I’ve been tying flies for many years and would like you to catch fish using some RiverKeeper Flies.

I’m not a commercial fly tyer. I call myself a custom fly tyer. What does that mean? I’ll tie almost anything you need to catch a fish…at least I’ll try. For more about my fly tying journey, be sure to read the About Me page.

I have over 180 fly pattern sheets on my RiverKeeper Flies website for you to choose from. And I keep adding fly patterns too. Don’t see that special fly? Just contact me using the Comment section below and ask.

Here are a few examples…

All flies are tied with barbless or de-barbed hooks unless requested otherwise and will look similar to those in the pictures. Some materials may be substituted.

Minimum number of flies for an order is 4 of each style.

Pricing begins at $3 per fly. Prices are based upon the time it takes to tie the fly as well as the materials needed.

I don’t carry much inventory and tie orders by the date I receive your order.

Just leave a comment below and I’ll get back to you to discuss timeline and pricing.

Updated August 2021 – Feel free to contact me and I’ll put you on the wait list. I’ll send you a note when your name is at the top to see if you are still interested.

(In addition, most people don’t know and I certainly wasn’t aware I needed to include a 10% Federal Excise tax into the pricing of my flies. What does that mean? I’m required to pay a quarterly payment to the US Treasury of 10% of the retail price of any fly I sell.)

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171 Comments

  1. Hi John –
    I used to tie my own but then i got old with shaky hands (which made it super frustrating – LOL). Anyway I am looking to fill out my fishing set with a few uncommon flies that work well where I fish for brook trout. The patterns I am looking for are a Peacock Despair and an Emerald Despair. A description can be found at:

    https://globalflyfisher.com/video/peacock-despair

    I am looking to get 6 of each if possible. The Emerald variant replaces the peacock hurl body with green seal fur with gold ribbing, otherwise its identical.

  2. I have some patterns I really like. Could I send you one of each to duplicate? Some are:
    Big Mac: red, brown and gray, size 20
    Thread Midge: red, olive, black, white size 20
    Yongs special and Yongs flasher in size 20
    UV buzzer red and green in size 20
    analid size 20, root beer, red,
    2 tone zebra nymph bead head black by bead, red by barb

  3. Hey John,

    I’m brand new to fly fishing and I’m in the BC interior. I’m interested in purchasing some dry flies from you but I have next to no idea what I would need other than some woolie buggers haha. Do you have any advice?

  4. Been looking for Rs2 tied just like Rim Chung ties. Too many variants branded Rs2 that are not like his. But the one you show on your site it damn close! Love to order a bunch in size 18/20. Also interested in your euro-style perdigons. Please clarify how to order. Thanks!

  5. Hi John. Read about you in American Fly Fishing. I am planning on fishing the Metolius in July of 2021 and would welcome any recommended fly patters that I could purchase from you. Happy Holidays

  6. Hello John, I’d like to purchase some flies to give as gifts. An assortment that you feel would be appropriate for Central Oregon rivers. Thank you!

  7. Just noticed this page after sending you a comment about where to purchase your patterns on the main page. I’d like to purchase a couple dozen mostly dry/emerger for smaller western trout streams. Most of my fishing is in the Washington Cascades.

    Thanks!
    Jack Evans

  8. hello John, just came across your site while looking for some flies to take to the crooked river this fall and winter. i am currently learning to tight line nymph fish and on my first trip to the crooked i picked up some recommended flies in sister at the fly fishers place. the flies they recommended worked well. would it be possible to get your recommendations for an assortment of flies for euro nymphing and what the cost would be. thank you for your time

  9. Hi John!
    I’m looking to get a variety flies for my husband – a dozen. He mostly fishes for river trout up here in Virginia.

  10. Headed to East Lake early Sept. Can you put together a small box of assorted flies – dry and nymph/midges? thanks, rick

  11. Hello John,
    Love the work you offer. Custom flies, and made in US is always a treat.
    Any info on time estimates for the flies mentioned below would be fantastic. I know it says you’re out fishing most days…jealous, but I thought I’d try anyway.

    3 Mercers Poxyback
    4 WD-40’s
    5 Elk Hair Caddis
    4 Clark’s Golden
    5 X Caddis

    That should do it for today. lol
    Thanks head of time!

  12. John,

    Thank you for creating my 12 streamers. I could not get the color I wanted so I reached out to you. I am so pleased with them. Very satisfied plus working with you was fun to get to the streamer I wanted.

  13. Hey John! Hope you are staying safe & healthy.

    I am an avid fisherman quarantined on the Eastern Shore of VA for the summer. I am eager to try out some fly fishing on the Chesapeake Bay. I have some creative ideas on what flies might work, and was wondering if you would be interested in making them!

    Really look forward to hearing from you.

    -Mike

  14. I live in Idaho in St Anthony on the Henry’s Fork of the Snake River and also fish the South Fork from Palisades Dam down river to the confluence with the Henry’s Fork. Never fished a lot of soft hackles but want to because at 79 my eyes are having a harder time now seeing the drys on the water. Because of that I fish more and more Hi Viz which helps. Thinking I will not need to see the takes on soft hackle flies. How do I purchase some of your RiverKeeper Soft Hackle Cripple flies? Also in the summer the PMD’s on the South Fork tend to have a bit of pink color to them. What do you suggest?

    Also I am a Oregon Native and was born in and raised in Vale not to far from you.

  15. Hi John,

    I am wondering if you would tie Barr’s Meat Whistle in size 2: Natural color with blue legs. What is your minimum order quantity and cost per streamer?

      1. Hi John,
        I believe you are busy fishing. But I would like to get on your schedule to get 18 more of the streamers you tied for me: Size 2 Meat Whistle. Just let me know if you will tie them when you have some time in the future.

        Thank you,
        Bob

  16. Hello,

    It’s so hard to find a custom fly tyer. I’d like to be in touch about purchasing some of the Babcock and Irish Turkey flies if that’s possible.
    Thank you for your time
    Scott Pollack

  17. If I send you a picture of a simple fly will you tie some for me? Please email me so I can send the picture.

  18. Hi John! I’ve been a fan of your flies and want to order some and see if they work as well as I think they should. Would you please send me your current pricing information and ordering instructions. Thanks a bunch! Phil Jahn

  19. John
    I’m headed to the Owyhee River the last week of April and am interested in having you tie up a couple dozen flies for the trip.
    Milt Ketchum
    ps: I have just recently discovered your blog and am enjoying catching up on the articles and flies.

  20. Hi John

    Hope your well

    Would you be able to tie pike jig flies at all?

    Im interested in large baitfish style jig flies maybe 25cm if this is something you could help me with then please feel free to email me

    Thanks!

  21. Hi John,

    My son Christian was the one you mention in the article who contacted you about the three cutthroat flies, the Pete’s Special, Siletz Special and Female Coachman. We beat those into non existence with much success and here comes Christmas so I thought it would be a great gift for him (and me!)

    I’d like to place an order:

    Siletz Special, Pete’s Special, Female Coachman
    Size 8 and Size 6
    All with Barb
    3 of each in both sizes
    Total of 18 flies.

    Let me know if this is possible and pricing please.

    Thank you!

    Kevin
    Lincoln City, OR

  22. We need a specific mayfly nymph tied. If we send you a sample, can you provide us price and availability?

  23. Hi John –
    My first time ever ordering custom flies. Can I send you a PDF link about a fly recipe article from American Angler March/April 1997? Or is there a potential copyright issue? Thanks. Eric D.

  24. Hey john! I was wondering if you could take a look at this link and see if you could tie this one for me. I’ve tried but to no avail. I contacted the man who invented it but he said he doesn’t sell them. On his website he posted a recipe and a step by step but I still can’t quite figure it out. I’m looking for something that closely resembles a pumpkinseed zoom mini lizard for smallies. This fly in olive would be perfect. Thanks! Here’s the link-

    http://www.frankenfly.com/faithful-lizard-by-jon-hicks/

  25. I’m way past ready to purchase some well-made flies! And, I appreciate what I see on the site about your commitment to conservation and education.
    Please get in touch and we’ll put an order together. Thanks!

  26. HI:
    Love your Flies I am a Volunteer with Project Healing waters – I have a design for an Emerger Fly I would like for the Veterans to try
    Could you please send me your email so I can send the design for you to estimate etc.
    Thank you
    Maurice Mahler

  27. John,
    I’m looking for a dozen (or two) of size 20 BWO Comparadun emergers. They should be dun deer hair wing, olive body (dubbed or tying thread), and zelon or body flair trailing shuck. The zelon would be amber to golden brown. The body flair would be golden brown. I like the shuck to be fairly sparse, but I can trim to my preference.

    I’ve had operations on my hands and have trouble tying flies smaller than 18’s.

    Thanks,
    Kevin Henebry

  28. Interesting website….Anything fly tying or fly fishing peaks my interest. Here is my situation that I would like some feedback by you….Have you ever heard of the tiny needle stonefly? I encounter these flies in the fall on the Maryland tailwaters namely the Yough and Savage River. These little stones fly around in the air and land on the water and the trout gobble them up like candy. Since I have failed miserably trying to imitate these tiny insects, was hoping you could help me out…Thanks in advance.

    1. Ron

      Thanks for leaving a Comment. No, I’ve never heard of your little stoneflies. Perhaps because we live on different coasts the bugs are different as well. You’ll have to keep searching for a geographically closer advisor. Take a look at http://www.troutnut.com – someone there may be able to help.

      Sorry

      John

  29. I have a couple of unusual streamers that I would like to have replicated. I can send you pictures, and, in one case, the actual fly. I have not been able to find these flies (or even similar ones) commercially, but they both catch fish! I would be very grateful if you can help me out.

    Thanks,
    Doug Greenwood

  30. Good morning, John. I plan to visit East Lake in Oregon in mid-July and I understand that you have a box of excellent flies geared specifically to this lake. Would it be possible to learn more from you in regards to this subject, including any opportunity to purchase flies?

  31. John, is it possible to tie 12#16. And 2 #14. East lake sparkle duns and ship by June 15? I’ve never ordered before but I am John mac diarmid’s brother in law. Thanks. Chuck

  32. John,
    I would like to order a variety of your custom green drake flies if possible:
    6- hatchmaster green drakes
    6- Klinkhamer Variant
    6- film critic green drakes
    Any others you recommend?
    Brian

  33. Hey John,
    Hope you and Karen are doing well. Looks like Spring might finally on the way.

    Do tie Film Critics? I’m looking for a dozen PMD,s size 16 and a dozen 18’s.
    Also a dozen BWO Film Critics size 18.

    Take care and see you on the river.

    Tim Taber

  34. John,
    I am interestef in purchasing a set of Paracute Adams
    6 of each size 10-18.
    If possible, pls advise pricing, & terms

    Thanks

  35. Hi John,
    I have a friend who fishes the St Joe, and I want to put together a fly box for him as a gift for being the best man in my wedding. I tie flies, but I am not familiar with the flies he uses in that area, and I am looking to get a nice selection of flies to put in a custom box I have for him. I fish in Colorado, which I guess is very different from what my friend has told me. Could you give me a price on creating a selection of flies, maybe 50 flies, that would be specific to the St Joe?

    Thanks,
    Bear

  36. Hello, my name is Steve Jones and I live in Southern California. In January I will be going to Argentina (Patagonia) and fishing for large trout in Jurassic Lake. There are very large trout in this lake and I want to make sure that I have strong, sharp, best quality hooks that are tied well (the best hooks that are made). I have no problem paying for the best on this trip. I am also thinking about going with a 2X strong hook vs. a 1X because these I don’t want to lose a 15 lb trout due to the hook bending out. Here is a recommended list of flies that I was given for this trip:
    Nymphs:
    Copper John (Red/Green/Chartreusse) sizes 10/12.
    Prince Nymph (with and without bead heads) size 8/10/12
    Scuds sizes 10/12/14 (olive green/tan/roange/brown)
    Pheasant tail with and without bead heads – sizes 8/10/12
    Hare’s Ear regular color/olive green – sizes 10/12.

    Streamers:
    Squirrel Streamer (black/olive) – sizes 6/8.
    Balanced leech (black, olive, usually guides tie them with a mix of UV dubbing of the colors) – sizes 8/10/12.
    Bunny leech (black/olive) sizes 6/8/10
    Small leech patterns with rabbit fur.
    Woolly buggers (black/olive/white) with and without bead head – sizes 6 to 12)

    Dry Flies:
    Chubby Chernovyl – 4/6
    Chernovyl Ant (black and orange or blake and yellow combinations)size 6
    Gipsy King (black) size 6
    Fat Albert – size 6

    I would want about 5 flies for each of these sizes/colors.

    Would that type of order be of interest to you? What would be the cost?

    Steve

  37. John,
    I thought I heard you mention you are going to be trying in Portland in November.
    When and where will that be.

  38. I’m interested in purchasing some of your custom flies to fish rivers in Oregon. Your suggestions will be appreciated. I look forward to hearing from you.

    Thank you,

    Grant

  39. I am new to fly fishing and have become hooked on catching big bluegill and crappie. I would like to know how much 2 dozen assorted spiders and small grasshoppers would cost. Also a dozen of your favorites for this type of fishing..

  40. Hi John,

    I’m fishing the Missouri river in October and wondered if you could tie me up six of your October caddis dries and six emergers and six nymphs to match this hatch.

    Please let me know,
    Best
    Donald

  41. Interested in Wayne Doughton’s SRC flies. Would like a custom package of Female Coachman, Siletz Special and Pete’s Special. I fish Tillamook Tributaries I’m thinking a mix of sizes 6 and 8.

  42. Interested in your Blue damsel flies. I have a few ponds which love those tiny blue damsel dragon flies. Price and availbility? Thanks

  43. -Hello there Friend, We are avid fly tiers who hand craft and dress top quality flies for fly fishing. Our experience includes tying of flies under all the categories viz Trout, Salmon, saltwater and Bass Flies. We can also custom tie. We are looking to expand our market and would love to interest you into interring a flies working relationship with us. We would love to supply you with top quality flies at decent prices. Are you interested with our proposal? Please let me know.

  44. Hey John,

    What are the chances of getting a dozen and a half green drake sparkle duns in size 10 before the hatch ends for this spring? I’m finishing up my 3 weeks away from Oregon and hope to be on the river this weekend and most of the following 2 weeks. If you don’t have time to get them for this spring I would still like you to do them. What are you charging these days? I also would like a 1/2 doz size 12 and 1/2 doz 14’s.

    Tim

  45. Hi John,

    I am relatively new to fly fishing and live across from the Middle Deschutes. My field trips include the Metolius, Fall and Crooked Rivers so far. A friend, Delores M., recommended I contact you and purchase a selection of flies you recommend for these Rivers. I know this is a little open-ended , but will wait for your reply to flesh it out.

    Thank you!

    Larry

  46. Summer 2018 issue of Fly Fusion included an article “A Case for New Caddis Patterns” by Jeremy Davies. Couple of patterns I really like and have never before seen: Jeremy’s Floating Caddis Pupa and the Tri-Wing October Caddis. (I’ve seen other tri wing octocads before but this Jeremy’s is different and special.)

    I’m not a tyer but would love to try these flies. Could you suggest a tyer (including yourself) that would willing to produce a dozen or so of these? Thanks.

  47. John:
    The Metolius is my favorite place to fish, locally, but 9.5 times out of ten I get skunked. Never know if it is my presentation, or that I am not using the correct fly at the time. If you only had several flies to use on the Metolius what would they be? Can I order those from you?

  48. Hey John,

    I am interested in purchasing some diving caddis patterns. Shoot me an email when you can and we can discuss.

  49. hi john-

    i’m interested in having you tie me a selection of steelhead spey flies.

    i fish mainly on the NU and the Deschutes, but venture up into BC every year as well.

    would you be available to do that?

    -dwight

    spigee@gmail.com

  50. Hi John –

    Once again you were a great hit at our Mckenzie Flyfishers meeting on Monday. Thanks for doing a great job! I was present at your last visit to MFF and you really did change my success on the Metolius.

    I am interested in purchasing some flies from you. Specifically I am looking for three each: Purple Haze, Beetle Bailey, Rusty Spinner and $3 Dip, plus 5 each Soft Hackle Cripple (River Keeper) which you indicated should be fished as a dry fly on the Metolius.

    Also, I am going on a four day trip on the Deschutes mid-May and would like a selection of flies you recommend. Maybe 15 total. Here is what the guide suggests, plus I will be nymphing, so some stone and salmon nymphs would be ok.

    Guide recommends:Flies:
    Dry Flies: although there are myriad stonefly patterns out there my favorites are the Norm Wood’s Special and the Clark’s Stone, and Chubby Chernobyl in sizes #6 and #8. You should also carry some smaller caddises (#12-#16), and some Mayfly patterns: Parachute Adams (#16-#18), Pale Morning Dun imitations (#16-#18), as well as a few Green Drakes (#8-#10).
    Nymphs: Various stonefly nymphs work well. The Girdle Bug is a good choice(#6-#8). Other nymphs to bring include Prince Nymphs (#12-#16), Pheasant Tails (#14-#16), and red Copper Johns (#14-#16). Many other patterns, of course, also work well.
    Other fishing accessories: Pliers or hemostats, nippers, tapered leaders (9’ 3x being preferable for this time of year), tippets (2x, 3x and 4x is all you need for this date), fly floatant, and split shots and strike indicators (if you want to nymph).

    Thanks and let me know your recommendations.

    Best,
    Al Eckerdt

  51. Hi I am wanting to have 4 golden spey made…original design by Taylor.

    If possible I would like them to be slightly different to each other either in someway…..sorry so vague it’s for a gift and would like to discuss further.
    Many thanks

  52. DEAR MR. KREFT, I WOULD LIKE TO ORDER:
    BIRDS NEST TUNGSTEN HEAD
    6 NATURAL 12
    6 NATURAL 14
    6 NATURAL 16
    6 BLACK 12
    6 BLACK 14
    6 BLACK 16
    IOBO HUMPY:
    6 #12
    6#14
    6#16
    6 # 18
    THANK YOU, WILLIAM NEEL

  53. Hello my name is Tom. My dad was an avid fly fisherman in the 1950’s – 1970’s. I am currently going through his gear which includes hand tied flies, feathers, thread, vintage fly cases/wallets & vintage fly fishing books. If you are interested in any items for your collection please contact me.

  54. Hi John,
    Would you be able to tie flies to my pattern specification? (if I give you the material listing, tying instructions and some photo’s etc)
    I look forward to your response.
    Gavan

  55. DEAR SIR, COULD I PLEASE PURCHASE AN ASSORTED DOZEN OF YOUR TROUT FLIES-YOUR CHOICE OF FLIES. MY SON-IN-LAW IS A FLY TIER AND I WOULD LIKE TO GIVE HIM A DOZEN OF YOUR FLIES. I. ALREADY HAVE SOME FROM SOME OTHER FAMOUS TIERS AND I KNOW HE WOULD APPRECIATE THEM. I’M NOT IN ANY HURRY SO MAYBE YOU COULD JUST TIE AN EXTRA FLY WHEN YOU ARE TYING FOR OTHERS.
    PLEASE LET ME KNOW COST AND HOW I CAN PAY YOU.
    SINCERELY, WILLIAM NEEL

  56. You green drake fly is nice, but the recipie says it is yellow dyed grizzly, but the picture shows what appears to be moose body, which one is correct… thanks, dave

    1. Dave

      Thanks for your comment. I believe you are referencing the Green Drake Hairwing Dun fly I selected for a Throw Back Thursday Fly and have since added to the Fly Patterns pages. The fly pattern sheet uses the recipe from Rene’ Harrop. I pulled out a “variant” from my fly box.

      I’ve seen both colors on Green Drakes from the Metolius. The real bugs have 3 dark tails, which I believe the moose body hair imitates quite well. I’ve used shades of brown on most of the flies I tie for the Metolius, because that’s the color I see most of the time. There are bugs with quite a bit of yellow instead of the brown highlights.

      Hope that answers your question.

      John

  57. Hi John I head over to Crane Prairie this week. Wonder if you have some flies tied up I could stop by and pick some up

  58. Hi : Great to find your website. My wife and I booked a couple of days at East Lake Resort, the second week of June this year. Can you tie me a few of each of your East Lake Callibatis patterns ? Concentrate on the ones most useful at the time of year we will be there. Actually June 11 and 12.

    Please email me and I will reply with my mobile number.

  59. Looking for 2-3 dozen steelhead flies for the Clearwater River in Idaho. 3 each of #2 General Practioner (orange), #2 Green Butt skunk, #2 Freight Train, #2 Purple Peril = 1 dozen, 3 each of # 2 Skunk, #2 Black Bear florescent red butt, #2 Skykomish Sunrise, # 2 Ho Bo = 2 dozen. If you wish to tie these replay with prices. I will not start fishing until August. Thank you, Chuck

  60. John would like for you to put a box together for the Owyhee early June BWO’s double bunny leaches (white) PMD’s midges.

  61. Hi,
    I live in Tumalo and fish the Metolius often (but not often enough!). I would like to purchase a dozen of your Clark’s Golden Stones. Please let me know if you can tie these. Happy to pick up in Sisters since I am in town a lot (kids in Sisters High School). Great web site!

    Thanks!

  62. John, do you have the contact info for the gentleman who designed and produces the artificial limb extension for veterans to be able to fish. He gave me a card a couple of years ago and I can’t locate it or his info.
    Healing Waters here in Denver is interested in contacting him for one of the Veteran students.
    Thanks,

  63. I truly terrific fisherman handed me a fly on the lower Rogue last summer that out fished any fly I was using. I can’t find the pattern anywhere. I’d love to send you photo and hopefully have some made

  64. I have enjoyed your sight for some time.
    I would like to order some Beetle Bailey flies. 3 in size 12 & 3 in size 14.
    Thanks
    Jerry Martisak

  65. If I sent you a couple of images of some patterns I like but can’t seem to find for sale, could you make…and what would be cost?

  66. Hello I’m going to fish East Lake the first week in July (7-12) Wondering if you could a box together for me. 50 flies in a East Lake (Oregon Lakes) box. If 50 is not enough let me know.

  67. Good evening.
    My name is Terry Adkins I have a half dozen Coho fly patterns I looking to get tied for a trip we are taking this fall in September to Alaska. Would you consider meeting me so I can show you the patterns and see if you would consider tying 9 dozen of each pattern? Please contact me if interested. thanks Terry

  68. Hi John,
    Happy New Year to you and Karen!
    I would like to order some custom flies for when I return to Central Oregon in April. Please email me with ordering and payment instructions. I’ll then give you the order by private email.
    Thanks,
    Tom L

  69. John,

    I attended your Nov 19 presentation with the SR Anglers and would be interested in purchasing 2 each of your “new to fly fishing” flies (Parachute Adams, PMD Sparkle Dun, Elk Hair Caddis, Clark’s Golden Stone and Beetle Bailey). Please let me know how you would like to proceed.

    Incidentally, wonderful presentation!

    Dan

  70. I would like to purchase a dozen or so each of your Chubby Chernobyl and size 14 parachute Adams. I deal with a few guides and I would like to show them your work.

  71. interested in some hoppers. Shoot me an email with your pricing. Or if you sell the material to make them, i’d be interested in that too. Hope to hear from you

  72. I am a fisherman in Michigan and interested in smaller dry flies. I don’t tie myself. The Improved Mathews Sparkle Dun – BWO would be something I would be interested in buying if you could tie some. How many would I have to order? Do you have any other emerger pattern that you would think I would like? I liked the story of the Goddard Caddis on your site. I usually use an indicator fly like that so that I can have an idea of where the smaller fly might be. The Goddard would work for that, but then so does many others.

    Thanks in advance for responding.

    1. Bill

      Thanks for your comment. Happy to know you enjoyed the Goddard Caddis Throw Back Thursday Fly post.

      I can certainly provide some BWO flies for you. The other emerger fly I’d recommend is the BWO – CDC & Biot. I fish them in 16’s & 18’s.

      I’ll send you an email in the near future and we can discuss the flies and quantities you’d like to purchase.

      Thanks for your interest!

      John

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