The Dark Stone Fly

by Jonathan

This is a pattern more popular in the USA , and New Zealand , than here in the UK. It is a large fly that makes only a brief appearance as an adult fly. In it’s nymphal stage it is a generous morsel for a trout.

I would suggest a long shank 8 hook for both the nymph and the adult fly. The pattern I have tied is from a book by an American author , Edson Leonard , dated in the 1950s. A large pheasant tail nymph with a leaded underbody would be adequate for the nymphal stage.


The Dressing

  • Hook – Long Shank 8 ( light wire )
  • Tail – Bronze Mallard ( a generous bunch ) optional
  • Rib – Fine  Mono
  • Body – A mix of brown and grey Seals Fur. Dub 3/4 of the hook length. After tying in build up a base for the wing. The wing has to lie flat along the top of the body. If the wing ‘ cocks up ‘ carefully unwind and apply more even turns to the base and try again.
  • Hackle – 2 Cree Cock Hackles ( brown as an alternative ). Wind the 2nd hackle through the 1st. Make a nice neat head and tie off ( as an option you can trim the underbody hackle fibres ).
  • Wing – Brown Turkey quill , doubled and tied flat .
  • Antennae – ( optional ) bronze mallard fibres.

This is an easy pattern to tie and it just might be useful to have a couple tied in case you are there on the right day.


Happy Fishing

Dave Cammiss and the Team


{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

Peter Balazs January 27, 2010 at 7:09 pm

Hello Dave,

Thanks for the information. It is not that urgent just wanted to know where I can acquire one from. I heard somewhere that the griffin patriot is not the best if I wish to tie small (16-22) flies. What is you experience? I am one of those blokes who do not tie overly big flies. I normally use hooks between size 20 and 8 or maybe 6.

Thanks Dave or whoever is willing to chip in!

Best regards,


DaveC January 27, 2010 at 11:30 am

Hi Peter
reference the griffin patriot vice . I have had a word with my old mate Steve Parton here in Nottingham. He does usually stock them but is out of stock at present. If you e-mail him with details he will get you one in from the US.You can contact him on
DaveC.and the Team

Peter Balazs January 26, 2010 at 8:56 pm


Sorry but I could not read all the posts to get an answer to my question. Could any of you tell me where I can buy a Griffin Patriot Cam vice? I have already browsed the UK sites for one but all I found was the Blackfoot Mongoose and the Montana Mongoose on the Celtic Flycaft website. I am just wondering if it was available in the UK or I would need to order it from the US?

Thanks for your help!

Tight lines!


irish angler January 6, 2010 at 8:37 pm

happy new year to you to dave hope your head is ok

DaveC January 3, 2010 at 9:15 pm

Hi Irish angler
Happy New Year.
There will be another one up fairly soon. We have been having very cold weather recently and this bunker is like a cold store and the roads are very difficult…..I did try making a hole in a neighbours drive with my head on the ice. We can repair the drive when the frost has cleared.I will be spending some time for the next few weeks making trips to London…..errands of mercy. Hopefully things will pan out fairly soon.
Happy Fishing
DaveC.and the Team

irish angler January 3, 2010 at 7:16 pm

any chance of a new vid for the new year?

DaveC January 1, 2010 at 5:39 pm

Hi Tony
Let me wish you a Happy and prosperous New Year.
Thanks for your comments. If you want to dub hair or any dubbing material you must pull the thread through beeswax or similar to make the thread tacky for the dubbing material. Pulling the thread thro 2-3 times should be enough. When you apply the dubbing use only small amounts at a time( my mentor 60 plus years ago used to tell me put out what you think you need then halve it.) When you spin it on to the thread spin in only one direction. Aim to do no more initially than one and a half inches at a time . When you wind on the hook use touching turns. Always rib with braid or wire , winding in the opposite direction to strengthen.
Let me know how you get on.
Happy Fishing
DaveC.and the Team

Tony Percival December 31, 2009 at 7:02 pm

David, When tying a STONEFLY, you mentioned, in passing, ‘always make sure your ‘material’ is well g waxed. Could you please explain to what you were refering. I am a beginner, in the true sense of the word, so know nothing other than what you have showm me. Tony Percival.

DaveC August 26, 2009 at 8:13 pm

Hi Gabby
If you were brave enough to look in my tackle bag you would see a real hotch potch of fly boxes, some bought ,some given and some have been with me for 60 yrs. or more.
If you are trout fishing and prefer to travel light get a size that will comfortably fit in your jacket pocket. If you are a boat angler most of them prefer much larger fly boxes to accommodate flie for their evey need whilst they are afloat.
Get a box that floats, is easy to open, and is foam lined top and bottom.
Put your name and postal code in permanent marker on the lid. Most fly fisherpersons are honest. I bet you will soon have more than one box if you get into tying flies!
Happy Fishing
DaveC.and the TEam

Gabby August 22, 2009 at 12:33 am

I have been tying flies for about a week know and your videos have been a great help. but today i realized that i needed a fly box to store my flies in and i was wondering what type of box you use.


David Cammiss August 3, 2009 at 10:08 pm

Hi Andy
Sorry that you have sold your tackle shop. They are getting very thin on the ground………but I can see why.
If you can give me some idea of what you have I will have words with friends who now tie their own flies.

Andy Henderson August 3, 2009 at 11:37 am

I have over £1000.00 worth of fly tying materials left over from when I sold my tackle shop. I’m prepared to sell for £200.00. Know anyone who may be interested? Mobile no. is 07779172091
Andy Henderson

Edwar Dowell May 12, 2009 at 9:43 pm

Hello dave the vidio was a great help thank you. I was woundering if you could do one on tying foam bug bodies like ants hoppers or spiders i have seen them but not sure how to do it you are the best teacher and i would like to learn how to from you could you show one on foam tying? Keep up the GREAT work.

Oliver May 12, 2009 at 9:41 pm

Hello David,

Though probably as long in the tooth as you, if not longer, I’ve just come across your website for the very first time and I have to write to say a very appreciative thank you for the unselfish help and guidance you give so freely. It’s so refreshing to find your attitude present on the net, almost everything there seems to be aimed and directed at pecuniary gain these days doesn’t it?

I’ve been tying my own flies now for more years than I care to remember and they’re mostly my own variations on Knotted Midge, Griffith’s Gnat and Black and Peacock. As a large hook for me is an 18’s it won’t take you too long to figure out that my fishing is exclusively for wild Brown Trout in an oligotrophic high moorland still water. I notice you fish in Derbyshire once or twice and if you fancy an afternoons and/or evenings free fishing with me please don’t hesitate to let me know it’d be a pleasure to see you.

One thing I constantly struggle with is the tying of the hackles for the flies I mention above, are there any of your videos that deal specifically with this area?

Thanks again for the site.

Kind regards,


topflyman March 16, 2009 at 2:00 pm

Hi Andrew
Thanks for your comments. We do our best to inspire an interest in both the fly tying and fishing. We have had several comments from the other side of the pond about the success they have had with the Baby doll. A firm favourite over here in the 70s. but still catches today. Well worth a try and simple to tie.
Happy Fishing
DaveC.and the Team

Andrew March 14, 2009 at 2:20 am

Hi Dave,
I’ve been meaning to drop you a note for some time. I stumbled across your videos on YouTube a few months ago, when I decided to get back into fly tying. I received my first tying kit about 25 years ago, and after the novelty wore off, it was more of a dust collector. While the patterns you’re tying are somewhat different than what we use here in British Columbia, the techniques are universal. Needless to say, I’m very much “back in the game” and have just completed a very enjoying fly tying course through our local fly shop. My reason for contacting you, is simply to say “thank you”. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed your videos and your approach to the sport.
Enjoy this fishing season Dave, and I look forward to your next video.
Tight lines!

David Cammiss March 1, 2009 at 9:27 am

Hi Stuart
Thanks for your comments. Welcome to Derbyshire!
The Derwent and Dove are both good fly waters. I am a member of Derbyshire County Angling club and we have good fly water on the Derwent at Willersley Castle Cromford and on the Dove at Church Mayfield not to mention other smaller streams and stillwaters. Go to for more details. You can mention my name and website. If you want more info on fishing in the area come back to me, but my club is the one I would recommend first.
Will give you info on the rest if you send your e-mail address.
Happy Fishing
Dave C.and the Team

Stuart Poll February 28, 2009 at 4:44 pm

Dear Sir,
I moved from a small own in Norfolk to Matlock in Derbyshire a few months ago and this has afforded me the opporunity to try fly fishing on the section of the Derwent that runs through Matlock itself. I would like to thank you for the well thought out easy to follow and friendly videos you have produced as they have inspired me to try fly tying instead of using only shop bought flies. However i do have a problem. The Derwent through Matlock is pretty fast with odd swirling curents and greatly variable depth over a short distance and i am quite frankly a bloody awful novice fly fisherman. Would it be possible to include a little info in your videos or the accompanying blurb on when/where each fly is best used and in what manner you would fish it either solo or as a team. I know that you are concentrating on the tying side of things but i am sure there are a few people who come to both fly tying and fly fishing at the same time and any help with overcoming the double handicap of being bad at both would be appreciated.
Yours Sincerely, Stuart Poll.

David Cammiss February 21, 2009 at 9:25 pm

Hi Mark
Sorry to hear you have a problem.
I am not sure how much I can help you. My vice is a Griffin Patriot Cam vice. I do have a user guide but I am not sure if it would help.I could get it photocopied and send it down to you. It looks like you have a Danica vice.First try going to Danica on the net. They do a big range so try to get the model number and if it is one of theirs I am sure they would help. If that fails I will send you photocopy.
Good Luck
Dave C.and the Team

Mark Gilson February 21, 2009 at 12:14 pm

Sorry, David, not a comment but more a cry of ‘HELP!’.
I’ve only just found your site and was delighted to see you using a Danvise. I bought one for a bargain price and on contacting the postal retailer on finding no instructions received the reply “Why do you think it was so cheap?” Do you have said instructions and are they copiable if I can borrow them? My address is: Mark Gilson, Briarwood, Garleigh Road, Rothbury,NE65 7RB. I would, of course, pay all postage or even drive down to Durham to collect/return.

Hope you can help because I can then start tying again!


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: