leggy CDC sulphur dun

“Leggy” CDC sulphur dun

I find that CDC wing versions of duns worked much better than ones  made with a wing of gray poly, even though poly forms a more natural wing profile. I noticed fish fed more on duns whose legs were moving. I speculated the CDC imitates the very prominent legs that can be quite active on the duns. I decided to come up with a pattern that provides legs. Another feature of this pattern is that the body is formed from CDC, very light and buoyant. The use of CDC bodies was first described on caddis patterns. This makes the fly ride high.
The downside- care must be taken when removing the hook with forceps and trout teeth batter the CDC. I am experimenting with a dubbed body, but using CDC for the thorax.

Hook: dry fly sz14 or 16
Thread: UTC70 watery olive
Tail: medium dun hackle fibers or split microfibbets
Body: one (sz16) or two (sz14) light yellow CDC feather (Waspi CDC004).
Alternate two tone body (sz14): one light yellow and one yellow olive feather (CDC061). Twist before wrapping.
Thorax: one yellow olive CDC feather
Wing: Three or four light dun CDC feathers (CDC215) or light gray poly


  1. Tie in a tail of hackle fibers (shown) or split microfibbets. Cement the thread.

2. Select a long light yellow CDC feather, stroke it from butt to tip and tie in at the tip.
step 1

3. Wrap the feather forward creating a body. The tricky part is using all of the feather without creating long fibers protruding from the body. To do so, wrap feather until you come to the end of the hackle barbules that were bound down by the thread, and then stroke the free fibers back towards the butt and continue wrapping. Tie down.
step 2

4. Tie in a yellow-olive CDC feather by the tip, used to build the thorax.
step 3

5. Tie in the wing material. Either light dun CDC (shown) or light gray poly (see finished example below).
step 4

6. Wrap the CDC feather behind the wing a few times and then cross under the wing and wrap in front. Fibers should come free to form the legs. Tie down. If not enough fibers come free you can generate more by gently picking at the thorax. Trim legs to about 1-1.5X the hook gap.

cdc version final
finished CDC wing version


Poly wing version

This is a poly wing version that has the two-tone body made with one light yellow and one olive yellow feather
This is a poly wing version that has the two-tone body made with one light yellow and one olive yellow feather