With Winter upon us, now is the time to sort your fly boxes. Who knows what you may find? Most Fly Guys have not even looked at their boxes in months. Now is when you can sort, lock, and load for the upcoming season.
Start with several old egg cartons and a pair of big tweezers. Pick a full fly box and begin to segregate your box. This is not a political or racist display. What you are doing is taking inventory on your menu of flies. As you look at your flies, divide them up in groups.
Flies with line attached trim and clear the hook eyes
Damaged flies in need of repair fix and repair. Do not forget to sharpen the hooks
Flies with no hooks You will be surprised how many hookless flies show up
Like flies match color, patterns
Like sizes sort by sizes from big to small
Trash Flies If the flies are too far gone, put them into a recycle pile. You can cut the old fly apart and reuse the hooks. Use a single edge razor blade or knife.
Giveaways We often have space takers that are old, used, or not as perfect, but still useable flies. Separate these flies into a giveaway box. Find a kid, friend, or newbie to give them to. We all wished we had a hand me down or two when we first started.
Make sure that you examine every fly. Look for rust and use a sharpener to service each fly. Now upgrade your fly boxes and storage. If you have many seasonal or surplus flies, place them in large, labeled boxes.
Create a diversity box that contains your favorite choices. Have a dozen or so of each ready to use. Streamers should be with streamers. Nymphs, terrestrials, attractors, dries, or… Be organized. You will also be able to inventory your needs. Now you know what to tie. I make an egg carton box for what I need. Each egg section holds a sample of what I want to tie/replace.
If you put in the time now, you will save time when on the water.
For more Montana Grant, catch him at www.montanagrantfishing.com.