THE GRIFFITH'S GNAT FLY PATTERN
Midges or gnats are the staple diet of most trout. These tiny insects are found on most rivers, lakes and streams. This popular American Fly is used to imitate egg-laying adult midges and emerging midges. George Griffith, one of the founding fathers of the American Trout Unlimited, created one of the most important midge dressings. The Griffith's Gnat is simple, no more than a peacock herl or dubbed body, overwound with grizzly hackle. The beauty of the fly is how it floats half in and half out of the surface film representing something stuck, trying to emerge from its shuck. After having had some coverage in the British and European fly fishing press it has now successfully crossed the Atlantic. These flies are very small having a black body and whitish wings. The small black midge (polypedilum nubeculosus) and similar species are common and widespread. Hatches are normally during the evening and often prolific. In the late summer you may come across early morning hatches if the temperature is right. The larvae and pupae of these insects can be found in countless numbers in stagnant and stillwater. You will find them in rainwater butts as well as the margins of lakes, ponds and ox-bow sections of rivers. Although called a gnat it is a great all round dry fly, effective on lakes, reservoirs, rivers and streams. It can suggest all sorts of insects that are trapped in the surface film. It is also a useful representation of chrionomid midges in a mating ball floating down the river. The body is made of peacock herl with a grizzle cock hackle wound around its length. To help it float and keep weight down to the minimum there is no ribbing.