Anatomy of a Quality Nymph Pattern, Part 5


For me, durability is one of the most important aspects of a solid nymph pattern. If we, as complete anglers and proficient tyers, fail to create a durable fly, we have missed the mark entirely. If we manage to create the perfect nymph pattern that covers our local conditions very well, fishes as we want it to, gets eaten by trout, is fast to tie, but manages to fall apart after a few fish, it is functionally useless in my estimation. And I’m not the only one either. For people that fish a lot, having a durable bug on the end of their line is mandatory. These fishy folks need to be able to fish water hard and long, thus mandating a fly that can fit the bill. For example, a nymph that uses a stripped peacock quill for an abdomen but is not coated in any sort of glue or resin is not worth tying and fishing, because it will fall apart almost immediately. The same fly coated in a high end Cyanoacrylate Glue, however, could end up being very durable. There is a wide spectrum of durability in the fly tying material world, but some materials are just simply not as durable as others, and some are much more durable. Many of the less durable options can be made significantly stronger through the addition of wire counter ribbing, glues, and other materials and tactics. Additionally, if tied incorrectly, the strength of some materials can be lessened, and the longevity of the pattern compromised. Because this section focuses on briefly addressing the principles that I feel make a fantastic nymph pattern, I won’t dive into the various materials and tactics that I feel lead to durable flies. I will, however, address the specifics throughout the book, and in brief notes under fly patterns, where I feel it is appropriate.

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