A touch of reality. Fly tying is like baking – leave out the butter, substitute lard and the cake tastes like S%$#

[dropcap]M[/dropcap]y fly tying, early on, quickly succumbed to impatience. Finished flies always ‘a little off’. Nine finished flies on the table – several exhibiting birth defects. Although each was intended to be the same pattern, a few of the earliest models clearly not related to the youngest flies. Failure being and unacceptable outcome forced rationalization – the fish are really not that interested in what Bob Popovics, Lefty Kreh, Bob Clouser, Tim Flagler, Chris Dean, Chuck Kraft or any number of fly tyers I admire had in mind when they came up with killer patterns befuddling me. I gave my versions amnesty and endorsed them as being good enough. They were not – proving it each time when it was “Play Ball” time.

Rarely does a fly fail whose tyer has thoroughly followed instructions

In order to stay at it and enjoy its rewards, fly tying that is, I learned to honor #14 hooks as my cutoff, and only tie flies that have recipes of four or less common materials (no-exotics). And ‘say no to epoxies’ (I ruined too many pants and shirts) – preferring the more expensive UV activated solids. These restrictions have not limited my supply of good, self-tied ‘bite me’ flies or my eagerness to learn more.

Looking for different, simple and fast fish catnip flies?

Try this Chuck Kraft Kreelex fly, (my favorite). No, you have never seen it before or seen it tied before. Maybe never even heard of Chuck Kraft? What is uniquely special about this fly and his other Eastern Trophy Flies’ patterns are that most of them have universal appeal. For example, a smallmouth bass just as likely to pounce on a Kreelex as a fat carp? Kraft’s Kreelex fly catches trout in the Blue Ridge Mountains and has been the hottest thing on the Madison in Montana for the last two years.

Ooops, that does not work. Hmm?

One of the dictums of these Kraft flies is that the recipe materials called for are key. As you know, this is not always the case and substitutes work fine, but unfortunately with these Eastern Trophy Flies by Kraft, ingredients called for, so far, make ALL the difference. The only inconvenience to that is you have to order them all from one supplier. But so what.

As a suggestion, buy a little more than you think prudent because some of the flies are material hogs.

NOTE: Featured Image is Chuck Kraft with a big musky. He is credited with having caught over 100 during his 30 years of guiding. A Kreelex Fly? Mossy Creek Outfitters image.

Here is how to tie the Kreelex, a fly to remember


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