Syd Glasso Shrimp Fly by Sean Dahlquist

I’ve highlighted a Syd Glasso style wet fly as a perfect example of inventive pattern revitalization. One of Syd’s favorite fishing flies was the tried and true Polar Shrimp, which he tied in a number of variations.

syd glasso fly

The original pattern calls for a tail of red hackle fibers. A Syd Glasso tail could consist of varying lengths of Golden Pheasant tippets with a few orange or red hackle fibers mixed throughout. In place of a standard body of orange chenille, Syd might wrap a fine silk body, splitting his silk half way up and inserting hot orange seal fur for the second half, and then spiral over it a few turns of flat silver tinsel.

A collar of brightly colored Golden Pheasant flank would replace the typical orange saddle hackle, and in place of a white bucktail wing Syd would strip off long white rooster hackle fibers and tie them down in a bunch, creating a free-flowing wing that would have great action in the water.

The end result is a unique wet fly that holds true to the overall nature of a Polar Shrimp but has a life of its own. Syd’s innovations knew no bounds and he seemed to always be looking for new ways to utilize feathers and furs. 

Step 1: Attach a length of flat silver tinsel.

fly fishing shrimp tying glass

Step 2: Select a nice Golden Pheasant tippet feather.

Step 3: Sweep several fibers down to mix the fiber lengths.

glasso shrimp feather fly

Step 4: Ideal patterning and tail shape.

golden pheasant fly tying

Step 5: Tie in the tippets and a few red hackle fibers for a tail.

fly tie tippets

Step 6: Wrap a length of hot orange floss down and back.

wrap floss fly tying fishing

Step 7: Split the remaining floss and insert a sparse amount of hot orange dubbing.

shrimp fly tying

Step 8: Twist the floss to lock in the dubbing and wrap up towards the eye leaving plenty of room for the collar and wing.

twist floss fly tying

Step 9: Take 3 turns of tinsel.

tinsel fly tying

Step 10: Wrap a few turns of Golden Pheasant flank for a collar.

fly tying glasso shrimp

Step 11: Select a large white rooster neck hackle.

white rooster neck hackle fly tying

Step 12: Peel off a small bunch of fibers for a wing.

feathers fly tying

Step 13: Place a dab of head cement to the butt ends.

fly tying tube glue

Step 14: Tie in the wing and whip finish.

glasso fly tying shrimp


  • Very nice tie….Seem like I am a little slow here but never thought to use the floss with dubbing in it…..Thanks for sharing….Don

  • Great work as always!

  • Mister Glasso was my teacher at Forks jr. high in the mid 60’s. It was suprising to see his name in this venue. Very good looking flies and will try to ty and keep the dream alive. Thanks Mister Glasso.

    Ron Krume
  • Looks like the hackle step and picture is missing?


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