Scary-Good Fishing

Tying the ghost prince nymph.

I started tying this pattern a few years ago for fishing the Gallatin in winter. When a nymph needs to grow, it has to shed its exoskeleton, and the nymph takes on an opaque, whitish color. As it hardens, it regains its normal color. Since they’re highly visible to the fish during this stage, nymphs are especially vulnerable. Even though I tied this for fishing during winter, it can also be fished year-round.

Hook: Gamakatsu C12U Caddis, size 6 or 8
Thread: Danville 140 Waxed Flymaster Plus, red
Tail: Goose Biot, black
Body: Hare’e Ice Dub, Hare’s Ear, Mirage Flashabou
Ribbing: Medium Ultra Wire, red
Wings: Goose Biot, black
Collar: Whiting Dry Fly Hackle, Grizzly
Head: Spirit River Hi-Lite Glass Bead, Medium root beer

1: Place a glass bead onto the hook and wrap thread back to the bend of the hook.
2: Tie in two goose biots for your tails. Attach the Ultra Wire to top of hook shank and leave it trailing off the back of the fly for now.
3: Cut a small strip of mirage flashabou and tie it in on top of the ultra-wire and also leave it trailing off the back for now.
4: Dub on a body of Hare’s Ear and Hare’e Ice Dub. Continue dubbing up the shank until you are 90% up the hook shank. Leave a small space between the dubbing and the glass bead.
5: Tie in a piece of hackle at the front of your dubbing. Palmer the hackle two or three times and lock it off.
6: With your left hand, pull hackle fibers to the bottom side of the fly to make the legs and gills. Now, with your right hand, pull the Flashabou over the back of the fly and lock it off.
7: Now palmer the Ultra-wire ribbing up the body the back of the bead and lock it off.
8: Tie in two more goose biots for the wings on top, behind the bead, and lock them off.
9: Whip finish behind the bead and add a drop of cement.