Leeches found in Northwest lakes are smallish, an inch & under, for the most part. Simple mini-leech patterns have become staples for lake fishing in my neighborhood – a favorite alternative for midge anglers who like to fish small stuff – & tiny leeches can be fished all the ways that one might fish a midge larva.
I like to fish these when trout are fairly shallow – 10 feet deep or less – using a floating line with 15 foot fluoro leader. Dress the leader with a sink potion. The floating line is the indicator. Trout often hit the leech on the sink, so I watch the line for a tell-tale wake. A hand-twist retrieve with pauses is good. Several short, rapid strips, then a long pause, often turns the trick.
The Bunny & Tinsel Leech recipe given here can be tied with any tinsel coloration. Also makes an excellent bluegill fly.
Bunny & Tinsel Leech
Hook: #12 Daiichi 1150
Thread: Grey UNI 8/0
Underbody: Blue mylar tinsel (or choice) -- coat with Loon Hard Head or thick dope
Overbody: Pinch of black rabbit fur taken from a strip (guard & underfur), tied in as a wing & pushed down around the sides of the hook shank (tinsel should show through), extending back about twice the length of the hook
Hackle: Dark bronze hen (starling or dyed-black soft hackle can substitute) – & finish.
Flyfish NE Washington with Steven Bird: http://ucflyfishing.blogspot.com