Swedish version

by Goran Grubic

  Last year I started to use a new version of Hedgehog fly. Hedgehogs are not exactly new flies. First version, tied by famous British angler Richard Walker, was made just from clipped deer hair. It was obviously inspired with the way the Muddler Minnow head was formed. I used that version of the Hedgehog during eighties with some success, but after that I almost forgot about it.

  In more recent times new and interesting versions of the Hedgehog appeared, the best was Sedgehog, which I discovered in an excellent article written by Stan Headley, probably the best known modern exponent of Scottish loch style fly fishing. That version consisted of several clumps of roe deer hair, with some dubbing in between, and with hen hackle. It is very fine fly for lake fishing, but it proved to be quite deadly on rivers too, not only in sedge time but also as a general attractor pattern. The good side of all those patterns is that they are great floaters, due to the well known properties of deer hair.

  I used Sedgehogs for some time, and still do occasionally, but the tying of the pattern is time consuming a bit, and so I got the idea to completely abandon dubbing in its construction. It became possible to tie the fly in just a minute or two. The dressing is straightforward: it is made by placing clumps of roe deer hair on top of the hook and letting hair butts to flare around the shank. It takes 3-6 clumps to cover the shank of hooks in sizes from 14 to 8. Than the fly is finished with a whip knot, and the hair below the hook shank is removed with a single cut of scissors or razor blade. It is much faster to tie than Sedgehog, and was fairly successful on my local trout rivers.

  The problem with all of the mentioned flies was that, in my experience, they were not suited to all sedge/caddis situations on the rivers. In times when trout were obsessed with hatching caddis pupae some other flies, understandably, were more successful. One of the better flies for such situation is CDC & Elk, a great fly invented by the maestro of Dutch tiers Hans Weilenmann. My idea was to mix good features of the Hedgehog and the CDC & Elk into one fly. Thus we came to the fly we now call CDC Hog. Its tying is shown in the following pictures.

Pic. 1. The dubbing loop with barbs cut from one CDC feather is created on the end of the hook shank.

Pic. 2. First clump of deer hair is attached, taking care that tips remain on top of the hook.

Pic. 3. Second clump of deer hair is attached.

Pic. 4. Third clump of deer hair is attached.

Pic. 5. Fourth clump of deer hair is attached.

Pic. 6. All hairs below hook shank are cut flat

Pic. 7. The CDC dubbing loop is fastened below shank.

Pic. 8. The finished fly

  As can be seen from the pictures, the fly is very simple and easy to tie. So far I tied it in two natural roe deer hair colors: light and dark, and with natural mallard CDC. The first several outings to the river produced several dozens of trout during the second part of the previous season. It floats like cork, especially if coated with some Gink on the top of the hair. This year it will be tested more and I do hope that it would became firm favourite, not just for me and my friends but also to any of you who would like to try it.

Text and photos by Goran Grubic,
March 2009



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