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Size 10-12, 2x long


Olive 8/0 is unweighted, Black 8/0 if weighted


Olive seal fur or substitute, marabou, or ostrich herl


Medium olive marabou, same length as hook

Hackle: Grizzly saddle hackle dyed burnt-organge
Rib: Copper wire
Wing case: Medium olive marabou tied down full length over entire body (use excess from tail, unless you use the burnt orange marabou for the tail)
Weight (optional) 6 wraps of .020 lead wire at the head

Rickard's Stillwater Nymph

Denny Rickards is a well-known still water flyfisher, author, and tyer. His flies are very simple, but also very deadly. Yet, his patterns are precise, and in his demonstrations he doesn’t hesitate to point this out. The reason that I chose this pattern for the fly of the month for June is that it’s the fly that won the one-fly contest last year for former president Rick Radoff…well, Rick’s skills actually won it, but he attributes his success to this fly. Rick will probably kick my behind for revealing his secrets, but I’d be willing to bet that he has another trick or two in his bag (probably another fly or two engineered by Denny Rickards). Who knows whether this fly will work this year…but that’s fishin’ as they say. Here’s what Rickards says about fishing the fly: “Top foot with the intermediate or just off the bottom in shallow water with an intermediate, Type I or II line.” For a retrieve rhythm he recommends: “A slow hand twist or a short four to six-inch pull-and-pause.”


  1. If you use weight, place 6 wraps near the hook eye, leaving enough room for the head. Cover the lead and hook shank with thread. Place a drop of Flexament on the lead.

  2. Tie in the marabou tail. It should be somewhat sparse, and the length of the hook shank. Use marabou that is long, and don’t trim the butts as they will become the wing case. However, if you use the burnt orange marabou for the tail, then you’ll need to tie in some olive marabou at this point for the wing case, to be pulled over the body later.

  3. Tie in the copper wire at the same point, and push it to the rear and out of the way for now.

  4. Tie in a burnt-orange saddle hackle by its tip, at the same point.

  5. Dub a slim body with the seal fur or substitute, or using marabou or ostrich herl. Don’t be tempted to tie a full body; that’s verboten according to Rickards. The dubbing should end about 1/16” behind the eye.

  6. Wind the hackle forward, making no more than 4 turns. Tie it off at the same forward spot as the dubbing.

  7. Weave the copper wire forward, making about 6 turns. Tie it off also at the same point.

  8. Bring the marabou butts over the top of the fly and tie them down at the same point.

  9. Form a nice smooth head and whip finish.

See ya on the creek…or, in this case, the bass pond!!!

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Copyright 1998 by Granite Bay Flycasters unless otherwise noted.