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Electric Caddis Fly – A Nymphing Staple

The Electric Caddis should be a staple pattern in every nymph anglers fly box. It is quite a simple fly, but it hooks trout with great regularity. You may think of Caddis as a spring and summer fly, as that is when they hatch. However, caddis larva are available to trout for most of the year. That is why this pattern works especially well during the winter months on trout rivers.

There are many variations of the Electric Caddis. Some have a wire body, and some have a body made of dubbing. You can get them in unweighted versions, and tungsten bead versions as well.

If you haven’t fished this fly, be sure to give it a try on your next outing. Mike Lawson is a very well known tyer who invented this fly, along with many other wonderful caddis patterns.

Electric Caddis Are Easy To Tie

For beginner fly tyers, it can be hard to find easy flies to tie. Many patterns are complicated and involve lots of steps – this can be frustrating for new tyers. Luckily, the Electric Caddis is nothing more than dubbing, tinsel, ultra wire, and an optional bead head. They are almost as easy as tying a Zebra Midge – so beginners should definitely try this fly at the vise.

Electric Caddis Work All Year

Here in Colorado, Caddis generally start to hatch in April, and many species of Caddis will continue through the summer and fall months. This offers great dry fly fishing, as we’re often using Elk Hair Caddis, Ginger Variants, and other Caddis dries. Nymphs will also work during this time, and the Electric Caddis is a good choice. As mentioned before, Caddis larva are also plentiful during the winter months – but most anglers don’t think about this. Between the months of November and March, think about fishing the Electric Caddis on your nymph rigs. It shows the fish something different than an egg or a midge pattern, and it can be very productive.

A Great Runoff Fly

Using this fly in larger sizes can be productive during runoff conditions. I will tie them as large as a #12 so the fish can see them easily. The flashback tinsel will reflect sunlight and the trout will take notice. I will also tie them with large tungsten bead heads so they get down quickly. Consider trailing this fly behind a large worm pattern or stonefly pattern during runoff.

Many Variations

The Electric Caddis has a ton of variations. The ones pictured in this article are tied with dubbing, tinsel and ultra wire. However, you can use just wire for the bodies if you want to make them heavier and flashier. You can also experiment with different hook profiles and bead colors. Find what works best for your local waters, as this will vary depending on the region.