Thank you for visiting our fly tying blog! Here you will find free step-by-step instructions for fly patterns that we have found to be very successful while fishing on the Tributaries of Lake Erie known as " Steelhead Alley." You will also be able to see step-by-step instructions for warm water, tube, trout, and destinational fly patterns. If you would like to request a pattern tutorial that you do not see,please send requests to info@steelheadalleyoutfitters.com

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Matt Zudweg's "Wicked Leech of the Midwest"

When I first began swinging flies for Steelhead, I had no idea what I was doing. In fact, looking back on it now I wouldn't even call it swinging. At that time, I would simply rig a heavy sink tip with a big bunny streamer such as a "mad pup" and back troll through a run, just like I had seen the plug fishermen do. Simple as it was, it worked. It wasn't until I began working for Feenstra Guide Service, that I truly began "swinging flies" for Steelhead. The added "swing" made this style of fishing way more fun and effective. Although swinging for Steelhead is one of the most challenging ways to hook them, the take is so awesome that it's very hard to go back to any other form of catching them. If you haven't tried it, I would highly recommend that you do. Even if it's on a single hand rod, the experience is one you won't forget. For more information on swinging for Steelhead I recommend Kevin Feenstra's latest dvd available at: http://www.swingabigfly.com/

The pattern below is one I used much of the fall season this year. It has become one of my go to patterns. I hope you will give it a try.


Step 1: Place a Daiichi 2461 Size 2 hook in your vise and attach dumbell eyes about 1/8" behind the hook eye. Wind thread to the back of the hook, even with the hook point.

Step 2: Attach a black micro rabbit strip securely to the top of the hook and wind thread forward, leaving about 1/4" before the dumbell eyes. Trim the rabbit strip so it is 1 1/2" behind the hook.

Step 3: Wind the rabbit strip forward until it reaches the thread, and tie it off, trimming the excess.

Step 4: Attach a large yellow mallard flank by the tip and trim off excess.

Step 5: Dub some pink, or hot pink Laser Dub, or Ice Dub onto the thread and wind losely up to the dumbell eyes.

Step 6: Palmer the mallard flank through the dubbing and tie off.

Step 7: Attach a large amount of Black Rainbow Polar Flash just behind the dumbell eyes, leaving it about an inch longer than the rabbit strip.

Step 8: Fold the Polar Flash over the eyes and tie the remnant to the underside of the hook. Trim it the same length as the top fibers of Polar Flash.

Step 9: Advance the thread ahead of the dumbell eyes and tie in a clump of Hot Yellow Ice Dub or Laser Dub, as you would a vail on an egg fly. That's it!
Good Luck Swinging for Steelhead!

Matt Zudweg guides for Feenstra Guide Service on Michigan's Muskegon River. He also owns BoneYard Fly Gear. To see his unique line of fishing products visit http://www.boneyardflygear.com/