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Freestone Fly Tying Series - CBC Red Scud

CBC Red Scud

To kick off the second entry of the Freestone Fly Tying Series, I'm going to be tying the CBC Red Scud pattern, which I found in a February 2015 Issue of Fly Fusion Magazine (an awesome fly fishing mag based out of the Kootenays!). Each issue has a variety of new patterns to either try out or tie yourself, it's one of my favourite features of their magazine. This pattern in particular was developed by Colin Callbeck, a contributor to the "Fly Tier's Table" content seen in Fly Fusion, so all creative credit goes to him!

This scud pattern has been highly effective in weedy areas of natural lakes, especially when the water temperature is quite low (think after ice-off or in late fall). I like to fish it on a dead drift suspended under an indicator, or if that's not producing then i'll do a slow strip to imitate a scud swimming pattern. Okay, lets get into it!

Material List

Hook: Size 10-14 Curved Scud Hook
Thread: 6/0 Red Uni-Thread
Bead: 8/0 Red Glass Bead
Tail: Red Strung Marabou
Rib: Gold Wire (Small)
Body: Red Arizona Simi-Seal Dub
Back: Clear Scud Back with Pearl Crystal Flash

Start by getting the glass bead on your hook, and adding a few wraps of lead (0.15 is what I used) to add some weight. Get your thread started and wrap a few times back and forth over the lead to secure in place, add a bit of thread-dam behind the lead to snug everything up.

Next, get some nice marabou fibers and make a tail about the length of the hook shank, using the excess to build the body up a little bit. Next tie in your wire and bend off to the side (this will come last!). I forgot to mention to only bring your thread slightly down the curve as scuds only curl up when they've come out of water, or when they're dead. They usually have a straight profile when in the water.

Get your scud back and crystal flash out and tie them in to the start of the tail. I prep my scud back by cutting a "V" at the end, ties in nicer and seems to help get it nice and straight along the shank when you pull it over. Now in Colin Callbeck's  Fly Fusion version he uses red crystal flash, but I chose pearl mostly because I like the look of it better (you'll come to learn I not only like my flies to nail fish, but they gotta look pretty while doing it!).

Begin get a dubbing noodle going, you can use Red Ice Dub or what I'm partial to, Red Arizona Simi Seal (anything Arizona Simi Seal is awesome). I like to build my scuds up in the middle, give them a nice taper towards the tail and head. Once dubbed, get your wire brush and loosen some of the dubbing fibers out, this will act as legs as the fly moves through the water.

One step I kind of forgot to include, and is totally optional, is to grab some more marabou fibers and make some antennae out of it. Do this before pulling your crystal flash and scud back over the hook shank, or you'll have a helluva time securing those finicky fibers, and likely will start crowding the head.

Lastly, wrap that gold wire rib evenly and tie off just behind the bead. I always try to land 4-5 wraps depending on size. The wire helps with securing everything down and also adds to the longevity of the fly itself. End with a whip-finish (4-5 wraps) and a spot of head cement, or if you're feeling adventurous, give the whole back of your fly a coating of UV Resin. Not only does it make it look great, it adds another measure of protection to your fly!

This fly is a must-have in your stillwater arsenal, especially as said earlier in early spring and mid-late fall. I like colour variants in olive, pink/orange, white and will often switch out beads with some mono-filament eyes (such a cool technique!).

Another simple, effective fly in the books - now hit your vise and start loading you flybox with these little beauties!

Tight lines,



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