Ah, December, that magic time of year is upon us again! My wife loved cruising the stores, buying gifts galore, but I have tried every excuse in the book to avoid the mad shopping rush! More than once, I have tried to explain that the steelhead were running and was answered something like, well, they will run just as fast after Christmas! Perhaps though, for the few of you who can make it out December steelheading, I do have a small present for you called Don's Santa Steelhead, a fly that hopefully will put your fishy quarry into a seasonal mood by vigourously striking your offering! It was designed to be a high water fly when rivers are often clouded with significant run-off. Bright colours as in a Santa suit, glo yarn for the white bands and holographic tinsel for the red body. What self respecting steelhead could resist that?
Start with a tail of soft black craft fur or if you do not have that, black marabou will do. Cut it fairly short but just long enough to wave or show movement in the water. Next wind a butt of white glo yarn at the hook bend. Glo yarn will show up better in cloudy, high water conditions than ordinary chenille or yarn. Then using red holographic tinsel, wind a body from the butt to near the hook eye, followed by another ring or collar of white glo yarn. As I have an old fashioned vise, I flip the hook to tie in a hackle of red saddle feather. The final step is to secure longer bright red saddle hackle tips just ahead of the white collar and let them flow back as a wing on top of the fly body. As I have black Sally Hansen's "Hard as Nails" cement, I use it to finish the fly head but clear cement will do. The fly colours are meant to follow a Christmas theme and it will be up to you to see if steelhead will be in a Christmas striking mood!
|Monthly Fly Tying Articles from November 1996|
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