The Grey Hackle Peacock Wet Fly is a simple generalist fly pattern – it looks like nothing in particular and so like many things. Caddis pupa, mayfly nymph, stonefly, midge, drowned beetle, blowfly, caterpillar, and on and on. Tie it in various sizes to go from stoneflies to midges. Tie it on heavy hooks (like the Fulling Mill Heavyweight Champ used in the video) to sink it deep or on light hooks to keep it in or near the surface. You could even tie it with rooster hackle as a dry fly.
I fish this fly on a dead drift like a nymph, but I also like to let it swing downstream and rise to the surface. And when tied on light wire hooks in small sizes I fish it in the surface film like an emerging mayfly or even midge. It is just super versatile. For some tips on the wet fly swinging technique check out my Casting Around Blog Post: Tenkara Technique: Swinging Wetflies
I an addition to being a versatile fly, it is very inexpensive to tie. Nothing fancy is needed peacock herl and grizzly india hen are very inexpensive materials. I actually prefer the cheaper india hen to the more expensive hen necks available – I find the cheaper hen necks to have webbier and softer feathers that lend to the effectiveness of the design, aiding in sinking and fly movement.
If you are looking to simplify your fly selection and focus on presentation rather than switching fly patterns constantly (which will pay dividends – I promise) this is a fly to use for that. It has stood the test of time and I hope that you will give it a go and continue its legacy into the future.