Autumn On The EB

Autumn On The EB

Monday, October 17, 2016

Polly's Fuzzy Nymphs

Successful trout fishing isn't a matter of brute force or even persistence, but something more like infiltration"  - John Gierach

Polly Rosborough was a great inventive fly tier from over 60 years ago.  He basically invented the "fuzzy nymph", that concoction that seemed loosely tied but gave the impression of "life" due to the natural flowing materials used in it's construction.  Tightly wrapped bodies on his nymphs were not to be found. Light reflecting natural fibers applied with dubbing loops were.  They worked.  In the last years of his life he tied mostly for collectors and his flies were always in demand.

His BEAVER NYMPH and his CASUAL DRESS applied beaver in it's construction but any buggy (I like Australian Possum) fur will do. I apply very thin copper wire although Polly didn't.  It never meant that I was creating a "variant" of his fly but just putting my personal preference to it.  It's still Polly's fly!

One material that is in these two flies is a thorax of ostrich herl.  This is now becoming a forgotten material but it REALLY works on the two flies mentioned here.

The Casual Dress

Size 12 nymph hook

Use wire weight if you want but Polly never used weight. It works well with a micro shot

Australian Possum on a dubbing loop or just loosely dubbed on the hook

The finest copper wire available if you want it.  Use a dubbing brush to work out the fibers after you wrap the wire on.

Use a long strand of ostrich herl to wrap over the thorax area and you are done.

No need to coat this fly in plastic. You will absolutely kill it as you will with all dubbed bodies.  Let those fibers breathe and you will do well!!!!!  I used them late Sunday afternoon on the Millers and I did well!



Hibernation said...

Cant agree more on the fuzzy flies Ken. The casual dress in particular. Is it a nymph, a minnow, a leech? I have no clue what the fish think... Heck, they could think it's a worm. Whatever they think... They LOVE those things. And by "they" I mean any swimming critter in our waters :)

Anonymous said...


I was given his book years ago. He was ahead of his time with fly creation.


Millers River Flyfisher said...

Hibernation - good flies represent everything and nothing at all!!!


Parachute Adams said...

Great looking flies, Ken. I appreciate the fly tying ideas you put up. I haven't been able to get out much lately. Work and the much shorter days now getting in the way, but I think about it, more than I should probably.


Millers River Flyfisher said...


The shorter days are certainly here and will get much shorter within two weeks.

Sorry about the Sox!!


Parachute Adams said...

Sox didn't show up for their series with Cleveland, Ken. Indians are tough though. They are going to the World Series now.