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Category: Fly Tying Tips

Fly Tying Video: Baby Sculpin Jig-Style Streamer

Fly Tying Video: Baby Sculpin Jig-Style Streamer

The Baby Sculpin is a continuing evolution of a video I posted a while back in which I used Meyer’s Mini Leech as a starting point to create a small sculpin pattern. This is the “production” version for 2020, tied with a tungsten bead on a jig hook to reduce hangups. Small dead-drifted sculpins are excellent patterns for larger browns, both on summer float trips and in the fall when the browns are sitting in deep runs preparing for the spawn. Fish this one under an indicator from a drift boat or when fishing long, deep runs on foot, or Euro-style in pocket water.

Recipe

Hook: 2xl jig nymph, #8-12. Alternately, use a scud hook if you don’t need the fly to ride hook-up.

Bead: Slotted tungsten to match hook size and to match or contrast overall body color. Here, black nickel 5/32-inch. If tying on a scud hook, use a standard brass or tungsten bead.

Weight (Optional): .015 lead or lead-free wire, just a few turns to hold the bead in place.

Thread #1 (Jig Versions Only): Clear monofilament tying thread. Use Thread #2 for the entire fly if tying on a scud hook.

Body Bump: Australian possum or other coarse nymph dubbing. Good colors are olive, brown, black, antique gold, and rust. Here, olive. Omit on scud hook versions.

Legs: 3-5 small Sexi-Floss or similar barred spandex legs. Choose a sculpin-esque color from tan to olive. Here, amber.

Belly/Flash: Pearl-gold Ice Wing Fiber or similar. Angel Hair can substitute.

Thread #2: To match overall body color. Here, olive-dun Uni 8/0.

Wing: Pine squirrel strip. Good colors are gold, tan, brown, olive, and black.

Collar (Optional) and Head: Same dubbing as “body bump,” tied using a dubbing loop.

Tying Note: If you’re tying this on a scud hook, tie in the legs as shown here, then tie in flash above and below the hook to shield the leg tie-in point and to hide the hook shank. Then tie the wing above the hook so it hangs free as on a Mayer’s Mini Leech. Then dub the head as standard. This version is much faster to tie but more snag-prone. As such, I usually use it as a dropper nymph in #12 hanging from a huge dry fly such as a Chubby Chernobyl, rather than fishing it deep.

 

 

Fly Tying Vid – Delektable Bug Stonefly

Fly Tying Vid – Delektable Bug Stonefly

The Delektable Bug by Dan Delekta of Beartooth Fly Fishing is a large, aggressive stonefly nymph pattern with “a lot going on.” This version has the chenille body and abundant legs of a Pat’s Rubber Legs (aka Girdle Bug aka Turd), but also a marabou tail and a collar hackle. It has risen to become my best or second-best style of stonefly nymph over the past couple seasons, now certainly eclipsing the basic Pat’s. This variant is tied on a jig hook and has a couple small material additions in an experiment to cross over to appealing to fish who like my OTHER favorite stonefly lately, the Bomb Series nymphs, in this case the brown Stone Bomb. Otherwise it’s identical except in color to the basic Bug.

The basic Bug is the least-complicated version of a whole family of Delektable stonefly nymphs including the Braided Stone, the Hurless, the Mega Prince, the Mr. Rubber Legs, and the Stoner. Most are available in standard or flashback variants. These other variants add, subtract, or change a few materials, but otherwise use a similar tying process. For example the Mega Prince has a peacock herl body instead of chenille and adds biot wings, while the Hurless simply has a body of ostrich herl.

In most respects I use “Delektables” of one breed or another in the same situations where I would use other rubberleg stoneflies. I find the chenille-bodied version given here generally more effective when the water is high and/or off-color, as well as for ornery fall-run brown trout, while during the summer when the water is lower and clearer I prefer the similar Mega Prince or Mr. Rubberlegs.

The 2020 Delektable Flies catalog can be viewed here if you’d like to the stock color combinations and tying procedures: https://www.beartoothflyfishing.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/09/Delektable-Fly-Catalog-2020-WebPDF.pdf

Note that I have no business relationship with Delektable or Beartooth. I just use some of the flies.

NOTE ON FISHING DATES MENTIONED IN THIS VIDEO: The streamflow predictions for the Boulder have changed and it is now forecast to remain above 2000cfs through at least June 17, alas. I now expect it to drop into shape around June 20, 2020.

Recipe

Note that the following recipe is a “generic” recipe for the pattern. For specifics on the variant given here, watch the video. Note that the pattern given in the video is actually an experiment, not a standard color variant. The video is intended to introduce the style of fly, not a specific recipe.

Hook: 3xl curved shank nymph such as a Dai-Riki #185

Bead: Brass or tungsten to match hook size.

Thread: To match or contrast body chenille.

Antennae: Silicone legs.

Head: Ball of Ice Dub over thread wraps securing the antennae.

Weight: .010 to .035 lead or lead-free wire, depending on hook size.

Tail #1: Marabou or chickabou tied short or clipped short.

Tails #2: Same as antennae.

Body: Speckled crystal chenille such as Nature’s Spirit New Age Chenille.

Legs: Same as antennae.

Hackle: Full, webby saddle or hen hackle to match the body color.

Fly Tying Vid: Clouser Swimming Nymph

Fly Tying Vid: Clouser Swimming Nymph

This variation of the Clouser Swimming Nymph includes bead chain eyes to make it ride upside-down. This is an excellent stillwater pattern in both cold water (trout) and warmwater (bass, crappie, and panfish) settings. It is especially evocative of damselfly nymphs, though it possesses crossover appeal as a leech, small crayfish, or large mayfly.  You can fish it deep on a sink-tip or twitched shallow over the weed-tops on a floating line.

Hook: Dai-Riki #285 or other curved-shank 3xl nymph hook, #8-14, particularly #12.

Weight: A few turns of .010 to .25 lead or lead-free wire at the center of the hook shank.

Thread: 8/0 to match the fly body color. Here, olive-dun. Other good color variants are black, rust, and tan.

Eyes: Black or gold bead-chain. Adjust eye size to change the sink rate.

Tail: Olive-dyed grizzly chickabou or standard marabou.

Rib: Copper wire, color to match or contrast body. Here, brassie copper Ultra-Wire is used.

Abdomen: Olive Hare’s Ear Dubbing, thin.

Wing Case: Several strands of peacock herl.

Thorax: Same as abdomen, full.

Legs: Olive-dyed or natural brown India Hen back or similar buggy, webby feather, tied in vee-style.

Fly Tying Vid: Barry Reynolds’ Pike Bunny

Fly Tying Vid: Barry Reynolds’ Pike Bunny

Barry Reynolds’ Pike Bunny is a straightforward, simple pike (and bass) bunny streamer that derives its durability from strategically finishing the fly well behind the hook eye and from lots of adhesives. This is a small one, but they can be tied with magnum rabbit strips as large as 3/0 or 4/0.

Fish the pattern on a floating line in shallow water or on a sink-tip deep.

Hook: Standard bass/pike, #4/0 to 4.

Thread: 3/0 or 6/0 to match the front rabbit strip.

Eyes: Clear Cure Eyes or similar weightless dumbbells, or use doll-style eyes secured at the end of the tying process.

Flash: Sea green Polarflash, but any flash to match or contrast the rear rabbit strip will do.

Tail: Standard rabbit strip on sizes #1-6, magnum rabbit strip on larger sizes. Good colors are yellow, chartreuse, white, black, or barred combinations of the above. Here I’ve used barred chartreuse over yellow.

Body: Standard rabbit strip wrapped forward. Use the same color strip as the rear, or contrast. Red is a good alternate front color.

Gills/Blood: Red flash, here Kreinik Flash, but again any flash will do.

Head: Several coats of Thin or Thick UV resin topped with head cement to remove any tackiness.

Fly Tying Vid: Jig-Style Sculp Snack Streamer

Fly Tying Vid: Jig-Style Sculp Snack Streamer

This jig-style version of the Sculp Snack streamer is representative of drab, impressionistic streamers (often Woolly Buggers tied to ride upside-down) Walter uses on Yellowstone River float trips in the summer. This take on the Sculp Snack uses an exciting new hook, the Firehole Sticks #523, which as far as we know is the first “tactical” or “jig-style” 3xl long nymph or streamer hook on the market. This hook will make tying stonefly nymphs, streamer, leeches, and similar patterns that ride upside-down MUCH less time-consuming.

Hook: Firehole #523, sizes 4-10.

Bead: 3/16 to 5/32 slotted tungsten, here gold.

Weight (optional): .035 to .020 lead or non-toxic wire.

Thread: 6/0 sculpin-tone, here olive-dun Uni.

Tail: Two plumes of marabou or chickabou, here olive chickabou.

Flash: Any crinkled flash to match bead color, here gold Kreinik, two strands.

Body: Polar Chenille or similar “eyelash yarn.” Here, medium UV Olive Polar Chenille.

Legs: Two strands of silicone to either side. Here, metallic green pumpkin Sili Legs.

Head: Two colors of Senyo’s Lazer Yarn, here light olive and olive.

CDC Emerging Dun – Fly Tying Video

CDC Emerging Dun – Fly Tying Video

The Gray CDC Emerging Dun is a biot-bodied CDC and synthetic-winged mayfly emerger originally developed as a spring creek fly to imitate Blue-winged Olives. Parks’ Fly Shop ordered it in much larger sizes than standard as an emerger for the various species of Green Drakes present in the Lamar drainage. It is most useful in this purpose in sizes 12-16.

Hook: #12-20 1xl or standard-length dry fly or light nymph hook (nymph hook used here).

Thread: 8/0 olive-dun.

Shuck: Gray crinkled synthetic yarn (Sparkle Emerger Yarn, Zelon, etc.).

Abdomen: Gray-olive turkey biot wrapped over a thread underbody.

Wing: Natural gray CDC (medium dun if natural unavailable) and same material as tail.

Head: Gray dubbing.

Fly Tying Vid: Chickabou Gartside Soft Hackle

Fly Tying Vid: Chickabou Gartside Soft Hackle

The Gartside Soft Hackle Streamer is a classic marabou and soft hackle streamer developed by Jack Gartside. This version is made using chickabou feathers, which allows for the pattern to be tied in much smaller sizes.

The same tying procedure used here also works on the large Alaskabou series and similar marabou steelhead and coho salmon flies. Just use large (#2/0 to #2) steelhead hooks, swap the chickabou for much larger marabou plumes, and add more flash.

Hook: 2xl nymph, #10.

Thread: Black 6/0.

Body Material: Olive-dyed chickabou (3 plumes total).

Flash: Rootbeer Krystal Flash.

Hackle: Brown-dyed grizzly hen.

Fly Tying Vid – Garris’ Yellowstone Nymph, Plus a Coronavirus Appeal

Fly Tying Vid – Garris’ Yellowstone Nymph, Plus a Coronavirus Appeal

Josh Garris’ Yellowstone Nymph is a simple, buggy fly similar in most respects to a Walt’s Worm or Sexy Walt (no relation, just ask my wife) that works well in fast, bouldery water in Yellowstone Park as a caddis pupa as well as sowbug or caddis on the Land of Giants stretch of the Missouri River.

After the tying video, I’d appreciate it if you keep watching for an update on how Yellowstone Country Fly Fishing and Parks’ Fly Shop are handling the coronavirus and how you can help us get through it.

Hook: Standard scud, #12-18.

Bead: Black brass or tungsten to match hook size.

Thread: 6/0 rusty brown. Use 8/0 on #16-18.

Tail #1: Tag end of tying thread.

Tail #2 and Rib: Pearl Krystal Flash (#12-14) or Midge Flash (#16-18).

Body: Spirit River (now Hareline) Buggy Nymph Blend in Hare’s Ear, or similar tan/brown/gray coarse dubbing.

Head: Tying thread and head cement.

 

Fly Tying Vid: Buttcrack Baetis Nymph

Fly Tying Vid: Buttcrack Baetis Nymph

The Buttcrack Baetis by Duane Redford is a small, rather unusual mayfly/midge attractor nymph popular these days on Colorado’s West Slope but worth fishing on any clear, heavily-pressured water where the fish eat small, slender bugs.

Hook: Standard scud, #16-22.

Bead: Copper or gold brass or tungsten to match wire color and hook size. Here, the #18 hook is matched with a 5/64″ bead. The bead is optional.

Thread: 8/0 or 10/0 in preferred body color. Here, brown. Purple and shades of olive are also good.

Tail: Coq-de-Leon or similar speckled game bird or chicken feather fiber.

Rib: Copper or gold wire, small to extra small.

Abdomen: Tying thread.

Wing Case: Split strip of .5mm or 1mm foam, usually white.

Flash: Mini flat braid or similar braided mylar in pearl or root beer colors.

Thorax: Ice Dub. Here rusty brown. Change color to match overall colorway of the fly.

Fly Tying Vid: Floss Worm

Fly Tying Vid: Floss Worm

This is my version of the Floss San Juan Worm (Sexi Worm, Flexi Worm, Flexi Floss Worm, etc.). This is an excellent pattern for low, clear water. In my neck of the woods, it works well on the Paradise Valley spring creeks in late winter and early spring.

Hook: #14-18 scud.

Bead: Gold brass to match hook size.

Thread: 8/0 red or to match body color. Other good colors are pink, worm brown, and red/black/brown.

Head: Red Flexi-Floss or similar spandex “leg” material, tied in front of the bead.

Tail: Same as head, tied in behind the bead and wrapped down the shank.

Body: Micro Tubing to match body color. Use “midge” tubing on #14.

Body Coating: Head cement, optional.