Tag Archives: fly tying materials

Spin a Yarn

Guest Blogger: Michael Vorhis, author of ARCHANGEL suspense thriller, OPEN DISTANCE adventure thriller & more to come

We see recipes for this fly or that, calling out a variety of exotic materials, usually claiming that the ones most difficult to find are the most critically necessary to a wily fish’s eye. This is especially true for trout flies, given that so many other species appear triggered more by color and motion than by the differences between how an Australian Possum and a Fur Seal chose to evolve their fur.

It’s less common to come across synthetic materials said to be simultaneously magical and scarce. One that comes to mind is the so-called “Utah Killer Bug” yarn, Chadwick’s 477, around which has grown a kind of mythologic reverence since the day Frank Sawyer popularized the pattern. Despite the demand for it, this yarn can no longer be found (probably because Chadwick was into sweaters and not trout flies). And so the best substitute is said to be Jamieson’s Shetland Spindrift Oyster 290, which anglers in the know claim MIGHT be ALMOST as good, translucency-wise and wet-color-wise, as the revered Chadwick’s. more…

Fly of the Month – Butterknife of Justice

Fly of the Month by Paul Beel: J. Stockard Pro Team Leader and Owner of FrankenFly

The Butterknife of Justice was designed for largemouth bass. I have always had an interest in fishing for largemouth bass and even since I began fly fishing, I have never lost that interest. I just use flies now instead of lures. This is the reason I founded the Bucket Mouth League, a loosely based organization that promotes catching largemouth bass on the fly. To me this is all about fun. Isn’t that what fly fishing is all about?

What is great, is that I can design and tie large articulated flies and use them to catch largemouth bass. However, the size of the Butterknife of Justice is the same size as many of the articulated streamers that you might have heard of that are used for large brown trout as well. Even though I haven’t tested it on brown trout yet, I am positive it will be very effective at catching them as well because the profile and action.
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León’s Rooster – Old World Versatility

Guest Blogger: Mike Cline, Bozeman, Montana

Tucked away in the foothills of the Cantabrian Mountains in northern Spain is the provincial town of León, Spain. Not large by any standard, at approximately 130,000 people, Leon isn’t on many radars outside of Spain. However, for the fly tier, the Leon region is the origin of one of fly tying’s most ancient and versatile materials—the Coq de Leon hackle.

Gallos de Leon as they are called in Spanish (why the French spelling–Coq de Leon– is preferred outside Spain is unknown) are reared in the Curueño Valley along the Curueño river. The villages of La Candana de Curueño and La Vecilla are the origin of this rare breed.

The feathers of the ‘gallos’ (cockerels / roosters) have been famous for their fly tying qualities for centuries and references can be found in the earliest of fly fishing books. more…