All About Fly Fishing!

Glow Bug Hopper

Tied by Mark Donahue for our Uni-Products Fly Swap.

glow bug hopper fly pattern

Mark's Notes and Instructions:

For fly tyers that fish the Great Lakes' Tributaries, Glow Yarn or Glow Bug Yarn is a common fly tying material. This bright synthetic is the main ingredient used to tie many egg patterns and other tributary flys. The unconventional use of the glow yarn for the torso is what gives the Glow Bug Hopper such a realistic look. Not only does this fly look great, it also catches fish, the pattern will work for trout in the late summer where streams pass through grassy areas, or for the beginner this fly is deadly for Sunfish. Tie one up and tie it on.

HOOK: Size 6 or 8, 3x long hook
THREAD: Yellow
TAIL: Red hackle BODY: Glow Bug yarn (bright green)
RIB: Peacock Hurl
UNDER WING: Squirrel Tail dyed orange
WING: Molted turkey wing quill dyed green
COLLAR/HEAD: Coastal deer hair

1. Cut out a section of turkey wing and coat the back with head cement. Set aside to dry for later use.

2. Start thread at the center of hook and wind to the bend. Take a small group of red hackle fibers and tie on for tail.

3. Tie the peacock herl rib on at the base of the tail. Tie in by the fat end of the herl for strength.

4. Now take a length of glow bug yarn and split it into three strands. Tie one of the thin strands on next to the peacock herl, and start to wrap it forward to form the body. As you wrap the yarn forward it will flatten out and should be wrapped over itself to form a thick tapered body. Body should cover between and 1/3 of the hook.

5. Next palmer the peacock forward to form a segmented body.

6. Attach the under wing by tying a clump of the squirrel tail on top of the hook just in front of the body. The tips of the squirrel tale should be even with or extend slightly beyond the tips of the red tail.

7. To form the wing cut a slight arch on the tip end of the turkey quill segment that you set aside earlier. Place the cut wing over the under wing and tie down at the same point as the under wing, cut wing should be curved over the sides and cover the top half of the body. The curved end of the wing should extend rearward to the same length as the under wing and the tail. Trim excess material from the front and make sure you keep the front of the hook bare.

8. Place a sparse clump of coastal deer hair over the fly; the tips should be even with the bend of the hook. Attach the deer hair with a couple of lose wraps at the same tie in point as the wings. Allow the deer hair spread out around the shank of the hook and then tie tightly with a third wrap. Allow the deer hair tips to fan out for legs and trim the butt ends short.

9. Take a large clump of deer hair to form the head. Place a large clump of hair on the bare section at the front of the hook with a loose thread wrap, followed with a tighter wrap causing the hair to spin on the hook.

10. Whip finish and remove from the vice. Now with an old pair of scissors or a razor trim the spun deer hair to form a head.