CDC & Elk tied and photographed by Hans Weilenmann

CDC & Elk

  • Hook:           standard dry fly, sizes 12 to 18       
  • Thread:        brown, 6X or 8X depending on size        
  • Body:           tip portion of a CDC feather
  • Hackle:        brown mottled hen fibers tied as a beard
  • Wing:           remaining portion of the CDC feather 


After covering the shank with thread select a CDC feather stroke the CDC fibers together towards the tip and against the quill.  Then tie the feather by its tip to the hook just before the hook bend.  Spiral the thread back to the eye.  Now wrap the feather forward without twisting to form the body.  As you get to the half-way point you will start to free fibers as you wrap.  Fold these back towards the hook to move them out of the way and wrap to just behind the eye thereby creating the hackling of the fly.  Tie down and cut off the CDC stem.  Now select a small bunch of fine elk or deer hair, remove the under fur, and stack them to even the tips.  Holding the bundle near the tips measure the hair so that it goes no farther than the bend of the hook and snip the butts off at the point where they meet the front of the eye.  Take one and a half wraps around the bundle puling straight up and then bring the thread around to complete the second wrap.  Next bring the thread around at a 45 degree angle working it down into the bundle.  With that done lift the butt up and make a couple of tight wraps around the hook shank under the butt.  Then tie off around the hook shank with 3 or 4 turns of the whip finisher.  To see a video of this fly being tied go to the link below: