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BWO Series Videos - Part II CDC Burke Emerger

BWO Series Videos - Part II CDC Burke Emerger

Series Overview Intro

In this new video series, I hope to teach you about the major hatches of the Eastern United States and how to select flies to best represent those bugs. The thinking with these videos is that I wanted to not only show tiers how to imitate these insects, but also to teach every angler about my thinking in approaching each hatch and how bug behavior can impact fish behavior. After working for TCO for over a decade now, I have seen what troubles most anglers in selecting flies for a given hatch and my hope is that these videos will provide some insight into my process and hopefully provide some new information to help you be more successful on the water. With that, check out the first set of videos in this group of videos, The Blue Winged Olive Series. Please let me know what you think of the videos and what else you would like to see us doing.

-Lenny Gliwa


CDC Burke Emerger 

Emerger patterns come in many styles, but one of my favorite and most consistent producers has always been the CDC Burke Emerger. This simple dry fly pattern has accounted for some of the largest dry fly caught wild trout I have ever seen. I was first introduced to this style of flies by my former boss, Paul Weamer. Weamer is, in my opinion, one of the foremost authorities on technical dry fly fishing for selective trout and is arguably the best fishing entomologist in the country. The Burke emerger is a platform that I manipulate to cover a wide variety of insects. Tie it in a size 14 with a pinkish body, and you have a fantastic male Hendrickson emerger. Tie it in a size 18 with a yellow body, and you now have your Little Sulphur emerger covered. The versatility is truly amazing. 

When it comes to dry fly emerger patterns, I believe one of the most overlooked issues is having a variety of profiles for the fish to look at. For instance, let’s think about two different size 16 Blue Winged Olive emergers. A curved shank pattern with the wing tied back like a Burke Emerger is drastically different than say a size 16 “Pop” emerger, tied on the same curved hook, but with a forward facing wing tied over the eye of the fly. While these are both size 16 BWO emergers, how they sit in the water and what the trout sees varies greatly between these two seemingly very similar patterns. This type of information can be absolutely invaluable when you are faced with selective trout and challenging fishing. Take a good look at your dry fly box and make sure that you not only have a variety of sizes for each major hatch you’ll encounter throughout the year, but also a variety of profiles within each size. You’ll catch more fish and you’ll have a better shot at catching those super picky fish you might have deemed uncatchable in the past. Check out the materials list below and be sure to stop by your local TCO, give us a call, or shop with us online for these materials and all your fly fishing and tying needs.

Lenny Gliwa


CDC Burke Emerger

Hook: TMC 2488 sz. 16

Thread: UTC 70 Brown Olive

Shuck: Mayfly Brown Zelon 

Dubbing: Olive Brown Superfine

Wing 1: BWO EP Trigger Point Fiber

Wing 2: Natural Dun CDC

Previous article BWO Series Videos - Part III CDC Sparkle Dun
Next article BWO Series Videos and The Bug Book by Paul Weamer Book Review


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