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Fly tying Tips

by Elaine Cook – fly tying chairman

Ever wonder what to do with that small plastic container you get when you buy flies? A piece of fuzzy fabric glued to the inside bottom works well when trying to contain beads and hold them in place while threading a bead onto a hook.

Having trouble keeping track of your hooks and flies at your fly tying desk? A magnet like those that come in hook packages can solve this problem. Just glue it to the base of


When applying glue to a hook that you are in the process of tying materials to, the last thing you want is for the glue to drop down into your bobbin which ruins the tool. Here are a couple of ways to suspend it off to the side.

Do you if you like Zap-A-Gap glue but get tired of it clogging up, here are a few suggestions:
1. When you first use the container, uncap and attach the narrow plastic funnel to the top. (Save the cap) amazingly no need to recap because for some reason it doesn’t solidify in the narrow opening between uses.

2. When the above fails, remove funnel and use in the normal way, recapping between uses. Do wipe end off with soft cloth before capping.

3. When the above starts clogging use a safety pin to open the hole.

4. Finally when the above fails, cut off the tip. (See diagram)

These techniques will probably get you through the whole bottle.

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Chironomid in red or amber

by Elaine Cook – fly tying chairman

Chironomid’s are more commonly called midges. They are the most abundant food source for trout and can be found in any freshwater , but most abundant in still water. They are available to trout year-round. This pattern simulates a midge in its pupa stage which is between larva and adult. Best fished under an indicator.
HOOK: TMC 200, Dai-Riki 270, Daiichi 1270.    Sizes 12-18.
Crimp Barb.
THREAD: Black 6/0.
Attach behind hook eye. Touching wraps to 2 eye lengths behind eye. NOTE: frequently spin bobbin counter clockwise to keep thread flat.
TAIL and GILLS: White High-Vis or Darlon or similar. (Same material for both. Gills in front of hook,  tail in rear, )
Separate fibers with bodkin. Use about 15 to 20 strands. Lay bundle on top of shank extending about hook shank length beyond eye. Tie in place with touching wraps back to slightly past rear of shank. Cut bundle about hook shank length beyond rear of hook.
BODY: red  Flashabou under red vinyl D-Rib (choose size to match size of hook).    OR.    Pearl Flashabou under amber vinyl D-Rib.
Attach Flashabou extending to the rear.  Thread wraps 2 eye lengths forward.  Cut piece of D-Rib 3” long. Cut one end at an angle. Position D-Rib, flat side down, extending to rear, and point where thread hangs. Tie in with snug touching wraps back to tail. Advance thread forward in one wrap to the D-Rib tie in. Using touching thread wraps, wrap forward to gill tie in, then back to the D-Rib tie in, then forward to gill tie in again. This will form a body with uniform thickness. Wrap Flashabou forward with touching or overlapping wraps to cover thread. Tie off cut access. Make one half hitch. While gently pulling on the rib material, make first wrap behind prior wraps then forward with touching wraps to gill tie in. Tie off cut access.
THORAX: peacock herl.
Divide gill fibers and pull out to each side of shank. Make criss cross thread wraps to hold in place. Using 1-3  pieces of herl depending on size of hook, pull off fragile tips. Tie tips in behind gills. Make dubbing loop, insert hurl, then twist to make chenille. Advance thread to behind eye. Wrap chenille behind and in front of gills. Tie off, cut excess. Wrap small thread head. Whip finish, cut thread. Cut out a few tail fibers. Trim gills and tail. (See photo)

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Olive, gold and white clouser

by Elaine Cook, fly tying chairman

HOOK: Mustad 34007 size 1/0 or 2/0
THREAD: white flat waxed nylon
EYES: barbell eyes-white with black pupil
BELLY: 1.Doug’s Bugs Motion Flash-pearl (similar to Krystal Flash or Mega Baitfish Emulator. These are thicker strands. So use fewer.)
2. Gold craft fur.
3. White or cream craft fur.
BACK: Zap-A-Gap or similar glue.

  1. Crimp barb.
  2. Attached thread behind eye. With touching wraps, cover front 1/2 of shank. Position thread 1/2 way between hook eye and point.
  3. Attach eyes to top of shank with figure 8 wraps and wraps around base of barbells. Apply glue to thread wraps. Advanced thread to  in front of eyes.
  4. Using about 15 strands of flash, cut in half, bundle.  NOTE: If using other materials, they at thicker strands, so use less. Also when fibers bundled they should be 5 inches long. Place center of bundle in front of eyes, tie in place with two wraps. Fold forward strands rearward and tie in place with 2 wraps behind eyes.
  5. Advance thread to in front of eyes. Cut patch, about 1/2 inch by 3/4 inch, of gold craft fur and clean out fuzz. Tie in butt ends snuggly up against eyes. Then wrap down with two wraps behind eyes.
  6. Advanced thread to in front of eyes. Cut and prepare patch of white craft fur, about 3/4 inch by 3/4 inch, as above. Tie in as above.
  7. Advance thread to in front of eyes. Tie a half hitch. Reposition hook upside down vise.
  8. Prepare olive craft for, 1/2 inch by three-quarter inch, as above. Tie in only in front of eyes. Wrap down but ends forming a tapered nose.
  9. Whip finish, cut thread, apply glue to nose and fibers between eyes.
  10. Trim extra long fibers to shape fly. Overall length of fly should be about 3 inches.

Having clousers to fish for stripers is essential. Here’s one to try next time you go for these powerful fish.

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Carey Special

by Elaine Cook — fly tying instructor

The Carrie is a searching wet fly. Extremely successful in lakes. Use on a sinking line and twitch or strip to entice the mighty fish. It’s a good fly to use with a trailer. There are various options in tying this fly. I personally prefer sizes 10 or 12 on 3X long hooks, with back feathers of the Ring neck Pheasant for tail and hackle.
HOOK: Many hooks will work. TMC 5262, 5263, 300.  Mustad 9672.
Crimp barb.
THREAD: Black 6/0
Attach to mid hook and wrap to rear of shank.
TAIL: Ring neck pheasant. Rear feathers for a brown fly, back feathers for an olive blue fly.  NOTE: Rear feathers are longer than back feathers.
Remove fuzz from stem of one feather. Stroke all barbs toward tip and feather. Measure from tips to 1/2 hook length. Attach that spot to rear of shank. Tips will extend beyond hook bend. Attach feather to hook shank up to two eyed lengths behind eye. Cut  access in front of thread wraps.
RIB: Medium sized copper wire which is optional.
Attached to top of mid shank, allowing a short tip to be bent backward. Snuggly attach back to rear of shank.
BODY: Dark olive chenille
Strip 1/4 inch of chenille off inner threads.  Attach threads to rear of shank. Wrap thread forward to 2 eye lengths behind eye. Wrap chenille forward using  touching wraps. Tie off, cut excess. Wrap wire forward, in opposite direction as chenille, in about six wraps. Then 2 final wraps of wire on shank, 1 on top of the other.  Twist to break.
HACKLE: Ringneck Pheasant — Rear feather for brown Carrie. Back feather for olive/blue Carey. NOTE:Rear  feathers are longer than back feathers.
Select feather with barbs at least a little longer than hook shank but up to 1 1/2 times hook length. Remove fuzz from stem. Cut stem short to one 8th inch from barbs. Attached stem behind eye with shinny side towards you. Positions thread behind eye. Tie one or two have hitches, let’s thread hang. Attach heckle pliers to several barbs at tip. Wrap hackle around shank 2-3 times, stroking barbs to rear with each  wrap. Tie off, DON’T cut excess. Stroke all barbs to rear then wrap in place by forming a thread head. With finish, cut thread.

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Parachute Ant

by Elaine Cook – fly tying chairman

There are many and patterns, most of which are hard to see on the surface of the water. Here is one with a nice white post. Ants are most effective mid summer on and are more available to fish on windy days. Add floatant and fish with drag free presentation. They are good on lakes as well.
HOOK: TMC 100  Sizes 12 to 16.
THREAD: Black 8/0.     Attach mid shank
OVER BODY: White Antron yarn
Attach Antron to back half of shank and extending to the rear of hook. Note: Antron pieces need to be long enough to go over rear back body and then up as post.
REAR BODY: Black super fine dubbing and black permanent marking pen.
Dub a bulbous rear body up to mid shank, no further. Pull Antron snuggly over rear body and tie down. And attach Antron to top of shank with touching wraps forming a narrow mid body, about 1/4 of shank. Note: if tying a size 12 hook, additional touching thread wraps back to rear body then forward again.
POST: Continuation of white Antron
Hold Antron upright. Make 4 to 5 thread wraps upward around Antron. Then make 4 to 5 wraps down to base.Make a couple of wraps in front of post to hold upright.
HACKLE: grizzly  barbs equal to 1 1/2 to 2 times hook gap
Prepare hackle by cutting off fuzzy end then cutting 4 to 5 barbs short at base of stem (crew cut).
Identify shiny dark side of hackle. Position on your side of hook, shiny side facing you, tip to rear, and crew cut at base of post. Tie in place in front and behind post.
FORWARD BODY: Black super find dubbing. And some ants have a red forward body, so thread can be changed to red and red superfine dubbing used for this section.
Wrap a small bulbous forward body from eye back to midsection.
HACKLE: same feather from above
Wrap thread behind post, then forward, then in front of post, then allow to hang on your side. Using hackle pliers, wrap hackle around base of post about four times , then allow to hang on your side. Bring thread up in front of hanging hackle till parallel to table.  Wrap around post and under parachuted hackle about three times. Several half hitches behind hook eye. Cut thread. Cut excess hackle. Cut Antron so that it equals hook shank length. Push up on heckle from beneath hook to be sure it is parallel to table. Trim any barbs that hang below.

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Hantavirus Mouse

by Elaine Cook — fly tying chairman

This is a large fly that can target large brown trout or large mouth bass. These flies can be fished during the day but will prove most effective at night with both these types of fish. This fly can be tied in either brown or tan. The fly was designed by Brett Smith who you can find on YouTube.
HOOK: Partridge D3ST size 4.
Crimp Barb.
THREAD: Flad wax nylon. Brown or tan
Attach mid shank. Wrap back to above hook point.
TAIL: Black rubber bracelet material that can be found at Walmart or hobby stores.
Using a 3 inch piece of material, tie in tip mid shank, while pulling a little on material,  wrap back to above hook point.
BODY: Brown or tan foam. 5 mm thick. Can be found in fly shops and hobby shops.
Cut a strip one half inch wide and 4-5 inches long. At one end cut a tapered, blunt point.
Apply Zap-A-Gap or similar glue to entire shank. Advance thread to two hook eye lengths behind eye. Position foam on top of shank, pointed end two eye lengths behind hook eye. Attach and spiral wrap, with only moderate tension (don’t compress), using about 6 spirals, back to tail. Hold foam upright to be sure it’s wrapped far enough back. There should be no thread wraps visible on tail. Spiral wrap thread forward in about six wraps up to two eye lengths behind eye.
LARGE KRYSTAL HACKLE – BROWN OR DUN
Return thread back to tail. Tie in hackle.. Advance thread up to two eye lengths behind eye. Wrap hackle forward using touching wraps and stroking fibers to the rear with each wrap. Tie off, cut access. Brush hackle to get out excess fibers. Stroke fibers out to each side so that they are in the same plane.
BODY continued:
Place glue on top rib of body. Pull on foam and bring it forward. Pinch it from side to side were thread hangs hold it for a minute. Make two snug thread wraps, then let glue set a little longer. Make several more thread wraps around neck. Brush hackle out to sides again.

ARTIC FOX: grey or tan.
Turn hook upside down. Cut hide side of arctic fox into peace 3/16 of an inch by 3/4 of an inch. Position hide against under side of body with one end at neck. Attach with several snug thread wraps. Apply glue to underside of body. Press hide down and hold until glue sets.
LEGS: Magnum Predator Legs -Grizzly Barred – Root Beer Colored or Dun.
turn hook right side up. Using two legs on each side, attached centers to neck area. Trim legs so that they extend a little beyond hook bend. Tie off behind Eye. Apply glue.
HEAD: Continuation of foam body.
Cut a blunted pointed head. See picture.
Finish by stroking hackle to rear.

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CDC One Feather Fly

by Elaine cook fly tying chairman

CDC stands for cul-de-canard which is the butt feather of a duck. It has some interesting properties that will help the fly float without gel floatant. In fact gel floatant actually mashes down the barbs making the fly not float. Instead dress with a dry powdered floatsnt like Frog Fanny. When it becomes waterlogged, squeeze dry on clothing or a chamois. Then brush more Frog Fanny into the fibers. Don’t be concerned with the white fluffy appearance for it doesn’t seem to deter the fish at all.
HOOK: TMC 200 size 24-20.  crimp Barb. Note: length of CDC feather will determine size of hook. See shuck below.
THREAD: 8/0 Color to match CDC NOTE: mayflies come in many colors. Some of the more common are gray, olive, tan, brown and cream. Attach thread behind eye. Wrap to above hook point with touching wraps.
SHUCK; CDC feather. Measure length of feather along stem were barbs protrude. Select a feather that is at least as long as the following as in the following chart. Longer is even better.
One and 3/4” for 14 hooks.
One and 1/2” for 16 hooks
One and 1/4” for 18 hooks
One inch for 20 hooks.
Stroke barbs toward tip of feather. Tie in on top of shank, tips hook length beyond thread, with three wraps. Carefully pull feather forward until shuck equals shank length. Lift butt and, wrapped thread to eye.
BODY: continuing with the same feather as above. Spiral wrap feather forward covering shank. Tie off with 2 wraps between barbs.
WING: using same feather as above, hold stem upright, stroke barbs backward. Make a loop with stem that extends to shuck. Tie off securely add eye. Cut excess. NOTE; loop will probably lean. Wrap thread head. Whip finish, cut thread. Do not use head cement or any glue. Stroke barbs backward. Cut them short at end of shuck.

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BWO Quigley Cripple

by Elaine Cook — fly tying chairman

The Quigley represents an merging mayfly that is stressed in an unusual manner to make the rear of the fly hang down in the water and the thorax and wing out of the water. Apply saliva to the body tail, then floatant to the wing and hackle. During a hatch fish tend to be more eager to take an emerger than a dun because they are not ready to fly off.
HOOK: TMC 100, sizes 14 16 18.
THREAD:  Gray 8/0 or 12/0(preferred).
TAIL and BODY: Gray marabou (fluffy)
THORAX: Dark Olive Debbie.
WING: Deer hair with narrow fibers
HACKLE: Grizzly

  1. Crimp Barb.
  2. Attached thread behind eye wrap to rear of shank in touching wraps.
  3. Select 3 to 5 barbs of marabou, cut from stem, tie in with tips extending hook shank length to rear. Make two thread wraps forward, then fold marabou backward and make two thread wraps.
  4. Make thread loop. Hold loop and stem and of marabou together, then wrap thread 2/3 forward on shank. If marabou is longer than shank length, pinch off tips, don’t cut.
  5. Twist loop and marabou into rope, then wrap up to hanging thread using touching wraps. Tie off, cut access.
  6. Dub a round thorax that covers shank from 1/4 to 1/2 back on shank from eye.
  7. Select small bundle of deer hair. Clean out under fur, stack tips. Lay on top of shank, tips out over eye so that they measure a shank length from thorax.
  8. Tie in by making first wrap around only hair fibers and the second wrap around both fibers and hook shank. Make several snug wraps on top of one another.
  9. Make one wrap around base of wing to bundle it, then one more wrap around shank. Cut butt and so that they just cover thorax.
  10. Reposition hook with eye tipped upward.
  11. Select hackle, barbs one and a half hook gap. Cut off fuzzy and. Cut 5 to 6 barb short along base of stem  forming a “crew cut”. Holding feather tip to rear, dark shiny side toward you, tie and crew cut behind wing and cut deer hair butts and 2 in front of deer hair bundle. Position thread between wing and cut butts. Make 3 to 5 hackle wraps in the same place and around deer hair and shank. Tie off, cut excess.
  12. Half hitch knot behind hook eye. Cut excess.
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Callibaetis Dun

by Elaine Cook—-fly tying chairman

There are 15 species of callibaetis in the western United States in Canada. They emerge in spring, summer and fall, and are usually larger in the spring and smaller in the fall. Their distinguishing features are two tails, tan under body and modeled wings. They prefer still water but can be found in slow moving water as well. Use a floating line, apply floatant, leave still on water or dead drift.
HOOK: TMC 100. Sizes 12-16. Crimp Barb.   Crimp Barb.
THREAD:   Tan 8/0
Apply mid shank. Wrap forward to 1/3 back on shank. Cut thread tag.
WING: Hungarian Partridge
Using two feathers, pull barbs off base of feather until a narrow fan is formed. Length of fan should equal hook shank length. Attach feather to top of shank tips,  forward and stems to rear , at junction of feather and stem. Pull feathers upright and make several wraps in front to hold in place.  Tie down 1/8 inch of stems behind wing cut access. Make several thread wraps around base of wing to hold upright. Wrap thread to rear of shank.
TAIL: dun microfibetts
Make thread ball with 8 to 10 X thread wraps on top of one another. Wrap thread forward 1/3 of shank. Select 6-8 fibers(keep tips lined up). Lay on top of shank, tips extending well to rear. Tie to shank with four touching three thread wraps toward ball. Pull fibetts forward to make tail equal to shank length. Divide fibetts with bodkin. Pull the fibetts on far side away from shank and slightly upward, take one thread wrap toward ball. Grab remaining fibetts,  pull them toward you and slightly downward. Take another wrap of thread toward ball. Repeat last two steps a couple more times.  Ending at the ball. Cut access.
BODY: Tan super fine dubbing
Advance thread one wrap. Dub a narrow tapered body up to wing.
HACKLE: Grizzly, barbs equal to hook gap
Form a crew cut at butt end of feather by cutting 5 to 6 barbs short on each side of stem. Tie crew cut in at base of wing with dark side of feather toward you and tip to rear.
THORAX: Tan super find dubbing
Dub around base of wing. Taper dubbing forward to one hook eye length behind eye. Spiral hackle forward, two wraps behind wing, to in front of wing.  Tie off cut access. Tie thread head. Whip finish, cut thread.

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Red and black larva lace midge

by Elaine Cook fly tying chairman

Midges, also known as chironomids, are available to trout year-round. Not only in their larval stage but hatches occur as well. In nature they vary a lot in size and color. For the club fishout at Pyramid Lake tie larger flies. I prefer size 8 hooks. For Crowley lake use smaller hooks. The best way to fish a midge is to suspend it under an indicator so it rides a little above the bottom.

HOOK: TMC 2457 or TMC 2487   sizes 6-16
Note: 2457 is a heavier hook and is typically the hook of choice for a bigger fish like it Pyramid Lake.
Crimp Barb.
BEAD: Silver, size to match hook.
Note, for a size 10 Hook use a size 5/32 inch.
Slip small opening on to hook first, and position behind hook eye.
THREAD: Red, 3/0 or 6/0 depending on hook size
Test thread with glue to be sure it doesn’t turn black when applied.
Thinner thread with larger hooks will require more thread wraps.
Attached behind the bed.
RIB: Larva Lace   Other brands also available. This is a vinyl strand with elasticity. Diameter is usually round, sometimes D shaped.
Micro midge for size 16 hooks, midge for 12 and 14, small for eight and 10, medium for size 6. Lay on top of shank with and slightly behind bead. Touching thread wraps halfway back on shank. Then pull on rib material to make thinner and continue with thread wraps halfway around rear bend of hook. Note spin thread counter clockwise to keep flat and avoid twisting.
BODY: Red thread.
Wrap forward with touching thread wraps to cover rib well up to bed. Spin thread as above. Use more touching thread wraps backward and forward to form a slender tapered body if necessary. Finish with thread behind bead. Make one half hitch.. Snugly spiral rib forward in opposite direction of thread wraps, 6 wraps to reach bead, each a little further apart. Secure in place with 5 to 6 snug thread wraps. Cut excess rib. Tie off thread, cut. Applied glue to entire body. Allow to dry.
COLLAR: Peacock hurl and black 8/0 thread.
Attach thread behind bead. Select one hurl from stem of feather with medium to long barbules. Break off fragile tip. Tie tip in behind bead. Make dubbing loop. Hold hurl down side of loop, insert dubbing tool, and twist to make chenille. Make several chenille wraps behind bead, tie off, cut excess. Apply glue to about 1/2 inch of thread near bead, whip finish behind bead, cut thread.

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Josh’s Smelt

Having recently joined the Santa Cruz Fly Fishing club, Joshua Wilkens was first introduced to the Lee Haskin’s San Luis Smelt by Jeff Slaboden last year. “I was kind of neurotically tying these last year so if anybody just wants a few I have probably enough for the short group that potentially wants to go.” said Josh who hosting the Del Valle fishout in March.

Material: I usually tie on shorter shank so less craft foul, typically octopus or drop shot hooks, 3/16 yellow eyes for my 8wt and a size or two smaller and slimmer body for 6wt. The fish dope was from last day sale at California fly shop, and the belly fat is my cats toy which I’m not sure on what pelt that is but it’s very knotted and curly like roughed up by my kitty. I think it’s like streamer hair not craft fur and it’s the parts I didn’t use at base years ago when I must of used it no clue. Then creame/tan/rootbeer craft fur (I’m subbing rootbeer for what’s usually dark brown artic fox because my cat ran off with it I can’t find it) and some pearl lengthy dubbing. I use Danville’s 210 cause it’s cheap thread.

I put two little chunks of creame up the shank towards eyes leaving room for belly. Add belly chunk behind eyes, add pearl on body tie ahead of eyes, add red stuff, fold pearl back over eyes and red stuff, flip over tie thick chunk tan, tie medium chunk rootbeer/dark brown I think. I was trying to imitate smelt last year with material I had, then I went fishing with Jeff whose friends with the smelt creator and he said something like the ginger dye he started with they stopped dying that color.

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GLOW BUG (Salmon egg pattern)

by Elaine Cook — Fly tying chairman

Steelhead and trout follow salmon as they spawn and readily eat their eggs. This pattern simulates them. The fly doesn’t sink well so use a sinking line, put weight on your leader, or trail the fly behind a fly that sinks well, or add a gold bead to the hook before tying on the yarn.

HOOK: Mustad 9174 or TMC 105 or Targus 105.  Size 6 or 8

THREAD: STRONG: white, peach, salmon or other light color. Such As: flat waxed nylon, Danville 2/0, monochord, Gudbrod Gx2 or Ultra 149 denier.

EGG: Glow Bug Yarn: comes in both thick and thin strands. bright salmon, pale salmon, orange, peach, pale yellow, and pink

1. Crimp Barb. NOTE: a hook with upturned eye also works, but material is harder to trim.
2. Attach thread 1/3 back on shank. Cover center 1/3 of shake with touching wraps. Leave thread mid shank.
3. THICK YARN:

  • Cut 3 one inch or longer pieces.
  • (optional)to simulate a developing embryo, cut a 1 inch piece of contrasting color of thin yarn.
    (See diagrams for upcoming steps.)
  • position thick yarn pieces side-by-side. If using contrasting piece, place it on top.
  • pinching center of material, place on top of shank so that they are not stacked but the three thick pieces are side-by-side and thin piece on top.
  • make three snug wraps, one on top of the other, keeping yarn on top of shank.
  • pull all material firmly upward to be sure it is all on top of shank.
  • tilt yarn to rear, make three wraps in front as close to yarn as possible.
  • pulling firmly up on yarn, make three snug wraps around base of yarn.
  • Advanced thread to eye.
  • whip finish, cut thread, apply super glue or equivalent to thread wraps ONLY behind hook eye.
  • Holding and pulling yarn upward, cut all at once in a single arc with a sharp heavy duty scissor, so that the cut corresponds to radius of egg.
  • stroke yarn downward and fluff to cover bottom of shank. Finger nail or Velcro can help.
  •  trim yarn if needed to form a round contour.

THIN YARN:

  • Cut 5 inch or slightly longer pieces.
  • (optional) to simulate a developing embryo, cut one 1 inch piece of contrasting color of yarn or separate one piece of thick yarn into 2 pieces, and use one.
  • position all five pieces of one color side-by-side. If using a contrasting piece, position four pieces of primary color side by side and contrasting color on top of them.
  • Proceed as above with the step that starts with “pinching”.


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Peacock Conehead

by Elaine Cook, fly tying instruction

Both the Fly of the Month and Fly Tying Class this month will feature bass flies the Dan Eaton highly recommends for his upcoming Fishouts in the spring.

HOOK: Saber 7246. Or. TMC 5262
BEAD: brass conehead Size 1/4 “ (large) fits size 2-4 hooks
THREAD: black 6/0
TAIL: black marabou with long barbs and Black Krystal Flash
HACKLE: black saddle hackle, barbs equal to about hook gap
BODY: small peacock crystal chenille and small grey or silver chenille

  1. Crimp barb.
  2. Feed cone onto hook, small hole first.
  3. Attach thread behind cone.
  4. Select generous clump of marabou barbs. Position on top if shank, butts behind
    cone, tips extending shank length beyond rear of shank. Tie snugly in place up to
    cone then back nearly to rear of shank.
  5. Using one strand of Krystal Flash, cut in half then in half again.
    Attach center of strands with 2 wraps. Position rear strands to side near you, tie in place. Pull forward strands back and to far side. Tie in place.
  6. Attach tip of hackle to rear of shank, extending to rear.
  7. Attach crystal chenille to rear of shank, extending to rear.
  8. Remove some fuzz from end of chenille exposing strings. Tie in strings.
  9. Advance thread to cone.
  10. Snugly wrap chenille forward to cone with slight spaces between the first few then
    touching. Make 3-4 more wraps that will help to fill and secure cone. Snugly
    tie off, cut excess.
  11. Palmer crystal chenille forward in about 8 wraps. It’s OK to see a little grey. Tie off,
    cut excess.
  12. Palmer hackle forward in about 6 wraps then one extra behind cone. Tie off, cut
    excess.
  13. Whip finish. Cut thread. Carefully apply glue to thread wraps
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Whip Finish

by Elaine Cook — fly tying chairman

Instead of featuring a specific fly this month, using the “whip finish” method to tie your favorite fly will be discussed.  Having the skill of tying the knot to complete your fly using a “whip finish” is very important for certain flies. Some folks use the method more often, for they just find it easier when they get the hang of it. There are 3 methods to accomplish this:

  1.  Whip finish tool that’s referred to as a Matarelli (there are other similar brands but this is the most commonly used)
  2. Standard whipper (a very old style tool and trickier to use)
  3. Hand method (the only method available before there were tools and uses 2 fingers)

Specific flies that require this method are any that must be tied off behind the material on the hook, ie: beaded flies, poppers. You can use this method on the fly being tied at the fly tying class this month but won’t be required. This is a great time to learn how, refresh your skill, or learn a new technique. There are numerous demonstrations on YouTube for all 3 methods. Just ask for  “whip finish demonstration for tying flies”.

I found the one done by Copper Landing Fly Fishing was well done for a Matarelli. Check them out and do some practicing on a bare hook.

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Kilowatt Fly

by Elaine Cook- fly tying chairman

If you desire or must have a steelhead fly for the San Lorenzo, here’s one that comes highly recommended. Of course it will probably work for the mighty fish elsewhere. This is a variation of Cliff Watt’s Kilowatt Fly. The color combinations are limitless but the 2 that seem to work best are: maroon marabou and hackle  OR maroon marabou tail with both both blue and black hackles.

Material:

  • Hook: Gamagatsu 60 degree jig hook size 2
  • Thread: black 140 denier or 3/0
  • Eyes: “Lead Eyes” 1/30 oz. ( barbells)
  • Glue: UV resin, Zap-A-Gap, or Super Glue
  • Tail:
    • 1. Orvis –  New Age Holo Flash- Kaleidoscope color   (Can substitute Flashabou or Mega Baitfish Emulator)
    • 2. Spirit River UV2 maroon marabou. (Can substitute maroon marabou)
  • Rear Body: FNF UV Jelly-biscuit color. (Can substitute UV Polar Chenille-hot pink color)
  • Forward Body: both UV ice dub- purple color AND Salar Synthetic Mikkeli-blue color
  • Wing: same Holo Flash
  • Hackle: maroon marabou

Instructions:

  1.  Crimp barb.
  2.  Attach thread behind hook eye. Wrap thread base to rear of shank then forward to blend in hook.
  3.  Paint eyes with 2 layers red nail polish then one of Sally Hanson’s-Hard As Nails nail polish. Attach at bend of hook with many figure 8 and circular tight wraps. Apply glue. Wrap thread to rear of shank.
  4.  Tie in small clump of Holo Flash. Cut to length of hook.
  5.  Tie in clump of marabou. Same length as Holo Flash.
  6.  Tie in UV Jelly. Make 2-3 touching wraps forward, forcing thread as you turn. Tie off, cut excess.
  7.  Blend both forward body materials. Place in dubbing loop. Advance thread to 1/4 back on shank. Twist dubbing loop making  a thick chenille. Wrap forward a thick body. Tie off, cut excess. Pick out body with a bodkin.
  8.  Turn hook upside down. Tie in small clump Holo Flash on top of shank. Cut to hook length.
  9.  Select lg. marabou feather. Strip barbs off one side of feather. Tie in tip. Wrap, preening back barbs as you go. Tie off, cut excess. Whip finish, cut thread, apply glue.

This is not an early season fly. It can be swung on a Skaget line in the estuary when big fish are in, or dead drifted on a tight line through a riffle or under a bobber. It also can be jigged like a spoon through a pool or frog water. You may have noticed that there isn’t a lot of room for a back cast on the upper reaches of the San Lorenzo. That’s why most seasoned Steelheaders fish exclusively with mono line much like euronymphers. Strip casting is the common method of presenting a fly on the S.L. It is a similar technique to flipping for bass and allows the angler to pitch a fly into tight pockets in very tight quarters. Not to say that you can’t use a traditional fly line but many times anglers spook fish with a role cast over a run or pool, especially in low clear water.

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Tips For Fly Tying

by Elaine- Fly tying chairman

Instead of a specific fly to tie this month I’m sharing some tips that ought to help you tie more flies in the future.

1. There are various methods to thread a bodkin. My favorite is using a ” floss threaded” which is a dental item that is sold in most pharmacies. I advise never using the wire tool that is designed for that purpose. It will score the inside and in turn cause thread to fray and break.

2. While trying to tie a particular fly, it helps to prevent materials from being lost in the clutter or blow away in the wind you using a clip or cloths pin.  For your hooks, glue a magnet to the base of your vise.

3.  Bodkins usually get freshly applied glue out of the hook eye but a feather is really effective.

4. Frustrated with the hole in your glue bottle being glued shut? Try this, after each use quickly wipe with a cloth, re-establish  hole with a safety pin or bodkin, then cap right away. If that doesn’t work try a flame  heated pin. Also cutting off the tip will often get below the hardened glue.

5. Hardened glue on bodkin or safety pin can easily be scraped off with a razor blade.

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Red and White Bead Chain Whistler

by Elaine Cook --- fly tying chairman

This pattern can be used for stripers, pike, salmon, steelhead or ocean fish depending on size. These directions are approite for stripers. Use a fast sinking line and rapid long strips. The overall length of this fly should be about 3 1/2 “. This fly will turn upside down when fished.

Hook: Mustad 34007 size 1    1.Crimp Barb.

Thread: White very strong, ie: flat waxed nylon or monocord    1.Attach behind eye.  2.Touching wraps to mid shank then forward to one and half eye lengths behind eye.

Eyes: Lg. bead chain, cut in sets of 2     1.Attach to top of shank with many figure eight and circular wraps.  2.Apply Zap-A-Gap or similar glue.  3.Thread wraps to mid shank.

Upper Body: Red Bucktail    1.Cut clump from hide about size of wooden matchstick.   2.Pull out long fibers from tips and line up with others.   3. Cut butt ends at an angle 3 1/8 ” from tips.   4.Attach to top of shank behind barbells wrapping back to mid shank.   5.Repeat with a second clump.  6.Apply glue.

Mid Body: Mega Baitfish Emulator-pearl    1.Cut about 1/8″ of binding.  2.Attach strands behind barbells to top of shank tips at rear of fly.

Lateral Line: Neck grizzly hackle    1.Select 2 feathers, barbs equal to hook gap.   2.Cut stem 3″ from tip.  3.Cut about 10 barbs short on each side of butt end of stem forming a “crew cut”.   Tie one “crew cut” in on each side of shank behind barbells.

Lower Body: white Bucktail     1.Repeat like upper body but only use 1 clump.

Thorax: red chenille-lg.     1.Strip fuzz off exposing threads.   2.Tie in threads.   3.Advance thread to barbells.   4.Wrap chenille forward.    5.Tie off, cut excess.

Hackle: Very webby Grizzly hackle with very playable barbs.     1.Select feather, barbs equal to 1 1/2 hook gap.   2.Cut off fuzzy end and prepare “crew cut”.   3.With dark side up, tip to rear, tie in “crew cut between barbells on top of chenille.    4.Stroke barbs to rear while wrapping hackle 3 times behind barbells.   5.Tie off, cut excess.   6.Moisten fingers, hold barbs back, make a couple thread wraps to hold them toward rear.

Head: Tying Thread     1.Make a number figure 8 wraps around barbells.   2. Form a small tapered nose infront of eyes.   3. Whip finish, cut thread.    4.Apply glue to nose and thread between barbells.

 

 

 

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Bead Chain Woolybugger

by Elaine Cook----fly tying chairman

To fish this fly, use a sinking line, twitch or strip to elicite a strike from a trout. Woolybuggers typically are not tied with bead chain eyes. They give an entirely different profile. This pattern also varies in that dry fly hackle is used and barbs are kept short.

Hook: TMC 5263 , sizes 8-14

Thread: color to match tail or body

Eyes: bead chain , size proportional

Tail: Marabou, color to match hackle or body.

Hackle:  Neck or saddle. Color to match body or tail, or dun.

Body: Chenille: black, brown, olive, cinnamon, or those colors variegated.

1. Crimp Barb.

2. Attach thread behind eye. Touching wraps 1/4 back on shank then forward to one hook eye behind eye.

3. Cut bead chain with wire cutters into sets of 2.

4. Attach bead chain eyes to top of shank, one ball on each side, using multiple figure eight wraps and around base of eyes on top of shank. Wrap thread to mid shank. Apply drop of glue.

5. Pull clump of marabou off stem of feather. Note: moisten marabou for easy handling. Cut off butt ends. Lay butts on top of shank behind eyes. Tie to top of shank back to end of shank. Break (do not cut) tips to desired length.

6. Select hackle with barbs equal to 1 1/2 hook gap. Holding tip, stroke barbs against grain. Position tip on top of shank, butt end to rear. Tie in place.

7. Pull fibers off about 1/4″ of chenille exposing core threads. Attach threads to rear of shank. Advance thread to behind bead chain.

8. Wrap body forward with touching wraps. Tie off, cut excess.

9. Spiral hackle forward in 6 evenly spaced wraps. Tie off, cut excess. A couple more thread wraps to secure.

10. Make several figure 8 wraps around bead chain eyes. Wrap thread head. Whip finish. Cut thread. Apply glue to head.

 

 

 

 

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Iris Caddis

by Elaine Cook----fly tying chairman

This emerging caddis is fished in the surface film using a floating line. Apply floatent to the loop wing only.

Hook: TMC 100   sizes 14-18

Thread: tan 8/0

Shuck: Amber Z-Lon or spooled Antron

Body: tan Hairtron or Hairline dubbing

Wing: white Z-Lon or Antron

Thorax: same as body AND dubbing wax

Head: thread

1. Crimp Barb.

2. Apply thread 1/3 back on shank.

3. Separate strand of shuck material in half. Tie to top of shank from tie-in to a little around bend of hook. Cut length equal to 1/2 hook shank long.

4. Dub a generous body up to tie in. Brush backward a little to make rough.

5. Tie in wing material on your side of shank. Form a loop that extends to rear of shank. Tie in on far side of shank at original tie in location. Cut excess. Wrap down butts.

6. Apply dubbing wax to a couple inches of thread. Using touch method, apply small amounts of dubbing to thread. Wrap a generous, shaggy thorax forward to hook eye. Wet fingers, pull forward dubbing backward. Make several thread wraps forming a head. Whip finish, cut thread. Brush thorax fibers back a little forming a shaggy fly.

 

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Adult Damsel

by Elaine Cook ---- fly tying chairman

In late spring and eairly summer, damsels migrate from the debths of ponds and lakes becoming very vulnerable to trout and bass. As adults they flutter around vegetation that sticks out of the water. They end up in the water from mating rituals and the wind. Fish will sometimes come out of the water to take them from the air or off vegetation. Do check out http://Vimeo.com/85147880.

Hook: TMC 5262 size 12

Thread: 6/0 royal blue   Damsels often come in tan. Just change all the materials to tan to imitate them.

Abdomen: “Adult Damsel Body” or “Braided Butt Damsel” in blue. These are braided monofilament. And a black Sharpie pen.

Eyes: Pre-made black monofilament eyes OR make your own from plastic hairbrush bristle. Holding a 5/8″ piece in the center with hemostats, melt each end with a flame, forming a barbell shape.

Thorax: blue 2mm closed cell foam

Hackle: dun saddle or neck

Thorax: blue superfine dubbing

Head: blue foam as above

1. Crimp barb.

2. Attach thread behind eye. Touching wraps to rear of  shank.

3. Prepare abdomen. Cut 1 1/8″ long. With hemostats, hold 1/16″ from tip. Melt end with flame. Mark with Sharpie 6 times starting at tip. Note: some of this will be covered, leaving 4-5 exposed marks. Lay on top of shank, melted end to rear,other end to mid shank. Tie in place. Advance thread to 3 hook eye lengths behind eye.

4. Position barbell eyes 2 1/2 hook eye lengths behind hook eye. Attach to top of shank with figure 8 wraps so it’s at right angle to shank. Apply drop of Super Glue” or the like.

5. Cut 3/16″ of foam. With one end behind eyes, attach snugly to top of shank back to mid shank or a touch more.

6. Cut wing strip 2″ X 3/8″, round ends. Twist center and attach to top of shank infront of  extending foam with figure 8 wraps so that wings extend outward.

7. Select hackle with barbs 2 times hook gap. Cut off fuzzy end. Cut 5-6 barbs short on each side of stem forming a “crew cut”. Lay crew cut on top of shank infront of extending foam with tip to rear. Tie in place.

8. Dub thorax up to and a little around barbell eyes ending infront of extending foam.

9. Holding hackle, foam and wings upright, wrap thread all the way around base of all 3 over shank leaving thread hang on your side. Holding wings downward, make 3-5 hackle wraps around base of foam then leave hanging infront of hanging thread. Bring thread upward, make 3-4 wraps around base of foam. Cut excess hackle. Cut hackle barbs short in front of foam. Apply small amount of dubbing to thread and wrap to behind barbell eyes.

10. Pull foam forward. Tie snugly in place with several wraps. Advance thread to infront of barbells, pull foam forward. Tie in place with several wraps. Pulling on foam, cut foam short.

11. Snugly wrap down foam stub. Whip finish. Cut thread. Apply glue.

 

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Quigley Cripple PMD

by Elaine Cook---Fly Tying Chairman

Understanding how to fish this fly is important. The rear end of the fly needs to hang down in the water and the thorax and wing out of the water. Accomplish this by applying  saliva to the body and tail, then floatent to wing and hackle. During a hatch fish tend to be more eager to take an emerger than a dun because they are not ready to fly off.

Hook: TMC 100, size 16-18

Thread: yellow 8/0 but 12/0 or 14/0 are preferred (Note: Rather than purchasing multiple colors of very fine thread, get one spool of white and use a Sharpie pens to make various colors.)

Tail and Body: Brown marabou (fluffy)

Thorax: Pale yellow dubbing

Wing: Deer hair with light color and narrow fibers

Hackle: Ginger neck or saddle

1. Crimp Barb.

2. Attach thread one eye length behind eye. Touching wraps to rear of shank.

3. Cut 3-5 marabou barbs from stem. With tips extending hook length length to rear, make 2 thread wraps forward, then fold marabou backward and make 2 thread wraps backward.

4. Make thread loop. Hold loop and stem end of marabou together, and wrap thread 2/3 forward on shank.

5. Twist loop and marabou into rope, then wrap up to hanging thread with touching wraps. Tie off,cut excess.

6. Dub a round thorax that covers  shank from 1/4 to 1/2 back from eye.

7. Cut a small bundal of deer hair from close to hide. Clean out under fur. Stack tips. Lay on top of shank, tips out over eye so that they measure a shank length from thorax. Tie in place by making first wrap around only hair fibers then second wrap around both fibers and hook shank. Make several snug wraps on top of one another. Then one around base of wing to bundal it, then one more around shank. Cut butt ends so they just cover thorax. Apply very sm. amount glue to thread wraps.

8. Select hackle, barbs 1 1/2 hook gap. Cut off fuzzy end. Cut 5-6 barbs short on each side of the base of stem forming a “crew cut”.  With feather tip to rear and dark side facing you, tie in crew cut between wing and cut deer hair butts. Make 3-5 hackle wraps around shank. Tie off cut excess.

9. Tie off with half hitches behind eye. Cut thread, apply small amount glue to half hitches.