface Flies

Here They Are… Six New Patterns
Plus Our Long-Time Favorites

New Subsurface Flies

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Subsurface Flies: $3.60 each
MINIMUM ORDER = 10 FLIES
(ANY COMBINATION — SUBSURFACE OR TOPWATER FLIES)

All of these flies have caught thousands of fish — smallmouth as well as other fresh and salt water species. Based on their weights and sink rates, these patterns cover shallow, mid-depth and deeper water situations. The various colors are those Tim has found to be effective under the widest variety of conditions. And they are not cheaply constructed imports like the flies most shops offer. Tim’s professional American tiers turn out durable flies of the highest quality.

Tim’s HiTail Craw

Tim's HiTail Craw

Tim’s HiTail Craw

This fly is precisely designed to tempt wary or inactive smallmouth with a very slow-paced bottom presentation. Used properly, this fly can do what no other patterns do– it appears alive even when at rest!

We use an unusual hook and weight configuration that makes the fly almost always ride head-down and tail-up. Even if buffeting currents and rough substrates temporarily turn the fly on its side, the special piece of foam in the rear still keeps the tail riding high (hence its name).

The HiTail’s design keeps the small rabbit strip pincers facing up, the foam piece keeps the pincers splayed out, and the super-undulating rabbit fur is continuously waving in even the slightest current. Smallies cannot resist this!

How to Use This Fly

Lefty’s Red & White (NEW)

Lefty's Red & White

Lefty’s Red & White

Years ago, this lightweight, long-profiled streamer only had a feather tail and no weight. That original version of Lefty’s pattern was good, but this improved version is truly great. The long gold Flashabou tail is absolutely dazzling and often causes fish to race several feet thru the water to strike the fly with extreme force. And by adding 1/80th ounce eyes we cause the fly to generate extra enticing flex, plus stay under the surface even when retrieved quickly on a floating line.

In clear to moderate clarity water, this enhanced Red & White is often amazing, because it’s so light you can fish it just inches below the surface and not hang up in shallow rocky water. But smallmouth from 10 to 20 inches will come up and nail it hard even from much deeper water. From mid-summer into mid-fall, the Red & White will often beat any other fly you can throw, especially on Eastern and Mid-South rivers. It’s particularly deadly fished fast and shallow on a slow-sinking line.

Holschlag Hackle Fly

— Featured in Eastern Fly Fishing Magazine —

Holschlag Hackle Fly

Holschlag Hackle Fly

You can download and read the article here.

This pattern is regarded by many as the best crayfish pattern ever created. A signature fly of Tim’s for 20 years, the HHF is a bottom-bouncing pattern that’s a go-to fly whenever smallies are eating craws and when fish are inactive. Its bright yellow legs and orange eyes act as “supernormal stimuli” for smallies. This is a perfect pattern for doing the effective “Crayfish Hop” technique.

Now Available in 2 Weights
(Read more about fly weights.)

The standard 1/50th-ounce (with orange eyes) is the most versatile. The new, lighter 1/60th-ounce (with black eyes) is best for shallower and slack-water situations, where you want the fly to flutter to the bottom more slowly.

Specialty Minnows

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Specialty Minnows

There are lots of Clouser Minnow style streamers available, but we offer 4 specialty colors custom-created for smallmouth bass.

The larger Golden Minnow and Albino Minnow, both 3 1/2 inches long, have caught tremendous numbers of big smallmouth, in the Midwest, the North and elsewhere, since we introduced them many years ago.

Our slightly smaller new 3-inch models, the Ghost Minnow and the Chartreuse/Yellow Minnow, are expressly designed for the clearer waters of the East and Mid-South. These are among the most consistent subsurface patterns anywhere on clearer-flowing rivers. In fact, my Pennsylvania friend Todd Spacht has caught literally thousands of smallies on either the Chartreuse/Yellow or Ghost Minnow. His daily catch rates are often 50 fish or more on these two deadly flies.

Golden Minnow

Golden Minnow

This specialty version of the Clouser Minnow has a unique custom-colored golden belly that makes it fantastic during the summer crayfish season on many waters. We custom dye our own bucktail to get just the right "goldish" color, and added ...
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Ghost Minnow

Ghost Minnow

The Ghost Minnow is shorter and thinner than our very popular Albino Minnow. It has different-colored eyes and it also has different-colored synthetic material. Pennsylvania Pro Todd Spacht worked with the Ghost to get just the right amount of pearl ...
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Chartreuse/Yellow Minnow

Chartreuse / Yellow Minnow

Like the Ghost Minnow, this is a smaller 3-inch minnow pattern that's essential on clearer-flowing rivers. The combination of chartreuse belly, yellow back and just the right mix of Flashabou and Crystal Flash seems to drive smallies wild. Besides being ...
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Albino Minnows

Albino Minnow

Tim's special mix of white bucktail and various synthetic materials makes this bottom-bouncer a year-round producer, especially deadly during the spring, fall and winter. The numbers of big smallmouth and other species Tim Holschlag and his clients have caught on ...
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Cactus Bugger

Cactus Bugger

Cactus Bugger

This mid-depth pattern, moderately weighted with lead wire, can be effectively fished either fast or slow. It’s quite versatile, easy to use and a very consistent producer.

The extremely bright, flashy body material, combined with its undulating rabbit-strip tail, makes it especially effective. Many of our customers overlook this deadly pattern, but those who use it are richly rewarded. Our Cactus Buggers have caught lake trout, big brookies, muskies, pike, walleyes, and lunker largemouth, not to mention thousands of smallmouth.  All three are the same weight and size (3 inches long).

Of our 3 colors, frankly, I never know before trying each which color will be the hot one that day. So the smart thing to do is have all colors along and give each a try. No dice with chartreuse after 30 minutes? Then switch to white or black.

  • White Cactus Bugger — The white-tailed Cactus Bugger is especially deadly in extra-clear water. The extremely bright, flashy body material also makes it very noticeable and good in lower visibility conditions.
  • Chartreuse Cactus Bugger — With the same flashy Cactus Chenille body as the white bugger, plus a bright chartreuse rabbit-strip tail, this version is a hot fly for stained and lower-visibility water.  Largemouth bass love it.
  • Black Cactus Bugger (New) — All-black is often a killer in muddy or dark stained water, and also during midday on bright sunny days.  Don’t hesitate to give it a try if other colors aren’t doing the job.

Holschlag Hare

Holschlag Hare Fly in white, black, yellow, olive

Holschlag Hare

This is a mid-depth pattern with 1/50th or 1/40th-oz eyes. It’s an excellent search pattern for covering lots of water, but can also be allowed to sink deeper and twitched slower.

The rabbit-fur tail produces outstanding undulation, without the excessive fur that makes so many rabbit flies nearly impossible to cast when wet. A large deerhair head really pushes water, and its shape means the Hare darts extremely well with rod tip twitches. One of the most versatile and effective subsurface patterns ever.

The Holschlag Hare comes in four different colors and multiple weights:

  • White Holschlag Hare in 1/50th and 1/40th weights
  • Black Holschlag Hare in 1/50th and 1/40th weights
  • Yellow Holschlag Hare
  • Olive Holschlage Hare

More Subsurface Patterns

Here are more favorite flies. Thoroughly tested by the smallies themselves, these patterns catch plenty of fish, season after season.

Shenks Streamer

Shenks Streamer

Originally a trout pattern, this "bassified" version has been one of Tim Holschlag's favorite shallow-running patterns for 15 years. It's lightly weighted with lead wire, and sinks slowly. It is excellent when fish are chasing minnows, and it's absolutely deadly ...
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Murdich Minnow

Murdich Minnow

This lightweight, easy-to-cast streamer has become extremely popular. Our silver/white and grey version is excellent from the early summer into the mid-fall period. Fish it across and downstream with a slow strip-and-pause retrieve and prepare for hard strikes. MINIMUM ORDER ...
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Don’t forget your strike indicators!

Strike Indicators

Smallmouth Fly Angler Strike Indicators

If you fish subsurface without a strike indicator, you're throwing away half your strikes. Finally, here is a highly visible strike indicator that's easy to cast and will stay on your leader. Unlike other small indicators that break or fall ...
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Not sure which flies to get?

Let Tim Holschlag customize a selection for you!

Flies in logo box

“Custom Dozen” Smallmouth Flies

The "Custom Dozen" is a selection of 12 flies personalized for YOU. Considering the waters where you fish, your skill level, rod weight, and any additional information you give us, Tim Holschlag will choose the best flies for you. (To ...
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