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Prince Nymph Pattern & Tying Instructions

Fly Tying Recipe: Prince Nymph
Mustad 9671 hook, size
lead wire
light brown?
goose biots, brown
peacock herls
fine gold wire
brown hackle fibers
goose biots, white
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Video Transcript:

For this Prince Nymph I'm going to use a size 14 Mustad 9671 hook and as you can see I already have a gold bead on it. I take about 10 or 12 wraps of lead wire. This not only makes the fly sink faster, which is good, it also helps to stabilize the bead. As an added bonus, it also helps to produce a nice taper for the body of the fly.

With your tying thread, take a few wraps to build a dam in back of the lead then wrap the thread forward to secure it further. As you can see, the body already has a pretty nice taper to it.

For the tail, I use goose biots which can be a bit difficult to work with because they're so slippery. Cut off two brown biots and orient them back to back with their tips even. The tips should splay out. The tail should be about a hook shank's length. Orient them on either side of the hook and squeeze them between your thumb and index finger. Take one loose wrap with your tying thread to collect the biots then take a second loose wrap. Then with one quick pull, pull the thread tight while squeezing your thumb and index finger together hard. Keeping pressure on your fingertips, take 4 or 5 more tight wraps to completely anchor the biot. This process should lock the tail firmly in place. You can then snip off the excess goose biots and bind down their butts.

I like to use fine gold wire as ribbing for the Prince. Some people prefer tinsel, others prefer silver to gold, but I really like the fine gold wire.

For the body, clip the tips off 3 or 4 peacock herls and tie them in just behind the lead wraps. Wind your thread all the way back to the tail then forward to a little ways behind the bead. Grab the herls with your hackle pliers and give them a little twist, then begin wrapping them to form the body of the fly. Wrap up the fly in a nice even spiral but tie off the peacock herl leaving a small space behind the bead, you'll see why later. Make sure the peacock herl is really well secured, you don't want it unraveling at this point. Then give the excess a snip.

Grab the gold wire you tied in earlier and wrap it forward in an open spiral up the body of the fly. This provides a little flash and helps to protect the rather delicate peacock herl. Again, tie it off real well behind the bead. Wire nippers work great here so you don't ruin the tips of a good pair of tying scissors.

For the legs, pull a single feather from a cheap grab-bag neck. Coachman brown is the traditional choice. Pull back any discolored or webby fibers and snip them off. Then snip the lowest fibers to provide a little traction for your tying thread. Now, tie in in that space you left behind the bead and wind your tying thread forward to the bead. Don't use your good dry fly hackle here, it just isn't necessary. Wrap the hackle forward, 3-4 wraps ought to do it. Then, tie the tip off and give it a snip.

Use your fingers to pull the fibers back and down, then take a few wraps to hold them in place. Snip any uncooperative fibers from the top of the fly to get a flat spot to tie in the fly's horns or wings, whatever you want to call them.

This time cut 2 white goose biots free from the stem. Now, we're going to put them in one at a time and here's a little trick. Take the first biot and place it on top of the fly at an angle, about like this. Now bring your tying scissors in and drop them down the back side of the bead. You'll feel them fall into place, then snip to cut the biot off at an angle. What this does is allow the biot to brace against the back of the bead at the correct angle. Then, take 2 or 3 nice tight wraps with your tying thread. You can then repeat the process with the second biot. Again, hold, snip, wrap.

Whip finish then snip the thread. Don't be stingy with the head cement on this fly. It will help to stabilize the wing and secure the wraps. And there you go, a Prince Nymph. No fly box should ever be without at least a couple.