Gear reviews Fly tying

Loon tying tools help keep winter at bay

The drift hanging over the eves on the house this morning is quite impressive. And it’s cold. Damn cold. The thought of sneaking off for an afternoon on the Henry’s Fork is now more of a pathetic inside joke—fighting frozen guides, frozen fingers and frozen toes while the the wind whips snow around my wadered self has absolutely no appeal right now.

But winter won’t last forever, and we’ll all need flies come warmer weather.

In recent years, I’ve taken to tying the bulk of my flies in winter. I tend to have more time on my hands when the weather’s miserable, and tying always tends to transport my psyche to warmer weather, fishier days and trout water.

And, while I’ll likely never be a truly great fly tier, I do enjoy catching fish with the flies I tie. It’s an ego boost, honestly.

Over the last couple of years, I’ve upgraded my tying tools from the somewhat generic stuff I found on the shelves at local stores to the really high-end stuff made by Loon. The ergonomic tools make tying easier and they help me be more efficient. What’s more, they make tying more fun.

Even better? The quality comes at a reasonable price. The full Loon tying kit will only set you back $120—not a bad price for tools that will last you many a tying season. The scaled back “core” kit will cost you half as much.

While the tools make the tying better, Loon also offers other products for crafting quality home-tied flies. I love Loon’s environmentally inert UV-activated resins that help make flies more appealing and more durable. And now, the resins come in different colors, meaning you can really dress up a fly while securing your knots and making the final creation almost bomb-proof.

It’s tying season. You owe it to yourself to equip your tying bench with good stuff, and for me, that starts with my Loon tools. I’ll never go back to the cheap stuff because, honestly, you get what you pay for.