Articles, Fly Patterns, Step-by-Step Tutorials — By on May 18, 2010 11:20 am


Hook: Daiichi D1310 #12 -#14
Thread: 17/0 Uni-Thread
Body: Mad Rabbit Dubbing
Hackle: Whiting Hen Hackle
Second Hackle (optional): CDC Summer Duck- natural
Tinsel: French Oval Tinsel gold
Tail:Whiting Hen Barbs- brown or honey

Step 1

First, attach the thread to the hook at a point about one and a half to two eye-widths behind the hook eye.  This will leave a clean working area on the shank for the hackle and head, as well as give you a visual reminder of where the abdomen should meet the hackle.

Step 2

With a pair of smooth-jawed pliers, flatten the end of your gold tinsel.  While this step probably isn’t necessary when tying flies with a “buggy” abdomen, it is a good habit to develop as it will give you a smooth foundation to build your body upon.  Align the tinsel along the top of the shank so that the point where it transitions from flattened to rounded is directly above the barb.  Working from front to back, tie in the tinsel with side-by side thread wraps, keeping it along the top of the shank, and stop at the point just above the barb.

Step 3

Select around 8 Whiting Hen Barbs and tie them in above the barb so that they are around 3/4 to 1X the length of the hook shank.


Create a dubbing loop with Mad Rabbit Dubbing, or any other coarse-fibered dubbing material, wrap it forward to the point where you initially started your thread on the hook.  Next, evenly wrap the tinsel forward.

Step 5

Select a Whiting Hen Hackle feather with a barb length about 1.5 times the hook gap.

Step 6

Tie it in at the base of the feather and make several wraps forward.  Tie it off with three to four tight wraps and trim any excess.

Step 7

Form a head with your thread, whip finish, and if desired, apply head cement.

Here are several other variations

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Rating: +3 (from 9 votes)
Flymphs, 9.3 out of 10 based on 7 ratings


  1. Graham says:

    Nice looking fly but how do you fish it? Fish it like a nymph, swing it like a wet fly, emerger?
    Just a comment but I wish that the tying instructions would finish up with a recommendation as to how to fish some of these great looking flies.

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    Rating: +2 (from 2 votes)
  2. Shane says:

    Love this pattern. Have done very well with a green variation.

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  3. Now this style of Flymph was the style tied by Pete Hidy (Co-auther with Jim Leisenring- The Art of Tying the Wet Fly & Fishing The Flymph). It was Pete who coined the name ‘flymph’.

    This fly works very well when fished just under the surface. Cast up from a observed fish (either below or above you), give it short sharp strip to get it under the surface and then let it drift down onto or swing up in front of the fish – Leinsenring Lift style.

    The true Leisenring style of pattern did not palmer back through the thorax. IT had 2-3 turns of hackle at the head only.

    But the true style of tying called for a body made of various furs spun between two threads.

    Having said all of that, still a great tying of the Hidy pattern. Well done.

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  4. Dave says:

    The actuall body made by Pete Hidy is formed by laying a stand of thread (in his case silk) flat, cover one half of it with your body material and then double over the naked half. This is not twisted to form more or less dubbing rope or chenille. He would prepare a number of bodies and store them on cards, then pluck them off and wind on as he made flies. (Yes, I have his book and this is what he outlines)
    This type of body is not new, you can find references of it in old works such as Herters and for a while even Nor was making a small table so you could make them easily.
    The silk thread, adds a look that just dubbing does not have, more of a rope twisted segment look.

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  5. Arnsaga says:

    “Nice looking fly but how do you fish it? Fish it like a nymph, swing it like a wet fly, emerger?”


    It is a life evoking fly, not an exact imitator. So it will work in many presentations. The Leisenring Lift described by Philip certainly still works. But it can be dead drifted deep, in mid-water, in the surface film, or swung. Like Ed Story’s Crackleback, or Jack Gartside’s Sparrow, presentation decides what it looks like to the trout. It’s a great classic; try it.

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  6. Johan Nygren says:

    Really nice looking fly!
    How do you secure the hackle feather since you wrapped it? You write “Tie it in at the base of the feather and make several wraps forward”, but in the picture you wind it backwards. Do you wind the thread through the hackle to reach the hook eye?

    Tight lines!
    // Johan

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  7. John Kelly says:

    Will only Whiting feathers work?

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  8. ED TORCHIA says:

    I know a fellow on the Madison River who has this pattern down pat. He uses special wax to dub the loop.
    It is an old pattern and he told me ALL about Eric and Pete. Also taught me how to tie it.

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  9. joe t. c. says:

    i’ve been tying for more than 55 years…
    the original “flymph” was tied on hooks with an upturned-eye… and tied sparser than you’ve shown… the up-eye gave an action of a nymph trying to nose-up to the surface… used it for years in NE PA creeks… great pattern…

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