Its not uncommon to run across deer hair specialists, but it seems hard to find someone who has tried to explore the full potential of foam in flies. I love foam in my flies and I am alway trying to see if I can recreate the flies of deer hair fly tiers in foam. The latest success story of my efforts is my foam version of Dave Whitlock's Fruit Cocktail Bass popper. Originally made from deer hair, I have layered 2mm foam to create plugs that I can carve to the unique shape similar to the deer hair poppers for which he is so well known.
As you might expect this seemed simpler then it actually proved.
However, I would like to comment a little on weed guards. I consider weed guards an on going project. Most of the waters I fish don't "require" a weed guard, but I do like knowing I have a solution to weedy conditions when it comes up. I've been known to drop flies in the middle of lilly pad patches with abandon. As part of this on going effort i have been outfitting my foam fruit cocktails with both double mono spikes and double mono loops. Right not the mono spikes are my preferred weed guard unless I am fishing something super dense like lilly pad patches. The usual up and over fallen branches that occurs on the rivers only requires the double mono and hooking up seems to work out better. For absolute protection the double mono loop seems to work best, but I am still experimenting with a 50-30lbs mono to find a resistance I prefer. Additionally I am playing with different strip setting angles to get the pressure applied to the mono loops rather then yanking the fly out of fishes mouths. Its an on going exploration that I will continue to update.