My good wife Lois often asks me why I do all the work of preparing a fly tying article every month when there is no compensation involved, in other words, it has alway been a completely voluntary effort. As well, I never sell flies but I have given away hundreds over the years! An answer to my wife's concern arrived in the mail just before Christmas this past year. A fly tier from Prince George, Dale Ruth, sent me five of his very special flies together with a letter explaining that he appreciated my fly tying articles. To me, only one word can describe Dale's thoughtfulness, "Priceless"! To my dear wife I can only say that is the reason why I share my fly tying recipes each month and dutifully submit to all of the preparation work involved!
Now I have lived in Prince George on two different occasions, and have fished most of the area lakes that Dale tells me he frequently fishes. The pattern he has developed works extremely well in these lakes and I am quite sure his fly will produce in the Okanagan and Cariboo lakes that I fish. Now that I have Dale's fly to try, I will confidently put his pattern to the test this coming season. I am so pleased with Dale's fly that, with his permission, I want to share his tying instructions with you as follows!
Dale tells me that his fly is simple to tie. First prepare at least a dozen small sized well proportioned mallard flank feathers all stripped of their afterfeathers so that you have enough stem length 1/2 inch or more to easily grab. Then crimp the hook barb and slide the bead through to the hook eye. Wrap your tying thread from the bead along the shank to within 1/8 inch of the hook bend. Lightly cement the thread along the entire shank to ensure it remains secure on the shank and then wait for the cement to dry before proceeding further.
Now take the smallest feather first and place it's stem directly on top of the shank. Wrap the stem to the shank with just a few semi-tight wraps initially. Grab the stem and pull it slowly towards the hook eye until the feather starts to close in on itself as it is being pulled under the wraps. Stop when the feather extends approximately 1/4 inch beyond the hook bend. Now lock the stem in on the shank with a few tight wraps. Excess stem can be snipped later. Next place a slightly bigger feather on top of the first feather and complete the same procedure as before. Gradually you will work your way closer to the bead with each consecutive feather. Snip the stems close to the bead if they become too crowded (usually after the fifth feather or so). Tightly wrap them along the shank up to the bead and then back to the last feather. It is important to maintain good alignment and balance with each feather placed on top of the shank and to each other. Within 1/8 inch or so from the bead uniformly wrap the remaining snipped stems. Whip finish, cement and you have completed Dale's Mallard Concorde!
Your comments are welcome at "dhaaheim at telus dot net"
CANADA, a clean, spacious, scenic, fun place to visit!