We had a really tough time choosing the ten finalists for our Instagram fly-tying contest, and voters had the same problem trying to pick three winners from that group. Commenter james wrote, “All of the flies are beautiful, creative, and super fishy. Very tough to choose!” His sentiments were echoed by many others.
The votes were spread out among all the patterns, but three eventually came out on top. It’s fascinating that none of the top three was a trout fly! And your winners are. . .
First Prize: Hollow Fleye by mr_decor
Matthew Rooney (mr_decor) of Asbury Park, New Jersey, ties saltwater flies for casting to striped bass, bluefish, albies, fluke, and weakfish. His biggest influences at the vise are Bob Popovics and Captain Gene Quigley. His winning pattern was inspired by Popovics’s Hollow Deceiver Fleye.
Rooney’s prize is a customized Regal Revolution Vise.
Second Prize: Articulated Crappie by fenton_flies
David Fenton (fenton_flies) of Round Rock, Texas, was trying to imitate a crippled crappie with his articulated pattern, which caught the eye of many voters. Fenton says that the fins were the most challenging part of the fly.
For second place, Fenton will receive an Orvis Premium Fly-Tying Kit.
Third Prize: Doyle’s Floating Crab by destination_flies
Floridian Kevin Doyle (destination_flies) created his floating-crab imitation to feed bull redfish in clear water. He says that–depending on your leader construction as well as how fast you begin your retrieve when it lands–the fly will fish like a popper, a fleeing crab producing a small wake on the surface, or a floating crab being swept with the current.
For third place, he receives a Fly-Tying Work Center.
The winner of our random drawing from among all who voted is Stan Coleman, who gets a set of three pairs of Premium Orvis Scissors.
Thanks to all who entered such innovative and well-tied patterns. It was really fun to see so much creativity and passion on display. And thanks to the hundreds of you who took the time to vote.
Congrats to the winners, and stay tuned for another contest in the near future!