Skip to main content

Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly

These tying steps are excerpted from the book Landon Mayer's Guide Flies: Easy-to-Tie patterns for Tough Trout (Stackpole Books, 2022).

Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly

These tying steps are excerpted from the new book Landon Mayer’s Guide Flies: Easy-to-Tie patterns for Tough Trout (Stackpole Books, 2022).

Historically, fly tiers and fly fishers have tied and used leeches that are too large. While there are 3-inch and larger leeches out there, trout most commonly feed on leeches a ½ to 1½ inches long. This is where Mayer’s Mini Leech Jig fills a void.

Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
1. Slide the slotted tungsten bead with the small opening facing the eye of the hook and the slotted opening toward the bend. Clamp the hook in the vise and start your wraps behind the bead.
Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
2. Build a runway of thread behind the bead a quarter the length of the hook shank. This will help keep the bead in place.
Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
3. Bend a 6-inch piece of Krystal Flash around the thread. Elevate the thread straight above the hook shank while keeping tension on the Krystal Flash and then slide the flash down to the hook shank.
Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
4. Wrap the thread back just past the hook point and cover the Krystal Flash with a few wraps. This will prevent the flash from twisting when you wrap it forward. Continue forward with even thread wraps to the thorax and stop.
Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
5. Wrap the Krystal Flash forward to the end of the thread and lock it in with two secure wraps of thread.
Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
6. Cut a piece of micro pine squirrel two times the length of the hook shank and remove just enough fur from the skin to match the length of the thread runway.
Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
7. Place the fur against the hook shank with the skin facing up. Tie it in with a pinch wrap and then wrap the thread toward the bead, covering the skin and laying a smooth runway.
Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
8. Using a piece of large ostrich herl matching the wing color, clean ¼ inch of the spine and attach it on your side of the hook shank in front of the squirrel.
Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig Fly
9. Wrap the ostrich forward seven or eight times to form a straight and tall collar to match the thick head profile of a leech. Whip-finish twice, with three whips on each knot. Place two drops of Loctite superglue on the thread wrap behind the collar.

Landon Mayer (landonmayerflyfishing.com) is a Colorado fly-fishing guide and Fly Fisherman contributing editor. He lives with his wife Michelle and their four children in Florissant, Colorado. His most recent book is Landon Mayer’s Guide Flies: Easy-to-Tie Patterns for Tough Trout (Stackpole Books, 2022).

Tying Mayer's Mini Leech Jig

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Recommended Articles

Recent Videos

Fly Fisherman Magazine Covers Print and Tablet Versions

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Digital Now Included!

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

Buy Digital Single Issues

Magazine App Logo

Don't miss an issue.
Buy single digital issue for your phone or tablet.

Buy Single Digital Issue on the Fly Fisherman App

Other Magazines

See All Other Magazines

Special Interest Magazines

See All Special Interest Magazines

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Fly Fisherman stories delivered right to your inbox.

Phone Icon

Get Digital Access.

All Fly Fisherman subscribers now have digital access to their magazine content. This means you have the option to read your magazine on most popular phones and tablets.

To get started, click the link below to visit mymagnow.com and learn how to access your digital magazine.

Get Digital Access

Not a Subscriber?
Subscribe Now

Enjoying What You're Reading?

Get a Full Year
of Guns & Ammo
& Digital Access.

Offer only for new subscribers.

Subscribe Now