Both of the variants have the same basic features: body of divided berlin wool, black front-hackle and a topping wing. Kelson calls for Macaw in tail and for horns, but here I use blue swan instead, not as stiff as Macaw, and not quite the color, but for these flies (that go into the fishing box) I wanted to use up some 2nd grade topping and try to tie up some quick and fishable patterns without the need for all the materials called for.
Hook: Partridge M2 #1/0 Thread: Semperfli 18/0 Tag: Gold tinsel and yellow silk Rear hackle: Red, cheeked with kingfisher Body: Black chenille Center hackle: Yellow, cheeked with kingfisher Front hackle: Black and black heron, cheeked with kingfisher
2017 starts out with another Grub: the “Autumn Creeper” from Kelson (1895). The original have red macaw, yellow macaw and vulturine hackle with chatterer cheeks: here I have substituted with standard hackle to get the same colour scheme in the fly.
Hook: Mustad 80500-npbl #1/0 Thread: Semperfli 18/0 Tag: Silver and light blue silk Tail: swan & macaw Rear hackle: Black, cheeked with kingfisher Body: Black chenille with a black hackle in the center, cheeked with kingfisher Front hackle: Black, cheeked with kingfisher
Continuing the grub series, here a pattern from George Kelson “The salmon fly” from 1895. I substituted ibis with swan, powdered blue macaw with blue/yellow macaw and chatterer with kingfisher. The look and feel is the what is important here (plus the fact that I don’t have 6 chatterer feathers around for testing out new patterns). Will try to tie this one up with light blue hackle tips to see how that can work: the kingfisher is not maintaining that clear colour once it is in water, so for fishing purposes it would be good to have something that will last a bit longer.
A pattern that can be tied up with both shorter (and more sparse) hackle and one with longer hackle, depending on the movement you want in the water. A heron hackle in front of either the rear or front hackle could also be something to explore.