By Ed Askew

The renegade is one of the most universal flies that I have ever used. I've heard some fly fishermen and women say that they won't use it because it is like using bait. I think that the renegade, along with the golden ribbed hares ear, is the American Express of flies (Don't leave home without them).

The renegade can be fished either as a wet fly or dry fly. I mostly fish the renegade as a wet fly. When I come upon a fish that is feeding on the surface, I will made a few false casts to dry out the fly, so that it will float, then cast up to the fish. I have used this method many times with good success.

Another method of using the renegade is to cast the fly about 10:00 or 2:00 o'clock (depending on which side of the river you are on) upstream and let the fly float downstream past you. When the renegade is below you, pull it upstream through the riffles. The renegade can drive the fish nuts. By pulling the fly upstream you will miss two out of three strikes, but you will catch fish.

This method works very well with youngsters or novice fly fishermen because they can just float their line downstream and pull it back to them without backcasting and catching trees and brush (its also cheaper on dad's and mom's pocketbook).

I have never caught a large fish by pulling the renegade upstream, but I have caught many 12 inches and below. I usually fish a different fly pattern while walking upstream and then tie on a renegade and pull it through the holes as I walk downstream to my truck.

For fishing a lake, I usually use a clear plastic bubble above a swivel with 6 feet of leader between the fly and the bubble. I fill the bubble about one-half to three-fourths full and cast out and retrieve slow. I retrieve the fly so that the bubble and fly doesn't make a wake on the water.

Thread: Black monocord

Hook: Mustad 3906 or equivalent sizes 4-18. Double renegade, sizes 4-8

Tail (optional): Red hackle, golden pheasant tips, silver tinsel, flourescent orange yam, or any other attractor.

Body: Peacock herl

Hackle: Brown at the tail and white at the head