Hook: Regular dry fly hook, sizes 16 to 10.
Thread: Tan 8/0.
Tail: Blue dun hackle fibers.
Body: Stripped herl from the eye of a peacock.
Wing: Wood duck flank fibers.
Hackle: Blue dun.
Okay, you’ve hung in here with me so far. Now it’s time to ratchet things up and introduce a slightly more difficult fly: the classic Quill Gordon. Theodore Gordon, whom many consider the father of American dry fly fishing, created this pattern in the late 19th century. Make the body using a piece of peacock herl with the fine fibers removed. I might be wrong, but I don’t think you’ll find stripped peacock herl in any fly shop; you’ll have to make your own. Simply pull a piece of herl between your index finger and the nail of your thumb; the nail will strip the flue from the quill. Or, spread the herl on your bench top between the thumb and index finger of one hand, and remove the flue using a common pencil eraser.