The Ray Bergman Collection – 8) Allerton

Ray Bergman Collection — By on September 12, 2010 1:46 pm

Tip: Gold tinsel
Tail: Teal or barred wood duck *
Hackle: Dark blue tied palmer **
Ribbing: Gold tinsel
Body: Yellow floss
Wing: Scarlet

* Wood duck, not Mandarin, is actually listed for this pattern and some others despite the protected status of wood ducks at the time Trout was written (See introduction). The plate painting shows this fly with a teal tail; I prefer the more elegant look of barred wood duck.
** The Allerton is the first pattern in this collection with a palmered hackle. Up until the release of my first DVD, Tying Classic Wet Flies in 2004, and for a year or so afterward, I never stripped one side of the feather for palmered hackles. I always preferred to fold the hackles. In the last few years I have come to prefer stripping one side of the feather when tying nearly all patterns with a palmered hackle. A hackle stripped on one side reveals more visibility of the body and ribbing, enhancing visual effect, appears more lifelike, and does not overdress the fly.
Especially on the handful of flies with a double-palmer (Beatrice, Nicholson, Thistle, and Bostwick, two of which are on Plate No. 1), I now feel that one edge must be stripped to avoid overdressing the fly. See the Beatrice. No. 17, and note the web link to my two-hackled, folded-not-stripped version from Forgotten Flies.
Despite this change of preference, there are some hackles, particularly hen necks in natural browns, furnace, and some dun shades that are not as densely fibered and may not require stripping. In this case a folded hackle is preferable. Some of the Whiting products have high barb densities and nearly always require one side stripped for palmered hackle wet fly patterns. This is largely a matter of personal preference. Also the angler must take the type of water being fished into account. A heavily hackled fly will not sink as fast as one sparsely dressed.

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The Ray Bergman Collection - 8) Allerton, 9.3 out of 10 based on 9 ratings


  1. jay1 says:

    these are some great patterns .i got to add some to my fly box for the brook trout here in m.e.

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  2. Don Bastian says:

    Hi jay1:
    Thank you for youir comment! I Appreciate it very much. The Allerton was published at least as far back as 1892 in Mary Orvis Marbury’s Book, Favorite Flies and Their Histories. Glad you like the traditional brook trout flies, thanks!

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