Today we present you with some rigging wizardry courtesy of Alaska West guide, Jerry French. You may recognize Jerry’s name as part of the original brain trust behind the Intruder. However, intruder style patterns are hardly the only flies Jerry fishes..
In fact, he’d be the first to tell you that great anglers evolve, constantly pushing the envelope to try new things. That’s the driving force behind his latest ‘evolution’ of fly patterns, including the ever popular ‘dirty hoh’ which utilizes a leech-like bunny strip (amongst some super unique techniques which is a topic for another post).
It’s hard to argue with the sheer fishiness of bunny strips in the water. Although the downside to most leech-style flies incorporating a bunny strip and a stinger-style hook is that they’re most often tied with the rabbit strip attached directly to the stinger hook (see an example by clicking right here). This provides great action to the fly, allowing the hook and tail and swim together in a natural manner, but doesn’t allow for an easy hook change should your hook become dull. That means more flies that get tossed before they’ve reached their full shelf life, and that’s no bueno.
Instead, when fixing a stinger hook to a bunny tail style fly, Jerry utilizes a super clever way he refers to as the twisted hitch that allows for easy hook changes with unhindered movement of the tail and hook of the fly. It works pretty darn well, and here’s how he does it.