How to Tie: The Pay Day Midge

In this week’s How to Tie video feature, Barry Ord Clarke from The Feather Bender shows us how to tie the Pay Day Midge.

Learn About This Fly:

Difficulty: Novice

The payday midge is a dry fly imitation of a freshly hatched midge; an insect somewhat similar to the mosquito and a favorite amongst hungry trout. This tie is set to imitate the final stage of the midge, the first of which being the larva, then the emerger, then what you see here.

The Pay Day Midge pattern is similar to many other midge patterns, but capitalizes on its shiny quill abdomen, and vibrant red dubbing body. This fly, like other midge patterns, is best fished on calmer water such as eddies and lakes. Considering the size of these midge patterns, many anglers find them to be less effective in enticing trout to rise (as opposed to mayflies and caddis). However, if you can identify a midge hatch, which is often notable by large clusters of flies swarming a condensed zone, toss your fly into the mix. Trout will often rise at these large groups as they make for easy and bountiful snacks.

If you’re just now getting into tying dry flies, this is an excellent pattern to start on. Because of its few ingredients, this fly is a great way to practice working with more natural materials like peacock quill and is also great practice for wrapping hackle. Also note, that by playing around with color variation, you can put your own personal touch on this fly in order to best match your local hatch.


  • Mustad c49s size 16 dry fly hooks
  • Sheer red 140 denier tying thread
  • Natural striped Peacock Quill
  • Barred ginger hackle
  • Red seal fur dubbing


Now you know how to tie the Pay Day Midge

Video courtesy of The Feather Bender 

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