GODFREY SPEY FLIES  II
SPEY FLIES  I      
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Gordon Castle water originally covered 12 miles of the lower Spey from Spey Bay on past the town of Fochabers up toward Roths. Stories of large fish caught are true, but before 1904 when regulations changed, all were caught in the Fall of the year. From January through September great masses of salmon were netted by up to 15 crews working the length of the Gordon waters. Today the best fishing is in the Spring and Summer, particularly the Summer when boat a wade fishing is at its best.



Purple King
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Purple King
Rough Grouse
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Rough Grouse
The Dallas Fly
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Dallas Fly

 

    The Purple King

A favorit ancient Spey fly from Francis Francis and C. Grant. A prescription for blending the wool or originally mohair colors is given by Charles Grant of Aberlour-on-Spey. Both dying and blending wool or mohair colors was an accompliched craft of Spey-side fly tiers. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

Charles Grant was a great angler, tier, and Head Shool Master of Aberlour until 1874. Aberlour was actually feued (feudal grant) in 1812 and first named Charlestown for his son by Charles Grant Senior. The famous Aberlour Distillery was charted in 1814

An early JAJ Munro sample fly with its very thinly dressed body tied with blended wool is the model for the Purple King here. Available in all sizes 2/0 - 6. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

 

The Rough Grouse

In a supplement to Land and Water, Kelson supplied: It is a great favorite on the Spey and was introduced into use many years ago by John Cruikshank of Aberlour. On a dark, drizzly day none of the local flies are to be compared to this variety for its singularly constant and attractive qualities. At such times I have often heard Cruikshank say:' Put on the 'Rough Grouse' and keep it on till you've got him and his grandfather too.'" This one is attributed to a sample fly of JAJ Munro. No grouse feathers, just a nice black and white fly! Available in sizes 2/0 - 8. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

 

The Dallas Fly

The Dallas from John Dallas presumably is noted in Kelson and might also in some way be attributed to the prolific tier and collector Henry Grant. Like so many Spey patterns it has many versions; this one is tied thing like that of JAJ Munro of Aberlour-on-Spey; note the bit of yellow in the throat. This fly is available in sizes 2/0 - 4. fly tier. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.


Lady Florence
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Lady Florence
Miss Grant
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Miss Grant
Gled Wing
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Gled Wing

 

The Lady Florence

Lady Florence Gordon-Lennox 1851 - 1895 was Lord March's sister thus the name L. Florence March for this fly in some books. The fly was tied special for Gordon Castle starting around 1890. This tie is from a color picture from Farlows Salmon Fly Catalog 2017. Available in sizes 2/0 - 4 Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

 

The Miss Grant

Miss Grant is a fly presented by Kelson and is another brown-olive bodied fly similar to the Lady Caroline, but with interesting gold pleasant tail strip for the wing. Looks allot like a crayfish to me!. Available in sizes 2/0 - 8. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

 

The Gled Wing

A dozen or more versions of this most beloved fly; this is a gray hackle Spey version. Anglers agree that the loss of the Gled - Red Kite in of Scotland was quite a loss. Here the pattern is from Geoge McCorquodale who provided the fly sample to Farlows ca. 1890. The pattern in general predates Francis' very similar description from the River Dee. Available in sizes 2/0 - 4. Note that the Gled with its huge six foot wingspan is now protected, reintroduced, and nesting in a few spots around Scotland. Available in sizes 2/0 - 8. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.


It seems that the Spey Fly may well be a shrimp imitation as given by Knox Autumns on the Spey - A.E. Knox published 1872
". . . while lying down on the bank of a small clear pool, at the tail of a rush of water through one of the lesser arches of Spey bridge, near Fochabers, and attentively watching the motions of a fly at the end of a long line thrown by a young friend of mine an accomplished fisherman from over the parapet above. Its undulating movements under water exactly resembled those of a living shrimp or prawn, while the continuous play of the long soft hackles of the heron or fowl so characteristic of the old Spey flies imitated still more closely the actions of those small, but many-legged crustaceous animals, as I had frequently observed them in the aquarium of the Zoological Society."



Gold Speal
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Gold Speal
Gold Green Fly
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Gold Green Fly
Miss Jackson
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Miss Jackson

 

    The Gold Speal

Translating from Gaelic the word "Speal", pronounced "spyal", may mean scythe - a farming tool for harvesting wheat or other grains. Should we think of this fly as "The Gold Harvester"? The 1867 Jamieson's Scotish Dictionary gives it as "splinter of wood". With different meanings and indeed different spellings: Spale, speal, and speel, its no wonder Scottish Gaelic is considered a "fluid" language. Available in sizes 2/0 - 6. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

 

The Gold Green Fly

Simply a nice and bright olive-gold fly by Shanks and recorded by Knox. It no doubt dates back to the earliest time when names were simple. The orange is bright and gives a strong impact along with the wide gold tinsel. This particular rendition is from Farlow's catalog dating back to 1880. Available in sizes 2/0 - 6. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

 

The Miss Jackson


A nice reddish spey fly shown in an early Garden catalog and listed by Kelson as a leading Spey fly pattern in the 1880's. This may well be a John Cruickshank fly design as he fished the Wester Elchies beats along with Miss Mary Jackson. Available in sizes 2.0 - 6. Priced at $24.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.


The Duke of Gordon and Richmond and Geordie Shanks at Fochabers Bridge (near Gordon Castle) from Grimble The Salmon Rivers of Scotland, Vol. 2, 1900. Geordie tied all the flies for the Gordons and their many visitors both noble and esteemed who visited and fished the 12 miles of Gordon water that reached from Spey Bay on up to Aberlour.

Geordie arranged all of the sport fishing from the beat beat assignments to managing the many ghillies. Indeed Geordie had his own operations room in the Castle for managing all the duties of head ghillie. The large 3 and 4 inch flies arch typical of the Spey were fished up river from Craigellachie on up through the Grant water. Size 3 or 7 old scale (that corresponds to size 1/0 - 6 our scale) flies were typically used on Gordon water in the Fall of the year.




The Miss Elinor
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Miss Elinor
Lord March
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Lord March
Lady Evelyn
Three for $20.00 mixed sizes
About the Lady Evelyn

 

The Miss Elinor

Elinor is a daughter of Sir Archibald Smith who was a tenant at Wester Elchies on Spey. The fly was probably created by J.W. Henry Grant or J. Stewart also of Wester Elchies. Considered a summer pattern it sports a long wing and tail. Available in sizes 1 - 8 Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

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    The Lord March

In 1903 Lord March succeeded his father Duke of Richmond and Gordon and thus took full reigns of the Gordon estates. This pattern goes back before 1890 when it was first listed by Farlow's Catalog. The fly design is from an original Farlow's model. Available in sizes 2/0 - 6. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

 

The Lady Evelyn


Lady Evelyn was Lord March's daughter and the fly designer is not known. It is a rarity to see a spey with silver body and have spey cock tail feather for hackle. The Lady considered this a "bright weather" fly. Available in sizes 2/0 - 6. The pattern if from Farlow's Catalog. I want to try this one this summer for smallmouth. Priced at $20.00 per 3 flies mixed sizes.

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