ESTAZ WILLOW BUGGER
By: Mike Melmoth
Hook – TMC 300-8
Thread – 3/0 or 6/0 black
Folded clevis – 5 mm
Willow leaf – 1 inch
Loon Hard Head paint
Estaz – opal black
Marabou – slate gray
Hackle – black wooly bugger
The most time-consuming part of tying these flies is the painting and dry time of the willow leaf spinners. I paint all ahead of time, dry with a hair dryer the day after painting and store until needed. Do not paint entire front of spinner (pool in the center of convex side) allowing a thin rim of silver or gold around the spinner. I use two or three coats to get the depth of color desired. I also use three different colors: green, yellow and red. Your choice of colors, or combination of colors for all materials, can be anything you want to try.
As always crush the barb (clevis will not fit hook if you don’t).
Slide clevis through spinner and onto hook.
Leave three eye widths of space behind eye for free floating clevis. Start thread and wrap back to bend of hook. Coat with head cement or Zap-A-Gap.
Tie in marabou tail the length of the hook shank, wrapping over entire hook shank to build body bulk desired. Wrap thread back to tie in point.
Tie in hackle and Estaz.
Wrap Estaz to within one eye width of thread wrap (this will be for tying a head).
Palmer hackle forward and tie off at end of Estaz.
Tie a tapered head, whip finish and cut thread.
Coat head with head cement.
Troll or fish with as fast a strip as you can to made willow leaf spin. This fly works well for large and smallmouth bass, pike and, occasionally, trout.
PHEASANT TAIL JIG NYMPH
Hook: Hanak H 400 BL Jig Hook size 14-16 (or any jig hook)
Bead: 2.5 – 2.8 mm Slotted Gold/Copper Tungsten Bead (has to be slotted)
Thread: 8/0 or 70 denier Fire Orange Thread (try any bright color)
Tail: Coq de Leon (barred/speckled) (or Hungarian partridge)
Rib: Copper wire – small (mix it up with any color wire)
Body: Natural Pheasant Tail Fibers
Thorax: Gray Rabbit Dubbing or UV Ice Dubbing
Hot Spot: Fire Orange Tying Thread
1. De-barb hook and slide on bead. Insert point of the hook into the small hole and secure in vice.
2. Start thread behind bead and form a small thread dam to keep bead in place.
3. Wind thread just past the hook bend. Choose 4 – 6 Coq de Leon fibers, length should be same as the body. Tie in and wrap all the way to the bead and cut off excess.
4. Cut a 3 – 4 inch length of copper wire for the rib. Tie it in under the hook shank and secure all the way to the tail tie in point with thread wraps. Wind thread back to the bead.
5. Choose 5 – 6 pheasant tail fiber and tie in by the tips at the bead and secure them all the way to the tail tie in point. Wind thread back to the bead. Wrap pheasant tail fiber back to the bead to form the body and tie off, cut off excess.
6. Counter wrap the rib with 4 – 5 wraps and secure at the bead with 4 – 5 wraps of thread. Move your thread back about a bead width.
7. Apply dubbing to thread and dub a shaggy thorax. Stroke the fibers back as you dub. Use traditional dubbing technique or touch dubbing technique.
8. Wrap thread to hook eye and form a hot spot and whip finish.