Ruddy Fly, Berners
Muddler Minnow English 《fly》
American streamer. In reference to the origin of this fly pattern, it appears that there is room for argument.
One possibility is that the inventor was an angler called Mr. Ludwig Moedler who immigrated to the United States from Germany in the 19th century. His diary contained a description of a streamer fly that had the gold body and the clipped head of Virginia deer hair.
On the other hand, it has been widely believed that the Muddler Minnow was originated by Mr. Don Gapen who was a fly tyer in Minnesota. Mr. Gapen fished for brook trout in Nippigon, North Ontario around 1937 (or 1948). At that occasion, a Cree Indian who guided him, caught a muddler (a kind of sculpin), and told Gapen that the local brook trout preyed on this fish. The muddler was called cockatush minnow locally. Gapen made an imitation pattern of the minnow, and had incredible success with it. Later on, when Joe Brooks showed the Muddler Minnow to Dan Bailey of Montana, Bailey was taken by it, and added improvements to the fly to make it look more real. As its reputation spread, he sold it on a grand scale.
Various descriptions of Gapen's original fly pattern exist. Joe Brooks wrote that it was a simple fly made exclusively out of hairs of the timber wolf and a sheet of feather wing. Terry Hellekson mentioned that its head was like the Elk Hair Caddis, and Joe Bates has declared that it had a clipped head of deer hair. It is really difficult to decide which one to believe now. However, it seems certain that Dan Bailey made the fly with the beautiful and dense clipped head of deer hair, and he made the Marabou Muddler using marabou for this pattern.
The existence of so many anecdotes concerning only one fly pattern may be a proof that this fly is a masterpiece fly. Since this fly can fish so well, it has been used all over the world and many variations were made. It is effective when used underwater, and equally good as a dry fly. In many books, the following statement is found frequently. "If a fisherman is allowed to use only one fly, many fly fishermen would choose the Muddler Minnow."
【Tying Material】Don Gapen's original pattern assumed by the author.
hook: long shank hook
tail: none or short turkey quill
body: flat gold tinsel
wing: guard hair of timber wolf + turkey quill
squirrel tail can be substituted instead of timber wolf
head: originally, timber wolf hair was used for the wing and the cut stump was
used as a head. Later, he used deer hair, spun and trimmed to form a
head, and left a rear half as a collar.
【Tying Material】Standard pattern Color picture XX page.
hook: Mustad 79580, # 2-12
tail: two sheets of mottled turkey quill
body: gold embossed tinsel
wing: underwing-bucktail of brown/white, overwing-two mottled turkey quill
head: voluminous deer hair to make a dense clipped head, flat head, tip of the
head thin, rear half of deer hair long to be a collar.
【Reference】Streamers & Bucktails, 1950. Complete book of fly fishing, 1958. Flies for trout, 1993. Trout (Schwiebert), 1978. Collins illustrated dictionary of trout flies, 1998 (1995). Fish flies, 1995. Fly pattern encyclopedia, 2000. McClane's new standard fishing encyclopedia, 1998 (1965).
→muddler (fish), Joe Brooks, clipped head, Marabou Muddler