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Pattern Size Guide

This page is designed to aid you in ordering the proper size fly pattern for the insect each pattern is tied to represent. Most fishermen think of pattern size in terms of a standard dry fly hook. Some of my own patterns are tied on hooks of differing styles, meaning length and shape. For instance, a Delaware March Brown Parachute is tied on a # 10 standard dry fly hook. A Green Drake Parachute is tied on a 2x long dry fly hook, making that pattern longer than the March Brown. Consequently, the Green Drake might be better represented on a #12. As you read down recommendations will be made as to what size fly will best help you accurately purchase the fly you desire. Actual insect size may differ by stream and watershed, so that's up to you to know.

Standard Size Dry Fly Patterns

Most dry flies are tied on standard dry fly hooks. Below is a list of the most popular patterns that we use throughout the season. I've tried to list them in order of emergence here in the Northeast.

Blue Quill #16 & #18 Quill Gordon # 12 Red Quill/Male Hendrickson # 14 Light(Female)/Delaware Hendrickson # 12 Grannom Caddis #14 Popcorn(Apple) Caddis #14 Sulphur # 16 & # 18 Also #20 for late season. March Brown #10 & #12 Grey Fox #14 Light Cahill #14 Blue-winged Olive #14 & #16 (early) #18 through #24 (late) Tan Caddis # 14 (early) #16 (late) Olive Caddis #14 & #16 White Fly # 12

I tie Drakes, Isonychia and Stonefly dries on 2x long hooks. Below are the recommended sizes for those patterns.

Green Drake #10 & #12 Brown Drake #8 & #10 Isonychia #12 (early) #14 (late) Golden Stone #8 & #10 Black Stone # 14, #16 & #18 Yellow Stone # 14 & #16 Yellow Drake #12

Phunny Emergers and Rabbit Emergers are most often tied on scud hooks. To my eye, this makes the emerger conform accurately to the correct insect size by going one size larger then the standard dry fly hook. I prefer to tie the Hendrickson Phunny on a 2x long nymph hook and that size is shown below. This pattern alone does not apply to the previous statement regarding scud hook size.

Male Hendrickson # 16 Female Hendrickson # 14 Sulphur # 14 & # 16 Light Cahill/Grey Fox # 12 Blue-winged Olive # 14, # 16 ad # 18 March Brown # 10 Isonychia # 10 & # 12
Green Drake Rabbit Emerger
Green Drake Rabbit Emerger
Questions? Email Mike Bachkosky at mike@rainbowsendflies.com