Video: How to Tie a Classic Dry Fly with Hackle-Tip Wings

This pattern can be tied in more-imitative colors, as well.

The classic Catskill dry fly has beautiful proportions, sits on the water in an elegant pose. . .and has tortured fly tiers for decades. It’s easy to screw up the wings, overdub the body, and get the tails or hackle too long or too short. Where you wanted slim elegance, you get clumsy deformity. But, trust me: there is hope.

In this great video from Tightline Productionsauthor and blogger Matt Grobert demonstrates his method for creating a beautiful mayfly pattern in the Catskill style. Once you see how he sizes everything, prepares and places the materials on the hook, and takes his time, you should be able to replicate his work. Maybe you won’t get it perfectly the first time, but you’ll be well on your way.

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Grobert ties this one in all pink. Consider taking this as a hint to check out Casting for Recovery, a wonderful organization whose mission is to enhance the quality of life for women with breast cancer through a unique program that combines breast cancer education and peer support with the therapeutic sport of fly fishing.

Classic Dry Fly with Hackle-Tip Wings
Hook: Standard dry-fly hook (here a Mustad 94840), sizes 10-20.
Thread: 8/0 or 70-denier.
Wings: Two dry-fly hackle tips, one hook-length long.
Tail: Dry-fly hackle fibers, one hook-length long.
Body: Sow and Scud dubbing.
Hackle: Dry-fly hackle, slightly oversize.
Head: Tying thread.
Tie this in color combinations to match any mayfly.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *