March Brown and a bit of humility

IMG_3355When I have been tying large streamer flies… using super thin and strong tying tread I tend to get a little bit too self-confident. I don’t actually think I’m a freaking master of the art of fly tying, but I find myself looking at colour plates in old fishing books thinking: Well those guys are not in my league.

Luckily… when this happens, I know a fabulous cure. I tie up a bunch of old classic flies (wet or dry) using the same materials these ancient guys did. They did not have super threads, super glue and premade plastic parts for the flies.

IMG_3366Today I was tying wet fly versions of the ever useful March Brown. Using size 12 and 14 wet fly hooks (Mustad 3906B), Pearsall’s Gossamer thread, real feathers, fur and stuff – I had a great lesson in concentration, precision and… humility.


There is no respect for others without

humility in one’s self.

Henri Frederic Amiel


Gossamer is rather thick compared to modern tying threads – and breaks easily. You will have to be very conscious about how many turns you make, and you also need a light touch. Furthermore quill wings can be a pain, when you are out of practice and – to make things even more interesting – I tied up some March Brown Silver as well – just to get a chance to cut the fragile Gossamer thread on the sharp Lagartun metal tinsel.

But anyway, it was a useful lesson, and when I look at this sparse hatch of real classic wet flies, I feel good. There really is not much that looks better than a (slightly large) fly head made of careful varnished silk thread. It glows. And there are just this fish appeal about flies using hare’s ear, partridge hackle and hen pheasant wings. Kind of honest and real.

Well, I’m not really in to this new “I challenge you” stuff. But if you need a challenge, and find jumping in lakes a bit silly – try this one :0)