Little Dark Kebari

Little Dark Kebari fly in vise

The Little Dark Kebari is an adaptation of the Killer Kebari, which has proven to be both effective and popular. It is a bit smaller and darker, and may be taken by the trout to be a little black stone fly or little black caddis, or any one of the small, dark mayfly nymphs that make up a good percentage of a trout's diet.

It is tied in the Hida Takayama style, and is the same general type of tenkara fly as the Killer Kebari, with a thick yarn body and a soft hackle, although the Little Dark Kebari is tied with starling hackle rather than hen pheasant. The starling hackle is extremely mobile and will pulse with the slightest twitch of your line or smallest current variation.

The charcoal-colored wool yarn body is a blend of light and dark fibers and looks much more lifelike than any uniformly-colored body could. I tie the Little Dark Kebari with the Jamieson's Shetland Spindrift "Oxford" yarn.  

Angler holding brown troutWhatever the trout take it for, they do take it.

Step by Step

Hook in vise, thread started just behind the eye

1. Start thread at hook eye and wrap back about 8 wraps with 6/0 thread (which leaves room for the hackle and the head). The photos show a Daiichi 1530 hook (1X short wet fly hook). You could also use a Daiichi 1550 hook, which is a standard shank wet fly hook.

One ply of 2-ply yarn tied in

2. Separate the two plies of the yarn and tie one in with two tight thread wraps. Clip tag end.

Yarn wound to bend and most of way back to eye

3. Wrap yarn in touching turns back to the bend, and then back to the tie in point. Tie off with two tight thread wraps and cut off tag end.

Starling feather tied in

4. Tie in starling feather by stem. Secure with two tight wraps and clip end.

Finished fly in the vise

5. Make just one wrap with the starling feather, tie off with two thread wraps and clip excess. You should have room for a three or four wrap whip finish to make a small, neat head.

Small brown trout with Little Dark Kebari in its mouth

Of course, you could also follow the tying sequence for the Killer Kebari, using the copper wire underbody and substituting Oxford yarn for Sand color yarn used in the Killer Kebari, and substituting starling for a hen pheasant neck feather. The copper does give you a bit heavier fly, which should fish a bit deeper. The fish seem to like either variation.

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