the ugly box

If you tie some flies, then there’s a good chance that you have an ugly box (aka: I’ll re-tie them later box, I need to throw them away but don’t box, I keep them because they are flies I tied when I started fly tying box). It’s the box with the flies that are so ugly that you won’t carry them out to fish, also because you are not sure if they will ever catch fish. I kept them because for some reason I imagined that I will un-tie them and reuse the hooks but never got around to it. I also throw in the flies that came apart while fishing, planning to fix them later. The flies from this box rarely make it back to the field fly box, but once in a while (usually winter) I get at them and remake them (add to it, fix it, modify it). Removing the thread and salvaging the hooks is more time consuming than it seems, so I just add to them. Most of the modified ones end up becoming wet flies, usually with a healthy amount of marabou tied on top of it to mask the original fly...or they become oversized nymphs. For me throwing away hooks always felt wasteful, kind of like throwing away toothpaste that is not completely used up. I did this last night and felt so good, so I went on line and bought a brand new wader with all the money I saved from the hooks.


  1. OMG, I have that too. I don't know why, but I tied so many of one kind that had floting problem. If you think, that as emergency hook suply, which you can reused when you are short of hook, then you feel much better.

  2. So glad that we have a hook ceremony once in a while.

  3. when you are catching and no-one else around you is. Then the guy who has been encroaching upon your spot asks "So what are you using". give one of those and wink.