Spellbound by riffling hitch
Riffling hitch anglers prefer some kind of consistency in the flies ability to stay on the surface – and at the same time we want a fly that looks lively at the end of the leader – so obviously we can’t solely focus on the hitch fly´s ability to stay on the surface – we must compromise.
Fine details could be; make or break and I could illustrate this by comparing the art of Riffling Hitch fly design with that of building miniature boats or aeroplanes… Make a small alteration to your design – and it could have a big impact on the ability and potentials of your construction…
We cant solely focus on the hitch fly´s abilety to stay on the surface – we must compromise.
If we visit the world of fishing tackle design – one could very much draw a parallel to the design of the perfect plug or lure.
Super designed trolling bait like The Apex and Rappala plug are not designed to move in just one specific way all the time – They have to work with and also in the flow of water, and act somewhat unpredictable. To move in an unpredictable way is actually a hallmark of superior lures and something that also could be part of a specific fly design – in particular, that of Riffling Hitch flies tied on a tube.
To move in an unpredictable way is actually a hallmark of superior lures
Importance of detail in Riffling Hitch flies
Tying salmon flies for + 40 years have taught me to pay attention to detail – There is no doubt that salmon can differ very much and flies are not always equally good. This is something that has become very evident to me in the time I have been fishing with riffling hitch flies – and you who read this and participate in this unique fly fishing form know exactly what I mean when I say that one specific riffling hitch fly can be particularly good compared to other seemingly identical riffling hitch flies
One specific riffling hitch fly can be particularly good compared to other seemingly identical riffling hitch flies
On a fly tying session I will normally sit down and copy the flies I consistently have caught fish on – something most fly tiers would do to get perfect flies – but with riffling hitch flies those perfect flies don’t come at a breeze. Experience tells me that some of the flies will be great but some of the flies simply won’t be that efficient
Even though I pay great attention to every detail on the fly like; measurements of tubing, length, and quality of hair etc. – I can’t always get it 100 % right – I simply can’t predict how the final result will work on the fish, or more correct; I simply can’t predict how the combination of material will generate micro movements and looks that will pull fish to the surface.
It may sound like a bunch of hocus-pocus and mumbo jumbo but the fact is that Atlantic salmon is the final judge and they seem to pay a lot of attention to details in RH flies – and probably also in many other artificial flies for that matter
Atlantic salmon will be the final judge and they seem to pay a lot of attention to details in RH flies. Riffling hitch is one of the diseplines in salmon fishing where the questions about flies and fishing – expose the fact that we know just about nothing when it comes details in salmon flies.
There is no middle ground between success and failure when it comes to tying Riffling Hitch flies on tube – They either work or they don’t – What it is that makes one fly very good and the next one less so is not always visible to the naked eye – at least not to this fly tiers eye (:
But we have uncovered some important details that will help you make a great hitch fly
Unpredictable micro-movements in Riffling Hitch tube flies
Tying the V-FLY
The V-FLY is one of the most simple and yet effective riffling hitch fly patterns you can get. Used by 100´s anglers every season it consistently produce fish on the bank – You will be surprised to see how this semingly neutral pattern will bring fish to the surface
If you follow our outlining on this specific pattern closely – You will get one of the best salmon Riffling Hitch flies you can carry in your box.
The V-Fly ™ that you find tying instructions for below is cut into proportion to make a fly with all the right abilities.
Hole in the center of the riffling hitch fly - Use fly from both banks
The position of the hole for insertion of the leader makes this fly equally good from both banks. The dimension of the tube makes the Riffling Hitch fly leave a delicate and highly attractive wake behind.
Construction of the V-shaped wing and the soft squirrel hair will work wonders on difficult fish.
The inner diameter of the tube supports the hook thus giving you the possibility to leave the hook in your favoured position – Using single double or treble hook.
The perfect tube! – Low memory tubing
The tube that we use for our riffling hitch flies is made specifically for this purpose – Produced from a unique compound that gives us a tube that won’t split – but will support your hook (keeping it in place) The tube will eventually fall back into place after you ended fishing and have removed the hook.
Hair from young squirrels works wonders
Hair from silver tippet squirrel is a unique material to lure salmon, steelhead and other kinds of trout with. Obviously these hairs can be quite diverse depending on where you cut them on the actual tail, and many different flies from tiny Smuts to big # 2/0 single hook flies could essentially come from one single tail – But squirrel tails also differ much in appearance and quality depending upon the age of the squirrel – and hair from young squirrels have the texture and quality that we have found to be prime stuff.
Step by step tying instructions
The position of the hole from the front of the head: 4 mm. Make the hole in the tube with a hot needle. Fix tube to
Fix tube to the needle. Make sure to put the entrance hole for the leader right opposite the centre of the wing. The tread I use is 12/0
Add cheeks of jungle cock – Whip finish and use a bit of super-glue for the head
Ready spawned Riffling Hitch V-FLY