The Snipe and Purple (sometimes called the Dark Snipe) is a classic North Country spider. North Country spiders aren’t particularly hard to tie, but there are some techniques you can use to help create the classic umbrella shape of the hackle fibers and keep the body neat and trim. This Snipe and Purple is often referred to as a good match for the Iron Blue Dun. The Iron Blue is frequently mentioned in older texts, from numerous Yorkshire anglers to Pennsylvania’s James Leisenring, but you hardly ever hear about it today. I like the Snipe and Purple for small, dark stoneflies and especially midges. I also tie this fly on a 1x short, 2x stout hook, add a gold rib, and fish it for steelhead.
A lovely fly, sadly largely forgotten. Thanks for reminding your readers of how beautiful, and effective, these North Country spiders can be.
I relish the thought that the materials list is often: silk and a feather.
Thanks for the videos Steve, well done and straightforward. Will be tying some up for my next trip north. Have to bust Jimmys stones.
Let it swing up at the end of the drift…try some Partridge and Orange, too.
Really nice video and explanation of tying! Ever try the Grouse and Flash?
I have not even heard of it. Do you like it? Thanks for the kind words.
Its a Nick Yardley Pattern with pearl crystal flash body, dk hares ear thorax and grouse hackle. Very bright pattern that works sometimes during caddis hatches. Nice one to add to a team of wets.
[…] called classics for a reason. Once again, Our Lady of the Blessed Snipe and Purple did not fail me. Funny thing! On a day where hatches were at a bare-bones minimum, I saw a little […]