I spent last Friday night at the Iron Fly event held at Charley Hooper’s in KC. For those of you who don’t know what Iron Fly is, it’s like Iron Chef meets fly tying. The real purpose of the event is to introduce people to fly fishing and fly tying. Show them that it’s not an elitist thing that only rich old white people do. Fly fishing is for everyone. These events are a great place to meet people that love fly fishing and have a good time.
After some time just hanging out the competition got started. The first event of the night was a blindfolded fly to be tied by anyone who felt like they could. So I hoped in and got after it. They allowed us to lay out our tools then open our bags and lay out our mystery ingredients. I formed a quick plan and laid everything out. Next thing I know I was blindfolded and tying away. This is what I came up with.
I was lucky enough to get everything on the hook and it almost looks usable. I got lucky and pulled out a win. This allowed me to move on to the final round.
After the Blindfold challenge the experienced tiers were tasked with finding someone who had never tied a fly before and talk them into allowing us to show them. I made my way out into the bar area and after interrupting a few people’s evening I found a guy that would give it a try. Luckily all we had to do was get them to tie a San Juan worm, possible the easiest fly ever. I don’t recall his name but my guy did a great job. We didn’t win but were a solid second place. As he looked over his fly he said he might have to try fly fishing in the future.
While I was watching other people tie in the rounds leading up to the final I spoke with the guys from ARC Fishing. What really caught my attention is that ARC Fishing is a Kansas company. They are doing some really cool stuff with tippet and leaders. They also make quality fly lines and are some all around good people. If you haven’t done so check them out. More on ARC in the future.
Time came around for the final round so I sat down and they passed out the bags. They said go so I ripped open the bag and poured out my mystery materials. Dog food, Dortitos bag, screws, 2 hooks, a rubber glove, leather strap, and more. What did I get myself into? I knew I didn’t have much time so I started tying. Well what I ended up with is something I that looked surprisingly good. It was up to the judges.
After some deliberation they came to a decision and I won. I was shocked.
I managed to win a new pair of Costa Del Mar Zane sunglasses. It was a great time and I met some cool new people. I’m looking forward to the next Iron Fly.