This is a size 16 Pale Morning Dun Sparkle Dun Mayfly or PMD for short.
One of my favorite flies. It’s in the top 5 of many fishermen in the know. The Sparkle Dun is a Craig Matthews pattern from Blue Ribbon Flies. I tie this simple, yet effective fly in size 22 Blue Wing Olive up to a size 8 Green Drake.
The fly is designed to imitate an adult mayfly trying to escape its nymphal shuck. That makes it an emerger or cripple. I really believe in using flies to imitate the transition to an adult. Somehow, the fish know they don’t have to work as hard to eat them because they can’t get away quickly.
You can watch the fish rise with purpose in slow, clear spring creek water with their mouth barely breaking the surface film. It takes a steady hand to not set the hook too soon. Don’t forget to try a Callebaetis on your favorite lake!
Here are a few favorite Sparkle Duns to imitate various mayfly hatches.
March Brown Sparkle Dun Mayfly – size 12:
Blue Wing Olive Sparkle Dun Mayfly or BWO – size 18:
Not a fly tyer? This fly can be readily found at your local fly shop in a variety of sizes and colors.
If you do tie flies, experiment with the body. The fly pattern sheet calls for a dubbed body. Include a biot body for the picky fish. Sometimes that extra rib makes the fish a believer.
Lastly, one of my favorites…a Green Drake Sparkle Dun Mayfly – size 10: