If you aren’t familiar with this product already, it is similar to Thin Skin, but with a unique pattern that allows for creating awesome segmented bodies, and wing pads. Every nymph tyer should have this fly tying material at their desk.
The Rowley Stone is a good example of a pattern that uses this material. Learn to tie it here
There is an age old adage amongst fly anglers that our hook up rate increases proportionate to our fly becoming more and more chewed up. I’m confident many of us have experienced this – as the day goes on, and if we are fortunate enough not to loose that single fly that’s been catching all the fish, our success rate increases. Instead of attributing this to an increase in insect activity, or the rust of our skills haven been shaken off early in the day, we give credit to our tattered fly pattern that continues to catch more and more fish as the day goes on. And once again last Saturday while Euro Nymphing a small stream, whether or not it truly was my fly, I had a magical day on the water catching more and more fish as my fly became more and more mangled.
Here is what the Mayday Mayfly pattern looks like fresh off the vise.
Early in the day this particular fly looks and fishes great. However… a few dozen fish later…
…a mangled Mayday Mayfly that can’t seem to keep the fish off. Once again the myth of the tattered fly has proven to be true!
In almost every river or stream that I have ever sampled for aquatic inverts I have found multiple species of caddis larva. However much we all love to fish the beautifully tied mayfly and stonefly nymphs, caddis larva make up a huge portion of a trout’s diet. There are many imitations out there, but the Czech Nymph is my go-to caddis larva. Not to mention that it can double for a cranefly larva, or any other grub style invertebrate that finds itself floating down a trout stream.
You can tie this pattern in a multitude of color variations, either as natural, or as flashy as you desire. The tan-pink-brown variation is usually the first Czech Nymph I tie on. I prefer to fish if in sizes 8-14 with sizes 8 and 10 being the most common. Tungsten and lead are a necessity if you are euro nymphing/czech nymphing. It’s not a bad idea to have a few tied with brass beads, or no bead at all for those shallow small streams that have willing to eat big flies. Also, you can add Net Back Foil to this fly if you really want the segments to “pop”.
The Provo River has some fantastic fish that love to gorge themselves on caddis larva. One unforgettable summer day on the middle Provo, Kohler and I found ourselves scoring into some fine fish while fishing both woven nymphs, and Czech Nymphs. If you watch closely in this video you will see this color variation hanging out of the mouth of a very fine brown trout.
Hook: Dai-Riki 135 Sizes 8-14
Bead: Tungsten or Bronze Size 1/8″-7/64″ (Depending on hook size)
Underbody: 0.020 Lead Wire
Thread: 6/0 Uni Color – Camel
Backing Material: Clear Scud Back
Rib: 3X Monofilament
Body: Tan Hare’s Ear
Hot Spot: Pink Shrimp Sow-Scud
Collar: Natural Brown Squirrel