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Chuck's FlutterStone


Published Jan 19th 2010

An ideal amount of action, buggyness and overall attractiveness packed into the perfect stonefly profile.

By

Chuck's FlutterStone

I was inspired to create this fly while I lived in Eastern Idaho working as a guide on the South Fork of the Snake River. The South Fork along with several other rivers and streams in the area including the Teton River and the world famous Henry's Fork of the Snake boast jaw dropping hatches of the two giant stoneflies: Pteronarcys californica commonly called "Salmonflies," and the "Golden Stones," of the family Perlidae.

Having three of the finest dry fly rivers in the West as my testing grounds enabled me to put some serious trial and error into the design of these stoneflies.

Great rivers



I had the chance to observe hundreds of specimens and put together what I believe to be a fly with the ideal amount of action, buggyness and overall attractiveness packed into the perfect stonefly profile.

  
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Drying - A salmon fly from the Henry\'s Fork drying its wings
Drying
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Empty - An empty stonefly shuck
Empty
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Large golden stone - Large golden stonefly from the South Fork of the Snake
Large golden stone
 
The FlutterStone combines the qualities of two of my favorite stonefly imitations: the Rogue Foam Stonefly and the Stimulator.
The Rogue Foam is great because of its ultra realistic slim profile and segmented foam body. It rides low in the surface of the water but floats all day because it is made from buoyant foam and deer hair. Fish love the realism of this fly as it is dead drifted over their snouts during stonefly season and it has caught me my fare share of lunkers.

The Stimulator is another bug that has unmatched popularity among anglers. Its design makes it useful as a general attractor or to match a number of different adult terrestrial and aquatic insects. Unlike the Rogue Foam Stonefly the Stimulator is tied with thick bushy hackle palmered up the abdomen and thorax, which helps the fly to ride high on the surface of the water. The high riding design of this fly allows a skilled angler to flutter and skate the fly on the surface of the water and induce heart-stopping takes from big fish!

Stones



Each of these flies has a unique profile and sometimes the fish can be in the mood for one over the other. It is common to see anglers carrying many different stonefly patterns in order to seduce picky eaters. In general this is a good idea, however these are large flies and with all the patterns available on the market an angler could easily fill his entire fly box with just adult stoneflies! This is why having a single versatile fly that can be easily modified to fit a specific presentation can be invaluable.

Pondering the need for such a bug I designed the FlutterStone. The segmented foam body and bullet head along with the low profile wing give it convincing realism, while the clipped hackle wrap and rubber legs add action and movement. You can cut the legs short and tie the wing sparse to create a stonefly with a slim, unobtrusive profile or you can give it a fuller wing and leave the legs extra long to suggest the fluttering wings of an egg laden adult struggling in the surface of the water. Fish it dead drifted or skate and twitch it to add action. It all depends on the mood of the fish so experiment until you find what works. Good luck and have fun!

Stonefly fishing



Chuck's FlutterStone
TypeDry fly
Originator
Charles Robinton
Difficulty
Medium

Materials
HookTMC 5263 (4-10)
ThreadFly Master Plus 210 Denier for large patterns, Flymaster 6/0 for smaller flies. For salmonflies use fluorescent orange or rusty orange, for golden stoneflies use gold or yellow/orange.
Body2 sheets of 2mm closed cell foam sandwiched together to create color contrast. For salmonflies use black or brown for the top and orange for the bottom, for goldens use a brown or tan back and gold or yellow for the belly
Belly flashPearl krystal flash wrapped around hook shank
HackleBrown grizzly rooster cape palmered around foam body and clipped short
UnderwingKrystal Flash
Wing1mm clear packing foam
OverwingDeer or elk body hair. Natural for Salmonflies, bleached for goldens.
Bullet headDeer or elk body hair. Black or brown for Salmonflies, brown for Goldens
LegsMedium round rubber for large flies. Micro round rubber for small ones. Try barred rubber and superfloss for added attractiveness!

Tying instructions
See tying steps


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Step 1: Tying in the foam body - Insert hook into vise and start thread, advancing to the rear of the hook shank above the barb.  Prepare a small strip of sandwiched bicolor foam about the length of the hook shank and half the width of the hook gap.  Here I have chosen a combination of brown and gold to represent a golden stonefly.
Step 1: Tying in the foam body
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Step 2: Secure foam - Tie the foam strip in with several firm wraps to make sure it does not slip around the hook shank.
Step 2: Secure foam
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Step 3: Securing the hackle - Select a hackle feather and tie in by the tip with the rest of the feather extending to the rear of the hook
Step 3: Securing the hackle
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Step 4: Adding belly flash and beginning body - Tie in Krystal flash, wrap the thread about 1/8th of an inch up the hook shank, wrap the krystal flash up to the thread and tie down with thread.  Tie down the foam with three firm wraps to form your first segment
Step 4: Adding belly flash and beginning body
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Step 5: The finished segmented body - Repeat this process to form three or four clean segments depending upon the size of the fly you are tying.  Leave about 1/3 of the hook shank free for the wing and bullet head
Step 5: The finished segmented body
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Step 6: Hackle is palmered up the body - Palmer the hackle around the foam body by making two wraps between segments and advancing with one wrap over the top.  Don\'t worry if the hackle twists a little as you are wrapping it because you will be clipping it short anyways. Wrap to the start of the thorax and tie off
Step 6: Hackle is palmered up the body
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Step 7: The finished body with hackle clipped short - Clip the hackle down close to the foam body.  This way the fly will still sit low in the water while the hackle traps air bubbles and creates a buggy fluttering action
Step 7: The finished body with hackle clipped short
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Step 8: Adding the krystal flash underwing - Double 2-3 strands of krystal flash around the thread and tie down in front of the abdomen sweeping over the rear of the hook.  This will be the underwing
Step 8: Adding the krystal flash underwing
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Step 9: Foam shaped into a stonefly wing - Select a piece of 1mm thin packing foam and cut it into the oblong shape of a stonefly wing.  It should be about equal to the entire length of the fly and the width of the hook gap
Step 9: Foam shaped into a stonefly wing
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Step 10: Tying down the wing - Tie it down so that it extends about one hook gaps length beyond the abdomen
Step 10: Tying down the wing
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Step 11: Tying in the over wing - Select, brush and stack a sparse clump of deer or elk body hair for the overwing.  I have chosen bleached hair for the golden stonefly pattern.  Tie the wing in so that it extends just past the abdomen taking care not to flare it too much
Step 11: Tying in the over wing
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Step 12: Adding the bullet head - Select, brush and stack a small clump of dark deer or elk body hair for the bullet head.  Here I have chosen brown for the golden stonefly pattern.  To make sure your bullet head is the right size, measure it with the tips facing towards the front of the hook shank as shown.  Your tie in point should leave the tips of the hair extending forward equal to the length of the overwing as shown above.  Tie in at the start of the thorax, clip off the butt hair and wrap tightly forward
Step 12: Adding the bullet head

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Step 13: The completed bullet head - Wrap the thread back to the start of the thorax and fold the hair tips backwards, tying them down at the base of the thorax.  Leave the belly open allowing the gold thread to show through
Step 13: The completed bullet head
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Step 14: The finished FlutterStone - Tie in rubber legs and whip finish.  I leave them long to suggest fluttering wings but clipping them short works well too
Step 14: The finished FlutterStone

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Tasty looking - The FlutterStone from a fishy point of view.  Pretty tasty looking!
Tasty looking




User comments
From: whatischocobubunga? · hopkins404·at·gmail.com  Link
Submitted May 15th 2013

please explain your name "Chocolate Bubunga" what does that MEAN?! i must know


From: chocolate bubunga  Link
Submitted July 28th 2011

this thing changed the way i fish! finally perfected tying it. some smart fish have fallen for this. flutter utter magic!


From: Tom · clark_hscs·at·yahoo.com  Link
Submitted May 17th 2010

Do you buy the 1mm packing foam at a fly shop or craft store?


From: Jan · cizekj·at·post.cz  Link
Submitted March 5th 2010

In your country is very many stone fly and i will try it on spring....Very realistic patern


From: Erick · linejudge·at·hotmail.com  Link
Submitted March 5th 2010

Great pattern and good pics. Thanks! Keep in mind that these types of flies can really be hard on light tippets. They have a tendency to "helicopter" in the wind, twisting the tippet. Thanks again for posting cause I have been struggling to tie this pattern for awhile now!


From: Cornelis · Corneel77·at·hotmail.com  Link
Submitted January 25th 2010

nice one...( although we don't have stoneflies in our country..)


From: Szegi · mokusles·at·gmail.com  Link
Submitted January 21st 2010

I liked the article! Thanks for the ideas.


From: Maximillian · Maxkrieg·at·gmail.com  Link
Submitted January 19th 2010

nice article hank!


Comment to an image
From: Leo Robinton · leo.robinton·at·gmail.com  Link
Submitted January 21st 2010

BROTHER YOU ROCK!



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