Wet/Dry Fly Stage 4 Emerger

The Wet/Dry fly is an “accidental” discovery design. I had tied some of them as wet flies to fish during a hatch of Blue winged Olived (Ephemerella rotunda/invaria), and on the first cast the fly floated. The little brown rose and confidently sucked in the rumpled-looking wet fly that was riding the film. I tried it as a floating fly on another fish, and it too rose confidently. Since those first fish, over four decades ago, I have cast this imitation over many hundreds of trout on rivers around the world, and always with excellent results. It’s a simple to tie design that imitates Stage Four of the emergence cycle—the insect up on the film, out of the nymphal or pupal husk. The imitation shown below is an excellent color match for the Small Wester Green Drake (Ephemerella flavilinea); use whatever colors are needed to match caddises, midges, and the small mayflies (typically size 14 and smaller).

Wrap rearward to cover the back half of the shank with thread. Then, wrapping forward, tie in a thin tail of poly yarn or sparkle yarn for a shuck..

Spin a bit of dubbing on the thread, leaving about 1 inch of bare thread between the top of the dubbing noodle and the hook shank. Wrap rearward, tying in a piece of yellow silk thread for the rib. Wraping rearward will bring the dubbing up to the shank.

Wrap the dubbing forward to form the body and then counterwrap the rib.

Prepare and tie in a soft hackle, tip first.

Wrap the hackle and finish the fly.