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?

Butte Fly

Butte Fly

Compiled By James Birkholm


"This is another pattern obscured by the passage of time. Todd Collins, of Bute, Montana owns an example carded by Wilbur Beaty in the manner common from the 1920s to the 1950s. The example incorporates a snelled hook, as did most wet patterns of that era, and a Trude-style wing. Beaty, operating out of his shop The Bug House in Butte, was one of Montana's top fly fishing retailers. Most of the flies he offered were his own creations. Little record remains of how many patterns he created."

    Originator: Wilbur Beaty, 1930s.

    Hook: Mustad 9671, or equivalent, size 4-10.

    Thread: Red 6/0.

    Body: Woven by sandy mite weave of gray floss over orange floss.

    Wing: Trude-style gray squirrel tail."

For instruction on tying the Sandy Mite, see Woven Hackle Flies. ~ JC

Credits: The quoted text and photograph from Trout Country Flies, by Bruce Staples, published by Frank Amato Publications.

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