For some reason leaders in fly fishing seem to be a bit of a mystery, especially for beginners. How long they have to be, how they are constructed, fluorocarbon vs monofilament, and what's this tippet thing? The bad news is there is no one leader that can do it all. There are leaders for bonefish, tarpon, trout nymphing, dry fly fishing, streamers, spey casting, bass, northern pike, marlin and about anything else you can think of. The good news is once you start to learn what a leader is for and how it works much of the mystery is solved.
Fortunately, a few years ago the company that makes Frog Hair leaders and tippet materials created a nice chart [although specific to their leaders] show how modern tapered leaders are constructed. It give you a great visualization as to how various leaders are designed and why. As well, the back of the chart has the specifications for all of their leaders so you can get an idea on how to construct your own if you are inclined to do so.
We have had this chart hanging at FlyMasters for about four years now and it has been a big help in teaching fisherman and women the ins and outs about leaders. I scanned in each side and am publishing it here for anyone interested. If you click on the images below you get a higher resolutions image but if you need to you can download a printable version of each chart from the links below the images.
As always, if you have any other questions concerning fly fishing leaders do not hesitate to contact us at FlyMasters. We are here to make your time on the water more enjoyable.