Orange Caddis by Nicole March
There’s something about an orange bead that just seems to attract trout, and this is an excellent anchor fly that I have had great success with in the Catskills, especially on the Willowemoc and Beaverkill. I normally tie this patterns in a #12 and #14 but adjust the sizing based on the naturals in your area.
Bead: Orange Tungsten Bead (size 3/32 for #14)
Underbody: .010 Lead-free wire
Ribbing: Copper Wire
Thorax: Sybai Nymph - Rusty Brown
Slide your bead onto the hook and remove a length of lead wire from the spool. Make 10 or 11 wraps around the hook shank with the wire and then push it up into the back of the bead so that it’s compressed together.
Securing the lead
One good way to secure your lead without having the thread wraps fall in between the lead wraps (We’ve all been there!) is to use the tag end of the thread as a barrier when you secure it. On a fly without a bead I would start this in front of the lead and run the tag towards the back, but since we want the lead pushed up into the bead, I will be doing it in reverse here.
Leaving a long tag, start your thread at the base of the wire wraps and begin making a thread dam to keep the lead in place. Now take that tag end of thread and bring it up over the bead. Take a few light wraps over the tag thread and the lead towards the front of the hook, and then take go back down towards the bend. This piece of tag thread will keep your thread from falling between the lead as you cover it up.
Taper the end of the fly behind the lead as shown and get ready to tie in the rest of your materials.
Tie in a length of copper wire and tinsel at the back of your fly. Be sure to position the tinsel at the top of the fly because this will be the flash back. Cover the waste ends while maintaining the taper in the body.
Return your thread to the base of the fly and dub a noodle of the Sybai Pearl Yellow dubbing. This is called yellow but is more of a yellow olive color that looks great in the water. Dub the body up the shank, adding more as needed. Stop your thread about one hook eye length away from the bead.
Grasp the flashback and bring it up and over the top of your fly. You want this positioned in the center going up the back. Tie it off behind the bead and now bring your ribbing up and over the fly in 5 or 6 evenly spaced turns. Tie this off behind the bead and remove the excess.
With your dubbing brush, comb out the body before dubbing the thorax. Using a small pinch of brown dubbing, fill in the area behind the bead. You can now whip finish and snip off your thread. If you find that you want the fly a little bugger, feel free to brush it out one more time.
Fish this fly as an anchor fly deep in pools, and be sure to lift it at the end of your swings. This brown on the Willowemoc couldn’t help himself when the fly passed him by!