The Bugger Barn
Back to Articles/Favorite Stuff  

I like boxes that allow me to keep my flies in organized rows.

The Bugger Box from Cliff Outdoors

Cliff's Bugger Barn is a sturdy large fly box from Cliff Outdoors a small company in Casper, Wyoming.

I must say that there was a time when I seemed to be collecting every fly box that was being produced.  And I never really fell in love with any.  But Cliff's Bugger Barn is an exception.  It's not perfect, but it is the best I have found for its purpose.

Typically I would load up my boxes at the beginning of each season. I would take out the flies remaining from the prior year's boxes and insert them into this year's chosen boxes. Then I would reach into my bin of newly tied flies and fill in any gaps remaining in the new boxes, with missing colors and sizes of my favorite patterns.

I have always used a large box that I call my "cross-over" box.  It holds a collection of sub-surface flies that I always have with me, as they work equally well for trout (except on the smallest mountain streams) and bass and panfish.  In other words, these flies "cross over" between the species I fish for. Mostly the box contains bugger-type flies, streamers and large nymphs.  The flies in the box in the top picture give you an idea of what goes into my "big box".  This box slides nicely into the right chest pocket of my vest.  I use a Simms vest with vertical pockets, as this design allows me to swing my arms as I walk without hitting my fly boxes, which may be an issue for fisherman with horizontal pockets.

Well, about 4 or 5 seasons ago, I started out the season by filling a brand new Bugger Barn.  The blue foam makes it easy to see your flies, and the slits cut into the foam hold the hooks firmly in place.  The only downside I found is that with my aging eyes I can't see the slits too well.  But, as suggested to me by Matt Cassel, owner of Cliff Outdoors, if you turn the box so the eyes of the hooks are pointing away from you, you can easily find the slot by sliding the fly backwards and pulling it toward you along the foam.  The bend of the hook easily finds the slot and wedges itself into place.

I absolutely recommend this box.  The foam slits make for easy organization of your flies, and the blue color is easy on the eyes.  The box is made of sturdy plastic and it has metal hinges.  The latch has a solid click to it.  This is a very high quality product.

Initially, one could only find Cliff Outdoor products at a few locations.  But recently I have seen their products in catalogs from such major outfitters, such as Orvis.  According to the Web site, they now have dealers in 39 states and 5 foreign countries.  If you have difficulty finding a dealer, either in your area or online, you can contact them through their Website,

Peter Frailey

September, 2009


 copyright Notice by All rights reserved. This material is for your personal enjoyment. Please obtain prior written permission from the author and before any other use.