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
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
Compiled by Deanna Birkholm
Archive of Old Flies
There are two versions of this Icelandic fly, the "true original," also
known as the Yellow Head. The "modern" verson has a black
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.
Credits: Information and photo from Fishing Atlantic
Salmon by Joseph D. Bates, Jr., and Pamela Bates Richards,
published by Stackpole Books.
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.
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