Idaho Fly Fishers Blog

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Big Y Fly Company
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Discussing fishing flies, trout flies, salmon flies, fly fishing gear and equipment, Idaho and Montana fishing rivers, NW rivers, fly tying and fly fishing trips. Over 50 years experience in fly fishing, best flies, fly tying, fly fishing techniques, fish stories, directions to rivers and lakes and great fly fishing tall tales with special communications from area guides.

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Thursday, April 14, 2011

San Juan Worm

"San Juan Worm" written by the YellowStoneFly at the  Idaho Fly Fishers blogspot is providing very simple tying instructions for this, possibly the easiest of all flies to tie. Idaho fly fishing, and any state for that matter, would be alot less successful without this fly. Effective sizes range from 6-22 and chenille colors, you pick. I would suggest using fairly dense standard or "ultra" materials which are readily available at any fly material website or retail merchant.

This fly can be fished at any time, but is most effective in cloudy or slightly cloudy water as a result of rain or run off. It seems also to be more effective when the water has begun to warm. Weight and fish close to the bottom at a "dead drift", although I occasionally catch fish with a little "lift" at the end of a drift. Try cinnamon, red, pink, neutral or brown for the best results in my opinion. Come fly fish Idaho and give the San Juan a whirl.

Back wrap thread onto shank. Use the same
color as your chenille.
Secure chenille with a couple of thread wraps near
the bend of hook.
Wrap thread towards the eye. Leave a little space and
no need to completely cover hook.
Wrap chenille around shank toward eye. This forms the
worm's clitellum*.  Now, half hitch the thread at
in front of your chenille and glue if desired.
Singe the ends of your chenille with lighter. This avoids
fraying. Length of worm is a personal choice.
Finished fly. Try it. Really is very easy to tie!
*The clitellum is a thickened glandular section of the body wall in earthworms and leeches, that secretes a viscid sac in which the eggs are deposited.

Happy Idaho fly fishing!

Idaho Angler (

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