The idea of a ‘presentation fly’ is one that is generally representative of common, prevalent food forms and by virtue of its construction and the materials used in its construction (as well as the presentation characteristics made possible by the rest of the tackle, particularly the line tip and leader), behaves on or in the water in a similar way to the naturals. Is this fly fishing in its purest sense; is it not the fly, the artificial fly, that defines fly fishing, much more so than does the fly line or the fly rod?
I still tie flies for sale, but please contact me before making an order. I only tie the patterns, and sizes, I actually use, and these are very few, for pragmatic reasons. The plume tips represent the single-most important ‘family’ of flies I have ever used, dominated by the heron herl version; my ‘core’ pattern. The plume tip to me is the ultimate refinement of a river dry fly. I do not think it will ever be improved. It can be varied to an extent, most readily by switching the CDC plume tips from the upright position to the flat over the back position, and thus more closely, though generally, representing numerous caddis and dipteran species; although the upright (or shuttlecock) version completely dominates during the river year. From spring through to late autumn, 90% of my trout and grayling come to this fly. Of course they would, because this is what I am fishing most of the time; but ask yourself why I am fishing this fly most of the time. Other than plume tips, including their caddis and black gnat variants, the only other dry fly I use is the Oppo, which is an outstanding rough water pattern and also the perfect duo (nymph under dry) pattern.
The plume tip to me is what the pheasant tail nymph (PTN) was to Frank Sawyer and my old mentor Arthur Cove. And it is the PTN that dominates my own nymph fishing, which is mostly confined to the cooler months, particularly winter for grayling. The only other patterns I now commonly use, principally on double nymph or duo rigs, are the Rhyac and Hydro (caseless) caddis.
Please contact me before making an order.
Heron herl plume tip, sizes 17, 19, 21
This is my number one pattern, of all time, yielding 90% of my catch during spring, summer and autumn.
(Note, this pattern is also my top tenkara fly, giving perfect presentation on the fixed-line technique)
CDC Caddis heron herl; sizes 17, 19
Oppo, sizes 15, 17 and 19
The most outstanding ‘duo’ dry pattern I have ever used; also works as a singleton.
Pheasant Tail Nymph (PTN), sizes 12 , 14 , 16 , 18 (all with appropriately sized copper tungsten bead).
Rhyac caddis, 14 and 16 jig (with appropriately sized gold tungsten bead).
Hydro caddis, 12 and 14 jig (with appropriately sized silver tungsten bead).
Please email with your request (email@example.com) and if I can tie the flies for you we can arrange payment via PayPal or cheque.