I have come to the conclusion that there are some fly patterns that I just plain LIKE to use. Sometimes they catch fish, sometimes they don’t.
On more than one occasion I’ve been heard saying things like; “well, if I’m going to get skunked, it may as well be with a fly I like.” The following caddis pattern IS one of the flies I like. In fact, I’ve chosen places to fish based solely on the fact that I might have success with it! It is a great “prospecting” fly that has proven effective on some pretty selective fish at times. If fishing for you means long hikes, covering water etc.~you might do well to include these in your selection. In the right size/color, I think they can suggest a wide variety of edibles for both warm and cold water fish.
So, what is it? I picked one of these up at a fly shop years ago, and can’t honestly tell you what it’s name is. If you’re interested in doing the Google work, feel free! I’d suggest using that time to start tying some of these flies instead.
The colors I’ve used in this tying sequence are very true to the originals I bought some time ago, but feel free to experiment. I play with the body and hackle colors mostly, and leave the wing a nice, easy-to-see color. I think a great deal of the effectiveness of this pattern comes from it’s buoyancy, and low-riding profile in the water. To keep it this way, I try to keep the hair wing from wrapping around the sides too much. To achieve this, pinch the bunches of hair in a tight clump on top of the hook shank, make 2 light wraps of thread, and begin to tighten on the 3rd. I use no more than about 5-6 wraps in total. When tying these in large sizes (or for bass in mouse-like sizes!) I’ll add some head cement to the tie-in point of each wing, AFTER the butt ends-of the hair have been cinched down. Tie them in an all-black color scheme if you’re fishing for big browns in the dark!
The Triple Wing Caddis
Hook: long shank, dry fly hook (size #8 shown here)
Thread:8/0 or 6/0, depending on the size you’re tying
Body:dubbing (olive, with antron shown here)
Wing:fine deer, or elk hair
Hackle:color is your choice (ginger shown here)
Start your thread, and wind back well onto the bend of the hook. Begin dubbing the body (tapered from fine to thick) ending just above the hook point. Cut, and stack a fine bunch of deer hair (or elk, if you’ve chosen that) and tie in as shown. Trim the butt ends of the hair, and make several tight wraps of thread to secure it.
Continue dubbing to about the mid-point of the hook’s shank, and tie in a hair wing the same way you did in step one.
Make a few light wraps of dubbing, and tie in your hackle as shown.
Complete the dubbing as shown.
Wind you hackle forward, stopping about 1/16″ behind the eye of the hook. Tie off, and trim the remaining, unused portion of the hackle.
Prepare, and tie in your third, and last wing as shown. Pull the butt ends of the hair back, and make several tight wraps of thread in front of the tie in point. This keeps the cut ends of the hair away from the eye of the hook.
The finished triple wing caddis fly pattern