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Hard-Hackle DragonFly
By Richard Komar

The dragonfly is a beautiful insect and an incredible flyer able to achieve top speeds of over 60 miles per hour. The wings are translucent and shimmer and gleam in the sunlight. The dragonfly's long tapered body may be black, olive, blue, brown and even red. A close relative of the dragonfly, the damselfly, has a more slender and fragile body. Adult dragonflies only live for a few weeks or months. It might be interesting to note that some extinct species had wingspans of 2 feet. Imagine the size of the largemouth bass that could swallow that monster!

Allow me to introduce the newest member of my Hard-Hackle family: the Hard-Hackle DragonFly!

Materials List:

    Hook: Mustad 94840, or Equivalent, sizes 2-14.

    Thread: 6/0 or 8/0 Brown.

    Body: Rooster Cape Feather, Brown.

    Tail: Rooster Cape Feather, Brown.

    Wings: Super Hair, Smoke Color.

Instructions - Hard-Hackle DragonFly:

1. Lay a smooth thread base along the hook shank starting from the hook eye, wrapping toward the hook bend.

2. Select two rooster cape feathers and tie them in at the hook bend, concave side up. The "tail" length should be 1 times the length of the hook shank. It's OK if your feather tips are a tad apart; this looks more like a real dragonfly's tail.

3. Tie in a rooster cape feather, dry fly style, with the concave side toward the hook eye. Make sure the hackle tips of the feather extend beyond the hook point.

4. Wrap the rooster cape feather forward and tie it off just before the hook eye, leaving enough room to tie in the "wings." You need this massive hackle body to support the long dragonfly "tail" and "wings".

5. Position the stiff Super Hair on top of the hook shank and tie it in with a figure-eight pattern. Whip finish and apply head cement to secure the "wings" to the hook.

6. Trim the Super Hair "wingspan" to equal the length of the entire fly. You're done! The Hard-Hackle DragonFly is ready to fish!

How to Fish the Hard-Hackle DragonFly:

The Hard-Hackle DragonFly is a very aerodynamic fly for its size. Even if it lands upside down on the water, it looks like a spent dragonfly in even more distress!

The DragonFly is fished like a dry fly, with a generous application of floatant on the entire fly. Initially, it will float high on the water. As the floatant wears away, the Hard-Hackle Dragonfly sits in the water film. If you don't re-apply floatant, you can just let the DragonFly slowly sink in the water column. It is vulnerable to strikes in all three scenarios. A most versatile fly indeed!

Even with a 3-inch wingspan and 3-inch body length on a size 2 hook for bass, the Hard-Hackle DragonFly gracefully floats down to the water without a disturbance. In the smaller sizes of 10, 12 or 14, it attracts bream and trout. If dragonflies are fluttering about near the surface, by all means, this is your go-to fly.

Dragonflies occur in nature in a variety of colors and sizes, and vary widely from region to region, so don't be afraid to experiment. Have Fun! ~ Richard

About Richard:

Richard Komar is a warmwater flyfisher residing in Plano, Texas and is a member of the Dallas FlyFishers.

For more great flies, check out: Beginning Fly Tying, Intermediate Fly Tying and Advanced Fly Tying.

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