This proved to be my go-to fly throughout late winter 2005.
Olive and Peacock Carey Special
Hook: Tiemco 5262, size 10
Thread: 0/6 black or olive (Black might be better)
Tail: Olive-dyed pheasant rump-feather long shaft barbs
Body: Peacock eye feather barbs
Hackle: Olive-dyed pheasant rump-feather tips
Rib: Fine copper wire—counter-wound over body for durability.
Notes on tying:
Some might find themselves scrutinizing the length of the hackle on these Careys. In the past, I have tied a few of these flies with the hackle on the shorter side—that is, hackle length not being at least full hook length. When I switched out to a longer hackled fly, I found better results. Having polled the trout, I figure erring longer is better than erring shorter.
The Carey Special is supposed to imitate a dragonfly nymph. Therefore, one should impart the same short, quick, darting motion of the original—over, in, and around weed beds. Once, while entering Fontal Lake through some lily pads, I cast back into the weeds from whence I came with a Carey Special. I had a trout on with the first pull. However, trout have expressed interest in the fly trolled even over deep water and at various depths. Since the Carey Special isn’t what I call a large(r) pattern, I have hesitated to troll at too fast of a speed. One constant is the motion gained by short, quick strips (1 inch). As stated before, this pattern is supposed to be an insect and not a fish. A slow to moderate troll speed would be the more imitative. Nonetheless, it’s a good idea to eliminate all possibilities of retrieves before abandoning the fly for another too soon. January through February, this fly was the bomb when trolled excruciatingly slow with an Intermediate line over shallows. Water temps were in the 40's and barely into the 50's, and it kept producing. This one is a certified winner!