Right now it’s -9 outside. When it’s this cold you can’t do anything outside. It’s too cold to ski or ice fish, so we are stuck inside for now. That mean’s its time to sit down and start cranking out flies for the upcoming season. If you live in Missoula you know that during the tying season you basically only have to tie a handful of flies Chubby’s, Pat’s Rubberleg Stoneflies, San Jaun Worms, Purple Haze’s, Pheasant Tails and your secret Skwala fly. These are, for the most part not so much fun to tie, especially after tying 5 dozen or more of them. It makes tying flies a bit of a bore. When the winter is over you are tired of tying flies. Unless you are tying new flies, getting creative and tying for fun. Every year we discover new tying materials that get us excited to tie flies and create something that might work, will probably work or was just super fun to tie. Here are 5 new materials (new to us) that have us excited for tying flies.
Hareline’s Gritty Tungsten Beads will give your nymphs or worms a pop in the water. Tungsten gets your flies down quick and have been a staple on our Pheasant Tails and Worms for years. Add the gritty texture and hot colors of these beads to these patterns and we are excited to see how these out perform the same old flies we’ve been using. Sometimes having something that is just a bit different than what everyone else is throwing makes all the difference in the world.
Dry fly capes are expensive and finding good “cheaper” ones can be hard. You always get what you pay for when it comes to dry fly saddles. These 1/2 saddles grizzly saddles from Hareline are amazing and have feathers that can tie flies from sz’s 20 – 8 and even a few streamer sized hackles. They are only $35.95, which in the world of dry fly hackle is a great price.
Everyone likes tying streamers. The amount of streamer videos on youtube and the fly tying “celebrities” that are streamer junkies is proof that streamers are fun to tie and fish. We are all streamer junkies here at the Hackle and we love tying them from the articulated beasts to the smaller bugger type flies. Flash has become more and more popular in flies and the Ice Dub Minnow Back Shimmer Fringe does just the trick. Each package has two colors, usually a darker color and a lighter color. Darker color for the top of your streamers and the lighter color for the belly of your streamer. This is a must try in all your streamers patters, especially baitfish patterns.
Staying on the streamer kick this stuff is awesome body material for any bugger type streamer. We’ve been tying our Circus Peanut’s with this stuff. It’s gives your body bulk, flash and wiggle with it’s flash and rubberlegs in it. This could be used on JJ Specials, Sex Dungeons, Yellow Yummies, Boogieman’s, Mouthwash’s and so much more.
OK now I know that using San Jaun Worms is sacrilege and not really fly fishing, but honestly we don’t care. We aren’t purists and they just plain work. If you fish in Montana these have to be in your box if you want to be successful. We all want to catch fish on dries, but that’s not always what fish are eating. Fish are almost always eating a worm of some sort… Wormille is just a funky material made for tying some stretchy, durable and cool looking worms. We are looking forward to trying them out.
These are just 5 of our favorites. There is more that we didn’t mention. Like Whitings 4B Saddles and Schlappen or Partridge Streamer Hooks or Chocklett’s Body Tubing or Groovy Bunny strips. Too many to list!