Because of the name, it is a common belief that George Griffith invented the Griffith’s Gnat fly. According to Griffith’s friend, Bob Summers, this is not the case. George told Bob several times that he did not invent the fly but was shown the fly in 1939 by Walt Shaw. Anyway, the Palmer Midge soon became one of George’s favorite flies and got the name Griffith’s Gnat.
Materials for Palmer Midge – Griffith’s Gnat
|Dry Fly Hackle
Video Instructions on How to Tie a Palmer Midge – Griffith’s GnatVideo coming soon.
Slideshow on How To Tie a Palmer Midge – Griffith’s Gnat
Step 1 – Tie in the Materials
Start tying in your thread close to the hook’s eye. Continue wrapping even turns until you reach the hook’s bend. Tie in a Grizzly dry fly hackle with the shiny side facing you. The fibers should have a bit longer length than the distance between the hook shank and the hook’s point. Align the tips of a few Peacock herls and tie them in. Peacock herls are delicate fibers that can easily break, so adding a drop of varnish to the hook shank can be a good idea before wrapping the herls. Another solution is to wrap the herls around your tying thread to make a chenille-like noodle.
Step 2 – Create the Body and Hackle
Wrap the Peacock herls around the hook shank to create the fly’s body. It is essential to leave enough space for the head, especially if you are tying smaller Griffith’s Gnat dry flies. The next step is to make the palmer hackle. Make even turns with the dry fly hackle towards the eye of the hook. 6 to 8 turns should be enough depending on the size of the hook you are tying on. Complete the fly with a whip finish or a few half-hitches and some varnish to secure the head.
How to Fish the Palmer Midge – Griffith’s Gnat Fly
The smaller sizes of the Griffith’s Gnat imitate single mosquitos, while the larger versions imitate mating clusters of midges. It is an easy tie, making it a great fly pattern for beginners. At the same time, it is also a fly that is catching a lot of fish. Fish the fly dead drift when the trouts feed on midge, which they often do.