Well I had plans to try and get out and go fishing or hunting this weekend, but I've come down with a nasty cold over the past couple days. So instead, I'm resigning myself to spending a quiet weekend around the house. Winter must be on it's way, because my tying desk has been calling to me more and more lately. Tonight I dug my boxes of materials out of the laundry room and sat down at the vice for a couple of hours.
I noticed that the subject of tying the Dolly Llama came up again on the forum not too long ago, and looking back at the abbreviated tutorial I posted previously, I can see where there's still some room for questions. There's still some great discussion on tying and using Dolly Llamas on this thread, and it's worth checking out.
Since I had some time to kill, I thought I'd post a complete, unabridged tutorial on the Dolly Llama.
The Dolly Llama is really a pretty simple fly to tie. There's a couple of tricks to tying them, but once you get the hang of it, you can turn them out fairly quickly. The pattern only calls for a few basic materials, but it lends itself to nearly unlimited customization and variety. You can use any color combination imaginable and can tie them from small to gigantic. The only real limit is the materials you have on hand (and your ability to cast what can amount to a small drowned rat).
Of course, this is just how I tie them. There are certainly other ways to do it. I just post this as an example to learn from. The beauty of tying your own is that there is no right or wrong way to tie a fly, so long as you're happy with the finished outcome.
(This is going to take me a little while, so for the sake of a smooth reading tutorial, please hold off on questions/post until I give a most triumphant "The End")
Hook: Anything the right size and cheap. You're going to cut off the point eventually, so it doesn't really matter. I'm using some old Eagle Claw O'Shaughnessy 3/0 I have lying around.
Conehead: Sized to match your hook. I'm using a cross-eyed cone from (I believe) Spirit River. 3/8".
Rabbit strips: Two colors (or one, I suppose) of your choice. Zonker Strips.
Flash: Saltwater Flashabou.
Thread: Color is irrelevant. Whatever you're comfortable with.
Stinger line: Something to attach the articulated hook. I've used heavy mono, Spiderwire/Fireline, and dacron fly line backing. For today I'm using 30 lb dacron backing.