The Drag Sculpin is representative of the class of large 3-4″ sculpin-style streamer patterns guides on the Yellowstone River often have clients use under strike indicators when shooting for larger brown trout, fish averaging 16 to 20 inches and potentially reaching or exceeding 24 inches. While such flies can be stripped like any big streamer, fishing them under indicators allows even novice clients who can’t properly cast and retrieve large streamers effectively to have shots at large trout. All that such clients need to do is mend consistently with slight amounts of drag between the mends.
The olive variation given here is without question the most consistent color for large streamers in the area, but other good baitfish colors also work: black, gold/tan, white, brown over yellow, etc.
Pink Lightning Bug nymphs are among the top winter flies in the region, especially on the Missouri River where they’re effective from now through mid-May. Suggestive of eggs and scuds, and to a lesser extent mayflies and midges, spin up a few Pink Lightning Bugs to try in your home waters this winter.