Salmon Flies on a Theme


A couple of weeks ago at the Milngavie fly dressers we demonstrated hair wing salmon flies as a few of the guys are regular salmon fishers on the Tay and had requested several patterns.

If you look into my salmon fly boxes the  flies tend to be along a distinct colour theme, orange  yellow and black with a trace of sparkle somewhere.  I used to use Willie Gunns a lot from my days on the Brora where back in the late 80’s I met the man himself at the famous Ford Pool.  It turns out that he did not devise the fly but simply picked it out from a batch of Waddingtons that Robb Wilson who used to keep the tackle shop in Brora had for sale. Several fish later as the story goes and Willie was back into the shop for more and Robb christened the fly after him.

This colour theme runs through a whole host of modern salmon flies Cascades and Park Shrimps being juts two. Modern version tied on light tubes with cone heads, single, double and treble hooks and designed to fish on modern spey lines with tips that get the fly down have made life easier for the angler not having to cast heavy brass Waddingtons and tube.


Orange Flamethrower

• Salar Double- Size 7,9 or trebles
• Thread – Orange Uni thread 8/0
• Tag & Rib- small oval gold tinsel
• Body- Rear hot orange floss, front oval gold tinsel. Rib on rear 4/5 turns
• Body hackle- hot orange cock hackle hackle
• Wing- tied in the centre orange bucktail 1.5 hook length add 2/4 fibres of crystal flash
• Head hackle – hot orange cock
• Jungle cock – body length
• Head -Opal Mirage

Willie Gunn Tube

Willie Gun Variant

Tube – length and weight as required
Body – Black with gold rib, Gold bodied with gold oval rib, Opal mirage with Oval silver rib
Wing – Mixed bucktail yellow orange and black with crystal flash
Head hackle option – Black
Jungle cock- Optional
Cone head – Optional

Park Shrimp

Park Shrimp

• Salar Double- Size 7,9
• Thread – Red Uni thread 8/0
• Tag & Rib- Medium oval gold
• Body- Rear gold light bright or tinsel, front black floss
• Tail – Orange arctic fox or runner body length, then yellow bucktail and 3/4 strands of crystal flash twice body length. Finally orange again body length. Bind down tag ends.
• Rib – with gold oval
• Wing- Black arctic fox/arctic runner length into the orange of wing, 3-4 strands of Crystal flash
• Yellow hackle, jungle cock them orange hackle or orange badger
• Red head

Sunburst Willie Gunn Variant Trout and Salmon March 2013

Sunburst Willie Gunn

Hook – Salar Double size 9
Body- Hook shank only
Wing – Yellow and Orange Arctic Fox topped with black incorporate a few strands of tinsel
Hackle- Yellow followed by Orange Badger
Cheeks – Jungle Cock

Tie in the hackles first as they will give the wing some lift

Finally just to prove that I like the colour I posted this fly a couple of years ago under “Alaskabou Style”

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