Learn how to tie the Little Brown Trout fly pattern, including step-by-step instructions, a video tutorial, pictures, and much more. Improve your fly-tying skills here.

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The Little Brown Trout is a classic streamer from Samuel R. Slaymaker of Pennsylvania, first tied in the late 1950s. Originally a part of a series of three streamers designed to imitate trout fry and intended to tap into the trout's predatory instincts. The other two flies in the series are the Little Brook Trout and the Little Rainbow Trout.

This pattern comes highly recommended in Joseph Bates' book, "Streamers and Bucktails: The Big Fish Flies," which suggests using a 6XL hook in sizes 2 -12., We find the moderate-size 8 Daiichi 2220 works best for most of our streams here in Maine.

Material List

Step One

We’re using two different threads for the Little Brown Trout streamer. Establish a base by wrapping white thread from below the hook eye to the bend.

Step Two

For the tail, strip away the excess fuzzy fibers from the pheasant hackle’s tip, cut the webby section’s center out, then secure it on top of the shank. 

Step Three

Moving onto the ribbing, secure a strand of Uni Mylar by the tip and below the eye with the silver part facing you, then cover the material with thread down to the tail. Leave the tag end intact, and we’ll complete the Little Brown Trout’s ribbing later.

Step Four

Secure the white yarn at the initial tie-in point, then cover the rear-facing material with thread down to the tail to begin the body.

Step Five

Finish the body by advancing the yarn’s tag end with overlapping turns, secure the material below the eye, then clip the excess.

Step Six

Complete the ribbing by advancing the mylar’s tag up the shank with evenly spaced wraps, then secure and clip it near the initial tie-in.

Step Seven

Clip the white thread, then create the Little Brown Trout’s head by wrapping the black thread below the eye several times.

Step Eight

The Little Brown Trout’s wing consists of multiple colors of bucktail,  but let’s start with yellow. Secure a sparse clump by the tip and below the eye, with the hairs running to the tail’s end.

Step Nine

Repeat the previous step with a mixture of orange and red bucktail tied over the yellow.

Step Ten

The final material is squirrel hair. Again, secure a sparse clump by the tip, below the eye, and directly above the bucktail. 

Step Eleven

Cover the wing’s tip tightly with thread, then complete the tying process by securing a whip finish.

Step Twelve

Finally,  apply a small drop of head cement, then it’s time to hit the water.