I make no apologies for this fly. Its my guilty secret. I came across it in Oregon or Colorado a few years ago, and it would take cut throat trout and brown trout when other flies were proving useless, so on my return, I’d deliberatly kept a couple, using them as models, I tied some up – just to see if they had a place in the UK. I accept that it might offend many peoples sensibilities of what a chalkstream dry fly should be and represent, but where I do most of my fishing, (River Wylye) it isn’t for the faint hearted, all wild, no stocked fish, and yet this fly has caught me a fair number of wild brown trout, and good grayling. Its easy and quick to tie and no fly box should be without one. On those early season cold days, when chilly winds seem to prevent any hatches, the water can look dumb and flat, no surface activity, yet this can drag them up, maybe its out of aggression, who knows, but I do know that at sometime when you’re puzzling over what to do to prevent a blank day, you’ll tie one on and it will catch for you. I’m not actually sure of its name, Wrights Royal, very similar to Royal Trude, Royal Stewart, Royal Wulff, they’re all similar and have their regional application and minor alterations. Basically, this fly is just a peacock herl, a red silk cummerbund, and a deer hair wing with a ginger collar hackle. I can’t think what fly it is supposed to represent, but that is true of many of the flies in our boxes, I suppose you could say its a Sedge but it works when Sedges aren’t around. This isn’t my best example of tying, but the suns threatening to peep out from behind the black and grey cumulus nimbus, and I’m going fishing, so here are the pics and tying sequence, I’ll tidy them up and do the editing tomorrow. Materials first – the tabulation and layoout of the materials list keeps appearing as jumbled up, I’ll try to resolve whats happening and make it look better soon.
Dry fly thread: Uni 6/0Black/
Abdomen: Peacock/Herl – single strand
Waist: Uni red silk (three strands)
Thorax: Continuation of the Peacock/Herl
Wing: deer hair
Hackle: medium ginger
Wind a thread base to just about level with the hook barb. Tie in a single strand of Peacock herl from below the eye. Wind the thread forward to be out of the way, then wind herl forward just two or three turns, secure it with a turn of the thread, then let it hang, weight of bobbin holder should hold it firm.
Tie in a 2” – 3”piece of red silk – it comes in strands that seperate for finer tyings. Move thread forward again, Wind a small even waist (in this picture it isn’t even but should be) of the red silk, its profile should be lower than the height of the peacock herl. Secure the end of thread, snip off waste.
Continue with another two or three turns of the Peacock herl, you shouldn’t need any more, remembering that you have to leave enough space for the deer hair wing and hackle.
Small pinch of deer hair, strip out the under fur, level the hair tips in a stacker, present on the top of the hook shank in flat position, with the tips of the hair extending very slightly over the bend of the hook. Tie down, tightening with three or four turns of thread, try to prevent it flaring too much. Snip off the deer hair butts.
Tie in a hackle stem ready to wind it on. Leave it, but wind the Peacock herl forward towards the eye, tie down firmly, and snip off whatever bit remains.
Now wind the hackle through the peacock herl, using thread to tie it down just a few milimetres before the eye. Snip off the waste hackle, then form a small neat head, a touch of varnish or Sally Hansen Hard as Nails if you prefer. Repeat half a dozen times, change hook sizes, change colour of wing and hackle, go fishing, catch trout.