Do woven flies catch more fish? I don't really know but they are fun to tie and you never know, on that day when those big trout are very picky, it just may be the answer! I learned to do a basic weave for fly bodies when I was a member of the Polar Coachman's Fly Club in Prince George many years ago. I still occasionally tie a woven fly, my favourite being the dragonfly nymph. The finished product certainly looks good to most fly fishermen and perhaps to a large trout as well! Try it and see!
Start by crimping the barb on your hook. Slip a fairly large bead to the hook eye as dragonfly nymphs do have big heads. Next tie in two olive goose quills for the tail at the hook bend making sure they are spread apart. Now for the body weave, tricky if you have never done it but simple with a bit of experience! You will need a foot long piece of green wool, place it under the hook bend and hold it up so that you have equal 6 inch strands in each hand. Then tie a simple granny knot on top of the hook shank where the goose quill tail comes together. Take a wool strand, let's say the left one and loop it ahead, over the shank and up through the hole on the left side, made between the shank and the granny knot. Do the same for the right strand, over the shank, up through the hole on the right side and pull it tight. Continue left, then right, then left again until you are about 2/3 distance to the hook eye. At this point simply wrap each wool piece to the black bead and tie off. You can see that the wool loops are just half hitches producing a flat woven body. Where the weave ends, make a couple of wraps with an olive hackle feather and snip off the top. Then tie down a short section of shiny green swiss straw at this point, pull it forward to the bead, tie down, then fold it back to your starting point and tie down. In the fly shown, the straw has been clipped off here but you can let it extend a little back over the body weave and clip it in an inward "V" shape to show the start of wing growth. To finish the fly, take two long pieces of peacock herl and make several wraps just behind the bead. Rather than clipping the ends of the herl flush, let them stream back over the body on each side and snip both off about 1/2 way back. This together with the hackle wrap act as the nymph legs. Tie off, cement, and you have finished a fun to tie dragonfly nymph!
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