Purple Steelhead Muddler
By Gary Lewis
For the pinnacle of steelhead fishing excitement, tease the fish up to the surface with a waking fly. Watch for the bulge when the fish charges. At the take, let it turn and pull line before you lift the rod. The Steelhead Muddler is tied sparse to run at the surface and just beneath it. Use a floating line and throw a high mend to slow the fly’s progress.
If a fish follows but does not take, make a step back upstream and throw the same cast. If it refuses again, tie on a smaller fly and swing it through the same water.
Tie the Steelhead Muddler on a No. 6 up-eye steelhead dry fly hook. For the body, use purple mylar. Tie in an underwing of dyed purple squirrel tail. Then tie in a dyed purple turkey quill. At the collar, wrap and spin clumps of deer hair. To finish, trim a bullet-shaped head.