The Sparkle Wing RS2 has become a standard pattern here in Colorado. The ubiquitous RS-2 has gained a bit of flash and sometimes this can make all the difference. Several years ago, the guys at Umpqua Feather Merchants asked me to tie the samples for this pattern and I played with the usual version a bit to try to streamline it a little. The formerly standard version used a flash braid for the wing that was far too large for the fly, along with the more conventional Microfibbett tails. I subbed in some pearl Mini Flat Braid for the wing to make the wing more in-line with the fly’s slim profile as well as a Fluoro Fiber tail, just to top things off. I have been very happy with the results and it seems as though everyone else has too! Fish this fly as you would the regular RS-2. Sometimes having a bit of sparkle is just what is needed on a little fly like this and I think you’ll find this to be a valuable variation to carry in your fly box.
Hook: TMC 101 #16-24
Thread: Gray 8/0 UNI.
Tail: White Fluoro Fiber
Abdomen: Adams Gray Superfine Dubbing
Wing: Mini Flat Braid, pearl
Thorax: Adams Gray Superfine Dubbing
Start the tying thread with a short jam knot at about the eighty percent point on the hook. Do NOT make a thread base back to the bend, just leave the thread hanging where you started it.
Lay in a single four inch strand of white Fluoro Fiber at the 80% point and tie it in at the center of its length with a turn or two of thread. Again, you do not want the thread to travel back, you just want to capture the Fluoro Fiber at the 80% point.
Pull both ends of the Flouro Fiber back along the top of the hook as shown here. You may want to hold these slightly toward your near side of the hook to *pre-load* them so the thread centers them atop the hook in the next step.
Wrap just slightly back over the bases of the Flouro Fiber to get them lying on top of the hook and pinned back.
Leave the thread hanging just behind the 80% point and dub the thread with the slimmest amount of gray dubbing you can. We want t keep the body on this fly very slim. Be sure to leave a small portion (an inch or so) of the thread bare between the top edge of the dubbing and the hook shank. We will use this bare thread to work back over the tails to the bend of the hook, tying the tail down, forming a thread base and positioning the start of the dubbing all in one fell swoop!
Hold the tail fibers up and slightly toward you here as you wrap the bare section of the thread back to the bend over the top of the tails. Try to keep the tails centered on top of the shank as you go. The dubbing should not come into play as you wrap back, just the portion of bare thread that we left between the hook and the dubbing.
Wrap all the way back to the bend with the bare thread, securing the tails to the top of the hook as you go. You should be right up to the start of the dubbing when you reach the bend of the hook.
Make the first, very thin wrap of dubbing under and behind the tail fibers. This turn of dubbing will help to life the tails a bit from the bend of the hook.
Pull the dubbed thread forward tightly to butt the dubbed thread up against the back of the tails.
Make the next turn of dubbing immediately in front of the base of the tail and then continue wrapping the dubbing forward up to the eighty percent point in a smooth even layer.
Wrap the dubbing back to the midpoint of the abdomen, building a bit of a taper on the front half of the body. Your dubbing must be very thin for this to work, so remember…use about one-third to one-half of what you think you need.
Make a couple more turns of dubbing over the front third of the abdomen to finish off the taper. You want a nice, sharp shoulder at the front of the dubbed abdomen. Wrap the bare thread forward from the front edge of the abdomen to the hook eye and back again, making a thread base for the wing that comes next.
Cut a one-inch length of Mini Flat Braid from the spool and fold it into a loop as shown here.
Fold the loop down flat and pinch it against the hook at the front edge of the abdomen. The loop should be about one-third the length of the abdomen and what is showing here in the photo is a bit long. Shorter would be good.
Press the thumb of your material hand down on top of the loop to hold it in place while you make a couple firm wraps of thread over the base of the flash loop at the front edge of the abdomen.
The wing length (loop) in this photo is much more like what you should have as far as the length goes.
Clip the wing butts as close as you can here behind the eye.
Dub the thread with another very thin layer of dubbing and begin wrapping it with the first turn immediately behind the hook eye. We are going to dub from the front of the hook, back to the base of the wing and back again.
Dub a single layer of dubbing back to the base of the wing. You can see a bit of a taper here resulting from the tapered thread base from tying the wing butts down.
Dub forward gain to the hook eye, finishing off the thorax shape and ending with bare thread at the very back edge of the hook eye.
Whip finish right behind the eye and clip the thread.
Pull the tails forward over the top of the fly and trim them so they are about one and a half shank lengths long.