Killer fly – The Poledancer
With a seductive wiggle that provokes heart-stoppingly explosive takes from big, bad predatory fish, this remarkable topwater fly is a triumph of hydro-dynamic engineering, says Matt Harris.
There are few flies as aptly named as the Poledancer. Charlie Bisharat’s remarkable topwater fly shakes its tush with an almost indecently seductive wiggle. This irresistible gyrating gets the fly’s target audience so revved-up that they often throw caution to the wind, rushing into mistakes that get them into trouble.
Charlie’s fly is a triumph of hydro-dynamic engineering. If that sounds a little overblown, wait until you see the thing in the water. Other surface-oriented imitations travel in a monotonous and predictable straight line. Not the Poledancer. It darts erratically from side to side in a fashion reminiscent of famous walk-the-dog lures like the Zara Spook. This distinctive action looks for all the world like a wounded baitfish, and big, bad predators absolutely love it. I’ve caught lots of different predatory fish on the Poledancer and it’s a killer for pike, but the big dorado and especially the peacock bass of the Amazon Jungle are absolute suckers for it. I use a big 8" version on a 5/0 hook and have caught some huge peacocks to well over 20lb on it.
The flies are not cheap, but are well worth the investment – the takes are heart-stopping explosions that are worth a million subsurface fish. And, if you fish the big version, I’m convinced that you have a fly capable of out-fishing streamers and even topwater spinning gear.
With our increasingly mild winters in the UK, the big pike of our local waters are catchable on the fly, on the surface, on almost every day of the year. What are you waiting for?
The Poledancer is manufactured by Umpqua and is currently not available in the UK, but you can buy them from The Fly Shop in the USA via their website.