The Iron Lotus

A dense Baetis with a subtle hotspot

Iron Lotus
The Iron Lotus is a quick sinking imitation of a mayfly nymph.  Its slick, coated body aids in the sink rate, its subtly segmented body adds realism, its sleek silhouette matches the naturals and its gold tungsten bead and subtle red thread hotspot give just enough flash and color contrast to pique the interest of feeding Trout.  If you are a fan of dumb humor movies (like me), then you likely know where this fly got its name.  Shortly after designing this fly the movie, "Blades of Glory", came out.  My team watched "Blades of Glory" several nights while tying flies leading up to a National Fly Fishing Championship.  In the movie was a dangerous, yet wildly effective (if executed properly) skating move called the "fabled iron lotus".  I thought the name was a catchy, and kind of summed up this pattern so I borrowed it for this fly.

I tie these in size 12 to 16 using jig hooks and size 18-20 on regular nymph or scud hooks.  
Because Baetis nymphs do not have anything red or gold on them, I've tried several versions of this fly with black or black nickel beads and without the red thread hotspot, thinking picky tailwater fish might prefer a more natural looking fly.  For me, the more lifelike colorations have been completely out-fished by the original sporting red and gold.  I can't tell you why the fish prefer the hotspot and gold bead, but I can tell you they do.  Go fish...

Material List

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Hook: Hanak H 400 BL Jig Hook - 14     
Thread: UTC Ultrathread 70 Denier - Light Olive     
Beads: Hareline Slotted Tungsten Beads - Gold - 7/64" (2.8mm)     
Weight: Lead Wire Spool - .010     
Tail: Whiting Coq De Leon Tailing Packs - Medium Pardo     
Abdomen: UTC Ultrathread 70 Denier - Light Olive     
Ribbing: 6/0 UNI-Thread Waxed - White     
Hot Spot: UTC Ultrathread 70 Denier - Red     
Body Coating: Loon UV Clear Fly Finish - Flow     
Thorax: Arizona Synthetic Dubbing - Peacock     
Wing Case: UTC Flashback Tinsel - Black - Large     

Other tools from the tutorial:
Renzetti Master Vise     
Loon UV Mega Light