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They say the only stupid question, is the question that isn't asked, but this may be verging on the exception, so bear with me.

So salmon flies seem to have a number of styles or 'classes', for example if I use the Willie gunn, I have seen wg cascades, wg flamethrowers, wg monkeys, wg shrimps, wg temple dogs, wg dogs, pigs, collie dogs, wg dee style, then there wg tubes, wg snaelda.

What I am struggling to understand is what makes the fly a cascade, a temple dog, a snaelda etc.

Where am i going wrong, please???

Is there a resource, an article, a book or someone who can will explain this in newbies terms, please?
 

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This should be interesting! 馃槣

Apparently many people believe that anything with a long tail of bucktail, or some other more exotic material, automatically makes something a cascade. This simply is not the case.

The Cascade is a "Longtail" salmon fly. However, not all Longtail salmon flies are cascades.

A cascade, for me, is just one single fly. Invented by Ally Gowans, quite a few years after his earlier, very successful, Longtail pattern of the Ally's Shrimp.

If you actually take time to read Ally Gowan's own words on the cascade, the name had nothing to do with the tail or or shape or style of the fly. He stated something along the lines of, liking the way the Krystal Flash on top of the wing, cascaded over the fly towards the tail.

The Cascade became such a success that every Tom, dick and Harry trying to sell flies after it, used the name of a single fly to try to flog their wares.

So, it would appear that if he hadn't used Krystal flash in the wing, the pattern could have been called something else entirely. How would folk have sold flies then? 馃槷

Personally, I'd tell you to forget about the cascade as a style of fly and look at "Longtails" being the style of fly of which the cascade is just one.

Here is a longtail fly I put together using black and chartreuse yellow a few weeks ago.

Plant Terrestrial plant Feather Grass Twig


Longtail flies have been popular, particularly in Scotland, for decades. Sometimes they are referred to as "Scottish Longtails".

A lontail salmon fly must have a long tail. Usually made of bucktail. Quite a slim body, a wing and front hackle. They're not that difficult to tie either which helps. 馃檪

I'll give examples of the other styles later when I get a bit more time.
 

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There are patterns, styles & colour schemes, all with their own names鈥..

The Willie Gun as a pattern is a fly tied with a black body, gold rib and a mixed wing of yellow, black & orange Bucktail tied all round the tube (usually), hook or Waddington shank. The wing may be tied in layers or all mixed together. The head can be red or black.

Different styles of fly exist. Sometimes a named pattern becomes synonymous with a particular style of fly.

The Cascade is one such fly and it is synonymous with the longtail shrimp fly style i.e. a Buck or Fox tail 1.5-2 x shank length. A floss, tinsel or mixed body, a light wing to the hook bend and one or more hackles wound at the front. A fly tyer might produce a 鈥榃illie Gunn Cascade鈥 by using the yellow / black / orange colour scheme of a Willie Gunn


Other patterns which have become synonymous with styles include The Snaelda, The Templedog, The Monkey, The Sunray. All of these patterns can be tied in many different colour schemes and sometimes folk name their fly after the colour scheme. e.g. A Willie Gunn Monkey.

Sometimes the type of hook or shank is used to describe a particular pattern e.g. Willie Gunn Tube fly.

Not sure if that helps or not鈥..
 

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The Templedog style of fly originates from Scandinavia. Designed for fishing in big rivers for big fish.

Originally tied by Hakan Norling and brought to the attention of the world both by himself and Mikael Frodin, they have gone on to incorporate many different colour schemes over time.

The name Templedog comes from the original wing material which was Temple Dog. A dog breed similar to a Lhasa Apso if I'm not mistaken. As the style of fly became more popular, the use of fox hair became more popular and very few 'Scandi' type flies today actually use Templedog. Is Templedog banned? I'm not sure? 馃

Typically tied on tubes with dense, webby, front hackles and long flowing wings. Designed to create a lot of movement in the water.

It is a style of fly that I enjoy tying but I am definitely no source of knowledge on. I have never tied one thst I've been 100% happy with but I have had fish on a couple.

This is one of my efforts to give some idea of the shape of a 'Scandi'.

Eyelash Arthropod Feather Plant Terrestrial plant


Forum member rotenone is the person who could give more in depth knowledge of the style. He has been tying flies for customers for those big Scandinavian rivers for years and has a knowledge of the style if fly and materials to suit the style is is second to none.
 

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They say the only stupid question, is the question that isn't asked, but this may be verging on the exception, so bear with me.

So salmon flies seem to have a number of styles or 'classes', for example if I use the Willie gunn, I have seen wg cascades, wg flamethrowers, wg monkeys, wg shrimps, wg temple dogs, wg dogs, pigs, collie dogs, wg dee style, then there wg tubes, wg snaelda.

What I am struggling to understand is what makes the fly a cascade, a temple dog, a snaelda etc.

Where am i going wrong, please???

Is there a resource, an article, a book or someone who can will explain this in newbies terms, please?
It's a pretty good question!

Far as I can see tiers feel free to use/amalgamate/adapt existing names pretty loosely.

Could be based on style, geographic origin or just colour. It's a very loose world is the flytying one! Though of course there are a few calvinists (who mostly tie shrimps with a bit of pink fox in the tail) who get badly het up by non regulation outcomes :)
 

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This is not a silly question. I know lots of very experienced anglers who are confused or mistaken with fly names.
Fly naming is a nightmare these days. The names Willie Gunn and Cascade, and others, seem to be used on anything.
JS and GK have made some good points.

Cascade is as JS says a specific pattern. To me you can have a variant of it as long as it has a long tail, split body, short wing and 2 hackles.

Sky Plant Arecales Wind Pole


Willie Gunn as GK says is a specific pattern, a gold bodied one seems to be more popular theses days. Variants must include Yellow, Orange and Black.

Ally Shrimp is a specific pattern from Ally Gowans. There are a lot of colour variations these days.

Sky Cable Close-up Wire Liquid


Flamethrower is a style of fly by Duncan Eagan. It has no tail, a long mid hackle and the wing of Bucktail is in the middle. Shorter front hackle and the original had a flash head.

Artificial fly Arthropod Bait Insect Wing


Templedog is a style. Multiple stacked wings some tied reversed to give a high wing with plenty of movement.

Head Eye Insect Feather Arthropod


Snaelda is a style. Tied on a short heavy tube it has a long tail of bucktail, short fat body and short front hackle.

Water Paint Slope Art Sky


Irish Shrimp is a style. Wound Golden Pheasant hackle for the tail. Hackle in the middle of the body and another at the head.

Sky Arthropod Insect Electric blue Macro photography


Scottish Shrimp. Generally with a tail from hair and several hackles.

Artificial fly Fishing lure Bait Fishing bait Fish hook
 

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Probably one of the best threads for a while
As others have said it's all styles with patterns turd in a style then variations of that pattern within a style
馃帲
 

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Great question, but rather than getting too hung up on styles and patterns, and the science, go to a shop with a good display (like House of Bruar) and choose what you like and have confidence in.

Obviously, it needs to be roughly the right size, and not break any rules (such as no trebles), but I believe confidence overrules most other science in terms of fly choice.

Good luck!
 

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I wouldn鈥檛 over think it myself. So many successful flies turn into a 鈥渟tyle鈥 over time, often further developed by their originator and others as the number of variants increases.

I believe the Templedog was a fly originally tied by Hakan Norling. You can find presentations of the 鈥淥riginal Templedog鈥 on line, by the man himself.

Some patterns might have been invented with two or more different colour combinations from very early on but I think many patterns that have a distinctive shape or combination of materials become a 鈥渟tyle鈥 relatively quickly.
 
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