A Slim Shrimp Sea Trout Fly

// Written by Rainer Ballin
// Photography by Rainer Ballin

Spring is sea trout season – at least along the northern European coastlines of countries such as Denmark, Sweden and Germany. This simple pattern imitates a sea trout’s favorite food: shrimp.

For me fly fishing for sea trout means getting rid of the unnecessary. A rod in #6 or 7 and a line – that’s it. I take as few accessories to the water with me as possible – I want to fish simple.

This also applies to my selection of bait. Basically I always fish with the same two or three patterns. Preferably small imitations of sticklebacks (Polar Magnus Variants made of CDC). My first choice however is a shrimp pattern that I tie in three color variations: sand, brown and pink.

All three variants can be tied with a higher or lower degree of UV. In the following step by step tying instruction I show how my shrimp pattern comes to live. The most important requirement of my pattern is first and foremost trust. As a rule, I do not change the fly at all, at most once or twice a day. The pattern at the end of the leader should therefore suit me from the beginning. Long trunk, a little UV, at for the eyes and a slightly transparent body. It’s important that the fly doesn’t tail. And it must fish immediately and always right after the cast.

TWL Rainer Ballin Sea Trout Fly Shrimp IStep 1 – Sea trout fly

Put the thread on the shank of the hook and tie in a small bundle of rabbit fur. This is supposed to imitate the mouthparts. On top, a bit of stiff synthetic material. Next a small dubbing ball of UV dub and the two sensors made of Krystellflash.

TWL Rainer Ballin Sea Trout Fly Shrimp IIStep 2 – Sea trout fly

The eyes are attached to the side and a small strip of lead is incorporated. If the shrimp is to jig, I tie in the lead in front of the eye instead of the strip. The whole thing is fixed with the thread and a little secondary glue.

TWL Rainer Ballin Sea Trout Fly Shrimp IIIStep 3 – Sea trout fly

Several layers of Craft Fur are tied between the eyes and a loop is placed. Then the thread is wrapped with UV dub and the body is shaped.

TWL Rainer Ballin Sea Trout Fly Shrimp IVStep 4 – Sea trout fly

More strands of Craft Fur are tied into the loop. The loop is evenly wrapped backwards around the shank to the eye. Tie and knot.

TWL Rainer Ballin Sea Trout Fly Shrimp VStep 5 – Sea trout fly

The body’s dubbing is brushed off a bit and put back with a comb. Finally the eyes are aligned a bit and ready is the shrimp.

TWL Rainer Ballin Sea Trout Fly Shrimp VISea trout fly

All materials can be changed or varied, at will. Basically, I prefer to use “too much” material and reduce the pattern if it doesn’t suit me yet.

TWL Rainer Ballin Sea Trout Fly Shrimp VIIISea trout shrimp fly UV

The shrimp should be fished quickly. If that doesn’t bring the desired success, it can also be stripped in short, crisp intervals. Most importantly the fly has to be in the water constantly.

TWL Rainer Ballin Sea Trout Fly Shrimp Fly BoxVariations of shrimp flies in a box

List of materials:

– Rabbit fur for the mouthparts

– Stiffer, synthetic material prevents splitting of the trunk

– Craft Fur

– Polar Fiber and/or Polar Hair

– shrimp hook e.g. Owner Kappa SW-1, Sz. 6

– Ice Dub UV or Spectradubbing

– Crinkleflash Micro for the antennae

– some winding lead

– twine: 200d

– Dyneema Powerthread,12/0, (W. Fabisch)

– Eyes: handmade by Marco Lemburg. UV active

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