Sunday, January 9, 2011


As a youngster my fishing was limited to a few local golf course ponds and a few others I maybe should not have fished. Night crawlers were the bait of choice and it worked well for some time. I saved enough money and bought a Mitchell 300 spinning reel, at the time it was tops. With the new spinning combo I also purchased a few Original Daredevle's in red and white. The next trip to the golf course pond I was amazed by the number of pickerel that this lure brought in, they would attack it with gusto.

While fishing the Farmington River years after I fished this Daredevle with confidence and it produced its share of trout. When I picked up the fly rod, a new arsenal would be needed, but funds were limited so the flies I purchased must be good fish catchers. One of the first flies I spotted in the shop was a Red and White bucktail, I purchased a few to start along with some others and was off to the river. That Red and White bucktail worked as well on those stocked trout as the Daredevle.

Some how the bucktail was put into the box and more realistic insect looking flies were used. It stayed pretty much lkie that until one August while we were vacationing in Rangeley Maine. While walking down the long road to Upperdam, two flyfishers were on there way back. We chatted for a while and they said the Red and White were working. As I tied on a #10 Red and White and cast it into those rough swirlling waters, a silver streak came up from his bottom lie to slam the bucktail. That short evening was a top 10 in my fly fishing days.

I still use that Red and White from time to time, with thoughts of that Landlocked salmon in Upperdams waters showing his colors for the Red and White bucktail

The "Red and White" bucktail. A simple and perhaps not used enough fly.


  1. Those look like producers for sure. We often over complicate thing in fishing and in life.

  2. Red and white..a killer you note, awesome for well as salt water..I think I need to ty some variations to experiment with. Too much fun!!!

  3. Alan,

    Found your blog last week. Nice to see the small stream scene is alive and kicking. That Red and White can be a trip maker. Try it in a winged wet tie or small bugger. Looking forward to more posts! Todd

  4. teachrtec,
    Thanks, and I agree that sometimes we do try to complicate something that has worked in a simple and easier form.

    Saltwater too. Good to know, Thanks

    Thanks. Small streams and wild trout, I do love it.
    I have fished a Parmacheene Belle wet which is similar, its a great brookie wet fly.

  5. Mitchell 300. Wow, the first spinning reel I had and I used it until it fell apart. If you replace the wite with yellow on the bucktail it gives you a Mickey Finn. Also good for Brookies.


  6. Simple is better. I think bucktails are a fly that is underappreciated. I was turned on to them when reading through Fran Better's fly tying guide. I tied many in the way Fran suggested, browns, whites and blacks of a natural bucktail and I did pretty good with them this year.

  7. Mark,
    The Mickey Finn is probably on of the best brookie flies out there. And the same fate fell upon my Mitchell 300, with the salt water helping that happen.

    Frans Old Fashioned bucktails, a good article.
    One of the few fish that seem to be in brook trout waters, especially small streams is the Black Nosed Dace. I believe that brookies will feed upon them when available. Thats another good bucktail Black Nose Dace.