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Hot smoked salmon and steelhead recipe

Items needed to prepare your salmon and steelhead for smoking :

  • rock salt
  • pepper
  • white sugar
  • paper towels
  • newspaper
  • non-stick spray
  • large plastic tray or plastic bucket
  • smoker
  • Alder chips

Recipe Instructions

  1. Filet the salmon or steelhead on both sides of backbone from the head to the tail, then cut the filet into chunks about 3 to 4 inches wide.
  2. Wash the chunks in cold water and place a layer of the washed chunks in the bottom of the large plastic tray or plastic bucket. Cover this layer with rock salt, add another layer of the fish chunks and cover this layer with rock salt. Continue doing this with the rest of your salmon or steelhead chunks.
  3. Let the chunks remain in the rock salt for about 60 to 90 minutes, the thinner pieces for 60 minutes, and the thicker pieces 90 minutes. After the salting time is up remove the chunks from tray or bucket and thoroughly wash off the salt in cold running water.
  4. On a table or counter top spread out newspaper 4 or 5 sheets thick and then cover with a layer of white paper towels. Place the washed fish chunks on the paper towels skin side down. Sprinkle with small amounts of pepper and sugar. Allow the chunks to sit about 4 hours. Spray the smoker racks with non-stick to prevent sticking during the smoking process. Place all the thicker chunks on one or two racks and the thinner chunks on the other racks and place the racks back on the paper to remain drying over night. This allows a glaze to form on the fish that is necessary for proper smoking.
  5. Place the smoker on a cement pad or patio blocks in an outside location where it is not affected by cold temperatures, wind or rain. Do not place smoker on any type of a wooden base. Pre-heat the smoker with a pan of Alder chips for about one hour and then load the smoker. Place the racks with the thicker chunks in the bottom slots of the smoker and the racks with thinner chunks on the top slots of the smoker. Leave a small space between the fish chunks to allow the smoke to pass and smoke all sides of the chunks.
  6. Add fresh Alder chips. After one hour remove the chip pan discard ashes and add more chips. This will need to be done
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    every hour, four or five times during the smoking process. After 4 or 5 hours, check the fish to see how it is doing. The chunks should be drying out on top and turning a golden dark red color. If not, add another pan of Alder chips and smoke for another hour. You can check for complete smoking by using a fork to open up one of the thicker fish chunks, the meat should be the same lighter color all the way through and the outside should have a nice golden red color. On warmer days you may only need about 4 to 5 pan of chips to complete the smoking process. During colder weather it may take up to 7 hours or longer to complete the smoking process but try to only use 6 pans of Alder chips. If you use too many pans of Alder chips the fish tends to get a very smokey taste

Tips and tricks on hot smoking

  • To get a good hot smoke cure of the fish, the temperature inside the smoker needs to reach approximately 125 degrees Fahrenheit. Use a meat thermometer inside the smoker to check the temperature. Use gloves or a hot pad to remove the hot top lid of the smoker. If you find that your smoker is not reaching the proper temperature, you can easily make a box to enclose the smoker that will hold in the heat and raise the temperature. Go to a building supply store and purchase a piece of 4x8x1/2 inch thick styrofoam insulation board with aluminum foil on both sides. The insulation board is inexpensive, lightweight and easy to cut with a sharp knife. The sides of the box can be held together with duct tape. Allow 2″ spacing between smoker and the sides and the top of the styrofoam box. Cut out an opening at the bottom of the box for the smoker chip pan. The top piece of the box can be held in place with a small rock or brick.
  • Always use approved electrical extension cords when using the smoker.
  • The fish on the bottom racks will smoke faster than the fish on the top racks, so you may need to remove the fish on the bottom if they are ready. Continue smoking the fish on the top racks.
  • When you first take the fish out of the smoker, do a taste test with some white wine, cheese and crackers; this is when smoked salmon is at its best.
  • If you want to freeze your smoked fish use a vacuum packer. Place two or three of the chunks in vacuum packer bags while they are still warm and vacuum seal. Place in the refrigerator for 3 or 4 days, this will help the oils and moister in the fish to permeate the meat with the smoke flavor. Freeze the bags and try to consume within 6 months.

How to choose the right fly rod, reel and fly line

Choosing your first fly rod and reel is very important. You need to have a balanced fly-fishing outfit that will match the type and size of your fish. For example, the fly rod and line need to be the same weight, #5 weight fly rod and a #5 weight fly line.

The weight and length of the fly rod will be printed on the rod just above the handle, it might read: 9’5 “weight. The weight of the fly line will be on the fly line box, a 5 weight could be shown as: WF-5-F, which would be a (Weight Forward), (#5 weight), (Floating fly line).

The weight numbers of the fly rod and fly line will go up or down depending on the type and size of flies, fish, and types of waters that the angler is fishing. The common weight range is #3 thru #12. A 10-weight fly rod and line will cast large salt-water flies but is much too heavy for casting small trout flies. A 5 weight balanced outfit will work nicely for a #14 trout fly but will not cast a 3/0 tarpon fly.

Purchase a good quality brand name fly reel to match your fly rod and line so the outfit is balanced. I would also suggest opting for a good quality weight forward (WF) dry fly line, it will last you for years. Also have the sales clerk put the fly line and approximately 50 yards of 20 lb. fly line backing on the fly reel for you.

Some sporting goods stores and fly shops may offer a fly-fishing starter package; .rod, reel and fly line. This may be a way to go but first shop around. The next question, what should I pay for my starter outfit? Good question, but remember you get what you pay for, and you owe it to yourself to have the best you can afford. In the sport of fly-fishing, quality equipment will reward you in the years ahead. Ask the sales clerks for information about the fly rods they carry, also ask to cast the different brands and sizes of rods. Get other people’s opinions and be sure to look at all the popular brands, and make your decision on what feels good to you. Fly-fishing is a never-ending learning experience, so enjoy and good fishing.

Hardy Fly Reels Lightweight Series

I saw my first Hardy fly reel years ago while I was fishing the lower section of Oregon’s Rogue River. The reel was a Hardy Princess and the following year I was the proud owner of a brand new one. The Princess was introduced in the l950’s and 60’s in a stable of seven fly reels that Hardy called their lightweight series. Features included: A right hand crank that could be switched to left hand if needed, similar adjustable drag systems with a clicking sound that is special only to Hardy fly reels, and a machined aluminum “foot” that is dovetailed into a reel frame of cast aluminum and riveted for added strength. All models featured unique but simple chrome line guards a beautiful gray finish and a removable aluminum spool.

The Hardy reels canadianpharmacy-toprx in the lightweight series that are no longer in production include the Princes (1953-2003), Zenith (1960-2003), St Aidan (1964-2003) and the St. Andrew (1961-1964). These models, like many other Hardy reels that are no longer being produced will only increase in value as time passes. This is one reason I believe that if purchased with care on the used market these classic fly reels can be a good investment and a fly-fishing reel you can use and enjoy. The Zenith, Saint Aidan, and the Saint Andrew were all larger viagra online fast shipping fly reels that included all the canadian pharmacy lightweight series features and were originally designed for Sea Trout fishing in Europe. They have stronger, adjustable drag systems with larger fly spools for heavy fly lines and more fly line backing capacity. Although sometimes difficult to find, these reels make very nice vintage Steelhead fly reels.

There are three uk muscle cialis lightweight models that are still in production, the Flyweight, the Featherweight, and the LRH lightweight. These updated versions of the classics are now machined from high quality bar stock aluminum but still have all the features of the early models. They can be purchased or ordered from most quality fly shops.

One of the most popular trout fly reels in the lightweight series has to be the LRH lightweight. The “LRH” is the initials of Lawrence Robert Hardy, who, no doubt had some influence in the lightweight series. I believe that the LRH is also the fly reel that is featured on the Federation of Fly Fishers logo. The LRH is just about ideal for most trout fishing applications. It has a nice adjustable click drag system with the distinctive Hardy “click” sound, and it can hold fly lines up to a WF-6 floating fly line or a DT-5 and about 75 yards of fly line backing. Extra reel spools are also available if the angler needs to make use of different types of fly lines during a fishing outing.

The next fly reel to consider in the lightweight series is the Hardy Princess, only available in the used market. The Princess is slightly larger than the LRH and has a spool diameter of 3-1/8” that will hold a WF-6 or a WF-7 fly line and 100 yards of 20 line backing. This reel also has the same type of adjustable drag system as the LRH and extra spools are also available on the used market The Princess can handle larger fresh water game fish, on rivers and lakes and is also a good “all around” fly reel that can be used when fishing streamers or fishing other types of heavy flies.

Distance Fly Casting Tips

Everyone at one time or another needs or wants to cast just a little bit further. If you are already casting with a tight loop, here’s a tip you may want to try, I call this casting on the spline. The fly rod guides on all good quality fly rods are wrapped on the rod blank spline. This just happens to be the stiffest and strongest part of the rod blank; the reel-seat is lined up and set in line with the guides. So by watching the fly reel when someone is casting you can tell if they are casting on the spline because the reel is on the spline. For example if the reel is pointing away from the caster on the back cast and the forward cast then he is not casting on the spline. The reel and the fly line loop need to be in the same plane to get all the power and line speed out of the rod. It’s normal for a caster who is tired or has the bad habit of letting his hand and wrist turn or roll off to the side, thus allowing the rod and reel to turn out and away from the casters body. In other words, the fly reel needs to be pointing forward from the casters body on the forward cast and pointing forward on the back cast and in the same plane as the fly-line loop because only then are you casting with the stiffest part of the fly rod and you will get more line speed and a tighter fly line loop. This easier to do than it sounds, just try making the forward cast with the fly rod almost vertical over your head and also keep the fly rod more vertical on the back cast while not allowing the reel to point away from the your body. This technique

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will also help when using the double haul, chest deep in water or fishing from a float tube.

Things to do near Eugene, Oregon, Fly Fishing the McKenzie River

Are you looking for things to do near Eugene, Oregon? East of Eugene is the beautiful McKenzie River that is among the top 5 fly-fishing streams in Oregon. The McKenzie is actually a clear flowing spring creek with excellent water quality during the entire fly-fishing season. Every stream has its own fly fishing characteristics and the white water rapids sections of the McKenzie River is no exception

A short 30-minute drive east of Eugene flows the beautiful McKenzie River. The origin of the McKenzie is high in the snow-capped peaks of the Cascade Mountain Range that divides the State of Oregon from north to south. The McKenzie River is on the west slope of these mountain, receiving more than its share of snow run off and rain from the frequent winter storms that roll in from the Pacific Ocean a 175 miles to the west. Even during the hot summer months, much of the cold clear waters of the McKenzie River are fast moving with many white water rapids. The north bank along Highway 126 offers many access points for public fishing. The river’s south banks have Douglas fir, Red cedar, Alder and Vine Maple growing close to the water’s edge making fly-fishing and wading more than difficult, it is just impossible. The solution for fly fishermen to fish the river about 75 years ago was the advent of the McKenzie river drift boat. The boat was developed to provide the fly fisher a stable casting platform while giving the boatman a craft that was very maneuverable and able to safely run the turbulent waters of the McKenzie River.

Methods of fly-fishing from a drift boat on the McKenzie River have developed in a somewhat unique manner because of the caddis fly hatches that abound during the fly-fishing season. The Green Caddis seems to be the most abundant and is seen on the river throughout the spring and summer seasons. There are also hatches of small black caddis in the spring and various sizes of brown, amber and tan caddis at different times during the summer months. All these caddis flies have one similar characteristic. They lay their eggs on the water by flying up and down just above the waters surface, sometimes actually touching the surface to drop their precious cargo into the water. This is when they are most vulnerable and also when they provide the opportunistic Rainbow Trout with an easy meal. During periods of the fly hatches, many trout seem to get keyed in on the up and down flying action of the caddis and will often take an imitation caddis fly fished in a similar manner better than a fly that is fished on a dead drift. To induce these fish to take the fly, the fly fisher must give his imitation the same up and down flying action that the real caddis fly does when it is laying its eggs on the water surface. By using a two fly method of fly presentation on the McKenzie’s faster moving water, the up and down flying action of the egg laying caddis can be imitated.

Using a 9 to 10 foot tapered leader, a #10 weighted bead-head nymph is tied at the tip end of the leader. Then 5 to 6 feet above the weighted nymph a small loop knot is tied and a 4 to 5 inch long dropper leader is tied onto the loop and the caddis imitation is attached.

As the boatman holds the drift boat back, the fly fisher casts about 15 to 20 feet of fly line downstream to holding water. The fly rod tip is slowly raised up, lifting the fly line, the first 3 feet of leader and caddis fly imitation off the water 5 or 6 inches and then it is allowed to drift down stream a foot or two. As soon as there is drag on the dry fly, the process is repeated, the dry fly re-floated or raised off the water several times until another cast is made to new holding water. and then the re-float process is repeated. The weight of the weighted nymph provides a little tension that helps to holds the leader straight and lifts the caddis dry fly imitation off the water as the fly rod tip is raised. With a little practice and a good boatman holding back against the current with the oars, the egg-laying action of the caddis flies can be simulated to fool those weary rainbows to take the fly. At times I find this is much more effective than the dead drift method of dry fly fishing on the McKenzie River. Of course there is no “sure thing” in fly fishing, so always be prepared to change your tactics.

Thank you for taking the time to read my article and feel free to contact me for more fly- fishing tips. Please practice catch and release and protect our rivers for future generations.

The Muddler Minnow, The Fly Fisher’s Fly

If I had to pick only one fly I could only fish with all year long, I would        have to choose the Muddler Minnow. I like this fly pattern        because it is so versatile, and it seems to produce on big rivers, small        streams, and lakes. Popular sizes ranges from size 4 down to size 10 and        it doesn’t have to be tied perfect to be effective. In fact, I have a friend        of mine who once told me that “the worse it looks, the more fish it        catches.” So if you are tying your own Muddlers and they don’t look        that good, do not worry they may still catch fish.

The Muddler Minnow is a great fly for

  • Rainbow Trout
  • Brown Trout
  • Cutthroat Trout
  • Brook Trout
  • Steelhead
  • and most other game fish.

This fly has two major things going for it. First, it looks like a wide        variety of fish forage. For example, to the fish, a large Muddler may look        like a grasshopper, big stonefly, or even a small field mouse. The smaller        Muddlers may look like caddis flies, small minnows, or small sculpins. Second,        it can be fished just about any way you want using a dry line or a wet line,        dead drifted on the surface, down and across the current, or cast and striping        the fly. Don’t be afraid to give the Muddler some action. Make it look like        alive trying to get away from a predator, or make it look like a big fly        trying to get off the surface of the water.

A Muddler Minnow fishing tip that works when fishing slower currents or        lake fishing: Cast out to a spot. As soon as the fly hits the water, twitch        the fly a couple of times while stripping in about 2 feet of line, and then        let it sit for 10 seconds, then twitch and strip in again working the fly        back to you. Make another cast to a different spot about 6 feet from the        first spot. Try not to fish over the same place over and over.

Just as there are endless variations of the Muddler Minnow, there are just        as many ways to fish the Muddler. For example, in the summer, you can fish        it like a hopper; twitch and pause making it look like a big insect has        just fallen in the water. Skate the Muddler, and make it wake across the        current while at the same time giving the fly the action of an injured minnow        trying to escape a charging predator. In the springtime try the smaller        sizes, and fish the fly with a sinking tip line close to shore, giving it        a short stripping action. During early mornings and late evening of summer        and fall use the larger sizes of the Muddler, giving it action along the        edges of deep pools and cut banks.

Please remember to be careful while you are on the river, do not harm our        wonderful land, don’t litter, and please practice catch and release for        the next generation.

Selecting Your Steelhead Fly Fishing Outfit

It’s to your advantage when steelhead fly fishing to use the proper tackle. A well-balanced fly rod and reel, and a good quality steelhead fly line are a must when fishing steelhead waters. The length and weight of your fly rod is very important because it needs to work and feel right for you. If you have done any type of fly-fishing, you should be able to tell when you find the right rod. You don’t want a rod that is too light nor do you want one that is too long or too heavy. You need a rod that you are able to fish with for 5 to 7 hours a day and not get tired. This is a big factor if you are on a destination trip where you are “power” fishing, long hours every day.For summer steelhead fishing in Oregon, I prefer a #8 weight, 9-foot or 9’6″ graphite fly rod and a good quality fly reel that has a good adjustable drag system. The reel should be large enough to hold a WF #8 floating fly line, plus150 yards of 20 lb Dacron fly line backing.

I sometimes use a one-size lighter weight fly line than what is called for by the fly rod manufacturer. When using the wet fly swing or damp fly method of steelhead fishing, I suggest a #7 weight line for an 8-weight fly rod. For example, when casting, I often have extra line out past the rod tip, the extra weight of the line, plus the steelhead fly, plus a strong generic cialis online double haul cast will load the 8-weight rod. I also like the way a #7 fly line fishes because it is easy to mend the line after making a cast. The lighter weight of the #7 also helps to make a change of direction cast and is easy to pick up or roll cast when you’re ready to make another cast across the current.

How to make your own custom fly leaders

A properly designed and well-made fly leader serves as a vital connection        between the fly line and the fly. When fly-casting, the energy of the fly        line is transferred through a tapered leader to turn the fly over in a presentable        manor into the strike zone. Of course, the long fly leader also keeps the        fish from seeing that there is a fly attached to the fly line.

In the modern world of fly-fishing, there is a need for specialized weights        and lengths of fly leaders for the wide variety of fish species that are        now being sought. For example, if you are dry-fly fishing a clear lake on        a calm day, you may want to have a very long leader; one that is perhaps        12 to 16 feet long with a very fine tippet that does not scare off feeding        fish. However, if you are fishing a river or a lake near the bottom, using        a sink-tip line or sinking fly line with a nymph or streamer, you may need        a 5 to 6 foot leader that will help to hold the fly down longer in the strike        zone. Dry fly fishing rivers for trout usually requires a 9-foot leader        with a soft mono tippet section and a soft mono tippet. Dry line, or grease-line        steelhead fishing requires a stiff butt section, and stiff tippet section,        to help turn over larger steelhead flies. Most saltwater fly-fishing requires        special, hard stiff monofilament, leaders that are designed to turn over        salt-water flies in very hot and humid climates where abrasive sand and        warm salt-water conditions exist.

There are many leader formulas to be found in the fly-fishing community,        and the following is one that was given to me by my friend Mr. Ramón        Aranguren, a past Argentinean fly-casting champion. I have used this leader        formula over the years, and it has also worked well for many of my fly fishing        associates. This leader has a long stiff butt section that will turn over        those big bushy dry flies, weighted nymphs, steelhead flies, and will help        you to drive a fly into the wind. I call it the 60/40 and here are a couple        formula variations of it for different fly-fishing situations.

First, take a piece of notebook paper and draw an 8-inch line. This will        be used for writing down your marks and figures for the layout of the 60/40        tapered fly-leader and should be saved for future reference. Starting from        left to right at the 5” point or about 60 %, make a short vertical        line that is above and below line. Therefore, everything to the left of        this vertical line will be the butt section or 60 percent and everything        to the right of the vertical line will be the tippet section or 40 percent        of the 8” line.

Lets say you want to make a 9 ft. leader or 108”: Take 60 % of 108        and you get about 65”, that is how long the butt section will be, so        write 65” above the 8” line and left of the vertical line on the        paper. The butt section will consist of two sections. Take 60 % of 65”        and you get 39”; this is the length of the first butt section, which        will be, .019” diameter leader material. Make a short vertical line        below the 8” line to separate these two sections. The second section        is 65 minus 39 or 26” of, .018” diameter leader material. Write        down these figures under the line on your paper for the 1st and 2nd butt        sections.

The tippet section is also broken down into the 60/40 formulas: Subtract        65 from 108 and you get 43”. This is the tippet section; so write 43        above the line on the right side of the vertical mark on your paper; this        is 40 % of the line. Now take 60 % of 43 and you get approximately 27”,        which is the length of the first section of the tippet section. Mark this        with a short vertical line below the 8” line. The first section will        be divided into three 9” pieces of leader material .015” diameter,        .014” diameter and .012” diameter. Write in these figures under        the 8” line for reference. The second section is the tippet, which        will be 17” of .010” diameter Write these figures under the 8”        line. If needed, you can add extra length to the tippet, or tie on an additional        20” of a smaller size tippet if so desired.

If you need a leader that will present a smaller fly very nicely, here        is variation of the 60/40: Draw out the 8” line on your paper but this        time, make your vertical mark at the halfway point.

In this example we will make a 10 foot or 120” leader. Therefore,        each half will be 60”, write this figure on each side of the vertical        mark above the line. Now, the 60/40 for the butt section: 60 % of 60”        for the 1st section will be 36” of, .019” diameter leader material.        The 2nd section or 40 % will be 24” of, .018” diameter leader        material, write these figures under the 8”line for reference.

The tippet section will be slightly different; divide it into the 60/40.        The first section of the tippet section or 36’ will be divided into        three segments: one 12” of .014” diameter, one 12” of .012”        diameter and one 12” of 010” diameter leader material: these are        the three segments of the 1st tippet section. Mark and write these figures        under the 8” line on the paper. The tippet will be 24” of.009”,        mark and write these figures under the 8” line on your paper.

Now that you have some leader formulas, what is next? The rule of thumb        for making a leader is that the first section of the butt section should        not be any stiffer than the end of the fly line. Don’t put a 40-lb        butt section on a 4 or 5 wt. fly line; it will not turn over properly. However,        a 40-lb butt section would most likely work on a 9 or 10 wt. fly line. Your        goal is to make a tapered leader that will smoothly and effectively transfer the energy of the fly line to turn over the fly.

Select the sizes of leader material you will need depending on the number of sections in the leader and tippet size for your type of fishing. Try a discount sporting goods store for bulk spools of the heavier monofilament  in different sizes and colors and your local fly shop for a wide range of  sizes and types of tippet materials that you will need to make your own custom leaders.

There are many different types of knots that can be used to connect the leader sections together, but perhaps the most popular is the blood knot. It is quick and easy to tie, and you will not waste a lot of material tying the knot.

If you are going to use fluorocarbon leader material for your leaders or  tippets you may find that the triple surgeon’s knot will give you better knot strength than the blood knot. I also recommend using the Double Uni  knot to tie fluorocarbon tippets to your fly.

Use a nail knot to make the connection between fly line and the leader butt section. If you want to make a loop-to-loop connection, cut the 1st.  butt section about 8” below the nail knot and tie a perfection loop        knot in both cut ends and loop them together. This will give the angler an easy way to change leaders or replace broken or damaged leaders quickly while on the water.

The following is a list of leader material breaking strength and thickness        in thousandths of an inch, because each manufacture’s product varies,        these values are only approximate: 4lb.= .005”, 6lb.= .009”, 8lb.=        .010”, 10lb.= .012”, 14lb.= .014”, 15lb.= .015”, 20lb.=        .018”, 25lb.= .019”, 30lb.= .020”

Fluorocarbon leader material and the Fly Fishing knots to make it work

I believe when you are fly fishing the clear cold waters here in the West, it pays big dividends to use  fluorocarbon leader material. Its advantages: Virtually invisible underwater, it sinks quickly and  it doesn’t reflect light on the water surface, fish can’t see it and your catch rates go up over monofilament.  Yes, it can be more expensive, but to improve a day’s fishing and change an average day into a great day, it’s worth it to me.  I was first introduced to fluorocarbon in the mid 90′s when the import fishing tackle company where I worked,  received samples from one of our contacts in Japan. I tried some of the 3 lb test and 4.5 lb test and really liked the  heavier test and how well it fished.

Depending on the brand, you may have to try several different knots when making up a knotted taper leaders using  fluorocarbon or when you are tying a fluorocarbon leader tippet to a monofilament leader.  A great knot to connect the leader sections together and, perhaps the most popular is the blood knot.  It is fairly easy to tie and it doesn’t waste a lot of material. When you need to join two vastly different sizes of  leader material together, for example l5 lb to 6 lb, use the improved blood knot:  Double over the smaller size of leader material and then tie the blood knot with 4 wraps of the doubled 6lb on one side  and 3 wraps of the 15lb on the other side.

You can find illustrations of these knots by going to this website  fishing knots ad

A very simple knot when tying different sizes of material together and one that has 100% knot strength with  fluorocarbon,  is the triple surgeon’s knot, it’s not pretty but it really works. I also like to use the  triple surgeon’s knot during low light conditions to retie fine fluorocarbon leader tippets.  Use the Uni knot to tie the fluorocarbon tippet of your fly leader to the fly.  It also has 100% knot strength with fluorocarbon. To tie the fly leader to a fly line use a nail knot.  To make a loop-to-loop connection to change leaders: Cut the first butt section of the fly leader 8 inches  below the nail knot and tie perfection loop knots to the cut ends and loop them back together.

When tying all types of fishing knots, use saliva to make them slick, and then draw the knot up tight but slowly to reduce friction.