All About Fly Fishing!

Furry Crawdad

Tied by Roger Cotner for our first fly swap.

furry crawdad fly pattern

History & Acknowledgements

Bass love crawdads! Al Rockwood of Flies For Michigan, developed the Furry Crawdad in 1990 based on patterns found in Dick Stewart's Bass Flies. This pattern originated with Walter Siegried, with a nod to Clouser and Ben Schley. Siegfried published in Fishing World in 1990.


HOOK: Mustad 9672, Size 2-6
THREAD: 3/0 Brown
WEIGHT: .035 Lead Wire
BODY: Sandy or Green Leech Yarn
BACK & HEAD: Olive or Brown Furry Foam
CLAWS: Fox Squirrel Tail - Two Bunches

This crawdad swims backwards, so the eye of the hook will be under the tail. The tying procedure may seem backward to you at first.

1. Wrap the thread from the hook eye to the bend as usual.
2. Leave 3" of lead wire free as you start to wrap the lead from 3/8" behind the bend to the eye. Overlap the 3" tag end of the wire at the bend to form a carapace.
3. Cut a strip of furry foam 3/8" wide and taper one end to form the head. Tie the strip in by the nose (tapered end) at the bend with the strip hanging out beyond the bend.
4. Tie in a length of leech yarn at the nose.
5. Cut a bunch of squirrel tail, taper the butts, and tie it in as the right claw between the bend and the lead. Follow the same procedure and tie in a second bigger bunch as the left claw, or vice versa (i.e., bigger right claw than left claw). Wrap each claw at the base separately, circle the bunch separately, and then figure-eight them apart. Apply head cement to the bunches and wrap over them. Take the thread to the end of the lead overwrap.
6. Wrap the leech yarn to form an underbody from the nose to the end of the overwrapped lead. Finish wrapping the leech yarn to the tail and tie off and cut.
7. Double the furry foam strip back over the hook, between the claws and wrap it down with three wraps to define the carapace. Spiral back to form body segments to the tail just behind the eye of the hook and wrap securely. Tie off and whip finish under the tail.
8. Trim the tail to shape and cut off excess furry foam.