Wrapped hide-strip bodies are easy to tie, lively in the water.
and very durable. You can cut your own strips or buy them
pre-cut. A cross-cut strip produces a slimmer profile, while
a longitudinally cut strip causes the hair to flare out, producing
a wider body that pulsates when stripped through the water.
Hook: Nymph, 2X heavy, 2X-3X long, sizes 8-14.
Tail: Red squirrel, longitudinally-cut strip.
Body: Red squirrel strip.
Head: Spirit River two-diameter counterdrilled brass
bead, size to match hook size.
1. Slide the bead, small end first onto the hook. Mount the
hook in the vise. Then use the bead head method (p.51)
with lead wire wrapped as shown; secure the wire and bead.
Advance the thread to the rear tie-in position.
2. Take a precut squirrel strip and at the end of where the
hair extends back past the hide, trim the hide to a point as
3. Place the strip atop the shank so that the pointed end
extends one shank-length rearward of the tie-in position.
Divide the hairs over the tie-in position and take 4 tight
thread wraps over the hide only as shown.
4. Advance the thread forward. Take the butt end of the strip
and use close, tight turns to wrap the strip forward to the back
of the bead. With each wrap, preen the hairs back as shown.
5. Divide the hair over the front tie-off position and take
4 tight thread wraps over the hide to secure the strip. Then
cut the excess strip, tie off the thread, and cement the
6. Finished fly. ~ Jim Schollmeyer
Credits: The Bead Head Squirrel Leech is one of the many excellent
instructional flies presented in Jim Schollmeyers book,
Nymph Fly-Tying Techniques, published by
Frank Amato Publications.