This blog post will be dedicated not to a specific fly pattern but instead to a style which I like to use. I call this style, “in the round, under the wing”.
I really enjoy tying in the round. Using spun Arctic Fox with Rhea and Amherst it is very easy to make a lively pattern that will attract many different species of fish (pictured below).
I also really enjoy tying hair wing tube flies. Some times however, it seems that the hair wing tube flies can be a bit sparse on the bottom (this of course does not apply to all hair wing flies) side of the tube, being that a lot of the focus is on the hair wing. However if we just spin one sparse layer of Arctic Fox (or another spun material) and wrap it under the hair wing we will add both life and color to the pattern without adding so much bulk that the fly will not get down to the appropriate depth like it is supposed to.
To take this one step further, I really like to put a cone head on a step tube and then wrap a sparse layer of spun Arctic Fox (or other spun material) over the cone head, thus hiding the cone head, and adding life/color to the pattern, once again without adding to much bulk. Pictured above, I used some Flex Tube and a smaller Scandinavian style tube to fit inside of it. The Flex Tube will function as the body and work as junction tubing as well.
In the example below I used some dyed blue Raccoon (not Finn Raccoon) that was spun into a dubbing loop then wrapped over the cone.
You may also notice a few strands of dyed green Amherst that I spun in the dubbing loop with the Raccoon. I often combine several different materials into a single dubbing loop. This helps save time and creates less bulk as you are only adding one layer of spun materials instead of 2 or 3.
Another benefit I have found to the “in the round, under the wing” style is that when using a cone head in a step tube fashion sometimes materials from the fly pattern will be seared off by the edge of the cone head when it is bumped up against rocks during the swing. With the extremely high prices for Jungle Cock these days it makes me want to cry (maybe I should start buying those synthetic Jungle Cock imitations) when a beautiful pattern has one or both of the Jungle Cock eyes seared off from banging against some rocks at the end of a swing or at the bottom of a shallow pool. A light layer of spun Arctic Fox wrapped over the cone head provides just enough cushion to help minimize the effects of the bare edge of the cone head.
After the layer of spun material is wrapped over the cone head you would then proceed to tie the hair wing as you normally would. In the picture below I have wrapped some green Badger Hackle over the Raccoon.
Next I added a small bunch of purple Buck-tail as the first layer in the wing.
After the Buck-tail I tied in the same dyed blue Raccoon that I spun in a dubbing loop, but this time I used it for the top layer of the hair wing (pictured below).
And to finish off this tube fly I added Jungle Cock eyes and a whip finish.