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Peacock Adult Midge Cluster Pattern - Hyde Low Rider

Peacock Adult Midge Cluster Pattern - Hyde Low Rider

During the mid 70’s to early 80’s, I had the fortunate opportunity of receiving fly fishing tutorage from a gentlemen by the name of Monroe. Monroe would make weekly weekend trips to fish numerous freestone and limestone spring creek fisheries in the Northern Maryland, Western Maryland and Carlisle, Pa. area. I did not truly realize that some of the same fisherman that we would meet and join during my formative teenage and college years were revered Pa Limestone Legends that routinely fished the same fisheries.

Particular fisheries like Falling Spring, Big Spring Creek and Yellow Breeches demanded the acknowledgement of matching midge (diptera) hatches during the fall and deep winter season.

A particular pattern that Monroe would use is a Peacock Adult Midge Cluster dry fly pattern in various sizes. Additionally, Monroe would incorporate specific shades of mixed fur (synthetic usage was just really starting to be at least discussed, but with limited incorporation in our arsenal at this time) to meet the challenge of fishing the various stages (larvae, pupae and adult) as an alternative body type. I believe our interaction with Ed Koch at the Yellow Breeches Fly shop in Boiling Springs, PA coupled with the support of his book Fishing the Midge, further pushed us to become very cognizant of the phenomena of midge hatches and subsequent trout behavior.

As I restock my fly box, and become a little more grayer along with changing eye sight, I am becoming more acceptable of the intent to use flies that I can see and rely on accurate presentation.

This is a proven trout pattern that you may not find in most fly fisherman's boxes.

I highly recommend having a few of these midge patterns in sizes from 14 to 28 available year round. They are a staple in my box.

Pattern: Peacock Adult Midge Cluster

Insect it Imitates: Midge Adult

Where to Fish It?: Works in Freestones/Tailwater's/Spring Creeks

How to Fish it: Dead drift or lightly skated

Hook: High Quality size 14 down to 28 - straight eye quality dry fly hook

Thread: 8/0 or smaller Midge Thread, prefer Dark/Olive Nylon coloration

Tail: 3 to 6 Stiff Grizzly Hackle fibers, no longer then 1 to 1 1/2 length of shank.

Body: Unstripped Peacock hurl. Palmered Grizzly dry fly hackle. Size of hackle fibers are 1 1/2 to 2 1/2 of hook gap.

Key considerations: I like a flush orientation when resting. Hackle fibers can be trimmed to provide a flush orientation if required.

Pics of completed fly:



Quick Story about Effectiveness and Theory Behind Fly:

This pattern has knocked them dead on various fisheries including Big Spring Creek, Yellow Breeches, Slate Run, Pine Creek, Hunting Creek, GunPowder River, Falling Spring and the San Juan River. I have high confidence in this pattern during midge dry fly activity.

One particular episode includes a fishing trip to the San Juan River on New Years day during the 90‘s. After making the 2.5 hour drive from Creede, CO to the fishery with my future brother-in law, we encountered near freezing temperatures with some light snow fall. Perfect fishing weather!

Randy, was an outdoorsman who I believed had little active fly fishing experience. I set up Randy with a favored Orvis PM graphite rod and 5 weight line with a hand-tied blood knotted leader, mandatory neoprene waders and fingerless wool gloves. Randy set the river on fire with an amazing performance.

After rigging up his rod, I placed 4 feet of 7x tippet and a sized 22 Peacock Midge Cluster and waited for heads to start showing that morning. Randy routinely hooked and landed almost a half dozen solid browns in the 16” to 20” size that would sometimes tail walk across the tranquil pools in this revered tailwater fishery. What a way to celebrate the New Year in New Mexico.

I sincerely hope you have as much fun fishing this year round pattern on your favorite river as well.


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The hackle seems a little longer and has a tail. I just started fishing midges more the last couple of years and my
go to is griffth's gnat #20/22, and they usually work for hard risers.