Sunday, March 1, 2015

Tying and Fishing Effective Streamer Flies

Muddler Minnow

Streamer flies represent minnows that can suggest many types of food sources and can be fished in a variety of ways. They can be stripped to imitate an escaping minnow or scurried along the bottom like a sculpin. They can be greased up and fished as a dry fly or stripped across the surface like an escaping grasshopper or beetle. They can also be dead drifted near the bottom to suggest an injured or paralyzed fish.

There are many effective streamers that are productive like the Spruce Fly, Clouser Minnow, Woolly Bugger and Mickey Finn. However, the Muddler Minnow, developed by Don Gapen in 1937, is arguably the best of the lot. It works very well for many different types of fish including trout, steelhead, salmon and a variety of ocean fish.

The design of the Muddler was a key factor in the development of some of the popular variations tied by Dan Baily of Bailey’s Fly Shop. They are the White Marabou Muddler, the Missoulian Spook and the Spuddler. Below are instructions to tie a Muddler Minnow.

Hook:  Mustad 9672 sizes 10-14
Thread:  3/0 black Monocord
Tail:  A small section of mottled turkey
Body:  Flat, gold tinsel
Wing:  Two mottled turkey sections tied in tips down
Collar:  Spun deer hair tied and flared backwards
Head:  Deer hair spun and cut to desired shape-round or tapered

Step 1. Tie in the tail and tinsel. Then wrap the tinsel forward and tie off 1/4 inch from the hook eye.

Step 2. Tie in the collar leaving room for the head of the fly.

Step 3. Spin the head around and forward to 1/8 inch of the eye. Trim it to the desired shape and finish off the head.

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