Monday, February 8, 2016

Fly Tying: Rocky Ford Flies

I'm tying up some more flies for my next trip to Rocky Ford. The temps there are predicted to hit 50 degrees by the end of the week, so I hope to go at least once, maybe twice this week.


Pheasant Tail Nymph
Hook: curved scud/pupa, 1X short, #10
Thread: black
Tail, Abdomen, Shellback, Legs: pheasant tail fibers
Rib: copper wire
Thorax: brown/copper dubbing

I tried to buy some new natural pheasant tail recently. (It's sad, but the feathers from the pheasants I bagged 30 years ago when I lived in Iowa are all gone.) A shop that should have done better had no natural, only dyed. So I got some brown, which I used on these flies. I'm not happy with it. It's thin and limp, so I had to use more fibers than I would like. Normally, 4 or 5 fibers of natural would do the trick. To be fair, the guy helping me felt so bad that he went into his own stash of fly tying materials to see if he had any natural to give me. I'll go back and see if he was able to order any more
by now.



Red Tag (Wet)
Hook: dry fly, 1X long, #14
Thread: black
Tail: red wool
Body: peacock herl
Collar: partridge


Red Tag (Dry)
Hook: dry fly, #14
Thread: black
Tail: red wool
Body: peacock herl
Hackle: brown 

This is an old fly originated in England around 1850 as a grayling fly. It migrated to Tasmania, and by 1920 was a popular trout fly throughout Australia. It was considered by then to be an effective beetle imitation. It's still migrating: I first saw it on a Finnish fly tying site, and I saw that Davie McPhail has a Red Tag tying video out. I used partridge on the wet version because I had some out, but hen saddle hackle is also used. For more on this venerable fly go HERE.

3 comments:

  1. Nice flies Jim. Make sure you send that warm weather on East when you're done with it!!

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  2. The red tag soft-hackle is a winner.

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