The best brook-trout waters near the Orvis HQ in southwestern Vermont are fast-flowing freestone streams, which feature lots of pocket water, so I need a high-floating fly that I can see even in frothy, turbulent water. In creating the Hi-Vis Coachman back in the late 1990s, I copied/stole aspects of the traditional Royal Coachman, the Hi-Vis Royal Wulff, and the Comparadun to create a fly that’s tough to sink and hard to miss, even in low light. In fast water, fish don’t seem to mind the garish colors, and I’ve taken many fine brookies and brown trout on the Hi-Vis Coachman. I also tie the pattern in yellow, chartreuse, and white.
Hook: Standard dry-fly hook, sizes 6 through 20.
Thread: Red Ultra Thread.
Wing: Orange deer hair, tied Comparadun-style.
Hackle: Grizzly, clipped flat along the bottom of the fly.
Tail: Orange deer hair.
Body: Four or five wraps of peacock herl, followed by a short section
of red thread or floss, then another three or four wraps of peacock herl.