Spider flies are typically dressed with a very minimal hackle, often only 1 and a half turns as traditional North country spiders or Clyde style spiders have been tied for many years. Yes we imitate hatches with our fishing flies, no north country spiders have NOTHING to do with imitating Spiders! North Country Spiders is the name given over the years as when dry before immersion the soft hackle looks like the legs of a large spider! Spider flies are over 300 years old and still they still catch fish. These are not an imitation pattern an exact match like blue winged olives, they are impressionistic patterns.
The North Country tradition of fly-tying and fishing has long been celebrated as a remarkably successful way of catching fish. Developed on the fast-flowing rivers of northern England, on both sides of the Pennines, soft hackle or spider flies like the Snipe and Purple and the Partridge and Orange have been traditionally used since the nineteenth century and beyond, and are just as effective in the chalk streams of Hampshire, the lochs of Connemara or even the freestone rivers of the Appalachians in the United States.