Categories: Fly Tying

The Flashback Pheasant Tail

Effective in small mountain streams and large rivers alike, be sure to stay well-supplied with a variety of sizes of the Flashback Pheasant Tail, with bead heads and without.

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1. About The Flashback Pheasant Tail

The FPT is a simple variant on the already effective, natural looking Pheasant Tail nymph.  It simply adds a strip of flashabou, to garner more attention when conditions warrent, such as spring flows when water is deeper and murkier.

2. When and How To Fish It

Use mostly with a bead head for more attraction and weight, but use without a bead head as a dropper or to fish higher in the water column.  If you rig a double nymph, use a less noticeable fly behind this one (attractor used to bring trout closer to see a more natural pattern), on a slightly thinner tippet.

Fish the Flashback exactly as you would a natural nymph imitation using the following techniques:

  • Under conditions where more attraction is needed to get the trout’s attention – such as spring flows
  • Dead drift by itself, or ideally as a dropper off a Wooly Bugger or large dry such as a Chubby Chernobyl
  • Be sure to try different sizes and with/without flash to ascertain what they are taking
  • Use a tungsten bead variant as an effective Euro-nymphing fly

3. Tie It, or Buy It?

For fly tying, this is an-intermediate level fly.  As a smaller fly, it has less room for error than the larger attractors and streamers.  It requires a range of skills and several different materials, so for beginners is a good one to challenge yourself to move to intermediate level.  For experts, there are a few variations to consider, but this fly is mostly one to tie a bunch in different sizes to be ready for stream-side and save yourself a little money instead of purchasing.

Related Article: 101 Proven Patterns – The Best Flies For Trout

.4. Basic Flashback Pheasant Tail Fly Tying Recipe Card

There are many variations on the CC, here’s one of our favorites, or substitute your own colors and materials:

  • Hook: use a standard nymph hook, or dry is OK as well, from sizes #14-20, such as the Tiemco 200R
  • Thread: use brown or orange, such as UTC 70
  • Tail & Body: pheasant tail fibers
  • Wire: narrow to medium thickness wire, copper or gold, to fit size of fly
  • Wing Case: mylar in flat pearl, or alternatively Flashabou
  • Thorax: peacock herl
  • Legs: any soft fibers such as hen back, partridge, or other soft fibers (such as for a soft hackle fly)

5. How To Tie The Flashback Pheasant Tail

We think that this video by TightLineVideos gives a great, detailed and close up breakdown of this fly.  

Flashback Pheasant Tail

6. Buy It – One Of The Best Flies For Trout

If you prefer to purchase, here’s an option for you:

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Next Article: Fly Tying For Beginners – 3 Steps To Start Under $100


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