For Ontario fly fishers looking to reel in rainbow trout, the Lake Huron tributaries — Sauble, Saugeen, Nine Mile, Maitland and Bayfield — are among the finest steelhead rivers in the province.
Here are a couple of flies that are sure to bring you some action when fishing that area.
Sassy Steelhead Sculpin (Olive Version)
- Hook: spey hook or 4X-long streamer hook – size 2 or 4, or use a tube
- Thread: 6/0 black or olive
- Body: Caddis green midge cactus chenille
- Wing: rabbit strip – dyed golden olive
- Overwing: pearl flash
- Legs: round rubber hackle – white
- Eyes: lead dumbbells – small (optional)
- Hackle: schlappen feather – barred olive
- Collar: micro squirrel strip – sculpin olive
- Lay down a solid thread base to a point opposite the barb.
- Tie in cactus chenille at rear and wrap body forward to an eye length back from the eye.
- Tie in a hook-length of golden olive rabbit strip on top where the chenille ends. On top of the rabbit, tie in 4 to 6 strands of pearl flash.
- On the bottom side of the hook, tie on 2 pieces of white rubber hackle that are twice the hook length, doubling them over to hang out towards the back end on the bottom side. (OPTION: For a little weight, add a small set of lead dumbbell eyes on the bottom side in front of where the white rubber hackle strands were tied in.)
- Take a barred olive schlappen feather and cut off about an inch of the bottom thick stem and then tie in bottom. Palmer wrap it forward, half-way to the eye.
- Take a length of sculpin olive micro squirrel strip, tie in the end and palmer wrap it 2 or 3 times towards eye, tie off and then whip finish.
The Only Nymph
- Hook: scud hook, size 8 or 10
- Thread: 8/0 black
- Bead: gold tungsten 5/32 inch
- Tail: deer hair
- Rib: gold wire, fine
- Body: midge cactus chenille, brown
- Side wings: goose biots, black
- Collar: peacock dubbing
- Slip a 5/32-inch gold tungsten bead over hook.
- About 1/3 of the way back along the hook on the bend, tie in 5-7 deer-hair tips that are half the hook length, trim off excess. Pheasant tail could be used, but I have found deer hair tips are tougher.
- Tie in a length of fine gold wire and a length of brown midge cactus chenille. Wrap the chenille forward to an eye length back from eye and tie off. Wrap gold wire as a rib, evenly spaced to same spot and tie off.
- Take 2 black goose biots and tie in one on each side with curve pointing out from sides and up a little with tips ending where chenille and wire started, trim off excess biot butts.
- Take a small pinch of peacock dubbing and apply to thread and wrap in front of the biots, which should be right behind bead as well, whip finish.