Sands' Epoxy Mysis Shrimp—Step-by-Step Guide

Posted on 08 June 2021

Sands' Mysis Shrimp pattern is a proven winner when casting for Fryingpan River trout.

Mysis shrimp are common throughout select Colorado reservoirs; the Taylor Reservoir, Ruedi Reservoir, and Dillon Reservoir. Mysis flow into these rivers from the reservoirs, and these tempting snacks offer a high nutrition meal for trout. 

Our Sands' Mysis shrimp pattern is especially effective during high flow seasons, but are a daily food source all year. 

This step-by-step guide builds an effective fly that mimics the black eyes and tapered body of live crustaceans. Trout that develop an appetite for Mysis shrimp are often richly colored, healthy individuals.

Will Sands–Sands’ Epoxy Mysis Shimp


  • Hook: Tiemco 200RBL
  • Thread: Clear Mono thread
  • Eyes: 16LB Fluorocarbon tippet melted to form eyes, colored with black sharpie
  • Antennae\Feelers: White CDC Puff overlaid with Lemon Wood Duck flank
  • Legs: Cream Z-Lon
  • Epoxy: Z-Poxy


Step 1: Wrap Mono Thread

Sands Mysis Shrimp hook and mono thread

Start your mono thread behind the eye of the hook. Wrap into bend and attach a CDC Puff.  The puff should be tied quite short.

Step 2: Tie Duck Fibers

Tieing in lemon wood duck fibers

Tie in the Lemon Wood Duck fibers; they should be twice the length of the CDC Puff. 

Step 3: Add the Eyes

Adding eyes to Sands Epoxy Mysis Shrimp pattern

Tie in mono eyes slightly behind the hook point. 

Step 4: Tie in Z-Lon

Adding in the Z-lon to the lure.

Tie Z-Lon in directly beneath the eyes.

Step 5: Cut Z-Lon

Cutting Z-Lon to hopok point.

Cut Z-Lon evenly with the hook point.

Step 6: Build the Shrimp Body

Building a tapered mysis shrimp body.

Using mono thread, build up a tapered body from the eyes towards the hook eye.

Step 7: Pre-Epoxy Finish 

Finishing the mysis shrimp fly body.

Whip finish. 

Step 8: Add Epoxy

Adding epoxy to sands mysis shrimp pattern.

Apply a drop of epoxy right between the eyes. Keep the bodkin in contact with the epoxy.

Step 9: Shape Epoxy 

Shaping the epoxy of lure.

As the epoxy settles between the eyes “draw it” from between the eyes along the top of the hook shank. 

Step 10: Further Taper the Epoxy

Taper the epoxy of the shrimp

Continue drawing the epoxy along the shank, tapering the epoxy down towards the hook eye. 

Step 11: Rotate the Hook

Rotate fly to prevent epoxy sagging.

Continually rotate to prevent the epoxy from sagging into Z-Lon. 

Step 12: Dry and Finish

Finished Sands' Epoxy Mysis Shrimp

Five minutes later, voila: Sands’ Epoxy Mysis Finished!

Hints and Tips for Making Sands' Epoxy Mysis 

A few extra ideas to help create the perfect Mysis. 

Hint 1

A rotation or two between steps 8, 9, and 10 may be necessary to prevent the epoxy from sagging into Z-lon.

Hint 2

When mixing epoxy draw out equal lines of hardener to resin instead of “puddles”. Your hardener to resin mixes will be more accurate and the final setup will result in a good hard clear mysis.

Hint 3

After applying the epoxy to the shrimp body, check the mixed puddle of hardener/resin to determine when your epoxy has cured.

Hint 4

To make multiple shrimps, tie up a bunch of shrimp bodies and epoxy them together with the use of an epoxy drier.   

Fishing with Sands' Epoxy Mysis

Note that this fly is intended to imitate a live Mysis, so expect it to be most effective in reservoirs or closer to dam release points. Trout hunt mysis shrimp in all seasons on the Fryingpan, but will be more effective during higher flows.

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