Fly tying

Tying Jake's Blackout Stone

One of the earliest stonefly hatches is likely about to start on some fabled trout streams in the West. The skwala stoneflies — a dark, greenish-gray bug — should be about ready to pop in rivers like the Bitterroot, the Blackfoot and others in western Montana, and other rivers throughout the region can claim hatches ranging from subtle to prolific.

Tying Jake’s Blackout Stone

Above, TU’s Nick Halle tackles a great skwala pattern — Jake’s Blackout Stone — that should get early season dry-fly anglers excited. Note modest additions to make the fly easier to see in inclement weather (the calendar might say spring, but those of us in the West know better), and take note of some of the tips and tricks Matt uses to make tying the pattern a little easier.

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