The San Juan worm divides people into two camps;
1. You love the San Juan worm and fish it all of the time in 5 sizes and 27 variations.
2. You believe the San Juan worm is not a “real” fly and refuse to fish it unless you find no other alternatives.
I personally think the San Juan worm might just be the greatest thing since John Barr to grace fly-fishing. An incredibly easy pattern to tie with readily available materials makes this something that you should at least have in your box. Add to the equation that you can successfully fish this fly year round on any fishery in the world and it will produce fish means that in my mind, you have nothing short of a gift from the heavens.
The chenille worm, while a classic is no longer my favorite worm pattern. I have come around to love the pig-sticker and its variations. Pig-stickers I think provide a very natural worm imitation that is extremely durable and are also very easy to tie with materials that you probably already have. The Gamakatsu C-12U hooks are very sharp and the shape of the hook replaces the chenille that always got torn apart. If anything grabs the “Gamie” they are going to be hooked, and it is going to hurt. I always pinch the barbs down on these hooks as they made of the “Hattori Hanzo” steel and tear fish apart if you don’t de-barb them.
Try some of these out, I prefer blood red, pink, and even amber. I tie these in three sizes all on the C-12U hook in 6,10, and 12. You can use either midge D-Rib or Medium D-Rib depending on how you prefer your segmentation to work. You can also make these smaller and you will have smaller annelid and rockworm patterns that work well during the spring rainbow spawns.
Replace the materials for whatever color you want and prepare to be amazed.