Today’s fly angler doesn’t fish wet flies as much as wet flies ought to be fished. Take a trip back in time with the Orange Fish Hawk. What does it imitate? Maybe a midge, maybe a snail. Maybe it doesn’t matter.
On a small stream, fish a floating line and a wet-fly swing. On still water, try it on a floating line or a slow-sink intermediate. In any case, use a fluorocarbon tippet. The retrieve? Don’t. Instead, cast downwind, keep the line tight and let the fish find it.
Tie the Orange Fish Hawk with dark brown thread on a No. 12-14 wet-fly hook. Wrap a tag of fine silver or gold tinsel. Use orange floss for the body and rib with tinsel. Finish with a sparse badger hen hackle.
—Gary Lewis, for The Bulletin