Project Healing Waters Fly Tying

I recently received this e-mail and photo from Jim Ottevaere, coordinator of Project Healing Waters fly tying classes at US Army Ft. Belvior and MCB (Marine Corps Base) Quantico. I wanted to share this information with my readers and blog visitors.

Here is Jim’s message:

“We’ve had a long, hard winter here in Virginia. It gave us plenty of time to hold fly tying sessions with our Project Healing Waters warriors at Ft. Belvior and Quantico. Here are some of the patterns we tied from Ruffed Grouse and Ring-necked pheasants. All the feathers were donated by bird hunting PHW supporters and volunteers from Michigan, Illinois, and Minnesota.”

And here is the photo:

Project heasling Waters flies, tied by warriors in the program at Ft. belvior and MCB Quantico.

Project Healing Waters flies, original designs, created with feathers from ruffed-grouse and ring-necked pheasants. These were tied by warriors in the program at Ft. Belvior and MCB Quantico. Photo by Jim Ottevaere.

I am pleased to present these flies with Jim’s permission. They are a beautiful expression of creativity in the use of pheasant and grouse feathers, along with other traditional fly-tying materials.

Jim Ottevaere and his assistants are doing a fine job of helping the wounded veterans by leading them in their participation of this program. I am very pleased that Jim and his students have found the information in my blog to be a helpful element of this program. Thanks Jim for your leadership!

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10 comments on “Project Healing Waters Fly Tying

  1. Jon R says:

    All I can say is “wow”. Those are beautiful flies.

  2. Richard "Dick" Heffernon says:

    A shout out to Jim for making Healing Waters work to heal those vets whose wounds are not so visible.

    • Don Bastian says:

      Hi Dick;
      Thanks for your comment and verbal support of PHW and the work they are doing through fly tying classes / therapy. See you in a couple months!

  3. Kelly L says:

    The flies are marvelous! Project Healing Waters is the cream of the crop. Thank you for sharing these little gems with us!

  4. metiefly says:

    Stunning results and what a fine mix of techniques to produce them! Thanks for sharing Don. Best regards – metiefly

    • Don Bastian says:

      Hi metiefly!
      Thank you for your comments! It’s rewarding to see the impact of PHW and their fly tying classes has crossed the Atlantic. Thank for your support and appreciation!

  5. Bill says:

    Wow! Those are stunning. In retrospect, I’m a bit surprised one doesn’t see more widespread use of these indigenous bird feathers in the literature of MOM and Bergman.

    • Don Bastian says:

      Hi Bill;
      Glad you liked these PHW flies. They are done, closely, to the style of the 1900’s fishing flies. Some pattens historically used ring-necked pheasant and ruffed grouse, but likely as you noted, not as many as one might think. Not sure how long it took ring-necked pheasants to become established and wide spread, they were introduced in California in 1850. Thanks for your comments!

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