Trico Quill Duns

Trico Quill Duns

Early morning anglers should have a dozen of these in their fly boxes

  • By: A. K. Best
If you haven't fished the Trico hatch, you're missing out on some of the finest dryfly fishing to be had, no matter what part of the country you live in. Most fly fishers get very excited about the Trico spinner fall, which can be a lot of fun, but the actual hatch is even better. Get to your favorite stream before dawn, because that's when these little guys begin to hatch. Chances are you'll have a lot of stream to yourself and all the action you could hope for. These are little insects, so casting accuracy is mandatory as is about 4 feet of either 6X or 7X tippet. Total leader length should be at least 12 feet.

Hook: Mustad 94840 or equivalent, size 16 through 22. Use a ring-eye or up-eye hook for smaller sizes.

Thread: White 6/0 or 8/0 for abdomen and black 6/0 or 8/0 for the thorax and head

Tail: Small clump (5 or 6) white spade hackle fibers, length to equal hook shank

Abdomen: Light green to dark green stripped and dyed rooster neck hackle quill. Note: The body color will vary from stream to stream.

Thorax: Charcoal gray to black fine dryfly dubbing

Wings: Pair of slightly oversize white hen hackle tips. (Use size 16 for a size 18 fly). The wings are larger than proportion charts indicate.

Hackle: Check your local hatches. Some have cream legs, some have medium- to dark-gray legs. THE DUNS DO NOT HAVE BLACK LEGS! (Even though the spinners do). Use only three or four turns of the hackle that matches the color of the legs of your hatch.

Attach the white tying thread to the hook at mid-shank and wind to the beginning of the hook bend.

Tie in tailing fibers and clip off butts at mid-shank.

Tie on one stripped and dyed quill and wind to mid shank.

Change to black thread and dub a short, thin thorax. Leave at least a hook-gap space for wings, hackle collar and head.

Tie on a pair of white hen hackle tips in front of the dubbed thorax.

Tie on and wind the hackle collar. One turn behind the wings and two in front is all that's needed.

Clip off hackle tip, whip finish and apply a tiny drop of head lacquer.