Tuesday Tutorial: Dornan’s Circus Peanut

Will Dornan of the Snake River Angler is one of my favorite western fly tiers, and I’m especially fond of his big chernobyl-style stonefly patterns. While the standard Chubby Chernobyl is a guide standby here in western Montana, it seems like many guides Dornan isn’t satisfied with the standard and has added his own flair to make his versions pop. And when golden stoneflies are on the menu, having a few of this lowriding, unsinkable Circus Peanut is a must. While this fly lacks the hi-vis wing of a chubby chernobyl, you’ll have no problem seeing this bright yellow monster in the water. When it comes to fishing this fly, I like to skip any sort of floatant, and let it fish until it sinks which is rarely ever. Something about it riding in the film seems to get a lot more strikes than coating it with a bunch of goop and trying to keep it up. Plenty of foam does the trick, while the dubbed body rides down in the good stuff. Get going on your summer attractors now, because when the hatches hit you’ll want nothing to do with tying and all the time you can get on the water! Add a dozen of these Circus Peanuts to your golden stone arsenal and you won’t be sorry.

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