Foreand Aft Hackles
"Fore-and-aft" hackled flies are so called because they have a hackle tied at both ends of the body; they therefore float very well. There are fore-and-aft patterns ranging in size from the largest trout flies down to the tiny Double Black Gnats.
The fore hackle is tied as a simple dry-fly hackle. The aft hackle is usually smaller and, depending on the pattern, may be a different color. The aft hackle may be tied in the same way as the fore hackle or it may be tied in in reverse (see the "Black Wooly Worm" sequence, later in this chapter); in either case, it is wound in close turns like a simple dry-fly hackle.
- Prepare the hook shank by winding close turns of foundation thread to the tail position. (S)
- Prepare a cock hackle in the same way as a simple dry-fly hackle (described earlier in this chapter).
- Lay the prepared hackle along the near side of the hook shank, with its outside surface facing you and the waist in line with the tying thread at the tail position.
- Tie in the hackle with two or three close turns of tying thread, then wind the thread in wider turns to the hackle position, out of the way. (S)
- Wind on the hackle like a simple dry-fly hackle, each turn touching the previous one.
- Unwind the tying thread to the point where the hackle is to be tied off.
- Tie off the aft hackle with two turns of tying thread. (S) Trim off the surplus hackle close to the securing turns.
- Prepare and tie in the body material. Wind the tying thread to the hackle position. (S) Wind on and tie off the body material. (S) Trim off the surplus.
- Prepare and tie in another hackle at the normal (fore) hackle position. (For the fly shown here, the fore is larger than the aft hackle.)
- Wind on like a simple dry-fly hackle, and tie off just short of the eye. (S)
- Trim off the surplus, and complete the fly.
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