Madam X variant
This month, Blake served up a pattern that we plan to throw at some trout in Georgia. Attractor patterns are our go-to on those bluelines that hold wild trout and the Madam X fits the bill. Though I think the Madam X is quite at home on the local bluegill pond as well. It’s a versatile pattern that deserves a home in anyone’s fly box. Here is Blake’s version:
– Hook: curved shank, I used a size 12 for the wild Georgia trout.
– Thread: color to match body
– Tail: Elk body hair
– Dubbing: Spectrablend dry fly dubbing. Match the hatch
– Underwing: Snowshoe hare’s foot, dun
– Collar/Head: Elk body hair
Step 1. Clamp hook in vise and start thread at a point behind the eye where you would like to tie down your bullet head. This will be where my body will stop and my head will begin.
Step 2. Cut a clump of elk hair and measure it to half the thorax length and tie it in. Wrap the butts down to the index point.
Step 3. Bring thread towards the bend to where the tail is tied in and dub a body forward to the index point. I used dry fly dubbing to match light cahills for this one, but I also use other dubbings as well. Try to match whatever insects the fish are eating. Being that this is a bushy attractor fly, you can get away with some less natural colors also.
Step 4. The actual pattern didn’t call for an under wing, but I thought it would be better with one. I used a small about of snowshoe rabbit foot hair.
Step 5. Cut a larger clump of elk for the head. The amount will vary with hook size. I measure it to be the total length of the hook. Spin it right behind the eye of the hook. The hair in the image is a little shorter than I would have liked, but the fish won’t care.
Step 6. Once spun, cut off the butts and clean up the area between the elk tips and the under wing.
Step 7. The original kit that I bought had these brass tubes in it that I assume are to be used to aid in making half hitches. I use the biggest one as a bullet head tool. Bring the thread to a point where you want to tie down the head, and push the tool over the eye of the hook forcing all the elk hair tips back. I then make a few wraps with the thread to cinch down the hair and make it flare. Remove the tool.
Step 8. Tie in rubber legs on either side of the fly in the same spot where you tied in the head.
Step 9. Whip finish the thread in between the rubber legs and turn the fly over in the vice. The last step is to trim the bottom of the collar to expose the dubbed body.