Anglers embracing fly fishing are intimidated by complicated fly fishing knots. Unfamiliar with the common connections fly anglers use, new anglers need to conquer a few frequently encountered fly fishing knots to obtain success. Do-it-yourselfers have no choice but to achieve competence or feel relegated to fishing with friends or expensive guides. To truly embrace Rare Waters properties and the DIY attitude prevalent across Colorado and Wyoming fly anglers need proficiency with their terminal connections.
The only way to obtain success is with practice. Pick up a spool of inexpensive monofilament, sit at the kitchen table and practice. Tying knots repeatedly burns the steps into the muscle memory of your fingers. A few good fly fishing knots tied perfectly creates a strong, streamlined presentation.
Anglers don’t need to search the far off tangents of the internet for the most obscure and intricately tied knots. A few common fly fishing knots are the basis for any angler to get started.
List of Great Knots for Fly Fishing
The Perfection Loop
The Perfection Loop is a simple knot for loop-to-loop connections. A perfection Loop is often used for the connection between the fly line and leader. With a little repetition the Perfection Loop can easily be tied with speed.
Uni to Uni Knot
A Uni to Uni knot links two pieces of similar diameter lines together. The Uni to Uni is a good connection for adding tippet onto your leader. This knot is easier for me to tie than others that are used for the came connection.
A Blood knot is another commonly used connection for joining two pieces of line together. My suggestion is to try each. Stick with the one your hands tie the easiest and with the least amount of hassle.
Another popular connection for this situation is the Surgeon’s knot. This could be your go to knot for ease of tying. Once again it is used for similar diameter lines. Anglers who try a variety of common knots and select the ones that are easiest to tie, can be tied in low light and provide the most consistency are the knots to stick with.
No Slip Loop Knot
A No Slip Loop knot from Lefty Kreh is the best connection for tying on a fly that benefits from added freedom of motion. Streamers, poppers and divers all appear more life-like and with the impression of free swimming when tied with this loop knot. This is a strong knot that enhances the action in a fly.
The most popular knot for connecting a fly to tippet is a Clinch knot. Anglers will find numerous tricks to assist in tying a Clinch knot. The best suggestion is practice. Repetition breeds confidence. Often anglers are in low light or even dark conditions. Knowing how to tie a knot from memory and repetition is an asset when dealing with poor lighting. An Improved Clinch knot requires one additional step when tying. The Improved Clinch is my knot for tying on droppers in tandem rigs or dry-dropper situations.
A starting selection of popular fly fishing knots all anglers should master. A Perfection Loop, for loop to loop connections. Three choices for joining similar diameter lines, the Uni to Uni, Blood and Surgeon’s knot. The No Slip Loop is a loose connection to provide additional movement to your fly. And the ever popular Clinch and Improved Clinch for tying on your fly. Are there other fly fishing knots out there? Yes. But these knots will get any angler started and ensure a degree of independence on the water.