Fly Tying For Beginners: 4 Flies And The Materials To Get Started
As spring approaches upon us here in BC and the ice slowly melts off the lakes and the stocking begins again, we will all soon be asking ourselves the same inevitable question, “what do I put on my line first?”. A constant guessing game that stumps even the best of anglers.
With the help of this read, you can approach the shoreline with more confidence and know that your chances to fool a trout will improve. The techniques learned from tying these patterns are fundamentals that will help you on your way to tying even the most complicated of flies. Let’s get started.
Hare’s Ear Nymph
With the countless variations to tie this pattern, it gives this fly the ultimate ability to imitate just about anything in the water. This pattern best replicates scuds and mayflies but can also be used for chironomids, damselflies, dragons, boatmen and baitfish. A simple yet highly effective pattern that has been tricking the most weary of trout for decades. Do not limit your imagination when thinking of different size and colour combos!
Hook: Togens Nymph competition Barbless, #14
Thread: Danville 70 Denier, light olive
Bead: 2.4mm tungsten, green magic
Tail: mallard flank, olive
Body: Super bright dubbing, olive
Rib: UTC Ultra Wire – X-Small, copper
Shellback: mallard flank, olive
Another tried and true pattern that is an absolute must have in every anglers fly box. At any given time of year, when in doubt throw on a leech. Even when there is a lot happening on the water, fish will rarely turn their noses at the opportunity to take a leech passing by. Using lighter colours like olive or tan can give this fly the look of either a leech or damsel. Also, with the options to use flashy and vibrant colours it can even be retrieved “roly-poly” style, tug is the drug with this one.
Hook: Togens Jig 60 Degree, #12
Thread: Danville 70 Denier, fluo. pink
Bead: 3.2mm tungsten, rainbow
Tail: Rabbit CC Zonker Strip, black
Body: Marabou, black
Rib: UTC Ultra Wire – X-Small, gun metal blue
BSC (Blue Steel Chironomid)
A hare’s ear nymph and micro leech are great “all purpose” patterns, but the BSC focuses on a trout’s primary food source, chironomids. When a fish eats a leech or drangonfly, throat samples usually reveal that the trout was merely packing down all the chironomids it had just gorged on. In many still water lakes here in BC, the BSC will perform like an absolute champion.
Hook: Togens Scud Barbless, #14
Thread: Danville 70 Denier, Black
Bead: 2.4mm tungsten, black nickel
Body: Togens Chirony Skin, Blue Steel
Rib #1: UTC Ultra Wire – X-Small, black
Rib #2: Flashabou, red
The last 3 patterns pretty much cover every aspect of sub surface lake fishing. Even with a large emergence of chironomids, mayflies, damsels or dragons, most situations still call for fishing beneath the surface. This is not always the case with the almighty caddis, it will drive trout crazy making them carelessly and reptitively attack a scampering adult trying to take flight. No dry fly has the same excitement as a Mik-Estaz Sedge (a flashy twist on the mikaluk sedge) and that is why it is a solid choice at #4, don’t get caught without it come mid-June.
Hook: Togens Nymph 3x Barbless, #10
Thread: Danville 70 Denier, Beige
Wing: Deer Hair, tan
Body: Estaz, salmon
Each of these patterns contain basic tying techniques that will challenge you but also get you on the right track to tying like a pro. Fearlessly explore and get to know the waters that you will be fishing for best tying knowledge and practice. These four patterns are a great place to start no matter where you go.
You can find all materials and supplies along with other tying tutorials linked below.