This week’s Throw Back Thursday Fly is an Andre Puyans Loop Wing Dry Fly.

Loop Wing Dry Fly - Closeup |

Jeff Smith, a friend of mine from the Salem, OR area tied this fly several years ago. Six of these flies will be part of an online auction to benefit the Southern Oregon Casting for Recovery retreat my wife leads. I’ll share the details in an upcoming post.

I don’t know if the fly has a name, but it looks like it was tied with light and dark moose for the body and I’m guessing two small grizzly hackles for the loop wing.

Loop Wing Dry Fly |

André Puyans created this style of wing in 1961, initially to imitate an emerging mayfly.

The wing can be tied with a variety of materials, including duck flank feathers, duck or goose feathers, or hackle as shown above.

Puyans tied perhaps a better known fly named the Loop Wing Macaw Adams. The body was tied with macaw tail feather which is blue and gold in color.

André “Andy” Puyans (1935-2005) was born in Garden City, NY and began tying flies at the age of seven.

He moved to San Francisco, CA in 1958 to tie flies for Abercrombie and Fitch and eventually opened his own fly shop, Creative Sports in 1971.

I found the following information which was attributed to the Creative Sports website:

“Andy started fly tying at age seven, and got his first professional fly tying order at age nine. By age twelve he was able to cast a fly and hit a Lucky Strike package at thirty five feet. He spent long hours at the New York Anglers Roost and learned his art from the Darbees, the Dettes, Art Flick, and Ray Bergman.”

As I read about Puyans in Mike Valla’s book The Founding Flies, he mentions how he tweaked flies to improve them. The loop wing style of fly is a perfect example of replacing hackle tip wings.

My friend Jerry Criss, who knew André and was taught fly tying by him, states he was a perfectionist. Jerry tells stories of him taking a razor blade or lighter to his flies because they weren’t good enough!

Puyans was recognized for his fly tying skills by receiving the FFI Buz Buszek Memorial Award in 1977.

Enjoy…go fish!

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  1. Greetings,

    Very nice to view and read your article on Andre’s Loop Wing Dry Fly. A very long time ago, in the early 1970’s, Andre gave me some flies, and the Loop Wing Dry Fly was among his Nymph’s and other Dy Flies. Those Flies caught a lot of Trout. I used to go into his shop that he owned with David Inks, in Pacheco, California. That was well before the shop moved to Walnut Creek, California.

    The shop got sold. David inks moved on to the Mill Pond Fly Shop, in I think Palo Alto, California. He now lives in Montana and builds a very nice boat that is very good for float trips and Fly Fishing. Bill Keane wrote a very nice article about Andre. upon Andre’s passing.

    Both Andre. and David gave me an endless amount of good advice on Fly Fishing and Fly Tying. I consider them both Mentors on my Fly Fishing Journey. They also introduced me to Danny Glines. He was a Basketball Coach at San Jose State University and guided in the Summers on the Madison River in Montana.

    I took a very valuable Fly Casting Course from Danny and as I needed to get some under Grad credits to complete my Master’s Degree from that same said University.

    I also, wish to thank you for your wonderful articles on the Metolius River. I had Fly Fished the river in the late 60’s when I was a student at Oregon Tech, in Klamath Falls, Oregon. Perhaps, I will get to fish it once again before my parade is over.

    So, I thank you for reviving those wonderful memories of my early Fly Fishing Travels and Adventures. Those three individual’s, along with Nino Ballaci and Emil Marchant of Martinez, California through the Boy’s Club of Martinez, helped me to build a base of Learning, Travel, Adventure and meeting all sorts of wonderful people through and along my Journey in Fly Fishing.

    Thank you,

    1. Thanks for the Comment, Andy. I’m happy to see one of my TBT posts resonated so much for you and was able to bring back some fond memories…that’s my hope if writing these.


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