"No one can argue with the effectiveness of flashing blades on conventional spinners, jigs and silver spoons. It’s that simple: why not try to make my flies more ‘strike enticing’ with a flashy, undulating tail of Flashabou extending past the basic wing/body of my flies?
It’s hard to beat the flash/action of ‘Flashabou’. Accordingly, I started tying my signature flies – the Whistler and my version of the Clouser Minnow – with many strands of silver (sometimes gold) Flashabou extending off the hook bend and an inch or so longer than the wing and belly material. It proved to be deadly, especially in turbid or slightly off-color water.
The flashy, undulating tail really got a fish’s attention and I know from comparative experience that the flashtail versions caught more fish. The flashtail not only caught their attention but it also added more life-like action to the flies.
Anyhow, that thinking and experience is what lead me to start tying the Whistler and Jig hook minnow with flashtails. Hey, I even started tying flashtails on my salmon and steelhead flies – comets, etc. years ago. That addition made a profound difference in off-colored water, often letting me out fish others in the lineup.
Talk about deadly on Silver salmon flies… Note: I coat the flashtail in flex-cement about an inch (whatever) past the hook bend to help prevent the flash from fouling back around the hook bend. That little trick really makes a difference."
- Signature Tyer Dan Blanton