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-eight

Crosfield

Crosfield

Compiled by Deanna Birkholm


There are two versions of this Icelandic fly, the "true original," also known as the Yellow Head. The "modern" verson has a black head.

Icelanders renamed the Yellow Head to the Crosfield in honor of its originator, Shetney Crosfield. According to Fishing Atlantic Salmon by Joseph D. Bates, Jr., and his daughter Pamela Bates Richards, "The origin of the Crosfield, has often been misunderstood or miscredited, is documented in Ellidaar: Reykjavik's Anglering Treasure by Asgeir Ingolfsson. In the book, Shetney Crosfield is described as "the most gifted angler among the British." The author goes on to quote the story of Crosfield finding a gray leg feather from a mallard and remarking it would "probably do for a good flywing."

This is the original pattern.

Crosfield

    Tag:   Fine oval silver tinsel.

    Tail:   Golden pheasant crest.

    Body:   Embossed silver tinsel.

    Throat:   A pale or Silver Doctor blue hackle.

    Wing:   Matched sections from a pale gray mallard feather.

    Head:   Yellow.

Credits: Information and photo from Fishing Atlantic Salmon by Joseph D. Bates, Jr., and Pamela Bates Richards, published by Stackpole Books. ~ DLB

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