My name is Mike Boyer and I live on the banks of the North Santiam river east of Salem, Oregon. I started tying flies at 13 years of age (some 40 years ago). I drive a truck during the day, and then spend most of my time tying flies, discussing tying flies at the flytyingforum.com, or finding ways to get the materials to tie flies. My focus for tying is featherwing flies, whether it is Atlantic Salmon flies, flies from the Mary Orvis Marbury fly catalog, or streamer flies.
In my younger years I tied only trout flies, and was fortunate enough to fish in the Sierra Nevada mountains of California. When I moved to Northern California I discovered Steelhead fishing and began tying flies to tempt those silvery monsters from the Pacific Ocean. When I discovered the links between Pacific Northwest Steelhead flies and Atlantic Salmon flies, something clicked inside my head and I began to search for materials, books, and other sources. John Shewey was helping me with materials (he was working in Dave McNeese’s shop in Salem, Oregon) and I was fortunate enough to watch him tie at some shows and learn the ways of the Spey fly. I watched as many good tiers as I could, and continued to collect books. Poul Jorgensen’s ‘Salmon Flies – Their Character, Style, and Dressing’ was about the only how-to book at the time. I practiced (with the book open next to me) many, many times.
All the good tiers I’ve watched over the years have left me with knowledge and inspiration to go forward and try different flies, techniques, and feathers. It has been a road of discovery at every turn. All the practice has given me more confidence, but I am never completely satisfied with any fly I might tie. I think that makes me move on to the next fly, so that I might tie a better one.
I just started raising silkworms for the gut to make twisted gut eyes and snelled leaders for blind eye hooks, and hope to have enough gut for myself and for some of my fly tying friends.
Thanks to Ronn for asking me to contribute to his site.