The Matuka is a fly style that apparently originated in New Zealand, using a feather wing over the body, to imitate bait-fish. Take that bit of history with a grain of salt, because it is likely that cavemen and cave women were tying their version of the Matuka and fishing it for mondo steelhead and trout at least 14 thousand years ago too. Maybe not with Lagartun thread, but still . . . .
As is usually the case, the Nicholas fly tying style tends to try to simplify and cut straight to the profile and essential form of fly patterns that can seem complex. My version of the Matuka, tied in various colors for steelhead, is a great example.
This Purple Matuka Steelhead fly is simple to tie and every bit as effective as the more complicated versions. Experienced Matuka tyers will decry the absence of a tinsel rib through the Rabbit strip, but I can tell you straight up that this fly will catch the big chrome boys and girls one-on-one with more complicated flies.
For the fly tyer who wants to spend more time on the water than at the bench, here ya go.
This fly has a bold silhouette and is easily seen by steelhead and salmon in dark water and low light. This fly is un-weighted to fish with sink tips; you could add a Tungsten bead in front of the Chenille body material and tie off the Rabbit strip over the bead, or wind on some lead wire under the body if you wish.
Purple Steelhead Matuka Fly
Hook: TMC 7999 #3/0 – 4
Thread: Lagartun 150 D Black
Body: Crystal Speckled Chenille – Midnight Fire
Topping/Tail: Black Barred Rabbit Strip – Bright Purple
Hackle: American Saddle Clump – Kingfisher Blue Grizzly