The Connecticut River Shad Fly

This shad fly is part of The Pfeiffer Collection.

The Connecticut River Shad Fly is shown in four variations in C. Boyd Pfeiffer’s book Shad Fishing. The first two variants are quill wing versions and they are covered in this post. The video above shows a version modeled after variant #2 which calls for a gold body and orange wing. The pattern calls for a hook size 2-4, 2x- 3x long. That seemed a little long to me, so I tied my version on a standard size 4 hook.

Connecticut River Shad Fly

The Connecticut River Shad Fly #2 Pattern (as pictured above and in the video:)

Hook: Size 4 Mustad 34007
Thread: Black 6/0 Uni-thread
Body: Gold Mylar Tinsel
Wing: Orange Turkey Quill

Originals:

Connecticut River Shad Fly

Connecticut River Shad Fly #1 Pattern:

Hook: Size 2-4, 2x- 3x long
Body: Silver Tinsel, extended around the bend of the hook
Wing: Red duck flight feather, tied full but short, about 1/2 the length of the hook
(Fished with a 1/4 inch red glass bead ahead of the fly)

Connecticut River Shad Fly

Connecticut River Shad Fly #2

Hook: Size 2-4, 2x-3x long
Body: Gold Tinsel, extended around the bend of the hook
Wing: Orange or yellow duck flight feather, tied full but short, about 1/2 the length of the hook
(Fished with a 1/4 inch orange or yellow glass bead ahead of the fly)

While the Connecticut River Shad Fly is certainly a good looking fly, the quill wing makes it more complicated to tie than the average shad fly. I question how the wing would hold up after several fish as well. I am not sure when the fly was created, but it certainly harkens back to a more traditional day. While I enjoyed tying this fly and plan to try it on the water this year, I am not sure that I will be filling a fly box with this pattern, particularly for use on the St. Johns River where I fish. If you fish the Connecticut River and have tied and fished this fly, please let me know how it works for you compared to other patterns.

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