HORNED TENT WINGED CADDIS DRY FLY PATTERNS
This style of caddis fly pattern is commonly called a "Tent Wing" caddis pattern very similar to the King's River Caddis and the Hemingway. It has a 'down wing' made of feather, over a palmered body with a hackle collar. The term 'down wing' is used to illustrate that the pattern is different from normal Mayfly dry fly patterns that have 'up wings'. Most caddis fly fishing is in the twilight with lots of airborne insects and others on the water skittering across the surface as they try to take off after hatching before a hungry trout grabs them for their dinner from down below. There is another type of Caddis fly fishing on smooth water with helpless dying caddis and trout with refined taste sipping the surface, taking time picking out what they want to eat, being choosy. The first type of caddis fly fishing can be great fun but if you do not have the correct fly the second scenario can lead to failure. Big bushy elk hair wing caddis flies will not normally work. They will not fool the selective feeding trout. You need to have a selection of flat water caddis patterns that give a more realistic silhouette
When the caddis hatch the emergent adult tries to swim as fast as it can to the safety of the bank. In this mad dash for survival it creates a 'V' shaped wake a bit like a small speed boat. The trout are on the look out for this give away sign of fast food on the move and home in on these flies with some spectacular takes. This pattern was designed by Al Troth in Pennsylvania, USA in the 1950's, to imitate the adult caddis in two ways: firstly by copying the shape of the wings and secondly he made sure the blunt stubby wings caused a disturbance on the retrieve, in the water surface that mimics that caused by the scuttering adults. Al Troth used a typical roof wing profile to mimic a whole range of medium to small caddis flies rather than try to imitate a particular species. Al Troth later moved to Montana where he gained fame as a fly tyer and trout guide. His new Elk Hair Caddis Dry flies soon became widely used in the various trout rivers of the Rockie Mountains. It is now used all over the world.
The common or slang term ‘sedge’ originates from the fact that adult Caddis flies can often be found clinging to sedge grass near the waters. Sedge/Caddis flies have four wings. The forward pair are normally a little longer than those at the rear. At rest their wings lie close along the body in an inverted V shape. Caddis flies do not have tails but many have long antenna. The Latin name for this group of flies is ‘Trichoptera’.