Tying a BEAST of a Salmon Fly
By Matt Schauer

Posted: January 20, 2012

Well we had quite a bit of snow here in Thompson Falls and my wife closed the vet clinic early today. So I took the opportunity to twist up another one of my favorite flies. This is big huge bug called the salmon fly. Now anglers from all over the state love to brag about which river has the best salmon fly hatch.

I would say it is between the Thompson River and Rock Creek. Both kick butt! But both rivers demand much respect due to the fast moving water during the snow melt runoff. Much like all the rivers in montana in the spring. Please do not be fooled by the fast moving water it will take your life in a heart beat! That being said, when I am not floating the river with clients then I just stand at the edge of the willows and set my salmon fly in the H2O and the native Montana trout go nuts!

Be sure to evaluate the river from a distance as you approach it. You will learn a lot form the way the trout react to the salmon fly. Don’t just run up to the rivers edge and chunk this huge fly out into the middle of the river as if you were in a casting competition. More than likely, the trout will be hugging the bank waiting for one of these fat bugs to fall to there demise!


Fly name the BEAST

This is a bullet head style fly

Hook size can be size 2 to 4 dry fly

Dark corse elk main for the underside of the neck

Pheasant tail legs tied in not half way down

I use some bright orange threat to wrap the body in a cross way pattern

Of corse the tan elk hair for the wing so the angler can see it well

I put a light brush of shellac to stiffen the body

This makes the fly last forever!


I usually shoot my game animal and use their hair or feathers to create my flies. You can find good materials at the Grizzly Hackle, Missoulian Angler, Kingfisher and Blackfoot River Outfitter Fly shops in Missoula. But you can only find my exclusive patterns in my flybox! That is why they work soooooo well. Lol….

This report is from Scott Anderson.

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