The King's River Caddis
Named for the California river of its birth, the King's
River Caddis is among those flies you want to tie just because
it looks so good. Its clean lines and crisply notched wing
of cinnamon-and-cream radiate elegance.
By Skip Morris
It is this distinctive wing that set the King's River Caddis,
an otherwise conventional fly, apart from other adult-caddis
imitations during the height of its popularity in the 1950s
and 60s. (It is, admittedly, a somewhat fragile wing, but a
coating of flexible cement can improve that.)
Despite concerns that it's too pretty to be good, too fragile
to be useful, the King's River Caddis continues catching trout,
just as it has for decades.
Wayne "Buz" Buszek of Visalia, California, for whom the
"Buz Buszek" fly-ying award was named, created the King's River
Materials for the King's River Caddis:
Hook: Light wire, standard length to 1X long, sizes 16 to 10.
Thread: Brown 8/0 or 6/0.
Body: Raccoon fur or natural or synthetic brown dubbing.
Wing: Mottled-brown turkey primary.
Tying Instructions for King's River Caddis:
Credits: The King's River Caddis is from Skip Morris's book,
Morris on Tying Flies, published by Frank Amato
Publications, (2006). The book contains seventy-four patterns,
Skip's favorites, updated from top to bottom.
1. Start the thread on the hook's shank, and then dub a full body over
the rear two thirds of the shank.
2. Snip a section about as wide as the hooks gape from a
mottled-brown turkey primary. Trim a notch in the tip of the
section. (A light coating of Dave's Flexament increases
3. Bind the secton, by its un-notched butt, atop the front
of the dubbed body. The notched end of the section should
extend past the end of the body a distance about equal to the
hooks's gape. Trim off the butt of the section.
4. Sprip the soft fibers from the bases of two dry-fly hackles
appropriate to the hook's size. Bind the hackles at the front
of the wing. Trim the hackle's stems and bind their cut ends.
End with the thread hanging just behind the hook's eye.
5. Wind one hackle forward in slightly open spirals; then
bind its tip. Wind the second hackle forward through the first;
then bind its tip. Trim both tips and then build and complete
a thread-head. Coat the head with head cement to complete
the King's River Caddis.