Adams (dry fly)

Artificial fly

Standard Adams
Type Dry fly
Imitates Searching pattern for caddis, mayflies and midges
Creator Richard Halladay
Created 1922
Variations Parachute Adams
Typical sizes 12-18, 1X fine
Typical hooks TMC 100, Mustad 94833, Daiichi 1100
Thread 6/0, 8/0 Black nylon
Tail Grizzly and brown hackle fibers mixed
Body Dark gray fur dubbing
Wing Grizzly hen hackle tips
Hackle Brown and Grizzly mixed
Head Black thread
Primary use Trout
Other uses Panfish
Pattern references Trout Flies-The Tier's Reference (1999) Hughes[1]

The Adams is a traditional dry fly primarily used for trout. It is considered a general imitation of an adult mayfly, flying caddis or midge. It was designed by Leonard Halladay from Mayfield, Michigan in 1922, at the request of his friend Charles Adams.[2] The Adams has been considered one of the most popular, versatile, effective and best selling dry flies since its creation.[3]


In 1922, Leonard Halladay, a Michigan fly tyer conceived the Adams as a general mayfly imitation. It was first fished by an Ohio attorney and friend of Halladay, Charles F. Adams on the Boardman River near Traverse City, Michigan. Charles Adams reported his success with the fly to Halladay who decided to name the fly after his friend.[3]



dry fly in vise
Parachute Adams

The Adams has been tied with a variety of materials and variations. The most common variation is the Parachute Adams where the hackle is tied parachute style around a wing base of white calf hair. The variation gives the fly greater buoyancy and visibility in rough water. Other variations include spentwings, downwings, females tied with a yellow body tag resembling an egg sac, hairwings and with different tailing material such as elk, deer or moose.[2]


  1. Hughes, Dave (1999). Trout Flies-The Tier's Reference. Mechanicsburg, PA: Stackpole Books. pp. 83–85. ISBN 978-0-8117-1601-7.
  2. 1 2 Allen, Farrow; Stewart, Dick (1993). Flies for Trout. North Conway, NH: Mountain Pond Publishing. pp. 2–3. ISBN 0936644141.
  3. 1 2 Schullery, Paul (1996). American Fly Fishing-A History. Norwalk, CT: The Easton Press.

Further reading

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