Skwalla / Stone Nymphs

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Entomology' started by LT, Mar 12, 2006.

  1. I'm fairly new to fishing rivers and have yet to fish a Stonefly hatch but will be remedying that by spending a good amount of time on the Clark Fork and Bitterroot over the next couple weeks.

    I'm looking to tie up some Skwalla nymphs. I see a lot of dry recipes on the net but few for Skwalla nymphs. What nymph favorites do you guys have? Currently I just have a couple pictures of nymphs and have have been messing around to tie something fairly close. I'm assuming size #8 and #10 since the Skwalla are smaller.

    Thanks for your help!!
  2. LT-

    You might want to think a size smaller. Little Brown Stones (Skwala) are more like #10 - #12.
  3. Any stonefly pattern will work. It's all about the color and size. I tie a pattern w/ a tungsten bead, brown rubber legs, brown goose biots for the tail, an olive brown dubbing for the body, brown v-rib evenly space on the abdomen and bug skin over the thorax.
  4. Big Tuna's pattern is pretty close to what I tie. However, I do switch over to yellow dubbing for the thorax. If you look at pictures of Skwalas, there is definitely a sharp change from the brown/black abdomen with segments separated by yellow to yellow with brown/black leg bases in the thorax. Also, I've always thought that goose biots at just too big to indicate the tails on stoneflies; I use brown deer hair instead (should probably use two fibers/ side for added thickness but it's too much trouble). Also, adding a bead head or lead wraps to some of your patterns can be good when swinging a fly into a deep slot. I've tied straight peices of lead wire on either side of the thorax to create a slightly larger, flatter profile; however, it can be a pain when the round wire decides to slide under the hook as you're trying to snug it down.

    The Skwalas that I have seen on the Yakima River tend to be size 8 for females and size 10 for males. I was fortunate to be camping along the river two springs ago during a major hatch. They were all over the tree trunks after dark and the fish were certainly still looking up when I headed out early in the morning.

  5. Thanks for the tips guys!

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