Phil Rowley’s Dubbed Scud Pattern

In Phil Rowley’s latest tying video, he covers a simple yet highly effective dubbed scud pattern for stillwater trout. Whether you’re a guide looking to pump out industrial quantities for use all season long or a beginner trying to develop your tying skills, this is a great pattern for everyone. Check out the video below.


Scuds are a calorie-rich food source trout love to eat. They are the carbohydrates of productive stillwaters, helping trout pack on pounds quickly. Exponential growth rates of two pounds per season are common on many productive lakes.

Despite that trout love to eat scuds, many stillwater fly fishers feel intimidated when choosing and fishing scud patterns effectively.

From a presentation perspective, it pays to fish scud patterns with a slightly aggressive approach to making your fly stand out from the thousands, if not millions, of natural scuds. Targeting the shallow water, less than 10-feet, in most instances where scuds prefer to live, use a brisk 1-2-inch choppy, erratic strip pause retrieve. The goal is to make your pattern stand out from the naturals by using a retrieve pace that draws trout to your fly and trigger a positive reaction.

The best scud patterns are uncomplicated and straightforward. As with many patterns types, simple flies perform best, especially when trout focus on smaller scuds, size 14 or smaller. The Dubbed Scud is about as simple as it gets, a hook, dubbing, and contrasting wire rib. You can tie the Dubbed Scud in a variety of colors. When figuring out what color to try, always use the weed colors as a guide. Scuds are camouflage masters, seldom straying from the natural coloration of their surroundings.

Phil Rowley is an internationally renowned stillwater specialist. His seminars, books, fly tying videos and articles make him an angler’s best friend and a trout’s worst enemy.

For more stillwater tips like this, make sure to follow Brian Chan and Phil Rowley at Stillwater Fly Fishing and Fly Tying on Facebook and download their Stillwater Fishing App for Apple and Android.

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