Published Apr 7. 2011

Raven NJ

It's simple, adjustable and deadly effective

Two Ravebs - On the right one you see the Jungle Cock cheeks.
Raven NJ

Simple things somehow often seem to work and this has also been the case for one of my absolute favorite salmon flies, the Raven NJ.

It's a rather new pattern that I made for fishing on the bigger rivers here in Iceland where I live. It was made with the classic river Laxá i Adaldal in mind since the water is rather slow but also has small parts with faster water.
This fly was designed to be able to balance it according to the current by adjusting the body weight on the fly.
The fly is built around a Pro Tube System Flexi Tube 10/40mm and one or two body weights in 4mm. This Pro Tube System really gives the creative fly tier endless opportunities. The weight is added behind the wing instead of a conehead in front, and I think this gives a great balance. By adding a very thin layer of glue on the tube, the drop weights will run very tightly on the tube under the wing and you now have a fly where the weight can be adjusted to most fishing conditions.
The genius hook holder part of the Flexi Tube will prevent the weights from falling off just in case but also give a solid grip on the hook.

The rest of the fly is simple. A two sectioned wing of Arctic fox. Sometimes the upper wing is replaced with Raccoon to make the fly extra mobile. Between the wings is a hackle A little flash is added and -- on a good day -- a couple of Jungle Cock cheeks.
All the times I have made my Raven NJ, I have used a Sonic Disc in 6 or 8 mm, depending on the size of the fly. This gives a nice move into the wing and the strong red or sometimes green color of the disc gives a nice contrast. It resembles a reversed Red or Green Butt.

Laxá i Aðaldal - A famous Icelandic salmon river well suited for the Raven NJ
Hefty salmon - The author with a very large Icelandic salmon

Raven NJ

Pattern type: 
Tube fly
Nils Jorgensen
10/40 mm Pro Tube Flexi Tube
Two 4mm drops
Tying thread
Monofilament (or black 8/0)
Arctic fox, black
Black rooster or ostrich
Arctic fox or Racoon, black
Red sides and black on top
Jungle Cock (optional)
Front disc/cone
Sonic Disc 8mm, red

The fly fishes great on classic down stream swings, it's really mobile even in calm water. The weight balance can be adjusted as already mentioned, and I recommend trying the Raven with all the weight in front for upstream fishing with fast stripping.
I have had many salmon on the small rivers on this technique.

Because of the great balance in this fly, it dives automatically with the head down after each strip and for some reason this really makes the salmon angry and they often hammer the dancing Raven NJ.

C'mon salmon! - The author's girlfriend Ásta fishing for salmon.


Hej Thomas

Thanks for the nice words!

The reason why I use monofilament thread, I guess its just a habit from when I did not know how to make a small head. I must admit that it is more difficult when securing. But there are some good sides of using it. Smaller heads, its so thin you can fit it in between materials without it being visible and thereby fix them better, strong surface but I also use a normal thread. So like I started, its just a habit from here.

Good luck with the Raven NJ! I just made some small ones with a blue Sonic Disc on and they are pretty cool.



Hi Nils,

This is a nice fly which I will definitely try this season in the Norwegian rivers. I have used the Pro Tube system a lot myself during the last tying-season and I really like it.

Just a question, what is the reason for using Monofilament as tying thread? I have the experience that this can be quite slippery stuff but since you are using it what is the advantage and how are you securing the head in the end... are you using normal head cement or maybe super glue etc with the Mono?


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