Thursday, November 24, 2011

Now I am committed.....................

Today I went on my annual Thanksgiving pheasant hunt with friends and family. For the first time I shot a pheasant on Thanksgiving. I gave the breast meat to a buddy and grabbed several feathers.

This is where my commitment comes into play: I will be trying to tie some flies this winter so I am planning on buying an entry level kit.

So........"shoot" away with suggestions (i.e. type of flies to tie, materials needed, etc.) for a newbie.

Happy Thanksgiving.


  1. Ed,
    Well done on the bagging of your first Thanksgiving bird.

    And have a Happy Thanksgiving.

  2. Start off with something really simple, i.e. the San Juan Worm. All you need is the tools from your kit, a size 12 curved shank hook,, thread, and Ultra or Micro Chenille. After you've learned a few patterns and gotten good at them, use the tail feathers from the pheasant you shot to tie a Pheasant Tail. You'll need: The tools from your kit, a size 14 straight shank hook, thread, the pheasant tail, size small gold wire, and peacock hurl. Good luck learning how to tie!

    P.S. I might look into taking some lessons if I was you. They really help speed up the process.

  3. Happy Thanksgiving Ed. I started with the Wooly Bugger and went from there. The only problem I have is tying anything under size 12. My fingers seem to be too fat. I have an Excel spreadsheet that would probably knock your socks off. If you want it, let me know.


  4. Thanks was getting discouraging. I hope you and your family had a wonderful Thanksgiving.

    Hi Justin.....Happy Thanksgiving and thanks for the tips. I did a Google search and found a place not to far from my house that looks like I might learn something:

    Thanks Mark on all accounts. I will be in touch about the spreadsheet. Hope you had a nice Thanksgiving.

  5. Ed,
    Nice work Ed. I'd love to try bird hunting sometime. Though I haven't fired a gun since boy scout camp.

    I would stay away from a kit if it includes materials. The vise is going to be your biggest investment. I have a griffin 2A vise. It was fairly cheap and holds hooks well. There are nicer vises out there but this one does the jobs. List price it goes $65. Other tools you really need to get started are a bobbin and some good scissors.

    As for materials I would say pick one pattern and acquire the materials needed to make that fly. Then practice that pattern. Once you get good at that start another one. You can easily get carried away with materials. Of course they work well on a Christmas list. The pheasant tail nymph is a pretty easy. In fact the original materials were just pheasant tail and copper wire (the wire was used at the thread).

    As for hook size I would try and start with a size 12 because it is probably the largest fishable size. You could do a size 10 but I rarely seem to fish pheasant tails that large.

    You might want to check out They have a nice fly tying lesson section.

    Good Luck

  6. Hi Mike,

    The state offers a great free course (Hunter's Education) and Westboro(MA HQ for Game & Fish) out by you gets stocked the most (so I am told)and is a nice place to go for a hunt (or walk in my case most of the time).

    I am glad you "stopped by" and gave me some feedback today because last night I looked at the Orivs beginner's fly-tying kit and put it on my "wish list".

    Any particular brand for the bobbin & scissors or is something from Bean or Orvis good (though pricey I am sure)?

    Thanks for the ideas & is book marked.

    Hope you and your family had a nice Thanksgiving.

  7. I know exactly where you are talking about in Westboro. I should check out that free course and see if it still peaks my interest.

    I was checking out that orvis kit. It does seem much better quality than many other starter kits I have seen. Looks like it is a good addition to your list. If you don't get the kit most of my tools are Griffin. I got very lucky a few years ago and got an griffin vise with a bunch of tools included all for a very low price ($50). Dr. Slick is another good brand.

    I did have a nice Thanksgiving...I hope you family did too.


  8. We did have a nice Thanksgiving....thanks.

    I'll check out the website you told me about.

    You going to the Marlboro Fly-Fishing Show this year?

  9. I haven't been in a few years...maybe I should check it out again