Monday, December 3, 2012

Polish Quill Flies

With the 2012 season officially over I can concentrate on preparing for the next one.
This particular fly is a good start - an excellent Grayling catcher originaly coming from Poland. I was told it was first tied by folks fishing the fabled river San, where the Grayling grow fat and spoiled by the heavy Baetis hatches. As they age they develop discerning tastes, and the wise old lunkers require a special kind of fly and approach - an emerger of a very slim silouhette, gently fished from upstream so neither line nor leader ever crosses the cone of vision of the fish. The angler is granted just one pass.

The fly is a very simple one, but there are some aspects worth special attention:
  • The hook is of a slightly heavier gauge than most dry fly hooks of its size - this will help to sink the hook bend and "cock" the fly up like a true emerger. The CDC wing will keep the fly afloat, the coarse thorax will create footprint in surface film and the quill body will be sunk below.
  • The body of a peacock quill is tied over a layer of wet tying lacquer. This will make the fly slightly more durable (though still better suited for fishing for gentle Grayling than Trout with their spiky teeth). 
  • The thorax is made of my special homemade mix of Hare and Fox Squirrel hair. The squirrel is very spikey, and by itself rather coarse for smaller flies. Mixing it with hare much improves its appeal and ease of dubbing.

The tie:

#18 Dohiku dry fly hook
#70 UTC Ultra Thread, color Tan
Peacock quill dyed Olive
thorax of mixed Hare & Squirrel fur
CDC wing tied facing upwards