Elk Hair Caddis

elk hair caddis fly pattern
elk hair caddis recipe


  • Hook: Dry Fly #8-#22
  • Thread: Match Body Color 6/0
  • Body: Usually Tan or Brown
  • Hackle: Match Body color
  • Wing: Elk or Deer Hair

Tying Instructions

  1. I will be telling how to tie the fly that is in the picture above but the colors can be varied for whatever you wish. This fly doesn’t have a tail so start by tying on the tan hackle and leaving it stick out like its going be a tail.
  2. Then put on your dubbing using a preferred method that you like. I use superfine dubbing and just wrap it around the hook, it’s a lot easier and faster to do it this way.
  3. Dub the body about 3/4 of the way up the hook shank.
  4. After you have applied the dubbing material wrap the hackle forward to this position and tie it off. It should be spaced out like on a griffith’s gnat.
  5. Next you should trim the hackle to its desired length. The top of the hackle can be trimmed right down to the body of the fly if you want but I usually leave a little there. Usually I try and make it a little longer than where the barb is.
  6. Next get a pinch of elk hair. You can use deer hair like I have on mine. The hair must be hollow so that it will flare up. Tie on the hair at the front of the hook. The tricky part here is getting the right angle on your deer hair. It should flare up at about 45 degrees to the hook. Also make sure that your hair doesn’t spin around on the hook, cause if it does after one fish you’ll have to get out another one.
  7. Now tie off and apply a dab of glue.

If I had to pick one dry fly to use on any random day, this would probably be it. This fly is very versatile. It floats well and can be seen very easily by the fisherman. Then main thing though, is this fly really works! I’m never caught out fishing without a few of these within reach. It can be tied in many different colors. I have some that are even black. Also the larger sizes can be used to imitate larger flies like the Stoneflies you see around here. If your in a pinch and don’t happen to have any stoneflies with you.

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