Posts Tagged ‘Jim Cope stillwater patterns


Stillwater Damsel Pattern (Cope’s Damsel)

I have highlighted this wonderful lake pattern before. It is easy to tie and very productive in brown or olive green. I have tied it as I first encountered it (Jim Cope via NWFFO) , on a Tiemco 200R hook. A down eye hook could be used. It is a slender pattern, with the head/eyes barely thicker than the body.

The tail is pheasant tail fibers tied into and no longer than the length of the abdomen. A body (abdomen) of dubbed hare’s mask, kept very slender. A ribbing of Silver Krystal Flash is wound up through the dubbing toward the plastic dumbbell eyes. The wingcase was tied in first with the tips extending out over the eye. I plan this so that when the tips are pulled back over the top of the eyes/thorax, they extend only half way back to mid shank and no further. Keep the head slender and dub around the plastic eyes. Once the pheasant tail fibers are secured with thread wraps behind the eyes, cut the top pheasant tail fibers to form blunt ends. I have also tied this wing case as a combination of pheasant tail fibers for the legs and paint brush bristles for the wingcase.

Mix the colors between brown, tan, light to dark green. Swim it toward shore or at least parallel in shallower depths.


Fly Tying: Cope’s Callibaetis Nymph (Stillwater Pattern)

Shown this stillwater pattern before by Jim Cope of Central Oregon. In one form or another this pattern has accounted for boo koo fish (rainbow trout, bull trout, kokanee, Atlantic salmon and browns) on lakes far and wide. It has been the most productive Callibaetis pattern I have fished (I have also done well with The Orb and The Little Gray, which I have previously shown here too). My only complaint is the deer hair tail and wing are not durable after repeated fish. That is why I have experimented with a Zelon wing for durability. However, you should try the original to see the juju in play.

Simple as can be to tie: tie in small clump of deer hair for tail; dub a sparse body of Hare’s Mask or even sparser of tan Superfine dubbing. Finish with a sparse, short deer hair wing. That is it. No ribbing or bead. Fish it pre-hatch or in the film during the hatch. Remember it is fragile after repeated removals from the fish. Damn.

Nope, I will never be a production tier. Too random and ADD. It all works. The consistent look escapes me of late. Not concerned…Bottom fly’s wing is too sparse for durability sake..It will still work, but not as long.

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June 2020

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