Recommendations for basic selection of fly hooks for tying tungsten jig nymphs.
This year's fishing season is slowly coming to an end, the winter is all around and the time is coming when we should move from the water to the warmth of our home, to the fly tying vise. In addition to choosing a lot of new fly tying materials, the most important thing for every fly tyier is choosing the right fly tying hooks. The time when there was a limited number of fly fishing hooks is long gone and the development is moving at enormous speed. This article is dedicated to my selection of the most used hooks for tying modern river tungsten nymphs.
This hook is designed primarily for dry flies, but when tying small nymphs it is indispensable for me. This fly hook is recommended especially for the smallest flies with which we target medium-sized fish. It is not a hook for trophy fish! A thin, dry hook enters the fish mouth more easily and is sharper than conventional jig hooks.
The secret is, before tying with dry fly hooks, bending the hook arm into a jig shape. With such a small change you will get the most delicate jig hook! Bending is a bit more difficult at first, be careful not to break the hook. If you do not have this Hanak Competition hook at hand, use the Hends BL 454 hook to replace it with a similar effect.
Available sizes: 10 - 20
The hook, which I have connected mainly with trout fishing, is thin enough for good penetration into the fish's mouth, but at the same time I do not have to worry about playing larger fish. This way I would define the H 450 series. The big advantage of these hooks is the wide bend and the long throat.
The shape of the hook is designed so that even on a small hook you can use larger tungsten beads. On hooks size 16 I use tungsten heads with a size of 3.3 mm.
Available sizes: 10 - 16
Another hook I choose is H 480, which, like the previous type, has a very wide bend, but differs with a needle point and is produced up to size 20! The wide bend helps hooking a fish, even if the fish are not very appetizing and just suck the fly and want to spit it straight away. These hooks are also suitable for larger fish.
If I were to compare the H 450 and H 480, they would mainly differ in the way they penetrate in the fish's mouth because of the different point shape. I cannot say exactly that one of the hooks to be compared is simply better, but in some situations one of the types may be more successful.
Available sizes: 6 - 20
H 490 is a stronger variant of the H 480, designed for truly large fish and can be used on premium fishing stretches where trophy fish is targeted.
Available sizes: 10 - 16
The hook, which I enjoy to use in small sizes on smaller waters for catching brownies and grayling, is the Slovak jig hook Dohiku HDJ. This fly hook is also produced in extremely small sizes - 18, 20, to 22. Size 22 is actually the smallest jig hook on the market, which is designed mainly for fly fishing competitors and fits perfectly on tiny grayling flies.
All micro jig hooks, however, when compared to dry hooks of the same size, will be slightly larger. In larger sizes, the strength of the wire increases and you do not have to worry about these hooks to use for larger fish.
Available sizes: 6 - 22
The last hook presented is again from the production of the Slovak company Dohiku, which I used recently during abroad expeditions and I caught on it the biggest fish of the season. In the smallest sizes I use Dohiku HDN SP during competitions on my local Czech rivers e.g. Vltava river. The hook is designed primarily for brownies and rainbows, which corresponds to the strength of the wire. The hook has a special shape of the shank, which is the same as the bent dry fly hooks (see hook No 1 in this article).
Available sizes: 12 - 18
For competition purposes, Dohiku also produces a version of SPR, from a thiner wire, but this version is still waiting for my testing.
Available sizes: 12 - 16
Well, that is my recommendation of the fly hooks for tungsten jigs. As you can see there are differences in each hook type and i recommend to think about the usage of the hook before the purchase!
Below you can see some patterns tied on the hooks mentioned in the article.