Tag Archives: fly tying

Knock Knock

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

Going back a few eons here…it can be fun to remember the progressions and epiphanies of our angling and tying journeys. From time to time I take a look at the odd tying tool, be it mainstream or nouveau, and how it fits into my tying.

For some years I tied flies using various kinds of natural hair, without bothering with any hair strand alignment at all. “Natural animal hair should be all over the place…like mine is,” I reasoned, looking in the mirror. “Wind exists out there, and we should mimic its effects in our flies. Bug wings are ratty and beat to hell, and fish wouldn’t have it any other way.” So my flies looked and held together like you’d expect: Horribly. more…

Fly of the Month – The Firehole Demon

Guest Blogger: Mike Cline, Bozeman, Montana

Fishing the rise and fall of the Firehole successfully in early June has always been a challenge. Having talked with many anglers who are disappointed with the lack of hatches and failure to catch decent fish on a regular basis, I became convinced that traditional methods were fruitless. Anglers waiting for hatches waited in vain. Anglers drifting small nymphs in deep waters were frustrated for the lack of takes. Anglers swinging small buggers and soft-hackles on floating lines (a commonly recommended approach) never get those flies in front of fish. When the water is high on the Firehole, the fish, especially the browns, are taken close to the bank where they shelter in deeply submerged undercuts. You have put a fly inches from the bank and down quickly in the swift water. The take may come immediately or as the fly swings out into the current. If you are fishing along a deep bank letting the fly swing all the way to the bank and slowly retrieved may lure a fish out of an undercut you are standing near. After several years of perfecting this technique, it was time to devise a fly that would excel in the deep, tea colored waters of the Firehole. more…

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…