continued thoughts on fly design: the micro-clouser

over the past several years a lot of my streamer tying has been influenced by larger freshwater predator or salt water patterns. in a similar manner as my great friend Andy Baird is obsessed with tying micro flies for trout, i’ve found great success on all sorts of fresh and saltwater fish by toning down the sizes of a lot of my streamers. adapting different materials while keeping the same basic construction influence and design elements of the classics can give astonishing results. it also gives the satisfaction of having tweaked someone else’s design while honoring their work.

here’s a little variant of Bob Clouser’s ultra-famous Clouser Minnow. with a total length of 2cm, the hook is a size 18 Hayabusa caddis pupae barbless, the dumbbell lead eyes are replaced by two tiny bead-chains and dark and light olive marabou replace the usual deer hair. when fished with varying retrieves, the result is a fly that can look like either a mini fish, a damsel nymph or other nymph. i’ve also had several takes as it was falling through the water column on it’s own.
it’s swim is very seductive so maybe it’s perceived as just something sexy that’s too good to resist. contrary to deer hair the marabou fibers wiggle back and forth like crazy, just like little fish and damsel nymphs do when they’re out for a stroll or trying to get to a safe area. the turbulence created by the bead chain eyes augments the wiggle effect.