This week’s Throw Back Thursday Fly is called The Kate.

Kate |

It’s another Atlantic Salmon fly from an old fly box I ended up with. The Kate is credited to Mrs. Courtney, who developed the fly in the middle of the 19th century…yes, that long ago! One of the few flies credited to a woman fly tyer. The fly was a favorite on the Tweed River in Scotland. And Geo. M. Kelson stated in his book The Salmon Fly below the fly pattern sheet “one of the best flies on the Tyne.”

I use several different books to research Atlantic Salmon flies because I know so little about them. Classic Salmon Flies by Mikael Frodin is the first place I go because I keep a copy of it on my fly tying bench. It provides a quick one-page history of each fly with a picture.

Frodin provides three slightly different fly pattern versions, one each from Kelson, Francis Francis, and T.T. Pryce-Tannatt.

I’ve included the fly dressing from T.E. Pryce-Tannatt below.

It appears the fly tyer mixed up the hackle as the fly dressing from T.E. Price-Tannatt called for crimson body hackle and yellow throat hackle. Perhaps the tyer mixed them up or just decided to create a “Variant”.

Regardless, it’s a beautiful fly.




Silver thread and lemon floss


A topping and Blue Chatterer


Black herl


Crimson floss


Oval silver tinsel


A crimson hackle


A lemon hackle


Mixed – tippet in strands; “married” strands of scarlet and yellow Swan, Golden Pheasant tail and Bustard; “married” strips of teal and barred Summer Duck; brown Mallard strips over .Short jungle cock at cheeks, topping over all, blue macaw horns


Jungle Cock and Blue Chatterer; a topping over all.


Blue and Yellow Macaw

Note: Fly pattern from How to Dress Salmon Flies by T.E. Pryce-Tannatt, page 218.

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