These Bead Head Wooly Buggers have Flashabou Mylar in the marabou tail and down the sides of the body. This gives the flies a flashy lateral line.
The weather doesn't always cooperate. Everyone else had quit fishing. They were huddled in small groups behind the van or in the pontoon boat trailer to get out of the ferocious wind that turned the center of the lake into white-caps. Dust blew and weeds flew. Fishing from a float tube was out of the question. No one could kick and hold themselves against this wind.
Determined to beat the odds, I found it easy to wade the shallow edge of the lake and roll cast down wind. My third cast enticed a nice bass to inhale the fly, a #8 Olive Bead Head Wooly Bugger presented with a short stout leader attached to the end of a five-weight floating line. The slow deliberate coverage of a hundred yards of shoreline brought several more very nice largemouths to hand, but only between the major gusts. When the surface was bouncing around, the bass sulked. It took twenty shots into a tiny cove in a shoreline grass bed to produce the best one. I knew it was watching the fly every cast, but it only struck when the water surface calmed. Largemouth bass can be moody any time, but especially in foul weather.
Bead Head Wooly Buggers are a universal on most any lake. I suppose the originator thought they might look like a dragonfly nymph or a leech. These flies are fairly robust and provide a mouthful for a hungry fish. Bead Head Buggers of all types are consistent fish producers at all depths, but especially when hopped or crawled near the bottom.
Black Bead Head Wooly Bugger
If you had only one fly pattern for all freshwater species in North America it might be the Black Bead Head Wooly Bugger in sizes #4, #6, or #8. We know that rainbow trout, cutthroat trout, redband trout, brown trout, brook trout, dolly varden, steelhead, coho, chinooks, largemouth bass, smallmouth bass, and rocky mountain whitefish have all been taken on this fly pattern.
Brown Bead Head Wooly Bugger
This has been a very successful pattern for mud bottom reservoirs, but is also very productive in weedy rivers and lakes. Brown can be a good color for early spring fishing in lakes before aquatic weeds start to grow.
Olive Bead Head Wooly Bugger
This is a universal fly that has caught a wide variety of freshwater game fish. This is a favorite starting fly for many lake fishermen and also works well in rivers. Some experienced lake anglers say any fly is good as long as it is an inch long, green, and moved slow along the bottom.