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-twentyone



Compiled by Deanna Birkholm

According to Joseph D. Bates, Jr., in Streamer FlyTying & Fishing "This was the idea of retired Conservation Warden Frank Hornberg when he was on active duty in Portage County [Wisconsin]. We [Weber Tackle Company, Stevens Point, Wisconsin] helped him develop it, and tied the first one for commercial sale. I think he had in mind to simulate a small minnow, which this fly does nicely when fished wet. It is also very effective when dressed and fished dry. It is primarily a trout fly but takes panfish very readily. . .

This fly is also called the Hornberg Special Streamer in the West. In the eastern version no lacquer is added to the tips of the wing. Some variations use yellow hair instead of the original yellow hackles, and teal instead of mallard. The fly is often fished dry until it sinks, whereupon it is fished as a streamer.

Forgotton Flies shows and lists the Hornberg in Black, Bronze, Cinnamon, Dark, Downwing, Downwing Orange, Downwing Red, Green, Yellow, Special Streamer and Trolling.

The pattern is:
    Hook:   Size 6 regular.

    Body:  Dyed yellow calf fibers tied to tilt at a slightly upward angle and flanked by two mallard feathers.

    Cheek:   Jungle cock.

    Hackle:   Grizzly and brown mixed and tied as a dry fly collar.

    Notes:   Eric Leiser writes: Though this pattern is listed in the streamer and bucktail sections of most catalogs, it may also be used as a dry fly imitating some of the adult caddis and stone fly naturals common in most streams . . .an all purpose favorite."

Quoted section from Streamer FlyTying & Fishing by Joseph D. Bates, Jr., published by Stackpole Books, Color photo and recipe from Forgotten Flies. We appreciate use permission! ~ DLB

Archive of Old Flies

[ HOME ]

[ Search ] [ Contact FAOL ] [ Media Kit ]

FlyAnglersOnline.com © Notice