Nymph & Wet Patterns

Below is a list of some of our favorite nymphs and wet fly patterns along with their dressings. Included with the pattern is a brief description of how and when to fish these great flies.

Bead-Head Prince Bead-head Redfox Squirrel Nymph Bitch Creek Nymph Featherduster Kaufmann Stone - Golden Ram Caddis
HyperLinkBead-Head Prince
Still one of the most widely used and effective nymph patterns in Montana, Doug Prince’s "fork tail" continues to produce. The iridescence of peacock with the split biot wing and tail make for a great searching pattern. Tied slimly dressed with a silver rib makes a great lake pattern as well. The addition of a bead adds a little weight and flash and helps the nymph dive head first through the faster water columns. Larger sizes are great producers during early season high water conditions but 12 and 14’s seem to be more effective as water levels drop. This pattern is a great one to experiment with. Dubbed bodies along with varied biot and hackle colors can be substituted to match most aquatic insects. The Prince truly is a "must" fly to have and is a favorite dropper fly for most of our guides.

Hook: Tiemco 5263 , 3761 or Dai Riki 730, 270, sizes 6-14, weighted
Thread: Size 3/0 or 6/0,black for original or closest match to body color
Body: Peacock Herl
Tail: Brown goose biots tied in a split V
Rib: Oval gold tinsel or wire
Hackle: Brown or furnace hackle tied in by tip-3 turns
Wing: White goose biots tied split over body
Bead: Gold, sized to hook

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Bead-Head Prince Bead-head Redfox Squirrel Nymph Bitch Creek Nymph Featherduster Kaufmann Stone - Golden Ram Caddis
HyperLinkBead-head Redfox Squirrel Nymph
One of Dave Whitlock’s best golden stonefly and general attractor nymphs. This pattern closely mimics the silhouette and movement of numerous aquatic insects and will work in most waters. If a Red fox squirrel skin is not available, any darker ginger and dark gray dubbing will also work. We like to use the SLF squirrel dubbing but any coarse, spiky dubbing will also be as effective. The addition of a bead, standard or tungsten, seems to help any nymph but it really compliments this pattern. Try fishing this pattern as a dropper fly off a stimulator when the golden stones are flying around.

Hook: Tiemco 5263, 200R or Dai Riki 730, sizes 8-14, medium weighted.
Thread: Black 6/0 or 3/0
Body: Ginger belly fur or substitute
Tail: Red fox squirrel guard hairs or substitute
Rib: Gold wire or oval tinsel
Hackle: Mottled brown hen or Hungarian Partridge.
Thorax: Dark Gray fur

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Bead-Head Prince Bead-head Redfox Squirrel Nymph Bitch Creek Nymph Featherduster Kaufmann Stone - Golden Ram Caddis
HyperLinkBitch Creek Nymph
There have been many new additions to our stonefly nymph fly bins over the years but none have ever been more consistently effective than the venerable Bitch Creek, a "standard" pattern on the Madison River for over 20 years. When high water colors the freestone rivers in late spring this nymph outfishes all other stonefly patterns and has always been our best seller. The movement of the rubber legs, the two-tone abdomen and palmered saddle hackle provide a silhouette and action that produces year round. Giant size 2 and 4’s are used during the salmonfly hatch, while smaller versions in sizes 6-10 are fished through summer and into fall. Primarily dead drifted, the rubber legs make this a great fly to twitch back on the retrieve after the fly swings out of its drift below you.

Hook: Tiemco 5263 or Dai Riki 700, sizes 2-10, weighted
Thread: 3/0 Black
Tail: White rubber legs
Abdomen: Black and orange chenille-woven
Hackle: Brown saddle palmered through thorax.
Thorax: Black chenille
Antennae: White rubber legs

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Bead-Head Prince Bead-head Redfox Squirrel Nymph Bitch Creek Nymph Featherduster Kaufmann Stone - Golden Ram Caddis
HyperLinkFeatherduster
Nymphs with built in animation seem to produce in a variety of situations. The ostrich herl used in the Featherduster is a great representation of the pulsating gills found on the abdomen of many mayfly species. This pattern is one of our favorite lake callibaetis nymphs and fishes great when unweighted versions are slightly twitched in front of cruising trout. Weighted and beadhead versions are great for streams and rivers and sparse marabou tails make for a great leech/damselfly pattern. In in all a versatile pattern.

Hook: Tiemco 3761 or Dai Riki 070, sizes 8-14
Thread: Rust 6/0.
Body: Natural gray ostrich plume.
Tail: Pheasant tail fibers.
Rib: Copper wire or gold Lagartun oval tinsel.
Thorax: Natural gray ostrich plume.
Legs: Pheasant tail fibers or pearl flashabou.
Wingcase: Pheasant tail fibers or pearl flashabou.

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Bead-Head Prince Bead-head Redfox Squirrel Nymph Bitch Creek Nymph Featherduster Kaufmann Stone - Golden Ram Caddis
HyperLinkKaufmann Stone - Golden
Randall Kaufmann’s stonefly series are great year round nymphs for heavy water. Trout see these nymphs all season in various sizes but they are most effective when the runoff is receding and the stoneflies are migrating towards the bank prior to hatching . The giant black version with rubber legs is an excellent pattern to bounce on the bottom before the salmonflies hatch. A size 4 black with a size 8 golden dropper is a great combo for the high water of early season—be sure to keep that casting loop open! The golden stone nymph is a good winter pattern for our freestone streams. A tan version with brown ribbing, brown marker on top of the abdomen and tan rubber legs is also worth tying.

Hook: Tiemco 300, 5263 or Dai Riki 700, 710, sizes 6-10 weighted. Sizes 2-6 on black version.
Thread: Brown or amber, 3/0 or 6/0
Body: Kaufmann nymph blend-gold stone
Tail: Amber goose or turkey biots-split
Rib: Amber V rib
Antennae: Amber goose or turkey biots-split.
Legs: Optional but seem to help—rubber, small white colored with marker
Wingcase: Mottled turkey tied in 3 layers with dubbing between—colored with gold marker cut to V shape

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Bead-Head Prince Bead-head Redfox Squirrel Nymph Bitch Creek Nymph Featherduster Kaufmann Stone - Golden Ram Caddis
HyperLinkRam Caddis
One of Ross A. Merigold’s favorite creations and developed on the "Slide Area" of the Madison River. The Ram Caddis is effective anywhere caddis are found. Fished with a short line straight upstream in the pocket water of the upper Madison, this pattern continues to produce year after year. The Ram Caddis is also a great pattern for swinging through riffles just under the surface during an evening caddis hatch. A beadhead version of this pattern is also a great producer on all the freestone streams in southwest Montana and other waters—give it a try!

Hook: Tiemco 9300, 3769 or Dai Riki 070, sizes 8-14.
Thread: 6/0 wine or dark purple—head coated with a shiny coat of lacquer.
Body: Olive floss
Rib: Gold wire or copper wire.
Hackle: White hen.

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For a great selection of quality fly tying materials, visit the Fly Tying  Section of our Online Catalog. In addition to the Fly Tying section you can also purchase these great patterns in the Flies  category in the Online catalog. There are also great photos of hundreds of additional patterns.

If you have any questions or need some information on a specific fly pattern feel free to call our toll-free line at 1-800-227-7127 or drop us an e-mail at mrfc@3rivers.net.

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