The Black Pennell wet fly

Black Pennell & Family…   One of the classic ‘Black’ flies that has survived the test of time.  Classified as a fancy wet or loch style pattern the Black Pennell came from the tying bench of Mr H. Cholmondeley Pennell a wealthy Edwardian english gentleman, who loved fishing in Northern Europe. There are several styles in tying this pattern, some with a fine slim body of only one layer of tying thread, the tapered body, as shown here and one with seals fur or black wool. Although some listings say that the hackle should be of a black hen tied … Continue reading The Black Pennell wet fly

How to tie Long Flies-streamer

Blue Devil Custom This is one of the many patterns from the legendary Rangeley fly tyer Carrie G Stevens. Most of her patterns where tied on 6 X long – 10 X long shank hooks although she did use some that where even 12 X long, these super long shank hooks is what gives these flies their unique profile and silhouette. In 1924 Carrie G Stevens caught a 6lb 13oz brook trout on a prototype streamer she had made herself. She entered her catch into the fishing competition in the well known American magazine “Field and Stream” shortly after her … Continue reading How to tie Long Flies-streamer

The G & H Sedge Goddard Caddis

The G & H Sedge or Goddard Caddis The G & H sedge, as it was originally named was created by John Goddard and Cliff Henry.  John Goddard who died last December was one of the great innovators of fly tying. This is a small tribute to one of, if not, his most famous patterns. The dressing and style of tying I demonstrate here, is taken from the 1977 re-print of his 1969  book ‘Trout flies of still-water’.   Original recipe Hook:  Long-shank 8-10 Tying Silk: Green Underbody: Dark green seals fur Body: Natural deer hair  Hackle: Two rusty dun … Continue reading The G & H Sedge Goddard Caddis

Chernobyl Ant

  This pattern was the product of Rainey Riding’s imagination after the Chernobyl atomic plant accident. Resembling an ant, only in the weirdest imagination, this is a great stimulator pattern. The CCFS (closed cell foam sheet) used in this ant floats like a cork, and the 8 rubber legs dance a jitter bug across the surface of the water. I first encountered the Chernobyl ant many years ago, while visiting a fly fishing shop in Toronto Canada, called Skinners. I enquired about good patterns for Brook trout in the north, they said that I would only need one fly, the … Continue reading Chernobyl Ant

Techniques for traditional dry fly

Techniques for traditional dry’s Its often said “If you can tie a good dry fly, you can tie just about anything” this makes dry flies sound extremely difficult, they are not. There are many other patterns that look much simpler but are much more challenging for the tyer to master.  The key to good dry flies:   Quality materials Proportion Attention to detail Follow the step by step instructions Practice Follow these rules and you will be tying great dry flies in no time. Although you dont need perfect, great looking flies to catch fish, a well proportioned dry fly … Continue reading Techniques for traditional dry fly

A simple nymph

Now you should have learned the basics, mounting the hook, attaching the tying thread and the whip finish. With these you should be able to start and finish a fly, its just what’s in between now! I always believe its better to start with a simple pattern that illustrates other elementary techniques, than demonstrating each technique one for one. When you are tying this pattern you may find that handling the materials is a somewhat difficult task especially if you have large fingers and are not use to intricate work. But let me assure you, this will come with time. … Continue reading A simple nymph

The Autumn is upon us.

Hi, I am now back from a weeks fishing with Marc petitjean and Neil Patterson on the Kvennan beat of the river Glomma here in Norway.  We had a great week with lots of grayling on dry fly, up-to 45 cm. I will be posting a full rapport from this trip later. Heres a snap of Neil doing his thing… And Marc doing his… Just to keep you up to date, hunting has started here and the first opportunity I get (the next deer I shoot) I will be doing a step by step tutorial on skinning and preparing the … Continue reading The Autumn is upon us.

The model Nymph

Pheasant tail Nymph variant Apologies, apologies, and more apologies dear friends… Its been a busy summer and posting has had to take a lesser priority in the last few weeks, for photography and fishing.  But I am back and will be posting regularly again!  My first post is # 16 in the fly tying course and is the model nymph, the basic pattern for most, if not all nymphs.  For those of you that are new to the website, you can find the previous 15 courses in earlier posts. If you have any questions regarding this or other posts, materials, … Continue reading The model Nymph

CdC bead head nymphs with Marc Petitjean

Charles Bickle one of the pioneers of CdC flies, standing on the bank of the Orbe river in Switzerland in the town of Vallorbe in the 1920s. While visiting Marc at his home, although a little more overgrown, we managed to find the same spot on the river where the famous Bickle developed and fished the first CdC patterns. After a weekend with Marc Petitjean we managed to do a little fishing, although the conditions where not perfect and there was little activity in our local forest lakes, we did manage to make a few more tutorials. This first one, is … Continue reading CdC bead head nymphs with Marc Petitjean

Tying the parachute Leptophlebia

Hi, I am back again with # 15 in the fly tying course, this time its a small mayfly Dun. Where I live in Southern Norway the Claret Dun (Leptophlebia vespertina) and Sepia Dun ( Leptophlebia marginata) are amongst the first and the most common mayflies to hatch. Because of their tolerance of acidic water they are to be found on most forest lakes and ponds along with slow flowing rivers. These two mayflies are on the trouts menu from as early as April until the end of July and no Norwegian fly fisherman should be without a good imitation. … Continue reading Tying the parachute Leptophlebia

The Bulldozer: A monster popper for spring pike

Hook: Ad Sweir Pike # 8/0 Tying thread: Dyneema Tail: Marabou and crystal hair Skirt: Four large Whiting American hackles Topping: Peacock herl Legs: Barred rubber legs Collar: Lite Brite and Marabou Head: Three foam pencil poppers welded together Eyes: Mobile dolls eyes For a long time after I began fishing with poppers, I was constantly disappointed with how little water the pre-made cork and foam heads actually moved – when yanked, after all, optimal  popping, gurgling and splashing is what we are trying to achieve! I then experimented with cutting my own popper heads from foam blocks, but found … Continue reading The Bulldozer: A monster popper for spring pike

Dry Fly Adult caddis

X Caddis Dont forget! If you have any questions please dont hesitate to ask. Just post your question at the foot of this page. If you would like to receive a message when the next stage of the course is published, just add your e mail address at the top right of this page. Thanks, The feather bender. This next fly in the course is the X Caddis. This is a no hackle dry fly that floats extremely well because of the natural buoyancy of the deer hair and Antron tail. Hook: Mustad R50 94840 # 10-18 Thread: Dyneema Tail: … Continue reading Dry Fly Adult caddis

Thread and Whip finish

Tying thread: There are many threads available today that have many different properties. The tyer will want to use the one that is most suited to the task at hand, in respect to thickness, strength, stretchability, waxed or un-waxed and weather it has a flat or round profile on the hook, And of course colour. Size / thickness: Thick threads are described in lower numbers  3/0  and thinner threads in higher numbers 16/0.  And strong threads such as Kevlar and Dyneema are as strong as carbon fibre. Silk threads and flosses are still available, but most modern threads and flosses … Continue reading Thread and Whip finish