Guten tag cows mit der Herr Blue flatwing

It’s getting to be that time of year: herring moving upriver with plenty of cow bass along for the ride…or at least a meal or twenty. A floating line, a greased line swing, a Herr Blue flatwing swimming broadside or just hanging there, hackles undulating in the current — I can almost feel the sensation of the strike.

To the fly: my nine-feather flatwing translation of the R.L.S. Herr Blue bucktail, tied about 11 inches long. I really like the colors on this one.

The Herr Blue Flatwing, nearly a foot long.

Hook: Eagle Claw 253 4/0
Thread: White
Platform: Ginger bucktail
Pillow: White
Support: White neck hackle
Body: Silver braid
Tail: 2 white saddles under 1 pink saddle under 2 strands pearl flash under 1 violet saddle under 2 strands silver flash under 1 pink saddle under 1 blue saddle under 2 strands light green flash under 1 orange saddle under 2 strands purple flash under 1 olive saddle under 1 blue saddle.
Collar: White and ginger bucktail, mixed
Wing: 20 hairs dark blue bucktail, 15 hairs olive green, 15 hairs grey, 15 hairs orange, mixed.
Cheeks: 3 hairs each of orange, chartreuse, pink, turquoise bucktail, mixed
Topping: 7 strands peacock herl
Eyes: Jungle cock

A closer look:


And a proven performer. Not quite a cow, but easily into double-digit pounds. The fly is same as the one in the top picture. This striper was taken last spring on a greased-line swing.


Steve Culton

8 comments on “Guten tag cows mit der Herr Blue flatwing

  1. Kelly L says:

    Breathtaking fly there!!

  2. Pat Brennan says:

    Very nice fish Steve . Taken by an equally nice Fly ! “Proof is in the pudding.”

  3. James crawford says:

    What does R.L.S stand for? Thanks!

    • Steve Culton says:

      R.L.S. is the prefix Ken Abrames used for his patterns in “A Perfect Fish.” Ken says, “R.L.S. stands for Roccus Leneatus Saxatilis, the old Latin name for striped bass which seems to reflect the spirit of the fish much better than the modern Latin name. A perfect name for a perfect fish.”

      • James crawford says:

        I found the answer just before you responded haha. I’ve never heard that before. Thanks for responding! Im also curious as to why the book “A Perfect Fish” costs hundreds of dollars on eBay and Amazon prime!? Must be out of print?

      • Steve Culton says:

        Long out of print.

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