Published May 4. 2023 - 1 year ago
Updated or edited May 5. 2023


Stimulators are a classic pattern that just works amazingly. It has been in the boxes of many dry fly fisherman since the 80's, and is still popular today. In fact its one of the most effective patterns for much of the west. It can mimic a stonefly or caddis. According to a few online sources (, and it was created by Randall Kaufmann who loosely based his design off of the fluttering stonefly made by Jim Slattery, which itself was based off of a pattern called the sofa pillow by Pat Barnes in the 1940's which is very close to the stimulator we have today. So this pattern has been in some ways been developed and improved since the 40's.

Personally I like tying these in all black with red wire ribbing, this orange color, yellow, olive, and brown. They are all great colors to mimic specific forages in different rivers and seasons. I like to flatten the wing a little, as to not have it poof up as much as some you see online. The hackle choices also are important. I really like to down size the hackle for this fly, as it will sit better in the water that way, and in my opinion looks better.

As I said in the video, offers some great quality fly tying materials and fly fishing gear at incredible prices. Best of all I got you guys even more of a discount. Type in McFly at checkout for an additional 15% off of anything you buy in their store on your first purchase.

Also I will list all the materials I used below, and much came from the fly artist. So go to for a 5% discount just by clicking that link.

As always here is a list of materials I used.
Hook: Firehole 718 (size 8) -
Alternative Hook: Risen Natural Bend 200r -
Thread: Veevus 10/0 in brown -
Wing and tail: Natures Spirit Stimulator Deer Hair (or comparadun hair) -
Wire: Fly Tying wire (small/copper) -
Dubbing: FTD Bull Frog (caddis orange/light amber) -
Hackle: Brown and Grizzly Dry Fly Hackle -
Head Resin: Solarez Ultra Thin -

Vise: Renzetti Traveler -
Bobbin: Stonfo Bobtec -
Scissors: Risen Mitton -
Bodkin - Pin Vise -
Whip finisher: Dr. Slick brass -
Hair Stackers: Medium Sized Stacker - And ultra small Renzetti stacker -
Fly Tying Bench: Oasis Walnut Compact Bench -

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