Welcome to Just Old Flies

Welcome to 'just old flies,' a section of methods and flies that used-to-be. These flies were tied with the only materials available. Long before the advent of 'modern' tying materials, they were created and improved upon at a far slower pace than todays modern counterparts; limited by materials available and the tiers imagination.

Once long gone, there existed a 'fraternity' of anglers who felt an obligation to use only the 'standard' patterns of the day. We hope to bring a bit of nostalgia to these pages and to you. And sometimes what you find here will not always be about fishing. Perhaps you will enjoy them. Perhaps you will fish the flies. Perhaps?

Part One hundred sixty-one

Mallard, Silver & Peacock

Mallard, Silver & Peacock

By Arthur James Lingren

This Bradshaw fly is a variation of the very successful and simply dressed Silver & Mallard trout pattern. Bradshaw first used it duing a 1936 trip to Vancouver Island when he decided to give coho [silver salmon] fly fishing at Duncan Bay, just north of Campbell River [British Columbia, Canada] a try. After rowing the mile or so up to Duncan Bay with his wife, Becky, they both had a successful day tossing feather and hair-winged lures to salmon. Starting at 10:30 and finishing at just after 4 they caught a total of 10 salmon and one seagull.

In his diary he gives the dressing for the fly he use: "#2 low water hook, silver body, badger hackle & gray mallard & peacock wing."

He also gives a brief account of the fish and bird that he caught. After landing his first coho, Brayshaw records:
I got a 5 1/4 cohoe & two four-pound humpbacks besides putting back 3 grilse. Left the Bay at 4 & rowing home home a big strike off the kelp & got a 10 1/2 pound cohoe - I also caught & released a seagull in the bay.

A few days later Brayshaw was again out casting to salmon in Duncan Bay and, early in the afternoon on the ebb tide, he took a 7 1/4 pound spring and a 9 1/2 pound coho on his Mallard, Silver & Peacock pattern. In just a few hours salmon fishing with his new fly, Brayshaw took cohoes, pinks and springs. With such catches, indeed, a most worthwhile pattern for the tinsel-tosser to have in his fly box.

Mallard, Silver & Peacock

    Hook: Number 2 low-water salmon.

    Body: Flat silver tinsel.

    Throat: Badger hackle.

    Wing: Peacock and mallard flank.

    [Head: Black.]

    Originator: Tom Brayshaw.

    Intended Use: Wet fly for coho [Pacific]Salmon.

    Location: Duncan Bay, British Columbia, Canada.

~ Arthur James Lingren

Credits: Dressing, fly photo and text from Fly Patterns of British Columbia by Arthur James Lingren, published by Frank Amato Publications, Portland Oregon. Ours sincere thanks for use permission.

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