My friend who told me about his success with fly # 144, the beautiful green nymph (October 2008 article) fishing a small lake near Salmon Lake in the Douglas Ranch country, also said that an olive dragon fly nymph produced well. He went on to say that the fly had large dark eyes, otherwise it was somewhat similar in shape and colour to the green nymph! It just so happens that I have tied dragon fly nymphs like this in the past. To distinguish this particular dragon fly pattern, I call it the ugly dragon as opposed to the beautiful green nymph but both flies according to my friend worked equally well this past fall at that little Douglas Ranch country lake! For our March article, we will examine the secrets of tying this very effective nymph pattern.
Select two olive goose quills and tie in a short tail in a "v" spread manner. About mid point on the hook shank, secure an olive saddle hackle tip first. Now, starting just ahead of the tail, wind an olive chenille body hook bend to hook eye. Next, wrap the olive saddle hackle forward in two or three turns also to the hook eye, then clip the top fibers so that the bottom hackles will represent legs. The final step is to figure eight a set of dark glass beads just behind the hook eye. I make my own bead eyes using craft store bought beads threaded to a short piece of nylon line. Grip the line between the two beads with thin pliers which will give a spacing of 1/8 inch or less and burn the nylon at the outside of the beads with a butane torch. This will make a tiny bar bell to use as the dragon fly nymph eyes, and with large black beads the name "ugly" is derived! If the nylon line used is too light in colour, you can darken the burned ends with a black or dark green permanent marking pen. Tie off, cement and you have finished a great search and destroy fly!
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