Is it too early to be thinking about Skwalas? Hell no. It’s never too early to be thinking about any hatch when int comes to fly tying. It helps you to avoid the most typical scenario come the busy season. You know the drill: Great day on the water, hatch is on and you reach in the box only to discover you’re a little low on that one fly you thought you had, you know the one that caught all the big ones last season. So get to it. Tie in the winter and avoid that sinking feeling when your last skwala pattern just got munched by a world record stick fish.
I’ve featured this tutorial from Dan Mahoney of Missoula on the Fly before, but it bears repeating. What was once a little known secret, purple flies have become common in most people’s boxes on western rivers, and purple skwala patterns just do the trick. An extended body fly allows you to run lighter hooks and are a bit easier to cast, and just look plain old awesome as well. A hardworking guide pattern from one of the hardest working guides in town, and one you can have confidence in once the little booger-green stoneflies start making their migration toward the banks. Get busy tying or get busy dying.