Tying Video – Trout Fin

The Trout Fin is a very old pattern. I first ran across it in a DVD Don Bastian produced on Tying Classic Wet Flies.  It is a difficult DVD to get an hold of these days.  The quality is not that great (compared to what we are used to now) I think it is a DVD made from the original VHS tape.  That said, it is certainly good enough to watch and learn from.  Plus, he has so many helpful tips and techniques you can not help but learn something.  According to him the Trout Fin (a.k.a. the Fontinalis Fin) was originally tied to resemble a fin of a Brook Trout.  I have only fished for Brookies a few times and there are not too many places in the Midwest that offer them as a species to target so I can not attest to the behaviors of these fish first hand.  However, they are a very territorial fish that will attack other Brook trout when they come into their area.  Thus, old timers would cut off the fin of the Brook trout and use it to catch more Brook trout.  Eventually, a fly was made.  I tied this fly many years ago to catch panfish here in the Midwest and it has worked very well.

There are two version of this fly in Ray Bergman’s book Trout, it is on plate no. 10 and the recipe is on page 451.  There is the Fontinalis Fin and the Bergman Fontinalis.  Interestingly, neither of these version are like the version in this video and on the DVD.  In doing a little more research into the fly I discovered a wide range of variations of the Trout Fin.  Some have tails others do not.  Some have a tinsel rib and other just floss.  Some even use red instead of orange duck quill in the wing.  They all have the white over black on the top of the wing though.  Stands to reason as this is always on the outer edge of the the Brook trouts fins.  When I first tied this fly it was also one of my first flies that used married wings.  One of the easiest of flies to tie if you are interested in married wings is the Ibis and White but the Trout Fin is pretty easy as well.  There is a supplemental tying video I did on using duck quill and making matched and married wings for wet flies (it will be released a couple days after the Trout Fin). It should help in getting an idea on dealing with this material and making these wings. – Enjoy.

Thread: Danville 6/0, Black & White
Tip: Danville 4-Strand Rayon Floss, White
Rib: Danville 4-Strand Rayon Floss, White
Body: Danville 4-Strand Rayon Floss, Orange
Hackle: Schlappen, Orange
Wing: Duck Quill, narrow strip of White, narrow strip of Black over Orange barb sections married together
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If you would like to purchase a few Trout Fin  wet flies there are a number for sale (while supplies last).

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As always, if you have any questions about this fly (or any other) you can leave a comment on Dressed Irons or any of the videos I have produced and I will help in anyway I can. Enjoy!

Remember….. It’s Fly tying….. If you’re not having fun, You’re Doin’ It Wrong.

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