[Editor’s Note: Since Rich Strolis was our Trout Bum of the Week, I figured it was worth going back and looking at some of the great patterns of his that we’ve featured on the blog in the past.]
Golden stoneflies (family: Perlidae) are often abundant in well-oxygenated waters—especially freestone streams where trout live, and especially in the West—although their range stretches across the country. Eastern anglers won’t see as many golden stones, but they are there and trout eat them. That’s why every angler should have a few golden-stonefly nymphs in his box.
The nymphs live under and around rocks and are easy to identify by their size and their light, patterned coloration. However, golden stones do range in color, from brilliant yellow to dark amber, from watershed to watershed, so your best bet is to find some naturals that you can imitate exactly when you’re tying up some Shimmer Stones.
In this video, Connecticut-based guide Rich Strolis shows you how to tie this pattern, which looks complex but really isn’t.
Hook: Curved nymph hook (here, a Tiemco 2302), sizes 4-12.
Head: Copper bead.
Thread: Olive, 6/0 or 140-denier.
Antennae: Life Flex or Spanflex.
Underbody: Lead-free wire.
Tails: Life Flex or Spanflex.
Shellback: Brown Flashback.
Body: Dark golden-stone D-Rib.
Wingcase: Brown Flashback.
Gills/thorax: Golden stone dubbing.
Legs: Hen hackle.