Third Thursday Flies

1. Adams Irresistible

with Skip Morris

Third Thursday Fly 1 Adams Irresistible (Photo © Carol Ann Morris)

The Adams Irresistible (a name sometimes reverse ordered to "Irresistible Adams") is a hybrid dry fly combining what was widely thought, at the time of its birth, to be the best qualities of both its parents. From the Irresistible it takes the body of flared, packed, and sculpted deer hair—hair that's pocketed, feather-weight (literally), and very buoyant (who doesn't want a dry fly that comes with enhanced buoyancy?). The Adams contributes its overall buggish, trout-convincing colors. (The tail of the Adams Irresistible is forever in dispute—it is sometimes the Adams's tail of hackle fibers, sometimes a tail of this hair or that. Just depends on whom you ask or which book you look in.)

The original Adams is a traditional dry fly bearing a traditional hackle-collar of fibers radiating out from the hook's straight shank, a spiky ruff like the one in the photo. Through the 1970s and into the early 80s (that's my best guess) the Adams was crowded with only a few other dries at the top of almost any list of must-have flies for trout-streams. (Again: that's the original Adams. It is not the now-much-more-popular Parachute Adams.) The Irresistible, also a hackle-collar fly, was further down such a list, perhaps not even on it. But the fly certainly had earned itself a loyal and sizable following.

An almost universally loved fly pattern and one less widely loved are not an inevitable pair for producing offspring. (If they were, the resulting fly might have been named the Adams Inevitable. The "Irresistible Inevitable"? That tongue twister? Please . . . ) But in this case they make a very logical and practical union that has borne us a fine result.

Whereas the old Adams has always made a solid mayfly-dun imitation, the Adams Irresistible makes a chubbier but still viable one. Both flies remain fine choices for just working a stream, giving the trout something plausible to come up to.

I think of the Adams Irresistible, because it bears the Irresistible's buoyant hair body and hair tail (when it has a tail of hair), as a dry fly for choppy water streams, streams of quick currents banging off rocks and off one another. Streams that would soon batter a conventional Adams underwater, but would have a tougher job doing the same to this extra-buoyant variation of it.


HOOK: Light wire, standard length to 1X long, sizes 16 to 10.

THREAD: Gray, black, or brown 8/0 or 6/0. (I like size A rod-winding thread for binding and flaring the body hair.)

TAIL: Grizzly and brown hackle fibers or natural-black moose-body, natural-brown buck tail, or about any stiff, buoyant hair.

BODY: Natural tan-gray deer hair, flared, compressed, trimmed to shape.

WING: Grizzly hen-hackles.

HACKLE: One grizzly and one brown, one wound through the other.

Check out Carol's Etsy store, CarolAMorrisFlyFish for original gifts for the fly fisher:

Click here to hear Skip's interviews on popular podcasts...

Click here to hear Carol's interview on photography
(How to Capture What You See) on


Skip's latest books:

Top 12 Nymphs for Trout Streams, 2nd Edition, originally published as an e-book only, is now available on Amazon as a paperback...check it out! Click on the links below to go to the information page on Top 12 Nymphs (the link to Amazon is at the bottom of the page...)

Click here to get more information about

Top 12 Nymphs for Trout Streams: How, When, and Where to Fish Them (2nd Edition)...

Click here to get more information about Skip's e-book,

500 Trout Streams...

Skip's latest PAPERBACK BOOK:

Click here to get more information about Skip's latest book,

365 Tips for Trout, Bass, and Panfish...

Print Skip's chart for FREE:

Skip Morris's Trout-Fly Proportion Chart

Go to Skip Morris's Trout Fly Proportion Chart

Skip's Predator...this popular Fly Now Available!

The Predator is now available to buy...

Skip's ultra-popular Predator—a hit fly for bluegills and other panfishes and largemouth bass (also catches smallmouth bass and trout)—is being tied commercially by the Solitude Fly Company.

Skip Morris's Predator

The Predator

CLICK HERE to learn more about or to purchase the Predator...

Learn to Tie Skip's Predator

Do you want to tie the Predator?

Skip Morris's Predator

Tying the Predator

Skip shows you how to tie it on his YouTube Channel link, listed below:

CLICK HERE to see Skip's detailed video on how to tie the Predator...