Tying Unsinkable Dry Flies

This blog will take off where the book "Unsinkable Dry Flies" left off, listing new and different ways to tie flies by attaching a air bubble to the hook. The flies displayed may be imitations of flies found in other reference materials or something completely unique. If you have a new idea email us, we will endeavor to post it on the Blog with your credit.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Salmon Fly

The Dream Salmon Fly

I’m going to show you how to tie a Salmon Fly that will out perform all others simply because it presents right profile and size.  Stop here if you are not into different materials because this fly is definitely non-traditional and the main body is not tied but assembled.   This fly floats like a cork and is impossible to sink always popping to the surface even in the roughest of water.

The ideal fly is 2 ½ to 3 inches long (6-8 Centimeters)


The materials are as follows:

Hook – size 2-6 any brand 4-6x long with as light of wire as possible
Thread - brown and metallic orange
Body – ¼ inch colored or UV reactive orange heat shrink or orange latex tubing
Head – ¼ inch gray polyethylene closed cell foam
Wing - home made wing material with black netting and some type of sparkle (follow this link to see how to make https://unsinkableflies.blogspot.com/2012/02/making-fly-wing-material-fly-tying.html)
Antenna – brown monofilament
Legs - brown rubber
Eyes - black mono or vinyl
Egg Sack – ¼ inch round black foam
Collar - brown saddle (optional)


Shown in the pictures above are the materials to be used and a 15 watt soldering iron used to segment the heat shrink fly body.  Note the two body materials the top one is orange UV Heat Shrink and the one below the top one is the colored heat shrink.  

  
The heat shrink bodies above have been segmented and assembled prior to attachment to the hook.  If the body is latex segmenting is performed by pulling the thread tightly around the hook shank.  The egg sack and head is super glued into place along with shrinking with the soldering iron.  The eyes shown are super glued into place..

  
Directions:

  1. Wrap the hook shank with brown thread.
  2. At the rear of the hook tie in the assembled fly body (6-10 wraps).
  3. Tie in the rear legs (location of legs varies depending on amount of segments).
  4. Work you way up the hook shank applying 6-10 wraps at each segment and tie in the middle legs.
  5. Near the eye tie in the tie in the front legs.
  6. Whip finish at the eye with the brown thread.
  7. Tie in the metallic orange thread at the first or second front segment.
  8. Attach the wing or wings (1 to 3 depending on the fly).
  9. Whip finish with the metallic orange thread and apply a small amount of head cement or super glue long the hook shank.  This will stabilize the body and keep it from rotating on the hook shank.
  10. Under side of finished fly. 


 The top three flies above do not have the optional brown saddle collar.  The reason most salmon fly tiers add a collar or fur as wing is to provide flotation.  This is not necessary on a salmon fly like this because of the air trapped inside the fly body. On the underside one can cut the bottom off the optional brown saddle to provide a better profile on the water. 


Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Beaverhead County Hatch Calendar

This Hatch Calendar is provided for those of you planning to visit SW Montana in particular Beaverhead County and parts of Madison County.   The rivers included are the Beaverhead, Big Hole, Jefferson, Ruby, and Wise.  While not all rivers and tributaries contain these hatches many do, local fly shops can provide additional information.


Sunday, December 24, 2017

Mating Damsel Fly

Recipe Rated-X Damsel Fly
 Front Fly
-  Hook – 4 or 6X Long Shank, Size 10
-  Thread – 6/0 Blue
-  Eyes 1/8 inch black round foam
-  Body – 1/8 inch Blue Heat Shrink Tubing
-  Collar – Grizzly Hackle (optional)
-  Wing – Web Wing or similar (Clear with black ribbing)
-  Legs – Black and White Rubber or Brown Mono
Rear Fly
           -  On the same hook
-  Thread – 6/0 Blue
-  Eyes 1/8 inch black round foam
-  Body – 3/32 inch Clear Heat Shrink Tubing colored with blue alcohol ink
-  Collar – Grizzly Hackle (optional) 
-  Wing – Web Wing or similar (Clear with black ribbing)
-  Legs – Black and White Rubber or Brown Mono

This fly is great on any water where damsel flies are present.    Fish this fly in calmer water especially under overhanging bushes and trees.

Mating Crane Fly

Recipe – X-Rated Crane Fly


Base Fly
-  Hook – 4 or 6X Long Shank, Size 10
-  Thread – 6/0 Light Brown
-  Body – 1/8 inch Heat Shrink Tubing Colored Brown
-  Wing – Web Wing or similar (Clear with black ribbing)
-  Legs – Brown Monofilament
Butt Fly
           -  No hook
-  Thread – 6/0 Light Brown
-  Body – 3/32 inch Heat Shrink Tubing Colored Brown
-  Wing – Web Wing or similar (Clear with black ribbing)
-  Legs – Brown Monofilament


This fly is great on any water where crane flies are present. (Note: a second hook can be added to the butt fly and connected to the base fly with minimum 20# line)   Fish tend to hit this fly hard especially in calmer water under overhanging bushes and trees.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Mating Salmon Fly

Recipe – Big Bang Coitus Fly
Base Fly
             -  Hook – Aberdeen Hook, Size 2
-  Antenna – Brown Monofilament
-  Thread – 6/0 Orange
-  Body – 1/4 inch HeatShrinkz - UV Reactive Orange Heat shrink
-  Wing – Web Wing or similar (Clear with black ribbing)
-  Legs – Brown Rubber
-  Collar – Orange Metallic Thread
-  Head – Gray Foam
 Rear Fly
           -  No hook
-  Antenna – Brown Monofilament
-  Thread – 6/0 Orange
-  Body – 1/4 inch HeatShrinkz - UV Reactive Orange Heat shrink
-  Wing – Web Wing or similar (Clear with black ribbing)
-  Legs – Brown Rubber
-  Collar – Orange Metallic Thread
-  Tail - Black 1/8 inch Foam
-  Head – Brown 1/8 inch Foam

We all know about famous Salmon Fly hatches and have most likely seen Salmon Flies mating on bushes near the waters edge.  What we don’t realize is that fish really key on mating flies when they fall in the water.  Big fish seem to watch for this phenomenon and explode when they see it happening, thus the Big Bang Coitus fly.  Fish this fly anywhere when Salmon flies are out, but especially under overhanging bushes and trees.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Mating Stonefly

Recipe Coitus Stonefly
Base Fly
-  Hook – 6X Long Shank, Size 12
-  Antenna – Brown Monofilament
-  Thread – 6/0 Yellow or Gold
-  Tail - Yellow Biot
-  Body – 1/8 inch Latex Tubing
-  Wing – Web Wing or similar (Clear with black ribbing)
-  Legs – Brown Rubber
 Top fly
          -  No hook
-  Thread – 6/0 Yellow or Gold
-  Body – 3/32 inch Clear Heat Shrink Tubing (colored yellow)
-  Wing – Web Wing or similar (Clear with black ribbing)
-  Legs – Brown Rubber
-  Antenna – Brown Monofilament

The development of this fly was suggested to me by a local fly tier and shop owner Tim Tollett after seeing my DC Shuckster.    Fish this fly anywhere when stone flies are out, but especially under overhanging bushes and trees as well as cut banks.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Emerger with Shuck

Recipe – DC Shuckster
Shuck
  • Hook – Long shank, light wire, size 8 to 14
  • Thread – 6/0 caramel or light brown
  • Tail - Brown Biot
  • Body – Brown heat shrink
  • Collar – Brown/Green Web Wing of similar
  • Legs – Brown rubber

 Emerger
  • No hook
  • Thread - Green or color to match the emerging fly 
  • Wing – Web Wing or similar (white or off-white)
  • Collar – Grizzly or white saddle feather
  • Legs – White/Black spotted rubber

Taking Gary LaFontaine’s claim of an air bubble causing a nymph to rise to the surface and emerge I have gone one step farther and developed the DC Shuckster.  This nymph/emerger semidry pattern as it is designed to float has both the nymph shuck and the emerging fly with air inside both to hold it right at the surface.  Fish this fly anywhere you would any other emerger, but especially in surface film or foam.