The idea behind the Hippie Chick Midge was to incorporate numerous bright colors into a single fly in hopes that trout respond to at least one. It’s also constructed with fluorescent thread which gives the pattern an extra bit of pop when exposed to ultraviolet light. In any case, this colorful little fly has been working quite well for me of late.
For a hook, I’m going to use a Dai-Riki #125 emerger hook in a size 20. Hooks this small can be difficult to handle and plunger style hackle pliers make the job much easier. Start by mashing the barb. Then thread a small glass bead, here, silver and grey, onto the shank. With the bead in place, secure the hook in your tying vise.
Dark brown UTC 70 is a good choice for tying thread. Start your thread on the hook shank immediately behind the bead and take wraps rearward before snipping or breaking off the tag. Continue taking thread wraps back to about the barb.
I’ve chosen these four bright colors to form the body of the fly but the choice is yours. Cut about a foot length of each and lay the strands together. This will be enough to make numerous flies. Get hold of the strands and, at one end, snip the tips off even. Lay the strands against the near side of the hook and take wraps with your tying thread to secure them to the top of the shank. Make sure they’re bound down all the way up to the back of the bead and then take thread wraps rearward to secure them well down into the hook bend. With that done, return your tying thread to just behind the bead.
Get hold of the strands with your hackle pliers, approximately 2 inches down from the hook, and then cut off the excess with your tying scissors. Gently spin the strands clockwise to form a thin multicolored rope. You don’t want to spin too tight but you do want to get a good repetition of color sequences up the length. When you’re satisfied with the coloration, begin taking wraps around the hook shank to cover up the brown thread. Continue making wraps to where your tying thread is located behind the bead. You can then secure the strands with 2 or 3 tight turns and snip the excess off close.
For the wing buds, I like to use plain white egg yarn because its fibers are very fine and work well with the smallest of hook sizes. A half inch segment is all you need and from that you’re going to use just a wisp. Fold the yarn in half around your tying thread and then position the fold on top of the hook shank. Take thread wraps around the hook and the yarn as if you’re posting a parachute wing. A few turns are all that’s required.
Brown beaver dubbing works well for the thorax of the fly and to support the wing. Again, you only need very little. Remove as many stiff guard hairs as you can and leave mostly the soft delicate underfur. Dub a short thin noodle on your tying thread and then build up the thorax both behind and in front of the wing. I feel this gives the Hippie Chick a more natural look. Do a 3 or 4 turn whip finish immediately behind the bead and then snip or cut your tying thread free. Finally, trim the yarn off close to form a nice little wing bud.
And that’s the Hippie Chick. I wonder if Patchouli oil would work as a floatant.