AJ is really a Wyoming Montana Idaho fishing guide based out of Jackson Hole. AJ started guiding for Jack Dennis about a hundred years ago in between classes at the U. Wyoming. AJ never finished college and he never finished guiding either. He's one of the best ever. Legendary fishing guide to movie stars and moguls, wooden boat champion, fly fisherman, fly tier, ski patrolman and saxaphone player, AJ DeRosa will only happen once.
I got these flies a few days ago (April 26, 2006 or so) while floating the Yellowstone with AJ and his crew. AJ comes up every spring to catch the mother's day caddis hatch. They always come up a few days ahead of their guiding schedule so they (AJ John and Dutch) can spend a few days fishing with friends plus eating drinking and partying around the cowboy tv (the campfire). I asked AJ for some flies. What appears here are just what came out of his fly box....just the one's he'd actually tied himself. You can even see a bit of waste leader tag on the Brown Double Humpy. These look like presentation quality flies suitable for a shadow box. Which they are. Which is how AJ does everything: first class and all the way or not at all.
I also notice AJ bends the barbs down in the vise. I usually wait until streamside--which works well as long as the fish aren't biting. Then I get in a hurry and tie the flies on as fast as I can, usually with the barbs left in place.