Tube Flies - A Tying, Fishing & Historical Guide
Mark Mandell & Les Johnson

Book Review & Photo: Bob Kenly


Tube Flies
Mark Mandell & Les Johnson
Publisher: Frank Amato Publications Inc.
PO Box 82112
Portland, OR 97282
(503) 653-8108
ISBN 1-57188-036-4


       When this book was published in 1995 there really wasn't any reference material at all on the subject of tube flies so most tiers like myself just sort of stumbled along in a sort of tying vacuum tying whatever we thought was right. But for those tiers who never even considered tying on a tube this work opened a whole new concept, a concept which now has deep roots in North America as with the rest of the World. No longer is tube tying the exclusive domain of the Atlantic salmon fisherman, although their contribution to the craft cannot be overlooked, but rapidly spreading as an all inclusive fly choice.

       Chapter one lays out the various reasons for going to tube flies instead of tying on hooks, although short it does layout a very convincing argument for switching.

       So now that your interest is whetted chapter two lays out in detail the equipment needed to successfully tie on tubes.

       Now that you rushed out and purchased all that stuff chapter three sets down some basic steps in tying various fly types, sort of a basic how-to of the kinds of flies most associated with tying on tubes.

       Chapter four is a section totally dedicated to the Atlantic salmon fly, even though you may not fish Atlantic salmon this section is chock full of great tying ideas.

       Chapter five is a chapter I really rely on, streamer tube flies, mostly salt water but certainly convertible to any waters or species.

       Chapter six, tube poppers and sliders, a little something for anyone.

       The appendix lays out suppliers of materials.

       All in all the book is well laid out with plenty of photographs to illustrate the text and personally a great place to start if you are considering tube flies as an option to your fly arsenal. If I have any criticism it would be the recipes for each pattern. They're written in such a manner that you have to carefully read the description to pick out the necessary materials to finish a fly but in the overall scheme of things that's a very small price to pay.

Bob Kenly