May be tied in size and color to imitate your local caddis flies.
Other names used for this fly: Polysedge, Rackelhahn
Note 3: Pictured
fly is tied with brown dyed Polywing material.
The construction and the idea of Rackelhanen was developed in 1967 during a hatching of caddis in Vännån
River located on the border between the counties of Kronoberg and Halland in Sweden.
The fish was extremely
selective on a special caddis, whose pupa hatched just below the surface. The fish only took the hatched fly in
the zone between, 10-20 cm below the surface and up to the surface. The pupa, would be an easy target all the
way from the bottom to 10-20 cm from the surface. But this pupa didn't interest the fish, neither did the hatched
fly that rested on the water surface ready to fly away. This hatching kept going on for several evenings.
I finally understood the problem, I found the right method to copy this hatching procedure after a long time of
experiments. It took some time, but when I had found the right material (polypropylenyarn), the tying technique
and the fishing technique - the Rackelhane fly turned out to be deadly efficient.
The fly was not very beautiful,
it's appearance was almost frightful. Because of this I was very reluctant to show the fly to my fishing friends. I
was always prepared for laughs, but soon the laugh changed into other expressions, when they took the time to
try my creation. It was one of my fly fishing friends who named the fly
Rackelhanen. He thought the fly looked like a "bastard."
The name Rackelhane comes from the Swedish name of a cross between a Black Grouse
male (Heathcock - Lyrurus t. tetrix), and a Western
(Tetrao urogallus, female). They are two gallinaceous European
During the years I have developed many different fishing methods with
I will try to describe the most important methods. Rackelhanen almost always is fished in the surface and with a floating line.
But at certain times it could be better to choose a sinktip line. A Rackelhane should always be treated with a floating
substance. Many people have misunderstood the quality of polypropylene, and believe that it floats well
without treatment, but it won't!
Caddis have many different ways of hatching.
These ways must we, as anglers know how to
imitate. The Rackelhane makes a blurry silhouette when it is looked at from underneath against the sky.
This is most likely the best explanation why the Rackelhane is so efficient.
The material gives the impression of life, and the caddis are never still either on or in the water, in contrast to the mayfly.
Technique 1. Stripping on the surface. Short and "nervous" pulls, 2 inch long, with a short pause between them.
This imitates the behavior of egg laying or drinking caddis
Technique 2. When I see the fish eating "swimming" "paddling" caddis pupae on the water, I usually cut of the
wings on Rackehanen and present it as a surface swimming pupa heading for land.
Technique 3. A - Let the leader sink. You can gladly use a sink
tip line with a short tip.
B - Pull the line so that the fly drags under the water surface. C -
Make a short pause, and the fly floats up again with a plopping sound.
This technique gives a perfect imitation of a caddis that is hatching
just below the surface
Technique 4. You can also fish Rackelhanen completely free floating as a dry fly, imitating a spent caddis.
During the years I have tested the Rackelhanen on many different
species of fish, e.g. trout, char, rainbow trout, cutthroat, grayling
and many more, both here in Europe and in USA.
Everywhere the fish have taken my fly with the same confidence and
trust as Swedish trout.
Because of this I strongly believe that you can find it worth your
while to try Rackelhanen on your next fishing trip.
Use a prewaxed thread of the same color as the rest of the
fly. Cover the shank with thread down to the bend, turn here and wind a couple of mm in the opposite direction.
Wax the thread thoroughly, dub it with 1 cm long cut pieces of
poly yarn that you have fluffed up.
the two first turns down against the bend.
Here you turn and wind in the opposite direction. This way you can
trap the fibers from the first turns (otherwise it's difficult to
have these stay in the right position) down under the body material.
Remember to leave space for the wings and front
Cut a piece of the poly yarn and use the right amount of
fibers for the hook size you are using. Tie the yarn on to the hook as shown in the picture.
Fold the other
wing-half backwards and fasten it with a couple of thread turns over the
wing-base. Remember to leave enough space for head and front body.
Trim the wings by cutting them just behind the hook bend.
Important that you don't make them too long.
the thread again with 10-20 mm long bits of fluffed poly yarn and tie
the front body.
Finish the fly by making a small head with tying thread. You can
varnish the head if you feel
like it but it isn't necessary, because we used the pre-waxed thread.