The Hendrickson hatch is prime time on the Battenkill for catching large brown trout on dry flies, and everyone around here gets excited when the first reddish bugs are spotted on the water. The Red Quill is a classic imitation of Ephemerella subvaria, and there have been flies by this name since at least the 1880’s when Frederick Halford wrote about it. But the most popular pattern was created by Art Flick in 1933 and included in his Art Flick’s Streamside Guide (1947). The style is classic Catskills, with a slim, tapered body, and all the right proportions.
In this great video from Tightline Productions, author and blogger Matt Grobert demonstrates his technique for tying Flick’s pattern, and he makes the sometimes fussy Catskills process seem easy. So tie a few of these, and when the big bugs appear in April, you’ll be ready.
Hook: Standard dry-fly hook (here a TMC #100), sizes 12-16.
Thread 1: Olive, 6/0 or 140-denier.
Wing: Wood-duck flank-feather fibers.
Tails: Medium or dark dun hackle fibers.
Body: Quills from 2 reddish brown neck hackles.
Hackles: 2 medium or dark dun hackles.
Head: Tying thread.
Adhesive: Light head cement.