Clouser Minnow

Clouser Minnow

Clouser minnow in blue and white bucktail
Clouser minnow in blue and white bucktail

The Clouser Minnow, or Clouser Deep Minnow, is an extremely effective baitfish imitation that catches a whole range of game fish in fresh- and saltwater. It’s allure comes from a combination of heavy lead eyes and long, mobile tail and wing that give it a wonderful ducking-diving action on every twitch and retrieve. It is also tied to take the knocks that come when catch large, powerful fish, and the use of tough materials such as bucktail, ultra-strong thread and Super Glue ensures that the Clouser is very robust.

It is an easy pattern to tie: the body consists of simple, crossed-thread raps over the waste ends of the tailing materials. Also, because the pattern is tied to fish point-up, to avoid snagging on the bottom, the heavy lead eyes are tied on the top of the shank rather than underneath.

View/download tying instructions

This is a great all round fly for the saltwater and a must for flathead. Note the heavier eyes will make them sit on the bottom and push up little puffs of sand as you strip and pause – on the retrieve. Give 'em time to sink to the bottom – can be used with an intermediate line.

Peter Glassen

Materials (above)

  • Hook: Size 2-8.
  • Thread: White.
  • Body: Tying thread over butts of the tail.
  • Tail: Bucktail. White and blue.
  • Wing: Bucktail, as for tail.
  • Eyes: Painted dumbbell eyes.


Source: The Fly Tyer’s Bible, pp. 214-15.


(White and chartreuse)
  • Hook: Pre-sharpened Saltwater, sizes 1/0 through 8.
  • Thread: White 3/0
  • Belly: White bucktail.
  • Lateral line: Pearl Krystal Flash.
  • Back: Chartreuse bucktail.
  • Eyes: Weighted dumbbell eyes, prepainted.
Source: The Orvis Fly-tying Manual, pp.99-108.


  • Hook: Regular stainless hook
  • Thread: Black
  • Belly: White Ultra Hair; or any other colour Ultra Hair or bucktail
  • Lateral line: Any colour Krystal Flash or Flashabou
  • Back: Chartreuse Ultra Hair; or any other colour Ultra Hair or Bucktail
  • Eyes: Machined brass eyes with recess on ends; painted or glued-on eyes
Clouser Minnow in white and chartreuse bucktail
Clouser minnow in white and chartreuse
Clouser minnows
Fly Tying for Beginners a Clouser Minnow with Jim Misiura
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Clouser Minnow: Exploring Different Tying Options
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Above: Clouser Minnow: Exploring Different Tying Options.
Left: Fly Tying for Beginners – Clouser Minnow with Jim Misiura.

Tying the Clouser Minnow with Bob Clouser
Tying the Clouser Minnow with Bob Clouser
How to Tie the Clouser Minnow - Orvis