I have been tying some variation of this wonderful prawn pattern for the past decade and have been really pleased with its latest incarnation. The Prawn Solo remains a confidence fly for me when pursuing big wild steelhead throughout the Northwest during winter and spring. When the water is a little higher and has that come hither steelhead green tint to it, this fly lights up like a beacon. The prominent black eyes really complete the prawny shrimpy look I was after, and create a slight wobbling action in the fly that adds to its appeal.
I like the Prawn Solo unweighted and poised to probe the fishy flats, riffles and inside seams along the Skagit and Nooksack, though it's caught fish throughout Northern Puget Sound, the Olympic Peninsula and Lower Mainland, BC. Alas, Prawn Solo remained nameless through many seasons until last year, when through a multi-day text exchange between Brandon and I of various horrible and tasteless names, this one eventually stuck. We'll happily share some of the runners up with you when you're in the shop, but most are absurdly unsuitable for print. Pour yourself a tall one. This fly takes a bit of time to construct.
Prawn Solo Recipe:
Thread: Fire Orange Uni 6/0
Shank: 40 mm Senyo's Intruder Shank
Trailing Hook: #4 SSW Octopus
Trailing Hook Wire: Copper/Orange Senyo's Intruder Wire:
Tail Flash: Pearlescent Flashabou
Tail: Yellow Yak or Orange Farrar Blend and Orange MFC Ostrich
Rib: Hot Orange Brassie Ultra Wire
Rear Hackle: Hot Orange Schlappen (one side stripped)
Rear Body: Hot Orange Dubbing Blend (Hot Orange Angora, Orange Ice Dub, UV Shrimp Pink Ice Dub)
Eyes: Melted #80 Mono painted black
Rear Carapace: Hot Orange Chinese Pheasant Shoulder Feather
Front Hackle: Hot Orange Schlappen (one side stripped)
Front Body: Hot Orange Dubbing Blend (Hot Orange Angora, Orange Ice Dub, UV Shrimp Pink Ice Dub)
Front Carapace: Two Hot Orange Chinese Pheasant Shoulder Feathers
The Confluence Beer Pairing: We highly recommend drinking Fremont's Kentucky Dark Star Imperial Stout when you tie the Prawn Solo. The name's certainly in keeping with the whole Star Wars theme, but it's also a fine winter warmer that stands on its own. If you like stouts, this one's aged in 15 year old single use Kentucky Bourbon Barrels and makes a great bench-side sipper.