The Green Weenie …. what can I say? The Green Weenie is one of the first flies that I tied way back in the day. I don’t remember exactly where I first saw the Green Weenie, but I most likely came across it via a book or article by PA angler and author Charles Meck. He was not the creator of the fly but he did a lot to popularize it in his writing. An internet search brings up the names of Ken Igo and Russ Mowry as the originators.
It’s a stunningly easy fly to tie but that doesn’t mean it’s not effective. I have caught many, many fish on the Green Weenie. The version that I used to tied was weighted with lead wire. But with the advent of beads I have moved to using brass or tungsten beads for the weighted versions.
In addition to it’s appeal to the fish – the Green Weenie has the added appeal of high visibility to the angler. Quite often when fishing the Green Weenie you may be able to see it in the water – this helps with learning about currents and honing your techniques – and also when the bright chartreuse fly suddenly disappears that means it may have just been inhaled by a hungry trout.
What do the fish think the Green Weenie is? Who knows for sure – they are not speaking to us about it. It’s not hard to imagine that it looks like a caddis larva when it is tumbling along the stream bottom. When fishing the unweighted version just under the surface – perhaps it’s taken as a terrestrial caterpillar of some kind. Or perhaps it is just so highly visible, with it’s chartreuse color that fish just see it and eat it. It doesn’t really matter.
What does matter is that it is easy to tie, effective and versatile. It’s effective when fished deep with the tungsten bead, using short line nymphing techniques. And it’s effective fished shallow, especially in the warmer times of the year when fish are active and looking up for terrestrials and other bugs.