Practical Fly Tying

Guest Fly Dresser and Contributor

North Country Spiders part IV by Tony Down


    This fly is even better than the Golden Hackle (PT 3) on both rivers and stillwaters. It excels in smaller sizes.

    Hook, Hyabusa 752, size 14 – 18.

    Thread, Pearsalls, Primrose lightly waxed.

    Hackle, A well marked feather from the marginal coverts of a Golden Plover. (the smallest are found at the knuckle)

    Body, Tying Silk dubbed with the palest hares ear fur. Making sure the silk can be seen through the dubbing. A small thorax may be added immediately behind the hackle.

    This fly can be used from May onwards, and can be regarded as an imitation of

    Pale Wateries, or Medium Olives.

    Hare's Lug and Plover



    Tied small enough this fly will imitate those tiny black smuts that the fish latch onto during those cold days in April. (Sharpley Springs this April comes to mind)

    Hook, Hyabusa 752, size 16 – 22.

    Thread, Pearsalls, Purple Naples.

    Hackle, A dark glossy purple/black feather from the neck of a Starling.

    Body, Tying Silk dubbed with one strand of Magpie herl.

    Scrape the herl gently to raise the flue before tying in. The herl should not be wound as a rib, but twisted with the silk as the body is being wound.

    Little Black


    Tied exactly the same way as the LITTLE BLACK, but with the addition of WINGS,

    Some dressings call for slips of Starling Secondary. I prefer fibres from a light grey feather, tied flat over the back.

    Again this fly is best tied in smaller sizes, i.e., 16 – 22.

    Fog Black


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