Frederic Halford and the dry fly
Halford is often referred to as the 'father of the dry fly' even though he didn't invent the method and had to be taught it back in the late 19th century when it was just as much a mystery to him as it was to the vast majority of anglers. Halford went on to write many books explaining the method and he developed a series of patterns which imitated many of the smaller ephemeroptera for the first time. His set of patterns was a landmark, but his flies were very complicated to tie and it wasn't long before simpler replacements were found to be just as effective. In this video, Andrew Herd shows how to tie one of Halford's patterns and talks about the man and his times.
In this video, Andrew Herd takes one of Halford's early dry flies for a field trial and finds that it is still a killing pattern more than a century after it was first tied.
Frederic Halford is also featured in Andrew's book The History of Fly Fishing, which is the most comprehensive history of fly fishing available today.You can order the book by visiting this link.
You can learn more about Halford in Angling Giants, another classic from the amusing and informative pen of this well-known author. You can read more about Angling Giants by clicking here and you can order a copy by following this link.