How To Tie Pookie Hopper

What You’ll Need


TMC 5263, size 10-6


Natural deer hair (body). I like using the primo strips


UTC 140, color to match body. Note; Make sure to use a thread that would create transparency for the color of foam you’re using


Spirit River barred sili-legs in olive and black combo.


Two colors of 2mm foam cut to shape. I like colors that either blend together or totally two colors that make no sense, example; black and orange. In this tutorial I’m using two shades of green, example; chartreuse and olive green. Always mess around with different colors. You will be amazed if you think outside the box.


Step 1

Start a secure thread base up and down the hook shank. This will help keep the foam from shifting around the hook shank. This step is important so I wouldn’t hurry this step up. Start at the bend of the hook and go up to the eye and back down. This will give a nice foundation thread base.

Step 2

Poke the foam through the hook shank. Notice in the picture. The width of the foam is pretty standard, but I just judge according to the hook I’m using. The bigger the hook the wider you make the foam. Also remember you don’t want the tail to too long hanging off the back of the hook.

Step 3

The thread should be at the bend of the hook. Rotate the vise or turn the hook upside down.. I make about 6-8 turns to secure in the foam. Once tied in you’ll make three more segmentation evenly has you wind up the hook shank.

Step 4

If you notice in the picture where I made the cut. There’s two ways to cut the excess foam off. One is by pulling making a little tension as you pull on the foam and make the cut. The other way is by taking a razor and go underneath the hook, press up with some pressure by pressing against the hook shank. You can also do this with a pair of scissors.

Step 5

Advance the thread back the second segmentation. Tie down the other piece of foam. Since this will be a bullet head style you’ll need to measure it accordingly. It should be longer then the foam that you tie down first. The foam sticking off the front will be the one you’ll fold back. The back piece will be cut off. When measuring this keep in mind that you tied back one segment and will advance up to the eye before going to the bend. That will be how much extra length you’ll need for the foam to be measured correctly.

Step 6

Go forward and make the first segment as you tie back to the eye.

Step 7

Make the cut flush when cutting the back piece of foam off. You thread should be back at the second segmentation after making the cut.

Step 8

Now tie in a wing of deer hair. Butt the tips up by making a even cut leaving no excess to trim after trying it in. If you have a good piece of body hair you more then likely can get away from stacking it in a stacker. I don’t like stacking hair evenly when tying in hopper wings. The tips should be a little longer the length of the bottom piece of foam. I also add a little glue in the deer hair I tied down to help durability.

Step 9

Fold over the foam and tie it down with 8-10 thread wraps. This will also lay a nice foundation for the sili-legs to be tied down on.

Step 10

Next tie in a little piece of foam for an indictor reference.

Step 11

Tie in the sili-legs on each side and whip finish the fly.

Step 12

Now glue the wraps underneath that formed the segmentations for more durability. I would say this to me is by far one of the best hoppers for locating big browns in my book. Not only for that, but this will lay upright every time you make a cast.