Category Archives: Trout flies

Fly tying of John Satkowski

Having designed commercial patterns for Rainy’s Flies for two years now, I am constantly pushing the boundaries of movement and effectiveness with my patterns. Being a Bass guy my whole life, my eyes weren’t opened to the whole long rod thing until a family trip to Montana in high school changed my perception of what fly fishing is. Big streamers for aggressive brown trout was the ticket. I quickly learned that these trout can be fished very similar to smallies on a river system by quickly ripping streamers through pockets, over drops, and around cover. I was a convert almost instantly.

When I got back home I picked up a simple tying kit and began to experiment. I will admit I tied a lot of awful buggers and some terrible Adams before I had something that resembled a decently tied fly. I would go to Chris Helm’s shop in Toledo, Ohio and watch a true master spin and stack deer hair and go to Cabela’s on Saturday mornings to watch guys like Bear Andrews and Dennis Potter tie and after a while, all the time and energy paid off. I was able to design patterns and go fish with moderate success. I really started getting into Pike with their nasty attitude and speed. The tug is the drug when you fight these toothy, slime bullets. The more time on the water I spent, the more I started to notice things and by the time I was in college I pretty much had my home waters figured out.

I have learned a lot along the way and now that I am getting waist deep into the waters of the business side of things, I am learning the fly industry can be fickle and tough. You always have to self-advocate and no matter how many patterns you have on the commercial side, you always have to keep being creative and inventive. I do a fair amount of realistic tying but those flies never see the water. The real bread and butter is being able to tie a fly that works for the intended species and is easily repeatable. For the most part, my flies are developed for the way I fish. The people that I take fishing and my friends always get annoyed with me because I fly fish for bass like a tournament bass fisherman. I rip streamers or drift a nymph through a hole and if no takes I move on. I really like to cover water when I fish, especially if I’m wading. When I tie a streamer, I want the movement to be instantaneous when entering the water, get the attention of the fish, and then trigger a strike. Things like the movement of rabbit and hackle together or my addictive and generous use of ice dub in a dubbing loop to create collars and bodies lends to this method. I generally fish clear water so the patterns must not spook fish but have a good draw from a distance.

I was a teacher by trade so I love teaching the art of fly tying as well. The trick to becoming a good tier is always simply doing it. Instead of just trying to tie a wooly bugger, tie seven or eight in a row. You have to work out the kinks in the process whether it be rushing the eye or overly bulky bodies. You will tie a bunch of ugly fuglies before you tie something decent so be prepared for that. Have fun while you are at the vise. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t need a $500 vise and expensive tools to tie. The same goes for gear, it is really nice to have a $300 fly rod, but it simply isn’t a necessity. Get something in your price range and go fish. It’s as simple as that. A little extra information though, for big or tough fish you don’t want to skimp and be outgunned.

For tying tips, questions, and inquiries folks can visit my facebook business page River Raisin Fly Company or email me at for water levels, suggested patterns, and additional information about myself, my patterns, and the adventure we all call fly fishing.

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Filed under nymphs, Pike, Poppers, Streamers, Trout flies

Willy’s Fruit Rollup – Willy Self

I dug this up from back in 2014. Willy tying his Fruit Rollup.

Materials list:

Hook: 730 Series 4, 6, 8, 10
Thread: 3/0 mono cord
Bead: Glass or Brass
Tail: Scud Back over Krinkle Flash
Body: Dubbed Simi Seal
Head: Bead

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Filed under Streamers, Trout flies

Flies Around the Net – March 2017

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Filed under Dry Fly, Foam, Muskie, nymphs, Pike, Salmon, Saltwater, Steelhead, Streamers, Trout flies

Hendrickson Para Emerger

Since the Hendrickson hatch will soon be upon us, I thought this video would be timely. Tim Neal hails from Michigan and has been tying flies for 62 years. Tim knows his stuff and is a great teacher. He ties his own deadly pattern for the famous Hendrickson hatch in this fly tying video!


Filed under Trout flies

Jerry French’s Summer Sculpin

Materials list:
Shank 25mm
Small Dumbbell Eyes
Loop #50 Braid (You can use this Intruder Wire)
Micro Rabbit or Trimmed (Thinned) Zonker Strip
Red Polar Chenille
Grizzly Flutter Legs
Peacock Ice Dub
Green Barred Predator Wrap
Senyo’s Laser Dub
Regal Fly tying Vice
Loon Outdoors Gator Grip Fly Tying Dubbing Spinner
Loon Head Cement
Regal Fly tying Vice

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Filed under Steelhead, Trout flies


To the fly tyer March is a little bit like the week before finals in college: you realize that you should have been more diligent and productive than you were during the (now expired) season. Fortunately, most of us have found that it is easier to stay on top of fly production than studies… but that is another story.

This week on Loon Live Matt is tying up a few patterns that will help get the juices going if you’ve been putting off restocking your trout box. There are some new materials in these patterns and, as always, Matt does a great job of putting his own twist on some bugs that look familiar.

We’ll see you on Thursday at 6pm PST! Come with your comments and questions; that’s the beauty of the live stream!


Hook: #4 NS 122 Ahrex
Tail: Black Barred Groovy Bunny – Blue/Yellow/White
Silver Reflector Flash
Senyo Chormatic Brush
Magic Minnow Belly
Faux Bucktail – Green and Blue
Senyo Predator Wrap
Eyes: ICE Eyes
Head: UV Clear Fly Finish – Thin

Hook: Daiichi 1167
Body: Life Flex – Brown and Orange
STS Dubbing – Brown Stone
Ice Dub – PT
Collar: CDC – Brown

Hook: Jig Hook 4640 #14
Bead: Tugnsten – 1/8 in
Tail: Bronze Mallard
Veevus Tinsel – Brown
Midge Tubing – Yellow
Ice Dub – PT
STS Trilobal – Brown Stone
Collar: Yellow Partridge – Sunburst


Filed under Trout flies

Trout on the Swing!!! by Jeff Hubbard

These small Streamer patterns work well in the Spring in Michigan. These flies represent two very important baitfish patterns in the diet of our cold water fisheries in the Great Lakes Region. The Salmon Fry and the Smolt pattern. In the Spring thousands of wild King Salmon fry hatch in the Pere Marquette River. These small minnows become a huge staple in the Brown and Rainbow Trout’s diet until the insect hatches begin. These fry sit along the banks in huge numbers allowing Brown and Rainbow Trout to slam them in the shallows. Almost like witnessing a blitz in salt water where a big fish is attacking the bait. In the Spring the Smolt of these King Salmon and Steelhead of two years of age, start to school up to make their long migration back to Lake Michigan following the adult Steelhead after they spawn and head out to the Lake. These become a big piece of protein for a giant Brown and Rainbow Trout as they try to ambush them on there way out of the river system. Another major food source for our resident Trout is Sculpin’s. The Pere Marquette River and other Great Lakes tributary’s are full of these baitfish. You can find them hiding everywhere, especially rivers full of woody debris.

In the last two Springs I have been playing around with smaller weight size switch rods and short Airflo Scout heads. This system is a ton of fun to cast and hook fish on. Swinging not only for the resident Trout but for any Steelhead that might be left in the river later in the Spring. I find fishing these smaller flies, can be even more effective, then stripping giant Streamers off the bank at a much faster speed. Swinging these small flies is more of a match the hatch scenario and do to the fact your presenting them at a much slower speed with cold water temps on the swing, can trigger more strikes. You give that big trout a little more time to react to a fly in the cooler water and due to the smaller size and life like look they are willing to take it. These flies are all simple to tie with not a lot of steps or materials involved. Good luck and Tight Lines, Jeff Hubbard


Hubbard’s Flash Fry

Hubbard’s Flash Fry
Hook: Heavy Wire Long Shank Nymph Hook Size 6
Tail:  3 pieces of Pearl Fringe
Body: Peacock Ice Dub Wrapped towards eye of hook and use more as a shoulder.
Wing: Tie in a reverse piece of Olive Artic Fox or Craft Fur, fray out with fingers and pull over Ice Dub shoulder and Tie off. Then add three more pieces of the Pearl Fringe.
Collar: tie in a nice piece of Mallard Flank natural by the tip and palmer towards eye of hook.
Eyes:  Gold Bead Chain Eyes small or medium in size tied on top with Ice Dub , dubbed around them towards eye. 
Finish off eye with whip finish.

Hubbard’s Swinging Smolt

Hubbard’s Swinging Smolt

Hook:  Daiichi 1750 size 4
Tail: two soft grizzle hackles tied in Matuka style off the back of hook.
Body:  Green Caddis Ice Dub , dubbed towards front of hook putting more on towards front to form a shoulder.
Wing: Tie in reverse Artic Fox White. fray out with fingers and pull over  Ice Dub shoulder.  Two strands , one off each side of Lateral Scale Pearl (1760 is the number).
Collar:  Tie in natural Mallard Flank tip first palmer towards eye of hook.
Eyes: Medium Silver Bead Chain Eyes.
Head:  Clump on Senyo’s Laser Dub Silver Minnow Body to form head, trim and form with scissors’ around Bead Chain Eyes
Tie off and whip finish.

Hub’s PM Parr “little fry”

Hub’s PM Parr “little fry”

I developed this fly long ago for Nymphing , learned lately it swings well too.
Hook: Daiichi 1750 Size 6 or 4
Tail: White Grizzly Marabou
Body: Olive Ice Dub with Mallard flank palmer to front of hook
Wing: Grizzly Marabou pulled over top
Eyes: Med Red Eyes
Head: Shrimp or Orange Ice Dub

Mini Pugsley Sculpin

Mini Pugsley Sculpin

Hook: Daiichi 2461 Size 2
Body:  Peacock Ice Dub wrapped towards front of the hook then make a shoulder of dubbing.
Collar:   Tie on a sparse amount of the Rubber Bass Skirts this color is Green/Pumpkin Orange.
Collar: Tie in brown shlappen by tip palmer towards eye of hook.
Wing: a few strands of Red Flashabou tied in behind the Sculpin Head.
Head: the key part for any Sculpin pattern.  Tie in a clump of Rusty Brown Senyo Laser Dub and trim to give the Sculpin head your looking for.

These Fly Patterns are a Copy Right of Outfitters North Guide Service 2017

Can also be found at

Jeff has been a full time professional Fly Fishing Guide in West Michigan now for 20 years.   He spends a majority of his guiding and fishing  time on his home river the Pere Marquette.  Jeff provides all his own flies on his guide trips, he ties a lot f patterns from Swing Flies for Steelhead to Hoppers in the summer.    Operates and owns Outfitters North Guide Service.  where you can find other great fly patterns for Trout, Salmon and Steelhead. His favorite method of fishing is Swinging Flies for Steelhead November through March.

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Filed under Michigan, Salmon, Steelhead, Streamers, Trout flies

Lance Egan’s Red Dart

In this Instructional Fly Tying Video Tony Torrence demonstrates how to tie Lance Egan’s Red Dart. This attractor pattern is a local favorite for fishing as the point fly in a Hopper-Dropper configuration. As a jigged pattern it also makes a great point fly for a two fly nymphing set-up. Tie a few in various sizes and weights to meet the river conditions and you will be very pleased in how well the Red Dart produces fish.

Materials list:

Thread: Veevus 10/0, Red
Hook: TMC C400BL sizes 12-16, size 12 in Video
Bead: Gold Slotted Tungsten Bead; size 1/8 in Video
Weight: Lead WIre 3-4 wraps; 0.015 in Video
Tail: Red Hackle Fibers; Hareline Chinese Saddle Hackle
Rib: Pearl Sulky Tinsel or Micro Pearl Flashabou
Counter-rib: 6X Mono Tippet
Abdomen: Peacock Hareline Ice Dub
Hackle: Furnace Hen Hackle
Thorax/Hotspot: UV Pink Hareline Ice Dub

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Filed under Trout flies

Moose May Fly

Umberto Oreglini ties a beautiful dry fly called the Moose May Fly in this fly tying video. Enjoy!

Materials list:

HOOK: Mustad 9671 #12
TAIL: Peccary
BODY: Two White and One Black Moose Mane Fibers
WING: Calf Tail
HACKLE: Brown and Grizzly mixed

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Filed under Dry Fly, Trout flies

CDC Caddis Emerger – Willy Self

Willy discovered his passion for fly fishing at the early age of six. Shortly thereafter, he began tying his own flies for trout, salmon steelhead, and shad. Willy found his love of lake fishing early and has continued to fish stillwaters, becoming known far and wide for his expertise and knowledge. He has fished all over northern California, Idaho, and Montana. From famous blue ribbon trout rivers to high mountain lakes and reservoirs, from farm ponds to the big lakes, Willy has guided for over twenty years in Montana and Yellowstone National Park. Willy has continued to develop his fly tying skills and is currently a signature tyer for Brookside Flies out of Denver, Co. He is the Assistant Manager of Montana Troutfitters of Bozeman.

Materials list:

Hook : size 16 true 10 scud style
Thread : 3/0 mono cord or choice
Body : CDC dubbing
Rib : French Tinsel
Under Wing : Krinkle Mirror flash
Hackle : Sharptail Grouse
Head : Black dubbing

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Filed under Trout flies