My post of 01/21/2011 chronicles the origin of the RS2 and also supplies a material list. Over the last couple years I migrated away from the RS2 toward the Craven soft hackle emerger, but I continue to carry an adequate quantity of RS2’s in my streamer wallet, as I visit western rivers and streams.
I prefer to fish the RS2 deep using a strike indicator and split shot hours before an expected blue winged olive emergence, and I impart movement to the fly by jigging it or executing poor downstream mends. These actions create momentary acceleration of the fly, and this seems to induce a feeding reaction from trout. If I sense that the fish are tuned into emergers close to the surface, I generally switch to a Craven soft hackle emerger, and sometimes I also shift to a dry/dropper presentation, since I no longer need to probe the depths of the river.
I also believe that the RS2 is a serviceable imitation of small midge larva, and for that reason it is a good choice when mayflies and caddis are not prevalent. Any fly that covers numerous food sources is a productive offering in my opinion.
When I surveyed my fly boxes, I counted 23 RS2’s. I established a goal of 50 to enter the 2017 season, so I settled into my stool at my fly tying bench and cranked out 27 new flies. Hopefully I will encounter some strong baetis hatches, and my RS2’s will continue to attract trout to my line.