What is the universal fly? [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: What is the universal fly?

11-21-2001, 02:59 PM
Just curious. If you were to pick a fly to 'represent' flyfishing as a general global symbol, what fly would you pick?

11-21-2001, 03:08 PM
Something in the Classic Salmon realm.

11-21-2001, 03:39 PM
I am sure the royal coachman is probably the most recognized fly though I seem to have misplaced the scientific data to support my claim.

11-21-2001, 03:58 PM
I would vote for a classic dry fly like an adams,royal wulff, etc or an atlantic salmon pattern.


11-21-2001, 04:04 PM
Royal or Gray Wulff in honor of Lee Wulffs many innovative
contibutions to fly fishing.


Willie Gunn
11-21-2001, 04:28 PM
I would have to go for a Classic Atlantic pattern.

Dusty Miller, Jock Scott.

For a modern fly perhaps a Willie Gunn!!

What fly are you using in the top of the messages ?

11-21-2001, 05:33 PM
I would say the Royal Coachman (used in survival packs for US military.. I undestand) for freshwater, and Lefty's Deceiver for saltwater

11-21-2001, 06:26 PM
I tie an enlarged (4x long) nymph that sports six knee-joint tied legs and has a blend of all colours dubbed in the body. It catches fish when all else fails. I won a fly tying award for it in 1982 and have been using the pattern ever since. :)
From tip to tail it's roughly 3.5 inches long.

11-21-2001, 06:56 PM
Blue Charm, of Atlantic/Scottish fame
Royal Coachman, of world renown

John Desjardins
11-21-2001, 08:25 PM
I'll suggest something different here the wooly bugger.

11-21-2001, 09:02 PM
For me it would have to be one of the older trout patterns to qualify as trully Universal. I vote for the Partridge and Orange.

11-22-2001, 08:47 AM
My choice for overall results is the Hornberg. Fish it dry-fish it wet, upstream, dead drift across and down. I've had every manner of fish smash this fly. If it meant eating or starving this one is a must have.

11-22-2001, 09:50 AM
Happy Thanksgiving all!

Actually. I was polling opinions to decide what pattern I should draw for the little fly icon. That fly started as a simple green butt skunk as a test. The wing didn't show up in white so I added a little A/S fly fanfare to it and a jungle cock eye.

I think we all agree, the jumping fish is OK although as I come up with different species we'll circulate them on occasion.

Maybe that's the way to handle the fly icon too?

Dble Haul
11-24-2001, 09:07 AM
I have a late entry- the Muddler Minnow. It's used all around the world and can be fished wet or dry for numerous species.

11-26-2001, 11:27 PM
Jock Scott -- high art that catches fish. Everyone can appreciate it; it catches trout very well swum as a wet.

The stripers and bonito guys and gals probably won't dig it, though.

Anyway, that's my vote.

Petri heil,


11-27-2001, 06:54 AM
Juro - you're looking for a fly pattern to use as an icon, this icon should sumarize fishing global way.
I suggest a wet fly w/tail & throat, like a coachman wet or similar.

If you can aniamte it, try rotating the top 5 or so patterns suggested here - like a classic 5 rotation or something.

11-27-2001, 12:07 PM
I'd go for a classic Maine streamer, like the ones Mike Matinek ties up. Tom D

03-19-2003, 02:13 PM
About what my first post on the Forumn was and sure enough it is about one of favorite fly fishing icons.

Mr. L. Wulff.

Reminds me I have to get back to the Lee Wullf Trivia thread as soon as things slow down here at work.

See above thread.

PM Out

03-19-2003, 03:24 PM
Lady Caroline, very nice fly not too flashy not too drab.

Lee Wulf has had his day, can't understand why. I always took him for an elitist type, especially when he went after the long rod guys. And playing a salmon on a migi rod just to prove it could be done was a disgrace to that noble creature.

03-19-2003, 03:52 PM
I'd have to say adams or royal wulff

03-19-2003, 05:25 PM
What?!? Nobody suggested a Moose Turd? :chuckle:
Seriously, an Adams, Wulff, or a Mickey Finn.

03-20-2003, 12:22 AM
Even my non-fishing mother-in-law who hails from a non-fishing family (something that drove my wife nuts when she was growing up because she liked to fish, and no one else in her family did) recognizes the Royal Coachman. therefore, I would say the Royal Coachman is it.


I love the Classic featherwings and would love it to have been one of them; but there are very few of us who recognize which one is which. And fewer of of still who know how to tie them properly.

03-21-2003, 10:28 PM
If I were to pick a fly to represent flyfishing it would probably have to be one of the fancier salmon flies.

Pat Bahan
03-25-2003, 08:03 AM
If you are looking for an icon, visual effect such as the modified green-but you are using, is much more relavent to me than any name recognition. Frankly, I like it. It has all the characteristics of a fly. No one, cruising the forum, new to flyfishing, would have any confusion as to it being a fly.
IF I were going to make a change I would lean toward Classic Atlantic for visual effect.

p.s. Hard as I try, I can't bring myself to like Wulff. Not that I haven't learned an aweful lot from his writings.

03-25-2003, 09:28 AM
For a universal fly candidate, you have to look at a traditional, but USEFUL fly anywhere. Also, what about categories - wet, dry, nymph, streamer, salmon, steelhead.

My candidates (that should catch fish anywhere) would be:

Wet - Coachman
Dry - Light Cahill
Nymph - Hare's Ear
Streamer - Black Nosed Dace
Salmon - Durham Ranger
Steelhead - Green Butt Skunk

HOWEVER, ask any 10 guys and you will receive 10 different answers for all categories. THERE ARE A LOT OF GOOD FLIES OUT THERE!