Fly Tying Jig Hooks for Bead Heads have become wildly popular for tying deep-sinking nymphs. The jig-hook profile, when combined with heavy wire or a Slotted Tungsten Bead, sinks quickly but is less likely to snag than a normal hooks because of the way the fly rides along the bottom. All kinds of nymph patterns can be used on this hook style, but this is the hook to use for those flies you want to get really deep. A good idea when using this hook is to tie your fly sparsely, because any bulk to the fly itself will hinder sink rates.
Over the past few years I’ve seen a definite resurgence in the use of jig style hooks for tying flies. Once relegated to the bass or jig fishing world where I had to “sneak” my hooks from the bass hook section in stores, these effective hooks are showing up more and more in the line-ups of most fly hook manufacturers these days.
So what do you gain with these funky looking hooks? Well for starters, they typically are intended to ride hook point up, thus reducing snags on the bottom. There is also possible improvement in hook-up success due to the lever arm created by the bent section of hook. If this holds true, it would also explain why fish are more often hooked in the upper part of the mouth on these style hooks. You’ll also notice that a lot of the competition guys are also fishing on these jig style hooks, and they don’t mess around when it comes to fish “hookability”.
As far as tying considerations, you’ll need to think a bit upside-down in your tying as the hook will usually be inverted in the vise and you’ll need to deal with the hook point on the top. If this becomes too much of a pain, you can also tie the flies “in the round” (similar to the baetis nymph above), where there really is no top or bottom to the pattern.
See here for our Slotted Tungsten Bead Head Selection.
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