For those who have been following O’Reilly’s Tying Bench for some time, you may remember a fly I posted called “The Dandelion Fly/Drymerger.” Essentially, its a small pupa pattern suspended below a “hookless” parachute. This pattern allows the fly to float just below the surface doing an excellent job of imitating an emerging insect. (if you only knew how often that pattern has saved he day for me….) Another design that does an equally good job of holding the fly in that critical zone is the Parasol Emerger.

More of an appendage you tie onto a fly than an actual pattern, the parasol style was invented by Fran Betters~a very well-known and innovative tier from the Adirondack Region of New York. I called Fran for some clarification on the origin of his fly called the Piggy-back.
His pattern was a small copper-wire/fur pupa suspended 2″ below the surface. The way Fran’s original was made, a bunch of deer hair was bound (not unlike the method below) using thread. When the thread was tightened, the deer hair flared. This was clipped into a small ball shape and tied to the fly. With the weight of the pattern’s copper abdomen, the fly pointed up in the water. In Fran’s words, “there are two benefits to the deer hair~it suspends the fly below the surface and acts as a strike indicator.” Enough said! In their book “Tying Emergers,” Jim Schollmeyer and Ted Leeson outline their method for tying parasols~the one below, and the one I use. Its fast to do and, like Fran’s original pattern, can be altered to suit the depth you wish to fish it. I prefer to keep it (the parasol “puff”)
fairly close to the fly to prevent it from getting tangled. This parasol can be added to almost any nymph/wet fly pattern~give it a try!

Tying The Parasol Emerger Pattern

White or gray poly yarn:2×1″ pcs. for flies #16 and larger 1×1″ pc. for flies #18 and smaller
Monofilament tippet material:4X for flies #16 and larger 5X for flies #18 and smaller

Fly materials to suit…


Cut your poly yarn into 1″ pcs


Tie the two pcs. of poly yarn together, at their mid point, using a clinch knot


Moisten, and tighten.


Using a fine comb, hold the tippet tight and comb the poly yarn. Rotate as you comb making it one bunch.


It should look like this.


Prepare your hook, and tie on the parasol tippet. Position it according to how you want the fly to ride in the water. I like mine to float almost horizontally, so I position mine roughly in the middle of the hook shank.


Dub/rib the abdomen. Lift the parasol up making several fine wraps of dubbing in front to hold it up. The fine tippet is supple, it won’t fight you! Complete the fly.


Holding the parasol straight up, clip it to a length no longer than 3/16″ of an inch. (remember, it will flare larger)


The finished Parasol Emerger!

Vise by peakfishing