My name is Hugh Kelly and this is where I post fly recipes, thoughts about fishing and any other stuff that my wife doesn’t want to hear anymore. I grew up fishing wet flies in the Rangeley area in the 1960’s and I still use them today. It figures that classic wet flies would finally come back into fashion; I’m not wearing bellbottoms again for anybody.     

    I try to write about old classic flies but I find I’m always interested in the new fly on the block that everybody’s using, so you’ll see some new stuff here too. And everyone loves a streamer here in Maine.     

     I’m cheap…er…I mean frugal…er…I mean thrifty. So you’ll read about how I try to save money on materials. If you have suggestions about that, email me or make a comment.     

     Some of what you’ll read here is re-written from articles I write for a fly tying column; I shorten them and I include stuff here that would be out of place in a sporting journal.      And every once in awhile, just to see if you’re paying attention, I’ll mention a pond or two that you should know about.

12 Responses to About

  1. D. Knight says:

    Whats the best time of year to use the Alexsander fly ? Thanks

    • Hi,the Alexandra is one of those great flies that can work anytime. When I start out for the water, there are only three or four flies that I reach for first. the Alexandra, the Leon Special, the Maple Syrup and the Gartside Sparrow. Hugh

  2. Don Knight says:

    Hi Hugh , Im Don Knight from Rangeley Plt. whens the best part of the season to use the March Brown ? Thankyou

  3. Ted Rzepski says:

    Hello Hugh
    Fished GLS for the second time last week (Monday 10/13). Water was low, but felt safer wading. Caught decent Salmon mostly on #16 black emergers. My friend cleaned up with Barnes special. I only had one but fed it to a bush.
    Like your recipe for the Barnes. Enjoy your observations.

  4. Phil Johnson says:

    I get homesick when I read your stuff. Back in the 60,s I lived in Cape Elizabeth and covered ME, NH and VT for GE selling two-way radio (63 to 68) . During that time I fished all of the Pucker brush.
    I tie a lot of the old classic streamers. One of my favorite ponds was Quimby at ice out .
    I get up that way now and then.
    Enjoy you site
    Phil Johnson
    Chesterfield, VA

  5. Wayne Stocker says:

    I moved from Northern NE to the west; Colorado. I am still tying and using some of the old time flies out here ! I loved your blog and am glad you are keeping these patterns out there for people to find. I do miss Qquossoc; but I did leave on of my expensive wading staffs at the bottom of the Kennebago as a memento after it fell through the bridge on the Lincoln Road. THANKS FOR A GREAT BLOG; added to my favorites.

  6. Eric Gendreau says:

    Just wondering if you could give me the skinny on the leon special, I know it is a local favorite up here in the north country, but is it a streamer or a wet fly. What does it imitate, and what exactly is the original pattern. I’ve seen many variations of the fly.

    • I tied this fly for the 2010 fly swap at Penobscot Fly Fishers. I finally got some information and history of this fly from Alvin Theriault at http://www.theriaultflies.com Originated by Leon Cyr of Madawaska, ME. Very popular up there at least 40 years ago. It’s said to imitate a stickleback minnow and works very well on stocked trout. Alvin’s recipe to me was:
      #10 Mustad 9671 2x long,
      Tail-florescent red hackle fibers
      Body- silver Mylar
      Throat-florescent red hackle fibers
      Wing-Yellow calf tail
      Mid wing-4 strands of peacock sword
      Topping-Mallard flank
      eye-jungle cock

      My version here is on a different hook (Moosehead) that I sometimes use, the florescent red hackle fibers are tough to find, the flash makes them look pink but they are, and should be, florescent red hackle fibers. The wing topping should be down and low to the body so it sometimes covers the yellow calf tail and peacock sword. There colors show through when the fly gets wet. You should resist the temptation to tie this in the old classic wet fly style with an up-swept wing, we all love that style but this fly works best with the wing low and with a jungle cock eye. I think this one is a sleeper.

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