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FlyTyer's Corner

by Bill Carnazzo

Sparkle Hare’s Ear Nymph

Typically, on a stream such as the Upper Sacramento, your nymph rig will include a dropper fly and a point fly. One very effective way to arrange this rig is to have a light colored fly/dark colored fly combination. The Hare’s Ear serves nicely as the light fly, and we have featured that fly in this column in the past. This month’s pattern is a "variant" of the standard pattern, adding sparkle to its characteristics, while sticking to the very basic traditional pattern materials. The fly can be weighted or unweighted, and can be tied with or without a bead.


1. Smash barb. If using bead, put it on hook at this point; if using weight, add after applying the bead. Cover hook shank with thread.

2. Take a small number of light colored deer hairs (6-8, depending on hook size) and tie them in as a tail just above back of barb; length equals shank length, or 1.5 times hook gape. Tie butts down well to prevent rotation. Directly on top of hair, tie in two strands of pearl crystal flash of equal length to hair. Sparseness is the key!!!

3. Tie in copper wire for rib at same tie-in point as tail. Dub a slim hare’s ear body forward to a point about 1/3 shank length behind eye. Wind rib forward evenly to the same point, and tie off.

4. Cut up some short pieces of pearl crystal flash (1.5"). Take 6 strands and tie in at the rib tie off point, with tips pointing to rear. Take 8 strands of light deer hair, and tie in at same point with tips pointing to rear.

5. Using hare’s ear dubbing, dub a thorax which is slightly larger than the body, leaving about 1/8" of room behind the hook eye; take a dubbing teaser (hook part of velcro works nicely) and tease out a bit of the hare’s ear in the thorax, so it looks a bit scruffy.

6. Pull the deer hair forward over the top of the thorax, forming the shellback, and tie off in front of thorax. Don’t trim the butts yet. Now pull the crystal flash over the top and tie it off at the same point, again leaving butts.

7. Stroke deer hair and crystal flash butts down and to the rear, and wind over them a bit to force them into the "leg" position. Trim them to size (just short of hook point), and cut out a few of each.

8. Form a nice whip finish with a small head.


Hook: Mustad 3906B; Tiemco 200R sizes 12-18
Thread: Tan 6/0 or 8/0
Tail: Light deer hair and pearl crystal flash
Body: Hare’s ear dubbing
Rib: Medium copper wire
Shellback: Light deer hair and pearl crystal flash
Thorax: Hare’s ear dubbing
Legs: Deer hair butts and crystal flash from shellback
Bead: Optional
Weight: Optional

Enjoy, and see ya on the creek...!!!

Copyright 1998 by Granite Bay Flycasters unless otherwise noted.