The Shop Vac
FLY SPOTLIGHT – What we currently can’t keep enough of in our boxes.
For such a simple pattern the shop vac seems to deliver in every season and is one of my go to flies. It is essentially a zebra midge a pheasant tail body and pearl midge flash, white zelon etc. that supposedly represents the air bubble of small emerging bugs. This thing absolutely works! It, like a zebra midge, imitates a midge pupa or other small larva, cranefly, baetis nymph etc.
I have most recently been using it in olive green to imitate the caddis larva that our local waters are currently full of. I like to tie mine with peacock herl at the thorax as opposed to dubbing, but that is just my preference. For the past several weeks on guided trips I have started my clients on nymph rigs in the morning hours and on pretty much every rig I have tied on a shop vac with something like a stonefly or pheasant tail as the top fly with the shop vac on the bottom. Easily 80% of the fish have been on the shop vac and when the bugs start really hatching I go to a dry fly. You better believe if I dropped something off of the dry it’s been the shop vac as of late, and the takes continue.
I have tied them in many colors but I personally like olive, black and red. If you don’t have shop vac’s in your box you better change that, and trust me you won’t regret it.