The Blushing Onyx nymph is something I’ve been working on for just a short time and have only had a chance to get out fishing with it a couple times. So far, it’s been producing really well in the creeks I’ve fished it, bringing several nice resident trout and even a couple river chubs.
The idea for this trout fly comes from a discussion I’ve had with Joe and Sean about the visibility of the hotspot on flies like the Mohawk Hotspot PTN. We were questioning how visible the spot would be tied either on the top or bottom of the fly. I think it was concluded that the hot spot tied as a collar, or in the round, would be the strongest hotspot. We talked about adding the hot spot to the top and bottom or even just using a hot bead, but I think this blushed effect on a dark bead provides a nice middle ground for the dark nymph.
Blushing Onyx Nymph Jig Fly Pattern Recipe
Hook: Firehole 516 #12-16
Bead: Black tungsten
Thread: Black 8/0 (70d)
Cheek: Pink floss, polish, UV resin
Tail: Black hackle fibers
Body: Black Ultrawire (brassie)
Thorax: Black Diamond Dubbing (Ice)
Body Coat: Bone Dry UV resin
The Pink and Tan is a fly that reminds me of a time early in my fly fishing career when some of my fellow anglers took me to a secluded spot deep in the northern Alberta backcountry. We drove through foresty roads, more or less unmarked and abandoned. You may pass a truck every 20 miles or so, but they are few and far between. Our destination was a little trickle of glacier water brimming with grayling, whitefish, and the occasional bull trout. From that day, the Arctic grayling became one of my favorite fishes to catch on the fly. They are gems and look as though they belong in the tropics rather than the cooler climates they are often found in. I fished for grayling quite a bit in Alberta and have had days where I was able to catch so many I wasn’t able to keep count.
Pink is a great color for grayling, but I like to fish it somewhat subdued. While I have done well with glowing bright hot pink flies, the hint of pink feels right. I tie these on a jig hook like the Partridge SUJ barbless hook or a Mustad C49s in sizes 10 down to 18. You can vary the weight by using either brass or tungsten beads and with the amount of weight you choose to wrap around the shank.
Pink and Tan Grayling Bug Fly pattern recipe
Hook: Partridge SUJ #10-18
Bead: Hot pink tungsten or brass
Thread: Pink 6/0 (140d)
Tail: Pink Congo Hair
Ribbing: Gold Ultrawire
Body: Tan Laser Dubbing
Thorax: Golden brown Ice Dubbing
Soft hackle flies are a staple in my trout box as are bead bead nymphs. This design also incorporates a jig hook into the mix, but if you don’t have them, or the required slotted beads, a standard 2xl nymph hook should do just fine. The tail uses Coq de Leon, a favorite material because of the natural speckled feathers. Whiting Farms has a great line of affordable and obtainable capes, tailing packs and saddles that would fit the bill. The starling feather makes a nice collar on this wet fly. It will provide a natural iridescence to the finished fly. I would tie this with the pink bead, but would also try out a few other options.