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Tying the Intruder

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By Steve Burke

Wrap the head dubbing

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Washington angler Ed Ward's Intruder was a fly that created quite a stir in the last several years because it broke away from traditional Steelhead fly designs. By all reports this fly has been highly effective. It is a big and bulky fly, creating a large profile for fish to spot and it swims like a small fish or squid in the water. It takes a little more time to tie, however, and it is difficult to find instructions anywhere on the internet. So here are detailed Step-By-Step instructions for tying it, with a few notes about Ed Ward's original design.

Name Ed Ward's Intruder Recipe (See note below steps)
Category Stealhead
Hook 2/0 Mustad 36890 salmon that has been straightened with the barb cut off; Trailer hook is a Daichii 2451 size 1-2                            
Rear Hackle Soft, black hackle
Feelers 9 strands of orange-dyed ostrich plume, on each side of hook shank
Body Burnt-orange chenille palmered with a long narrow badger hackle
Shell Two cree hackle tied in on each side of the shank as wings
Head Small ball of black chenille; lead eyes
Head Black
Intruder Step 1
Step 1
Intruder Step 2
Step 2
Intruder Step 3
Step 3
Intruder Step 4
Step 4
Intruder Step 5
Step 5
Intruder Step 6
Step 6
Intruder Step 7
Step 7
Intruder Step 8
Step 8
Intruder Step 9
Step 9
Intruder Step 10
Step 10
Intruder Step 11
Step 11
Intruder Step 12
Step 12
Intruder Step 13
Step 13
Intruder Step 14
Step 14
Intruder Step 15
Step 15
Intruder Step 16
Step 16

Note: The nice thing about tying the Intruder is that you can vary the colors and materials while still achieving the intended effect, that is a fly with a large profile that really swims under water. The Intruder can also be tied on a tube, which eliminates the necessity for attaching a trailing hook to a shank or using a Waddington shank. See also on this site, "Intruders Tube Fly Style", Russian Intruders",  "Four Russian Intruder Tube Flies". ...And for another twist for tying the Intruder, see Dennis Dickson's "Bunny Intruder".

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