Pacific Mole Crab (Uploaded from: Rich Lewis)
The Pacific Mole Crab Pattern is an attempt to imitate the Sand Crabs found along the shores of the Southern California Coastlines; especially the South Bay area. A good assortment of Mole Crab fly patterns currently exist. There is a good looking Sand Crab pattern that I have bought at Marriott's store, and also I bought some of Jay Murakoshi's Sand Crabs. First I picked up Jay's Dear Hair/Epoxy backed pattern, and recently ordered some of his fabulous Llama Hair Sand Crabs. Finally, there are a few more Sand Crabs listed here on FliFlicker as well-and they look good too. The one thing I noticed about all these patterns is that they are tied with the egg sack at the opposite end of where it actually is on the real deal; assuming you have the fly swimming backwards. So I set out to develop a Mole Crab pattern that was 1) anatomically correct, 2) easy to tie, and 3) natural looking & proportional, and 4) different than the other patterns.
This new pattern, as currently designed, is a floater. It uses commonly available materials and can be tied relatively quickly and unadorned. It can be taken further if desired, and fully dressed with shell coatings. The size is about correct for a female crab, and the egg sack is located at the REAR of the crab in the area under its telson. Details include white eyestalks with black eyes, primary antenna, an iridescent white under belly, the orange egg sack and a gray, shiny shell. This pattern is tied to swim naturally-which is backwards. I utilized a saltwater-grade, chemically sharpened hook.
This fly as of this writing is untested. My thoughts on fishing it as a floater would be to rig it on the short dropper on a two fly rig, and/or put it on a short, 5-6 foot leader to keep it near the bottom turbulence zone. When fished slightly off the bottom, it should present bottom dwellers and breezing Perch and Corbina with a good look at the attractive egg sack. Of course this fly could be weighted in a number of ways to achieve a sinking or neutral buoyancy pattern. Time will tell if weight is required. I want to thank Brain Web at Marriott's for his input on this pattern.
Tying Notes: Preen and pluck the antenna hackles. Cut a strip of fly foam about ½ inch wide and 2 inches long. Radius the aft end. Place the hook in the vise and bind the Monocord from the eye to a third of the way down the bend. Tie in two prepared hackle tips; one on each side of the bend. Tie in two strands of Saltwater Krystal Flash for the stalks. Place these on top of the bend and splay them slightly and leave them long. Tie in the round end of the foam strip low against the hackles and stalks. Leave it facing aft. Tie in the Ice Chenille forward of the foam tie-in location and spiral forward to just shy of half way to eye. Throw in a half hitch lock. Tie in the Bright Orange Chenille and spiral forward; terminating it just shy of the eye-throw another half hitch. Flip the foam forward and bind it down hard with 8 wraps of Monocord and center the now curved foam back on the hook. Using curved scissors, trim the foam 1/6th inch beyond wraps. Finish the head wraps covering the excess foam and whip finish. Apply Head Cement to head wraps. Glue the flared aft sides of the shell to the Ice Chenille using CA. Coat shell with urethane finish and be sure to coat edges of foam strip lightly. Immediately apply glitter to taste while the urethane is still wet. Air dry. Brush two, air dried, acrylic top coats to shell. Trim Stalks to appropriate length, and build eye balls using acrylic coating applied with bodkin. Paint eyeballs with Black Sharpie. Rich Lewis 2003
Hook: Mustad Signature Series Salt Shrimp C47SD size #4
Thread: Danville's Monocord, Gray 3/0
Antenna: Cree Neck or Saddle Rooster Hackle-barred preferred.
Shell: Gray Fly Foam-aprox. 3 MM thick
Eyes: Stalks White Krystal Flash, Eye Balls- Doped Hard as Nails
Belly: White Pearl Ice Chenille-Large
Egg Sack: Bright Orange Chenille-medium
Shell Base Coat: Loon Hard Head Water Based Urethane, Clear
Glitter: Spectrateck Micro Holoflake, 4 micron Silver
Shell Top Coat: Sally Hansen's Hard As Nails clear-2 brushed coats
Cyanoacrylate Adhesive: Basla USA Gold Bond-Thin