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Golden Retriever

Posted on May 01 2012

Golden retriever weighted fishing fly with tan marabou tail and tan estaz
The Golden Retriever was originated in the Shenandoah River Valley in Virginia. It is tempting to call it a type of wooly bugger, but there are some distinct differences between the two patterns. My first experience with this pattern was accidental. Last fall, a customer came in and asked if I could copy a fly that was working well for him on the Upper Magalloway. It had been pretty much destroyed by the fish. As I inspected it, I recognized it as a pattern I had seen somewhere on the internet as the Golden Retriever. I ordered the needed material: a tinsel-like material called Estaz. During the winter tying classes, it became a favorite among tiers. It can be tyed in tan (the original color), root beer, olive, white, black, and more.

Hook – 9672 #10
5/32 bead,
0.025 lead free wire
Thread – red 6/0
Body – red floss
Tail – tan marabou
Hackle – crustacean tan Estaz, medium


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