Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Childers from Francis Francis

This is perhaps the most satisfying salmon fly I've tied to date! Everything worked out just about right, except perhaps for the balance from top to bottom, which would be rectified by using a smaller hook and slightly longer wing.
That said, I really like how this fly turned ou. The hackle, body, tail, throat, and especially the head!

The Childers is a popular fly among the classic books, with no less than 12 descriptions, some which vary only slightly. This pattern from Francis Francis is my favorite of those patterns I've seen tied.
The hook here is 4/0 Jock Scott Stout from Ronn Lucas.

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Monday, May 26, 2014

Kiss the Water

Many of you may  be familiar with, or perhaps have even seen this movie already, surprisingly, I hadn't, until this weekend, despite it having been 'on tour' over the last number of months. I was aware of the release however, but the tour stops were never close enough for me to warrant a trip to view it.

The movie of course tells the story of Megan Boyd, BEM, an eccentric 20th century salmon fly tyer who lived in the scottish highlands tying what have been described as some of the best fishing flies the world has seen. I have not seen in person any of Megan Boyd's flies, and likely never will, so on that assertion, I can't comment!

The movie paints a rather romantic picture of salmon fly tying, told by friends and acquaintances of Megan Boyd. It is artistically produced with a nice score and artwork thoughout portraying the complex nature of man vs fish, and the design of quite intricate 'lures' to get the king of the fishes to 'feed' when on a spawn run in fresh water.
Overall the movie is interesting, and as a salmon fly tyer I enjoyed it, despite the lack of imagery of both Megan Boyd and her flies. I believe all told, there was perhaps 1 minute of the entire movie (80 mins) that featured either Megan or her flies.
In salmon fly tying ciricles there have been musings that some of the facts protrayed by one or two of those featured in this movie are not actually true, and not having seen or heard any evidence to contradict those facts I'm left to take the movie as it is presented.
Regardless, there is no doubt Megan Boyd tied quality flies, which caught fish, as well as many fishermen, given the notoriety of her work throughout the world. 

Kiss The Water is now available to purchase and if you go to www.kiss-the-water.com and use the code ANGLER, you can get 10% off the digital download of the movie. In addition, through the month of May you can also make a donation to Project Healing Waters who will receive 100% of all net profits collected from additional payments over the cost of the film

Kiss the Water is also available to view on Netflix.


Thursday, May 15, 2014

Floodtide 4/0

Floodtide 4/0 tied by Eunan Hendron
This is thet third time I've tied this particular pattern from Kelson (other version below), and I have to say this is the one I'm most happy with. 

As the name suggests, this should be a big fly for big dirty water, and I've tied it on a 4/0 Noble DS from Ronn Lucas. This particular hook, while 4/0, has a longer than normal shank, hence the choice, as I think longer shanked hooks give this fly a more sleek look.
The original pattern calls for eagle feather for the hackle, but alas, ownership of eagle feathers is strictly outlawed, unless you are a Native American, so I've used extra select turkey marabou, which is the commonly accepted sub.
You can just about see some red golden pheasant swords in the under wing, between the longest and middle jungle cock. Personally I dont like swords in this fly, as they are often much longer than required, particularly when tying smaller flies like this, and you really only get to use the very tips. Perhaps the next time I tie this pattern I'll use a red hackle feather with a better shape, or else tie the fly on a  much bigger hook. Though, then comes the problem of tying the main wing!!

Floodtide 4/0 tied by Eunan Hendron
This is the fly above, displayed in a little table top mount. This and other salmon flies can be purchased by visiting the STORE page at the the top menu bar.

Anyways, as promised here is the earlier version of the Floodtide I tied about a year and half ago - the newer one above is much more refined!!
Floodtide tied by Eunan Hendron

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Friday, May 9, 2014

Freestyle Rainbow Salmon Fly

Every night, almost without fail, while my wife puts the nipper to sleep (I'm generally not permitted if my wife is there, the rule of the 3yo), she finds some excuse to come downstairs and 'see papa', usually to tell me mama and her were fighing, or mama didnt read a story or some other white lie.

Nine times out of 10 i'm in the basement working on some fly or other. She always sees the materials, asks to touch, asks what things are and always asks, 'is that my fly papa'. So one night she saw the stackable containers of seals fur, all different colors and aske me to tie a fly with those. I assumed she mean the colors and set to work.

First I made the wing, married fibers of goose shoulder, and then for fun, the next night I made another shorter, and shallower wing with more blending of the colors, thinking I'd use it as an underwing. It ended up not being an underwing, but still made it to the fly.

I even had a chance to try to teach the nipper to marry fibers, - it was a short lived experience for her as she soon got bored, but nonetheless, a nice photo op!

So the fly. Since I was to be multi colored I went with a  rainbow theme, pretty much from the outset of the wing construction. I'd thought to do a maypole type twist of silk on the body, but that proved to be a bridge to far at that time. Though after considering last night when I'd finished the fly, I realise it could easliy have been completed. Next time perhaps.

The underwing originally intended soon became the sides, and I put some peach golden tippets to support the wing instead. Nice soft colors - no black in this fly apart from the head. Tail and topping came from the same head as the tippets.

I deliberately left the topping a smidge longer than the wing, it just looked right when I measured it that way, as compared to ending right at the tip of the wing. Better balance I think, or at least thats what I tell myself

I dont tie many freestyle flys because I simply dont have the vision some of the more proficient  freestylers out there, but the one or two I have done have been pretty simple and came out just fine. 

Here's the happy girl, Aoibheann (3 years old) with her fly.

And, the fly - Aoibheann's Rainbow - 4/0 Emerald Isle hook