Friday, November 18, 2011

Change-up baetis

This summer, I was fishing the Taylor C&R and was having success with a juju baetis, except certain fish would take a look and reject it, or after taking it coming off the line after a head shake or two. If the fish continued feeding, they would not touch the juju baetis. Coincidentally the fish wouldn't take barr emergers, PT's or any other baetis patterns I had, so I decided before my next trip I needed to tie a baetis pattern that was similar but different enough from any other stock pattern I carried, that these fish might take. I tied 5 different patterns, and the one that worked I decided was going to be my "change-up" baetis. Its not my first string, starter fly, but its always ready to come in and help. So far it has been productive on all rivers except for the elevenmile canyon stretch of the South Platte! which is exactly what I didn't expect.

Change up baetis:

hook: TMC 2487 or equivalent sizes 16-24
thread: olive 8/0 UNI
tails: olive brown hungarian partridge
abdomen: olive brown microtubing
thorax: dark green ice dubbing/ hare's ear dubbing or equivalent or whatever dubbing you prefer
flash: thin strip of mylar
legs/wings: brown fluoro-fiber, or olive brown hungarian partridge

This fly is not unique! It is a mix of a juju baetis, a Barr emerger, and a Stalcup's baetis, but different enough from all three. The original version used partridge for the legs, but it seemed to get destroyed too quickly; fluoro-fiber is much more resilient. I also used to tie with a fatter piece of flash, but to differentiate it enough from a barr flashback emerger and a juju baetis, I now use the thinnest flash possible.

I also tie this pattern in a 16 and 18 with a tungsten bead, its a good change up from a bead head PT, and a two-bit hooker for float fishing.


  1. looks like a mean little bug... Ill have a row in my box by the end of the weekend... Thanks for sharing...

  2. I like! I'll tie a few for my box. Perhaps, using it I'll not get skunked on my next trip to the Taylor.

    Thanks for the post!