This week’s Throw Back Thursday Fly is the North Country Purple Partridge soft hackle.

Purple Partridge |

I received a new book a few weeks ago, The North Country Fly: Yorkshire’s Soft Hackle Tradition by Robert L. Smith. It’s a terrific book. A friend had loaned me his copy about a year ago and I read most of the book. I liked it so well, I just purchased my own copy from The Rogue Anglers website.

I found the Purple Partridge soft hackle listed with John William Binns (1860 – 1907). So it’s an old fly pattern.

I’ve tied a lot of soft hackle flies, including my RiverKeeper Soft Hackle Cripple. I learned through the book a new “fly-dressing” technique. Many North Country flies were tied what I think is backward. At least how I learned to tie flies. The head is tied first, followed by the hackle, then finished with silk thread for the body.

I’ve been meaning to tie up a few different old soft hackle fly patterns and include them as Throw Back Thursday flies. There’s something about simple flies I find remarkable. How many years have passed since this fly was created and how many fish has it caught?

They work. Silk thread. Partridge wing. Peacock herl head. Simple, but beautiful.

You better tie some and fish them.

Enjoy…go fish!

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