Ten Best Flies for Fishing Rocky Mountain Waters

The goal for any fisherman is to catch a fish on every river he or she fishes. While some just have more luck than others, each fisherman’s success depends heavily on the type of fly and bait they use. If you’re planning a fishing trip out West this season, we have put together a list of flies that have proven success in lake and river fishing that are sure to help you catch the trophy trout of your dreams.

There are countless fly combinations out there all depending on the size and color you need for your specific location. These are 10 of our top picks that we think are the best to use regardless of their size or color.

  1. The Hair Sculpin 

This fly is tried and true and will surely be a productive fly for you on any fishing trip. You can tie these in any size or color to a sink tip for deep lake fishing. Or you can tie it on a line and cast it from a boat or shoreline. Regardless, the hair sculpin fly is a great option and will help you catch fish.

  1. Zebra Midge

No matter how long you’ve been in the fishing industry, or if you’ve spent any time at all in your local fly shop, you know of or have heard of the zebra midge fly. These are versatile, easy to tie, and can be tied in any size. They are another reliable, productive, useful fly that we can always fall back on.

  1. The Panty Dropper Hopper

Don’t let the name distract you from the usefulness of this fly, especially if you are fishing in an area known to have a lot of grasshoppers. Again, it comes in several sizes and colors, and it has realistic looking legs to help attract fish and get the job done.

  1. Royal Wulff

Royal Wulff flies are particularly useful in smaller lakes, streams, or ponds where the fish aren’t pattern shy. Unlike other locations where fish have seen several different flies, these locations have fish that will be highly attracted to and attack your royal wulff fly.

  1. Parachute Blue Winged Olive

As far as dry flies go, the parachute blue winged olive fly is very durable. It’s also a fly that you can tie in a smaller size and still spot easily in the water. Durable, reliable, easy to see, what more could you want in a fly?

  1. Pats Rubber Leg Stonefly

The pats rubber leg stonefly, in our opinion, is just about the perfect fly. If you’re used to and good at tying flies with legs, these flies can be tied in any size and produce quality catches. 

  1. Hare’s Ear 

The hare’s ear has a classic pattern that is used all over the fishing world. Tied in any size or color and with different range of motion, they can be used to imitate all kinds of bugs and will attract all kinds of fish.

  1. Elk Hair Caddis

The elk hair caddis is your best option for fishing anywhere there are caddis. No matter how you use it, sunken, skated, or dead drifted, this fly will catch fish if you are in an area that is known to have caddis.

  1. RS2

This is another fly with a very versatile pattern. Tied in the right size and color, the RS2 will imitate basically any form of mayfly or midge. You can also use this fly year round in any lake or river in any fashion.

  1. Pheasant Tail

We think this is quite possibly the best fly out there. The pheasant tail fly is easy to tie, doesn’t require much material, and it doesn’t need to be altered much in order for it to be effective. Throw this fly in any pond, lake, river, or stream and you will catch fish.

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