Don's Fly Tying - the Nelson Matuka

[the Nelson Matuka]

Several years ago Ron Nelson provided tying instructions for the Golden Matuka in the BC Outdoors magazine. I tie a similar fly, substituting a brown beard hackle rather than red as shown in Ron's Golden Matuka. My only claim to originality is the use of invisible thread for tying as I find looping back and forth to attach the wing matuka style can be done much easier with this material. Not only does invisible thread not distort the body colour, but its small diameter slips through the wing fibers with ease compared to thicker threads! I doubt if the fish care , however, anything that makes it easier to tie the tricky but effective matuka stand up wing is okay with me. As the wing and tail of this fly will pulsate through water when it is retrieved, you are often rewarded with action on those slow fishing days. Let's start the year with a look at the Nelson Matuka fly!



I like to start by tying an underbody of thin yellow wool throughout the hook shank. Next attach a piece of thin gold wire and also thin or medium chenille to the hook shank, allowing both to project past the hook bend. Wrap the chenille to the hook eye and counter wrap the gold wire over the chenille to form a rib. Now comes the tricky part. Select four short brown neck hackle feathers about twice the length of the hook shank. Match them up two against two, concave sides facing each other, so the appearance is identical from either side of the hook. Place the thick end at the hook eye between your thumb and forefinger and secure a tight loop over the ends with your invisible thread. Then make another loop towards the hook bend, gently vibrating the thread so it settles bewteen the hackle fibers without flattening them. You will need about four loops to reach the hook bend, then do the same back to the hook eye where you will half hitch everything in place! If your loops along the shank have tied parts of the wing hackle flat, try carefully picking out the fibers with a needle. The wing should stand upright from the shank, not turned to one side or the other, and the tips of the wing hackle feathers are the tail of the fly! Flip the fly in your vice to add the brown beard hackle, and finish the fly at the head with a few turns of peacock sword herl.

Your comments are welcome at "dhaaheim at telus dot net"

Http:// -- Revised: December 30, 2001
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