KILLER - Simple Baetis Nymph Pattern

Information and tips for tyers, as well as information on hatches.
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Postby brntrout » Fri Feb 10, 2012 5:20 pm

This is a Baetis Nymph pattern I have used for at least twenty years. It is simple to tie, very durable and a very effective nymph pattern for Baetis hatches.

IMPORTANT NOTE: Real Baetis nymph's have a very slim profile.

1. Hook: TMC 3769 in sizes 16 & 18
2. Thread: Black Ultra 70 Thread - Ultra 70 Thread has a good shine to it and is better than using DULL threads for this pattern.
3 Tails: 4 or 5 Microfibetts in dark dun color.
4. Wingcase: 10 or 12 strands of Black Krystal Flash


This pattern is easy to tie

1. Place hook in vise.
2. Wrap Ultra 70 Thread on the hook shank to where the hook bend starts.
3. Tie in the tails.
4. Use thread to build up the abdomen area. Once that area is built up, it should be the same size of a real Baetis nymph.
5. In the thorax area tie in 10 to 12 strands of black Krystal Flash which will become the wingcase.
6 Next, Build up the thorax area with thread so it is the same size as a real Baetis nymph thorax.
7. Pull the Krystal strands over the thread thorax area to form wingcase and tie off.
8 Then finish the head area and clear coat the entire fly "EXCEPT" the tails and your done.

This pattern only requires three materials to tie it. Thread, Microfibetts and Black Krystal Flash

For clear coating: I use Sally Hansen SUPER SHINE(CLEAR)to clear coat the abdomen, wingcase & head area. That stuff works better than 95 % of the head cements out there and comes with its own applicator and bottle. CHEAP TOO! Have the wife buy you a new supply now and then.

Try this pattern you won't be disappointed if you tie it right. This fly is usually good for dozens of fish (unlike PT nymph's)before you might have to replace it, provided you don't lose it first. :o
Last edited by brntrout on Sat Feb 11, 2012 5:33 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby jrs » Fri Feb 10, 2012 6:50 pm

Thanks for posting brntrout.

I've become a strong believer in very dark, thin nymphs during the spring and fall BWO hatches. The flies I have used a little more complicated, but probably have a similar profile and overall look.

I was a little surprised at the black wingcase. I realize black is probably a better imitation of the natural, but it seem a like pearl flash wingcase adds a bit of life-like flash. Do you have thoughts on black vs. pearl wingcase for this fly?
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Postby mwinkels » Fri Feb 10, 2012 8:34 pm

Tom would you be able to post a picture of one?

I am a visual learner
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Postby brntrout » Sat Feb 11, 2012 11:03 am

JRS, I have used both black krystal flash and pearl krystal flash for the wingcase. I have had better luck using the black KF but there is no reason not to try the Pearl KF for a wingcase. Its very possible I haven't given the pearl KF wingcase version of this Baetis Nymph a long enough try to sort out which really works best.

MW, I'll see what I can do about a picture of the B nymph. it might be awhile but I'll try.
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Postby ted4887 » Sat Feb 11, 2012 12:04 pm

I'll definitely tie this one up. Do you ever segment the body or just leave it?
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Postby brntrout » Sat Feb 11, 2012 1:10 pm

There is no reason to segment the abdomen area, as far as I know, the trout don't care so why do it? Baetis nymph's move around fairly fast in the water column, they are a swimmer type mayfly nymph and when swimming to emerger in the drift of the stream, trout don't have time to inspect them that closely. Besides, if there is a good Baetis hatch trout will stuff themselves as fast as they can. The supply and demand for food and its BRIEF availability means trout have to make the best out of the energy they expend VS the energy gained in order to survive. That means trout will gobble up any food item as fast as they can when a food item is available in mass quantity.

I have tied different types of Baetis nymph's with and without segmenting/ribbing the abdomen area. I have found it makes no difference in catching more or less trout. The only reason ribbing/segmenting the body of a fly is necessary in SOME cases, is because ribbing the fly holds it together better. Example: if you don't rib a real Pheasant Tail Nymph by reverse ribbing it, your PT nymph will fall apart after only catching one or two fish and be TOTALLY worthless in short order.

My Baetis nymph fly pattern is clear coated with a quality finger nail top coat that is able to penetrate into the entire fly body EXCEPT the tail area. Because of that it is very durable and doesn't need ribbing.
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Postby ted4887 » Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:03 pm

Sounds logical to me!


I'm also a visual learner, but decided to give it a go. Your directions are pretty specific. I didn't have dark dun microfibets though. Only light dun. I'd appreciate it if you could give me a little guidance here, so I make sure future ones I tie up correctly.


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Postby brntrout » Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:49 pm

Ted, nice job, your fly looks almost like the ones I tie. The only thing you could do a little better job of is make the tail length a bit shorter. ( about half the length the tails are now) Other than that your fly is right on the money. Did you use black or dark brown thread? It looks brown, if it is, I'm not sure whether the color difference will affect your catch of trout or not? Only the trout can tell you if the color difference really makes a difference in your catch rate?

Thanks for posting and sharing a photo of your fly pattern, I'm sure MW will be happy to see the picture. 8-)

Regarding microfibett tail color it may or may not make a difference. If you want the tails darker you could always use a permanet black marker (SHARPIE) to color them darker.
Last edited by brntrout on Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby ted4887 » Sat Feb 11, 2012 2:50 pm

The tails slipped when I was tying them in. I didn't really notice until after the fact. The next one I tied up was much better. The thread was black. The lighting alters it just a touch.
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Postby D.A. » Sat Feb 11, 2012 4:49 pm

Use some wood duck for the tail. I have gotten away from K. flash for wing cases, mainly because once they catch a few fish, they get chewed up and fray. There are a ton of single strand wing case materials, so I won't get into what I use. I have a tendency to velcro the thorax area when I'm done also to pull some fibers out and give it a buggy look.
You're a daisy if you do.
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