View Full Version : Tying For Spring

David Knapp
01-28-2010, 09:45 PM
Every winter I have the really good intention of doing all my tying for the upcoming season. Invariably I end up spending too much free time on the stream and not tying enough. When spring comes I always stress before each trip because I feel like I need more flies.

So, I have a question for all of you that actually tie each winter. Does anyone maintain a list of patterns with quantities and sizes that you try to fill each winter? That is the goal I have but so far the list has only been in my head...anyway, just curious if anyone is organized like I hope to be someday or is it an unrealistic goal?

01-28-2010, 10:30 PM
I only hope to be that organized with my fly tying. Just started this time last year and can't seem to keep the pace that I would like.

01-28-2010, 10:44 PM
I used to carry "Hundreds" of fly boxes on me. I had my entire supply of Caddis dries disappear in the Tetons after some guys were admiring them. Leaving me out west with absolutely no caddis dries. I ,also, found myself carrying flies that I wouldn't be using until the next spring at times. So I decided to cutback on the number of boxes I carry on the stream with me. I load my fly boxes with what I think I'll need that day and then replenish the next day. Ex. carry 5 Quill Gordons, 5 March Browns, etc in one box. If I lose a specific box then I'm not out that much.

I bought a bunch of large plastic boxes at a craft store on sale. I labelled one Smokies Spring Dries, another Smokies Summer Dries, Smokies Terrestrials. The Spring Mayfly box has a section for #12 Quill Gordons, another #14Quill Gordons,a third #12 March Browns,and so on for #16 Blue Quills, #12 Mr. Rapidans, #14 Mr. Rapidans, #12 and #14Parachute Adams
I have one for Caddis Dries, etc.

During the offseason, I can just glance at the boxes and see what needs to be tied. Hope this helps.

Randall Sale
the Kytroutbum

01-29-2010, 09:20 AM
I don't really maintain a list but I do like to start off the year with some minimums of specific flies in my flyboxes. Its usually something like 12-15 #14 para adams dries, 4-5 thunderheads, 5-6 #16 yellow stimis, 5-6 #12 yellow stimis. some small BWOs. All the other dries like quill gordons, cahills, hendricksons, and such are not used as much so I will tie as needed. Nymphs, I keep about the same numbers on the most used like PTs, princes, tellicos.
The same goes for the tailwater box. 8-10 zebras of 2 sizes, olive mides, pTs, sulpher dries, bwo dries, some black caddis. The things i would use the most are kept in stock.
My warmwater boxes are big and I do like to keep 5-6 main patterns well stocked . Lots of stealth bombers, Chart. and black poppers in 2 sizes, some special deerhair streamers and plenty of baitfish clousers. I tie year round, so restocking does not take long.

01-29-2010, 01:12 PM
David, I've tried several times to create a definitive list of flies to tie and keep them fairly organized in a few plastic bins with divided cubbies.

Here is the list I did last winter:
The highlighted boxes were the ones I really targeted in on. The funny thing is that during the year I really started sticking with the CHC xCaddis (in Husky underfur and Mr Rapidan - an Olive blend) as my go to fly [which isn't even highlighted. I'm now to the point that I will probably fish 95% of the time with the Husky xCaddis, so this year I am only tying those...(Disclaimer: I only fish mountain streams...and I only fish dries...)

Here is the Husky xCaddis:

If you want a copy of the excel file, to then update for yourself. Its at http://webpages.charter.net/petecz/files/Download/ Its called "Essentialv2.xls"

01-29-2010, 01:34 PM
"Disclaimer: I only fish mountain streams...and I only fish dries"

What a purist.

Halford and Gordon would have loved you man!

01-29-2010, 03:40 PM
What a purist.

Hans, You and I both know, I'm just lazy and awful at catching fish on anything subsurface....

Check your email.

David Knapp
01-29-2010, 10:02 PM
Pete, love the spreadsheet idea... I'm going to download that and modify it for the flies I normally carry... Thanks a bunch!

Everyone else, thanks for the replies. I already have some of the plastic bins but probably need a lot more for the kind of organization I want to have. Keep the ideas coming...maybe this will be the winter I'll finally get organized...:biggrin:

01-29-2010, 10:09 PM
I have been spending most of my time doing research and making cheat sheets. I have read most of the entomology books I can get a hold of and my close friends at TWRA and TVA supply me with tons of books. Plus, I have watched about 40-50 fly fishing dvds this Winter. What I am alluding to is that I hope to match the hatch and match the aquatic flow when no hatch. This is the difference between catching 7 fish and 30 fish.

Send me an email with your mailing address and I will hook you up...:biggrin: