His metal fly boxes held fleets of the critters, all clipped in rows like soldiers resting in a Quonset hut.
Traditional, skinny-bodied, elegant, emerging - words fit for a debutante at her ball - describes the similarly elegant soft-hackled fly.
Unfortunately, unlike the elegant debutante, the soft-hackle's dating luck has slowed since the turn of the century.
My first introduction to soft-hackles came at a young age.
The technique was a favorite of Doc's - a family friend and guide - who often took me drift-boating down the Mc Kenzie and Willamette.
Royal Wulffs, Elk Hair Caddis, Adams, Yellow Humpies, Trudes, and Coachmans - all were the staple of our small, pocket water adventures.
Later, indicators with dangling Hare's Ears, Prince Nymphs and Woolly Buggers were added to the mix.
Over a decade passed until an accidental discovery motivated me to tie one of Doc's favorites on again.
The line stretched out before the bow, causing the flies to sway just beneath the water's surface.
Every few days we'd catch a fish - or so it seemed with my nine year-old patience level. Doc probably wanted to make sure that this kid's flailings were kept a safe distance from his ears.
The technique bored me to tears and only Doc's wonderful storytelling and encyclopedic knowledge of natural history kept me coming back for a technique that seemed only slightly more interesting than lake trolling.
When I was away from Doc's boat and tutelage, my dad and I would greedily tie on anything that floated in hopes of capturing a slice of dry fly heaven.