The 52 Buick is a relative newcomer to the western fishing scene but it can be dynamite on those bright lake rainbows especially during the spring months. With varying hook sizes and different shades of body green, the fly can represent many aquatic insects such as dragon flies and shrimps or more accurately called scuds. Some say that Alberta anglers first started using the fly successfully a few years ago in foothill rivers such as the Caroline and Raven. It inevitably found its way to BC's interior lakes and became an almost instantaneous hit with dedicated fly fishers. It can be trolled or cast with equally great effectiveness but best results tend to be in the May - June period. I have found that if the green body color of this fly matches the lake bottom vegetation shades, I can count on some action even on those slow fish days! I recall a good fish taken by a friend on Aileen Lake, on the plateau east of Winfield, using a fairly small 52 Buick of very bright limey green color. Sure enough, when we checked the weeds growing at the lake bottom, a similar color shade was evident. No serious Canadian fly fisherman should be without the 52 Buick so it is the topic of this month's fly tying article.
Tie in the tail first, only allowing it to project about 1/4 inch past the hook bend. Then secure a 3 to 4 inch piece of thin gold tinsel at the hook bend. The next step is most important, tying in the body material. I often mix green and blue seal hair to make a body dubbing and I use several shades of green, whether wool or chenille, to make up the fly body. On some lakes, a very bright green often works best. Anyway, secure your body material to the hook shank and loosely wind it forward from the hook bend to the hook eye. Next, counter wrap the gold tinsel from the hook bend to the eye in a manner that produces bumps in the body material between the tinsel wraps. Add your guinea throat hackle and then complete the fly with a generous wrap of peacock herl to form a fairly large head. To more easily tie in the throat hackle, I take the fly out of the vice and flip it so that the hook barb faces upward, then I tie in the throat hackle before restoring the fly to its original position. Whip finish the head, cement, and you are finished! Just be sure to tie up this fly in several sizes and many different shades of green.
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