How to Tie: The Blacked Out Pheasant Tail

In this week’s “How to Tie” video feature, Cheech from Fly Fish Food ties a pheasant tail nymph variation that every angler should have in their fly box, the Blacked Out Pheasant Tail.


Difficulty: Easy

Pheasant tail nymphs are a classic nymph that everyone from beginners to experts will swear by. They produce fish consistently and are relatively simple to tie, making it a true staple in any anglers fly box. The Blacked Out Pheasant Tail is a simple, beadless, nymph that takes on a more natural profile in the water. During a BWO or smaller sized stonefly hatch, this fly could be the ticket to fooling those finicky trout.

Getting the proportions and profile right on pheasant tail nymphs is not top priority, but it certainly does not hurt. For the legs, wrapping the pheasant tail fibers forward to the eye allows you space to create your thorax, legs, and wing casing using all the same fibers. This is a trick that I wish I knew earlier and will make the process of tying this fly even more simple for beginners. The Blacked Out Pheasant Tail is a nymph that will continue to produce even after several fish if tied properly due to the counter wrapped wire holding the body together.

This nymph will fit perfectly into a double nymph rig as a dropper, or even in a dry dropper rig on small streams. Pairing this with a dry fly during a hatch allows you to cover those rising trout, as well as the ones subsurface picking off emergers. Versatility in all pheasant tail nymphs is why they have been a top producer for decades. Adding a hot spot just behind the eye of this fly is a way to have another variation in your box that will attract more aggressive fish. The Blacked Out Pheasant Tail is a nymph that every angler should have in their box, no matter the time of year.

Ingredients:

  • Hook: Umpqua XC290BL-BN Wet Hook – 16
  • Thread: Semperfli Classic Waxed Thread – 12/0 – Black
  • Tail/Body: Ringneck Pheasant Tail – Black
  • Rib: UTC Ultra Wire – Small – Black
  • Thorax: Peacock Eye Sticks

Now you know how to tie Blacked Out Pheasant Tail!

Video and ingredients courtesy of Fly Fish Food.

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