Skills: Tying a neat head on dry flies

When I first started tying flies many years ago, one of the biggest challenges for me was tying hackle into the head of the fly without getting too close to the end of the hook and covering up the hook eye as I finished the fly. Even now, a couple of decades later, this is still one of the mistakes I frequently make.

The video above from Tim Flagler is the best primer I’ve seen that will help you avoid this common—and incredibly annoying—mistake when tying flies. There might be nothing more frustrating than trying to tie a fly on the tippet at the river while a hatch is coming off, only to realize that, during the tying process, you got too close to the hook eye and your thread or the head cement is covering the eye.

It’s simple, really. As Tim explains, leave yourself more room at the front of the fly—likely more room than you think you need. It will make all the difference in the world.

— Chris Hunt

By Chris Hunt.