Posts Tagged ‘jack hagan


Pink Panther Steelhead Pattern

Pink Panther-JHagan-fly pattern-SwittersB-photography

A Jack Hagan (NW Fly Fishing Outfitters~Portland) pattern


Wet Rocks & Precision

During the downpours on an Oregon coastal stream, I had occasions to set my rod down and re-rig. When I would look down at the Hatch reel, I would note the contrast of a beautifully machined implement, the brilliance of the fly line and backing against the wet greens, browns, and grays. To my mind, it was rich looking in textures and colors.

The rod, a 10 wt. Winston Boron rod, once belonged to John Hagan…a dear friend and avid fly fisher, shop owner, who passed on not long ago. I was honored to receive the rod from his son, Jack Hagan and this past weekend the rod (and reel) performed flawlessly against big fish, even if I didn’t always match up to the moments. Power vs. power, a beautiful thing to feel and behold.

rod-reel-Hatch Reel-fly fishing-photography-Oregon-SwittersB


rod-reel-Hatch Reel-Hagan rod-fly fishing-SwittersB-Oregon


Photography: Beautiful Curves

Pink Panther JH SwittersB

Oh my, I hope some of you weren’t looking or something different? Before you leave though, admit that the curves of this hook and the enticing flare of the hackle lends itself a seductive quality that is not only pleasing to the tier, the fly fisher, but also the powerful Steelhead.

The Pink Panther (Jack Hagan, Portland, Oregon Pattern) here was tied on an Alex Jackson Spey Hook (Daiichi 2052 nickel). The Edge Bright abdomen positively glows. Dyed Guinea Fowl hackle lends color to the thorax area. A beautiful Steelhead pattern. Attraction, Excitation to provoke a response.


Fly Tying the Pupatator (Bead Head Pupa……Jack Hagan Pattern)

This originally was a larger bead head pattern in the size 10 range that was run through riffles and runs for trout or when larger, the steelhead. Fished like a traditional nymph beneath a strike indicator, it catches fish year round. Here, I have tied it smaller than the original pattern. I tied it smaller and therefore use a Starling wing. I don’t tie much of a body. Mostly a thread body or a wound Krystal flash body comprised of a couple strands of flash wound up the shank. I focus more on the thorax where I dub in a ragged thorax of Ice Dub and allow strands to trail to the rear. I tie in two goose biots right behind the bead head. I arrange the biots to angle outward at an angle and to not extend back beyond the bend of the hook. Then I take a Starling feather and tie it in at the tip. I wrap it twice and tie it off. I love Starling feathers for wings more than Partridge feathers in smaller flies.



Biot Wing Application (Prince Nymph but works for this fly also)


NW Fly fishing & fly tyer expo (a success in my book)

Robin Healy~StoneFlyMaidens for Casting for Recovery

Robin Healy~StoneFlyMaidens for Casting for Recovery

Well, I think it was a success because the show satisfied my needs and I met interesting people…talked briefly to Brian & Judith O’Keefe, Matt McCrary, Jack Hagan, Robin Healy , Dean Crouser, Don Nelson, and watched numerous tyers.  Bought some unique materials from Angling Specialties (Steven Korbay) and bought some beautiful watercolors from Dean Crouser. I also made the acquaintance of youth tyer, Danielle Lowry and her grandfather, Greg Lowry. Greg and Danielle gave me first hand instruction on using the Polish Weave technique (more to follow). The hot dog with lots of mustard and relish didn’t fail to give me heartburn. The beauty of a fly fishing/tying expo such as the Albany show is it presents visible generalizations that show the direction of the sport…the over all average age, minus any accumulation of data by me, was overwhelmingly 65+ years, in tyers and patrons. There was a respectable number of women in attendance, who seemed interested in the tying. Then some of the shops and vendors had the same “geez, I moved all this stuff here and no one is buying anything”. Tip: whining is not a magnet for business, especially if people can hear you bitchin’. Overall, I thought the show was pretty entertaining. The true barometers of booth sales, raffle and auction $$’s and actual number of attendees may indicate otherwise, but by me the show was just fine.    



The Spey Rod (the jaw drops more than once; frigging amazing!) )

The Focus

The Focus

As a young man working in the Fly Fishing industry, I have the pleasure and opportunity to see, use and fish all kinds of gear. This can be very exciting, rewarding and sometimes overwhelming! In the past couple of years, I have been introduced to the style of spey casting with a two-handed rod. At first, the idea of this was fun and exciting, but my first shot at it was a total bust, but I promised myself I woudn’t give up. Attending spey claves (more of a fish-story-telling affair than a how-to), spey classes, seminars, on-river practicing with friends and co-workers, Matt McCrary and Jack Hagan, and taking a demo-rod out of the shop and trying myself have helped me progress. Of all the methods of teaching, that have been the most helpful and most inspirational to me, has been having the good fortune of being on the river with Matt McCrary.

imgp4712aHe is a co-worker of mine at the fly shop, but in the last 2 years he has become far more than that. He is a role model of how a man should be, an amazing fishing buddy and teacher, a brother, a friend and when it comes to the two-hander….the best instructor and spey caster out there (in my opinion). Matt is a guide and a busy one at that, but Matt has taken me under his wing in many ways. We hang out in the “man cave” a couple times a week, drink Hamms and talk fishing, where it is going, the new styles of lines, rods and casting. And most of all how to increase my success as a retailer of these products and my skills at using them. It has taken me awhile to warm up to the idea of switching to a two-hander for steelhead, though in the past year or so i have come to realize that this is probably the most fun and effective tool we fisherman have out there.

The pro’s of this style of fishing are endless, but lets go over the biggest ones. Line control: we are fishing an 11′-14′ rod making our mending better and fly control more steady and paced. Casting: we are able to cast great distances with very little effort or exhaustion at the end of the day. Equipment used: in the summer we are using smaller flies and lighter heads and tips, making it easy to cast a long line. But, when casting a Skagit style head, a tip and a fly the size of a dead chicken, the true value of a spey rod comes out.

imgp5501A couple weeks ago, I bought a Sage Z-axis 7136-4 (13’6″ 7wt. 4pc.) two-hander and was given a beautiful Hardy Marquis reel to match it up. The moment I got it all set up, I couldn’t wait to get out on the river!! I put on an Airflo Skagit 510gr. head with an 8′ section of CCT 200 tip looped on the end along with a short leader. Talk about a sick set up. So, today was my first day out on the river. I headed up to Dabney State Park (Sandy R.) after classes and got suited up. It couldn’t have been a more classic fishing day either, overcast sky, drizzling, good water temp, clarity and height and a few fish in the runs. I got out there around 2pm and was practically trippin over myself running to get out there. For those of you who are stepping into this world of steelheading or are thinking about it….do it!! There is nothing on this earth that lives in water and has fins, as crazy and fun to fight as a NW steelhead!! Also, to go along with that statement, there is no better way to go about catching these specimens than with spey rod. My biggest goal today was to work on my cast, use my new set-up and see if I couldn’t rip one out of the seam while doing so, and believe it or not….I did!! A perfect cast (for me), swing, fly movement and run and I get a pull. I got the initial jet upstream and me trying to strip up my running line and getting some line on the reel, but before iI knew it the high-strung torpedo was making a run downstream into the tailout. Well, in the end he kind of schooled me and I lost him, but it didn’t matter. The combination of improving my casts and getting out there, my own flies doing exactly what i wanted them to and fishing the most effectively I have ever fished was the highlight of this afternoon! 


For those of you who have given into the sickness of this sport of steelheading with a two-hander, i feel your pain and frickin’ love it. And, for those of you who haven’t tried it or are too timid, i strongly urge you to take a class, come into a local shop and get some info on it, or tackle it on your own. You CANNOT find a more enjoyable, sick-deadly, rewarding tool in the fishing world…period!! With the technology in rod manufaturing, lines, reels and misc. equipment, this way of fishing is becoming readily accessible to the masses. With rods ranging from $300-$900 and a good reel from $200-$800, the options are out there and a set up can be found in most folk’s price ranges. Though i will say this, when purchasing a two-hander, i have come to find that spending a little extra money does make a difference in the overall effectiveness and fun you will find when using a spey rod.

Until next time, 

Have fun, swing the seams and be safe!!

Tony Muncy


Spey Fishing (Beginner’s Primer)

Adipose Flytying

Adipose Flytying   This is an area where I am a raw beginner. I have had instruction and tried it a time or two. At my worst, I still cast farther than with my one hander. But, I have lots to learn here from the forms of casting to the Summer/Winter riggings and much more I am sure. With the recent encouragement and prompting of Jack Hagan and Matt McCrary, I imagine I will have to give this more effort. My son, Tony, is tying and planning for exploits on the Deschutes R. So, we are in this together, as we always are. I will pass on all I can.

Pregressive Discipline~by Tony Muncy

Progressive Discipline~by Tony Muncy

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