The Thunder & Lightning

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   This is another so called simple strip wing pattern which has stood the test of time dating back to around 1850 with James Wright holding the title of originator. The Thunder and Lightning, The Silver Doctor, The Black Ranger and The Greenwell Salmon Fly, which incidentally has connections with the famous  Greenwells Glory trout fly, are just a few of Mr Wright’s well known creations.

   The top fly picture was dressed on a size 9/0 eyed single iron which at over 3 inches long was possibly one of the largest Salmon irons manufactured. Because of it's size a couple of pieces of hen pheasant tail have been used for an underwing, normally the Thunder & Lightning has no underwing. However there are many listed dressings available with small variations in the pattern each fully capable of catching fish. The second picture is the remnants of a gut eyed single probably about a 5/0 iron, note the shorter shank.

One Variation of the full Classic dressing is as follows:
Palmered hackle    
Throat hackle 
Three or four turns of gold tinsel followed by golden yellow floss 
A golden pheasant crest feather 
Black ostrich herl 
Black floss   
Gold tinsel 
Orange cock from the last two thirds of the body 
Blue jay or guinea fowl 
Bronze mallard 
Jungle cock or substitute 
A long crest feather  
   This is another fly that really looks best on a single hook but these days not many anglers will fish for Salmon with a single iron believing, falsely I’m sure, that they will land more fish on a double or treble hook.

   First tie in the turns of gold tinsel followed by the yellow floss to form the tag. The crest tail is tied in next with four turns of black ostrich to make a butt. Tie in the ribbing tinsel and the black floss wind the floss on to the first third of the body and tie off follow this with the rib and tie this off also, do not cut off the ends. Tie in the orange cock hackle for palmering then finish the floss body and the ribbing.

   With the fibres drawn backwards the hackle is now wound along the body between the turns of ribbing and tied off at the head. The throat hackle is tied underneath followed by strips of  bronze mallard for the wing and jungle cock each side for the cheeks. Finish off with a crest feather reaching back to the tail feather and a black head.
   You now have a pattern which is unique and antique all in one go, this pattern is over 125 years old.

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