Published Apr 18th 2006

a Scandinavian one material caddis/sedge imitation.


The finished fly - A very good and high floating caddis pattern tied with one material only apart from the tying thread
The finished fly
Swedish Kenneth Boström tied this pattern about forty years ago. I stumbled over it some 15 years ago, but found it too revolutionary. I had just started tying flies and dry flies are, as you know, tied using dubbing, quills and hackles!

Many years later, I fished some fast streams in Mid-Sweden. I could not see my flies. My E:12s and ants drowned and the exciting dry fly fishing suddenly turned into blind flymph fishing. Not my cup of tea.

Fortunately, I had brought my vice and some materials including poly yarn for parachutes. I had brought all the colors including some light olive and light grey.

You can tie variantions in all colors available. Dark body, light wing.
A small one tied with black body and white wing is a classic, but also olive body and cream wings work well. Some like a front hackle too.
I needed a hi-floater which should have the same profile (more or less) as the E:12.
I knew how to tie the Rackelhane, and one afternoon I started threading, dubbing, finishing. I tied some in olive, some in grey and some with olive body and grey wing (advanced, eh?).

Now we started a more controlled dry fly fishing. We fished the rapids for bigger grayling, and we could follow our flies - also in the evening and night (during the summer, nights are very bright in mid- and northern Sweden).
We had great fishing during the night, as Rackelhanen is a dry fly which can be fished actively by twitching the rod or fishing it in the skating caddis style or by pulling in the line in some fast, interrupted pulls, which will take the fly subsurface. At the end of the pull it will start emerging to the surface again, drawing a comet's tail of glittering bubbles, while releasing the air trapped in the wing.
Dry fly water - A nice stretch where the grayling and trout are numerous.
Dry fly water

Then it will emerge on the surface with a small "plop".

One day it started raining, the water level rose and the dry fly fishing became less productive. Then we used Rackelhanen as indicator and tied a nymph to the hook bend, so it would dance seductivly maybe half a meter (20") under the yarn caddis.

So, if you are looking for a hi-floating, cheap, easy-to-tie, multi-purpose caddis imitation, you should give this pattern a go.

Surprised dace - Taken on my favorite variation.
Surprised dace
The dorsal fin of a grayling - - the sailfish of the stream, which feed on caddis, sedge and Rackelhane\'s.
The dorsal fin of a grayling
Unhooked grayling - Even though they\'ve got an overbite, they often go for a fly in the surface with a \
Unhooked grayling


HookDry, long, such as Mustad 94833 or Partridge SHD, size 10-18.
ThreadColor to match body.
BodyPoly yarn cut into 1 cm pieces.
WingPoly yarn.
HeadPoly yarn cut into 1 cm pieces.

Tying instructions
  1. Cut some poly yarn into 1 cm pieces.
  2. Cover the hook shank with thread. Go a little bit down the hook bend.
  3. Make the thread come back again, so it hangs app. over the hook point.
  4. Dub the thread with the prepared poly yarn.
  5. Wind the dubbed thread to a little bit down the hook bend and back again, ending about an eye width from the eye. This should make the fly a bit more volumnious to the rear.
  6. Tie in poly yarn as the wing on one side of the hook.
  7. Bend the poly yarn over to the other side of the hook.
  8. Secure the wings
  9. Dub the wing base with poly yarn and form a nice head.
  10. Tease and trim the body to form "legs" and trim the wings.

Step 1 -
Step 1
Step 2 -
Step 2
Step 3 -
Step 3
Step 4 -
Step 4
Step 5 -
Step 5
The finished fly - A very good and high floating caddis pattern tied with one material only apart from the tying thread
The finished fly

Top view -
Top view

Read Kenneth Boströms original description here .

User comments
From: jan johansen · jany·at·blueyonder.co.uk  Link
Submitted September 19th 2007

Hi Kasper i do like this fly going now to have a go, it just looks right . Thanks Jan

Comment to an image
From: Arve Herman Tangen · mittfluefiske·at·gmail.com  Link
Submitted April 20th 2007

Yes it does look awesome. Rackelhanen is a very good fly. I know his Father. Kenneth Boström is a very famous Fly fisher from Sweden. But this is a very good pattern I love this fly and it is very good here in Trysil river in Norway. Can you make it in black and Grey too?

Comment to an image
From: Zoltan Palffy · palffyzoltan·at·hotmail.com  Link
Submitted April 25th 2006

Looks awesome!

Comment to an image
From: chris foltz · chrisfoltz·at·verison.com  Link
Submitted March 30th 2007

wish we had a few here in our limestone streams.

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