In my last few blog post's I have mentioned a specific fly several times. This fly has become a staple in my winter time fishing. My buddy "One Boot" Ed had a banner day on Maryland's tough Gunpowder during the first day of 2015. I have had several recent requests to do a step-by-step of the "Rainbow Warrior". The "Warrior", as we have come to call it, has served me well on stocked water as well as wild Trout rivers. I first came across this pattern in the great book "Dynamic Nymphing" penned by George Daniel. Mr Daniel credits Lance Egan for the pattern and I feel the need to personally thank him for such a great fly. Tied as big as a 12 or as small as a 22 this fly can be used strictly as an attractor or as a spot on Midge Larva.
Hook: TMC 2457 #12 to #22
Bead: Silver Tungsten sized to match hook
Thread: Red flat waxed 6/0
Tail: Pheasant Tail Fibers
Body: UTC Pearl Tinsel
Thorax: Rainbow Sow - Scud Dub
Wing Case: UTC Pearl Tinsel
Bead the hook and place the hook in the vise.
After attaching the thread wrap back around the hook bend. Tie in a small clump of PT fibers for a tail. The original calls for natural Pheasant, I have been using red and have come to prefer it for this application.
After tying in the tail, tie in a length of UTC pearl tinsel. UN-twist the thread (this is why I like flat waxed thread)and lay down a smooth, tapered under body.
Wrap the tinsel up the hook over the red thread. When you get approximately 2/3 of the way up the hook shank tie off the tinsel, but don't clip the excess off. This will be your wing case.
Dub a small abdomen with the rainbow dubbing. Fold the excess tinsel over the abdomen, centered and on top of the hook shank. Use the thread to build up the gap between the bead and the dubbing. Whip finish and clip the thread.
Here is a brace of Warriors ready for the box and the water. Check out this nice Gunpowder Brown my buddy Ed stuck on New Year' day.
Take a minute the next time you are at the bench and tie up a few Rainbow Warriors. I'll bet you already have all the materials in your stash. Based on the success I have had with this pattern you will be glad you did. Till next time...
It has been a couple of weeks since my last post. Both myself and my computer caught a virus and we were both down for a while. Well, we are back up and running and I thought I would share a step by step of one of my Nymph patterns, the PFN. The idea of Pheasant Tail Nymphs with a "hot" thorax is by no means a new concept. Although the color combo of this fly happens to be the same combination of my favorite hockey team, The Philadelphia Flyers (PFN = Philadelphia Flyers Nymph) the choice of colors goes much deeper than that. Everybody has their favorite color for trout. Read any Charlie Meck book and you will quickly realize Mr Meck is quite fond of blue. Well, I feel the same way about orange. Trout seem to key in on orange and that is why I chose Senyo's laser dub in orange for the thorax of this fly. The black wing case was chosen to make the wing case "pop" against the thorax and to simulate the darkening of the nymphs wing case prior to it emerging. At home on a wild river and deadly on stocked fish (especially Rainbows) this nymph is sure to become a go to.
Hook; TMC 5262 #14
Bead; 1/8 inch gold Brass or Tungsten
Thread; Brown flat waxed 140 denure
Tail; Medium Speckled Coq de Leon
Wire; Brassie Uni Wire, Hot Orange
Abdomen; Natural Pheasant Tail
Thorax; Senyo's Laser Dub, Orange
Wing Case; Black Scud Back or Thin Skin
Bead the hook and place the hook in the vise.
Tough to see here, but select a small clump of Coq de Leon fibers and tie in the tail as long as the hook shank.
Tie in a length of Uni Wire on the near side of the hook shank. The reason I tie it on the near side is when you counter wrap the wire the first wrap will be pulling up on the bottom of the hook shank. This way you can pull the wire tight and not worry about moving the tails with the tension of the wire.
Tie in a clump of natural Pheasant tail and wrap forward. be sure to cover at least 2/3 of the hook shank. Taper the abdomen small to large as you move up the hook.
Counter wrap the wire forward through the abdomen.
Tie in the Scud back for the wing case. You can substitute Thin Skin or Ploy Yarn for this step. Be sure the wing case is centered on top of the hook and is tied back far enough to create a smooth transition from the abdomen to the thorax.
Dub a "buggy" thorax with Orange Senyo's Laser Dub
Fold the wing case forward, tie off and clip the excess. See how the Black "pops" against the Orange.
This is something I have started doing recently. I dubbed a little Brown Hares Ear Plus to take up the space between the top of the thorax and the bead. I really don't think this has anything to do with how the fly fishes, I just think it looks better.
Next time you are at the bench tie a few of these up. Better yet, take your "confidence color" and incorporate it into your favorite Nymph pattern. You may just come up with the new "hot" fly!