The Tom Rosenbauer Fishing Flies Collection

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Proven Fly Patterns Designed by Fishing Legend Tom Rosenbauer

Find distinctive, realistic patterns that attract eats in the Tom Rosenbauer Fishing Flies Collection. Known throughout the sport as one of the greatest living anglers, Tom Rosenbauer used his encyclopedic knowledge of fly fishing and years of success on the water to develop this series of flies that convinces fish they’re hitting the real thing. As Orvis’s Chief Fly-Fishing Enthusiast, Rosenbauer has spent thousands of hours on the water, and he knows what makes even the fussiest trout rise. His lifelike trout flies include options weighted with artfully incorporated tungsten bead heads to drop fast. Browse realistic caddis flies that imitate emergers or attract strikes even when nothing is hatching. Explore wet flies and nymphs with perfectly placed colors and buggy accents to entice the pickiest rainbows and browns. Rosenbauer’s expertise informed the design of versatile dry flies to use as an indicator in a dropper rig or alone as a single dry, so you can adapt to whatever works while you’re on the river. Whether you’re swinging a Euro rig or traditional leader setup, Tom Rosenbauer has designed the perfect fly to work for you. Find what you need to net your targets in this exclusive collection at Orvis.

Tom Explains His Fly Patterns

I typically use standard patterns and have a lot of confidence in proven flies like the Sparkle Dun, Pat’s Rubber Legs, Prince Nymph, Game Changer, and many others. Sometimes I make small modifications to them like putting rubber legs instead of biots on Prince Nymphs but I don’t consider these new fly patterns. There are times, however, when I feel a need for different patterns that aren’t covered by what you see in a fly shop. The following patterns are my go-to flies when standards don’t work, or where my modification of a standard pattern is more than just a color or single material change.

  • TR Deep Pupa – I am a big fan of the late Gary LaFontaine’s Deep Pupa but I’ve gradually modified it over the years to come up with a version I think is more effective. I replaced the fur body with bright green Ultra Wire, keeping the Antron overlay. I also added a bead, but a black one for subtlety. And the one aspect of a caddis pupa that is quite prominent, and I feel LaFontaine missed, were the dark wing pads, which are very prominent on an emerging caddis.
  • TR Wire Caddis Larva – Most trout streams are full of small, thin cased caddis larvae that live all over rocks on the bottom. They move around and are not tightly attached, so they often drift off the bottom and into the current. I think trout look for them and I have found these larvae in many trout gullets after giving them a throat pump. It’s a great fly on a Euro rig or when fishing a dry dropper when nothing is hatching.
  • TR Wire Mayfly Nymph – There are so many slim mayfly nymphs with a brownish olive tone that a generic pattern that sinks quickly and has the right profile in these colors is almost always successful. This one imitates sulfurs and Hendricksons in the larger sizes and the various olives and PMDs in the smaller sizes. It works very well prior to a hatch, or even during the hatch.
  • TR Rabbit’s Foot Emerger – The Rabbit’s Foot Emerger is a pattern I’ve used for about 30 years and guides all over the country swear by it. It floats down in the film, but the rabbit’s foot wing is highly visible and highly mobile and suggests the impression of movement. I’ve updated it a bit with a Tactical Wide Gape Hook, and I now put the CDC alongside the wings as “outriggers” to keep the fly positioned in the surface film. The Brown/olive version works for the many species of small olive-colored mayflies, which fish seem to prefer in the emerger stage. The PMD/Sulfur version works for the many species of PMDs or Pale Evening Duns or Pale Wateries throughout the world. This hatch often produces the pickiest fish of the season and this subtle, low-floating fly will fool them when conventional dry flies get refusals. The tan version works for March Brown (eastern and western), Hendrickson, Light Cahill, Gray Fox, and other tan-colored mayflies.
  • TR Wire Soft Hackle – When swinging a soft hackle, I like just a bit of weight on the fly to keep it below the surface and the addition of a small tungsten bead behind the hackle seems to make the fly swim better—I don’t have as much luck swinging standard bead head flies. The subtle mix of brown and amber and dun of this fly appeals to trout no matter what kind of mayflies or caddisflies are hatching.
  • Eck Caddis – This is a low-floating caddis imitation that I developed years ago and named for my friend the late Rick Eck. It works well for both emerging caddis and spent caddis that have come back to the water to lay eggs. You can also draw this fly underwater just before it drifts over a trout, and it will pop to the surface, looking and behaving like an emerging caddis. I find the neutral gray/brown coloration of this fly is good enough for most caddis hatches and don’t even bother tying it in other colors.
  • Combo Platter Nymph – Pheasant tail and hare’s ear fur are magic ingredients in a fly. This nymph uses both materials to produce a heavily weighted imitation with a wide profile. It’s a deadly imitation of stonefly nymphs, and larger mayflies like the March Brown and Western Green Drake. Two black tungsten beads are hidden in the hare’s ear thorax to add heavy weight to the fly without giving it the flash of beads that sometimes make picky trout suspicious.
  • Sneaky Spinner – Rusty-colored spinners match a whole range of mayfly species. This pattern utilizes a bent hook to give the fly a more lifelike profile, and it’s also been proven to fool picky trout that have seen too many spinner imitations with straight shanks. Hooking qualities are still superb despite the bend in the shank. The wings are just sparse and sparkly enough to imitate the flash of spinner wings, and the white foam overlay on the thorax makes them easier to spot in fading light. This is an imitation I save for really fussy trout on flat water.