Lady Amherst Salmon Flies : And where to find the feathers

Lady Amherst Salmon Flies : And where to find the feathers

Apr 15th 2024

Photo Credit : Northwest Fly tyer

Where to find the feathers used in tying this fly.

HornsBlue and yellow macaw

ToppingGolden pheasant Crest

Cheeks : Blue Chatterer or other options like blue peacock plumage

SideJungle cock

WingJungle cock and Lady Amherst pheasant tippet

ThroatMallard Duck Flank Feathers

ButtPeacock flue / herl or ostrich herl (this feather can be pulled out from any whole ostrich feathers or ostrich trim.)

TailGolden pheasant crest and The Indian crow / black iridescent rooster feathers

Here is a bit of Lady Amherst Salmon fly fishing...

In the world of fly fishing, there exists a tradition as rich and vibrant as the rivers themselves. Among the many patterns of flies used to entice the majestic salmon, one stands out for its exquisite beauty and timeless elegance: the Lady Amherst salmon fly.

Named after Sarah Countess Amherst, wife of the Earl of Amherst, Lady Amherst flies are renowned not only for their effectiveness in enticing salmon but also for their elaborate and captivating appearance. These flies are a true testament to the artistry and craftsmanship that goes into the creation of fishing flies.

The origins of the Lady Amherst salmon fly can be traced back to the late 19th century, a time when salmon fishing was not only a sport but also a symbol of aristocracy and prestige. It was during this period that fly tiers began experimenting with various materials and patterns to create flies that would not only attract salmon but also catch the eye of fellow anglers.

The Lady Amherst fly, with its vibrant colors and intricate design, quickly gained popularity among anglers, earning a reputation as a highly effective pattern for catching salmon in rivers and streams across Europe and North America.

Design and Construction

What sets the Lady Amherst salmon fly apart from other patterns is its striking appearance. Typically tied on large hooks, these flies feature long, flowing hackle feathers dyed in vibrant hues of orange, yellow, green, and black. These feathers are often sourced from the Lady Amherst's pheasant, a species native to southwestern China and Myanmar.

In addition to the colorful hackle feathers, Lady Amherst flies may also incorporate other materials such as tinsel, floss, and peacock herl to add texture and depth to the fly's design. The result is a fly that not only mimics the natural prey of salmon but also captures the imagination with its beauty and intricacy.

Fishing with Lady Amherst Flies

While the Lady Amherst salmon fly is undeniably a work of art, its true test comes when it's cast into the water. Anglers who have had the privilege of fishing with these flies attest to their effectiveness in attracting salmon, particularly in clear water conditions.

When fishing with Lady Amherst flies, anglers often employ traditional casting techniques such as the overhead cast or roll cast to present the fly to the fish in a natural and enticing manner. The key is to let the fly drift naturally with the current, mimicking the movements of a real insect or small fish.

In an age where modern technology has given rise to synthetic materials and mass-produced flies, the Lady Amherst salmon fly serves as a reminder of the timeless artistry and craftsmanship that define the sport of fly fishing. From its origins in the aristocratic salons of 19th-century Europe to its continued popularity among anglers today, the Lady Amherst fly remains a symbol of elegance and tradition on the rivers and streams where salmon roam.

So the next time you find yourself on the banks of a river, rod in hand, take a moment to appreciate the beauty of the Lady Amherst salmon fly. For in its delicate feathers and intricate design lies a connection to the rich history and timeless allure of fly fishing.

Happy fishing!