3 essential flies for trouts you must have in your fly-box

2th June 2019

We are living in an age of massive evolution, in the last decades, the materials development became fast as never before. This evolution brought to us big changes, as we are applying the new discoveries in everyday life we are doing the same with the fly-tying material.
Nowadays surf an online store can be really dispersive, you can be lost in it, be aware of this. Many different materials doing the same function, or they are slightly different, that’s mean they do the same function.
This large growth in tying materials is certainly good for the fly-tier art, to work on new ideas or a new way to tie, but at the end of the day, just in rare cases, this is useful for fishing.
The old classic patterns, most of the time, pay off much better.


Those flies are basics, easy to tie, the required material is few and common for every fly-tiers. Productive and famous all over the world, they are making the story of modern fly-fishing.
I take into consideration one fly per type: streamer, nymph and dry.

The Woolly Bugger

Woolly Bugger was invented in 1967 by the American fly-tier Russel Blessing, the origin is unknown but it seems an evolution of the British Palmer (1700’s).
It is tied in different colors, materials, and styles, to imitate an ample variety of fish prey. Used for fishing under the water surface, the Woolly Bugger is largely used in the stream, creek, river or lake, but it can be productive, tied in the proper colors, even in saltwater.
It can be tied in different sizes, from hooks size 10 to 2, and can be weighted with lead wire, brass or tungsten cones, brass or tungsten beads, and dumbbell or chains eyes.


Imitates: baitfish, leeches, large nymphs, clam worms or shrimps.


  • Marabou feathers
  • Cock hackle
  • Chenille or dubbing
  • Wire
  • Eventually, something to increase weight

The Pheasant Tail Nymph

Pheasant Tail Nymph (PTN) was invented by the English river keeper Frank Sawyer in 1958. It imitates a wide variety of freshwater insects, that's why probably it's really attractive for the trouts.
Used in creek, stream, and river to fish under the water surface, PTN is really productive when it is drag by the water flow close to the bottom. Since the ’50s there were created lots of different variations in shape and color, but all of them with an essential material: few barbs of pheasant tail feather.
It can be tied in different sizes, from hooks size 16 to 10, and can be weighted with lead wire, brass or tungsten cones and brass or tungsten beads. In the picture below my own variation, here the classic. I tie the PTN in different colors but the olive one is my favorite. I caught lots of trouts and graylings with this pattern.


Imitates: mayfly larvae, stonefly, olive nymphs.


  • Pheasant tail for tail and body
  • Wire
  • Hen, cock or partridge for legs
  • Tungsten bead, it's allowed to sink really fast

The Elk Hair Caddis

The Elk Hair Caddis was created by the American fly fisherman Al Throth.
The Elk Hair Caddis imitates a small stonefly or adult caddis fly. It is a dry fly, and it is used to fish on the water surface. Some variations of this popular pattern are without palmered hackle, or with olive or grizzly body. It is tied with hooks from size 20 to size 10.
The material involved to tie this fly is few and it’s one of the easiest flies to tie.


Imitates: caddisflies, stoneflies.


  • Elk's hair
  • Cock hackle
  • Fine wire
  • Dubbing