Like all fly anglers, I am always on the lookout for new information to improve my chances of landing fish. I pay particular attention to those fellow flyfishers who I know have skills and experience that surpass my own. So years ago when our own Dave Kilhefner told me he had recently enjoyed a 100 fish trip on the Deschutes, he immediately had my attention. When I inquired about his secret fly or flies, he simply said… “egg patterns”. On that particular trip Dave had started out chasing steelhead but the steelheading proved to be unproductive. Turning to trout as a diversion he found he had an easy time taking advantage of the trout keying in on the eggs being scattered by the chinook salmon that are in the Deschutes at this time of the year. On the Deschutes I am usually trying to crack the code about what bug is hatching and what stage of the life cycle I should be using. So thank you, Dave, for opening my eyes to another possibility of what I should be carrying in my box of trout flies.
Here is a general recipe and one method of tying instructions for a Glo-Bug type of egg pattern:
GLO-BUG EGG PATTERN
Hook: Tiemco 2457, Mustad C67S, Daiichi 1120, or equivalent; #6 – #14
Thread: 6-0 or stronger; color to match the color of the egg
Body: Glo-Bug yarn or McFly Foam; color of choice (Note: Many people find the McFly Foam easier to work with. It tends to form a tighter, more dense egg.)
1. Lay down a base of thread at the front 1/3 of the hook.
2. Secure two or three clumps of GloBug yarn or McFly Foam on top of the hook shank with 4 firm wraps of thread. Keep the material on top of the hook shank. (The thickness and number of the clumps will depend on the size of the hook used. You will need to experiment to find the right amount of material.) To form a “blood dot” or “eye” in the egg, lay a narrow strip of yarn/foam of a contrasting color on top of the original clumps of yarn/foam.
3. Secure the clumps with 8 wraps right in front of the clumps. Then, while pulling up on the clumps, circle the base horizontally with three tight wraps of thread. Whip finish and apply head cement.
4. Pull up firmly on the yarn or foam and trim it all at once in a slight arc.
5. Work the yarn/foam around the hook to form a round egg. Trim as needed.
”The key to tying a good egg pattern is to tie a SMALL one. 95% of the ones I see are too big…For trout I like to copy a 6mm bead and have it be that size or a little smaller.”
Check out these links for some good videos with tips for tying Glo-Bug eggs:
EGGO WEIGHTED EGG PATTERN
An Eggo Fly is weighted egg pattern and makes a good anchor fly. Here is a general recipe along with tying instructions for an Eggo pattern:
Hook: Tiemco 2457, Mustad C67S, Daiichi 1120, or equivalent; #6 or #8
Thread: 6-0; color of choice
Eyes: Lead eyes
Body: Chenille, Crystal Chenille, or Estaz; color of choice
1. Lay down a thread base where you will want to anchor the lead eyes.
2. Anchor the eyes with multiple figure-8 wraps of thread. Further secure the eyes with horizontal wraps below the eyes but above the hook shank. Apply super glue to the wraps.
3. Use thread to anchor a length of chenille right behind the eyes.
4. Use figure-8 wraps to form a round egg shape around the lead eyes, tying it off in front of the eyes. Whip finish. Apply head cement or super glue.
Here is a nice illustrated article from Dave Kilhefner showing the steps for tying the Eggo Fly.
Dave has produced another fine article titled “Egg Fly Fishing Secrets” that appeared in Flyfishing and Tying Journal. I would think this should be required reading for those flyfishers planning on fishing egg patterns, especially those club members heading to this month’s fish-a-long at Beavertail on the Deschutes.
Check out the following link: https://ftjangler.com/blogs/fly-fishing/egg-fly-fishing-secrets-by-dave-kilhefner
Additionally, here’s an excellent article from Mark Bachmann of The Fly Fishing Shop on fishing egg flies: https://flyfishusa.com/egg-flies.aspx#eggflies
And finally, here is a drawing from Dave showing a suggested way of rigging up for fishing your egg patterns (Pay attention here… remember, Dave had a 100 fish trip on the Deschutes!) —