The Morgan’s Midge has been a staple in the fly shop bins since I’ve been around – going on 9 years now. Even with as long as we’ve had it, it unfortunately gets overlooked quite often. It’s a little wisp of fuzz in the bottom of a fly bin, surrounded by many flashier and more appealing-looking patterns. It’s one of those flies that when I dump ten dozen in the cup, it looks like there’s roughly four flies, possibly five. All that aside, the Morgan’s Midge is a sleeper! What it lacks in complexity or flashiness, it makes up for with it’s sheer ability to put fish in the net. We’ve consistently been able to seduce picky tailwater trout into eating this fly with a surprising regularity. If the local trout get extra snooty and decide they don’t like trailing shucks on your fly, no problem! Take your handy-dandy nippers and trim off the iridescent shuck and you’re ready for the pickiest trout out there.
If you’re a fly tier, you’re in luck as well! This is a really simple pattern to tie, and it only uses three materials – five if you count the hook and your thread. The Morgan’s Midge makes a great ‘guide fly’, because it doesn’t break my heart if we throw three consecutive casts into a tree and the fly is forever lost. Regardless of the reasons it’s a good fly to tie, it flat out gets trout excited! It makes a dead ringer midge pattern, and for whatever reason it works extremely well as a baetis during the start of a BWO hatch.
Below is a video of Hans tying the Morgan’s Midge. Tie some up and fish them this weekend on the in-town midge hatch. Or stop by and grab a half-dozen at your favorite fly shop downtown! The highs this weekend are forecasted to be in the high 40s to low 50s – perfect February fly fishing weather here in the Black Hills.