Published On: Sun, Dec 21st, 2014

Dorothy Trout Fly or Lure – Silver Dorothy Smelt Fly Pattern

Silver Dorothy Trout Lure - Hook Mustad 3666.

Silver Dorothy Trout Lure – Hook Mustad 3666.

Silver Dorothy

Though the Dorothy comes in many body colour combinations I think the silver tinsel body version is the most popular and the biggest seller. When fished in the North Island around Lake Taupo and Rotorua this pattern is tied with pointed cock hackles from a barred rock fowl. This pattern when tied and fished in the South Island uses wider hen spade hackles from the same breed of domestic chicken and is known as a Barred Rock Lure. This later fly being particularly popular in Canterbury where it is a top sea-run trout fishing lure.

As mentioned above this is one of the top lures for fishing Lake Taupo and the Rotorua Lakes. According to Derek Quilliam in his excellent book The Complete Guide to New Zealand Trout Lures this is an especially popular fly fished by local anglers in the Ohau Channel between Lake Rotorua and Lake Rotoiti. Tied in the smaller sizes down to size 8 it makes an excellent lure to cast to rainbow trout chasing smelt.

The Dorothy is also a very good lure to use for trolling and harling. When used for this purpose it is generally fished in a larger size 2.

The Dorothy is often attributed to Phil Parsons of Napier. Whether the Canterbury Barred Rock Lure is simply a copy I wouldn’t like to guess. The Dorothy is generally a sleeker looking lure while the Barred Rock was often tied in a plump torpedo fashion better suited to imitate the large smelt found at the mouths of the main Canterbury salmon rivers. The Canterbury smelt – better known as silveries or even cucumber fish owing to their distinctive smell – are in fact the same species of bait fish that were introduced into Lake Taupo. The Dorothy, and particularly the silver version, is one of the best lures for imitating them.

Other popular body colours include white, yellow and red chenille.

Hook: 2-8 Mustad 3666, or Black Magic B2 Lure Hook.

Tail: Red or orange hackle whisks.

Body: Flat silver tinsel. Variations include white, yellow or red chenille.

Rib: Oval tinsel.

Wing: Barred grizzle hackle tied down with oval silver tinsel matuku style.

Hackle collar: Barred grizzle hackle

Head: Black.

About the Author

- Fishingmag.co.nz website editor.