Sep 11

Eric’s Gotchas

From reader Eric…

My first trip was in May and I and caught a dozen on plain old Gotchas on Acklins. I threw my whole box of popular flies into schools or cruising big ones with multiple refusals. I tied them all so they will always be my favorite.  Here’s a photo of my first few efforts and my first bonefish… (day 1 of 6) -and saw it by myself!  I’ve only been fly fishing for three years and had a few months of tying and I feel like I’ve hit the big time!  I really enjoy your brain dumps.
Eric English MD
Aka fishbaydoc

simple and effective.

Mar 10

Chernobyl Saltwater Flies

I have no idea if this emerging concept in fly tying carries over to the world of bonefishing.  I have some reason to think it doesn’t, but the idea of a fly that works when nature turns the lights out has me intrigued.  At my local fly shop I saw some glow-in-the-dark materials… flashabou and EP fibers.  I bought them, having no idea what I’d actually do with them, but powerless to resist.

Just as I’m trying to wrap my mind around the possibilities I get the new issue of Flyfishing in Saltwaters which has has the Neon Knight highlighted, a glowing saltwater fly.  Looking around the intertubes I found more materials and even glow in the dark head cement.

I’m headed to Mexico soon, Pacific side, no bones, but some Jack Crevalle, maybe some snook and precious few fishing hours (family trip, not fishing trip).  However… if I can fish after my daughter goes to sleep… well… this would be good news.  How much sleep do I really need… really?

Just in case it might work for bones… here’s what it might look like…

In the light...

Chernobyl Gotcha

Now… non-bonefish applications are probably the most reasonable…

White Clouser in the light

See… now this is where it  gets interesting…

Chernobyl Clouser

If anyone wants to TRY that Chernobyl Gotcha… let me know… I’ll send one to you, but you have to promise to try it and let me/us know how it goes.

Dec 09

More Gotcha's Birthed From My Vice

Brought some new gotcha’s into the world tonight, birthed them from my vice.  I continue to amaze myself with my inability to stay focused on tying the same pattern more than once.  I started tying some gotcha’s with two-tone bodies… Bonefish Tan/Pearl.

Here’s the thing… I don’t know if there is some reason I shouldn’t do this or if this is a good idea.  I don’t have the salt context to evaluate this little tweak.  Moreover, I don’t know what situation would prompt me to use these flies as opposed, to, say, a regular tan  gotcha.  Some  day… some day I’ll be able to call upon some on-the-flats experience, some bit of genuine lived-through memory that will inform my choices at the vice.  Until then… I’ll tinker.

Some #4 two-tone gotchas

At this rate, I should have about 200 or so flies with me when I finally get back to standing calf deep on a Bahamian flat.  I imagine I’ll be paralyzed by indecision.  We’ll find out.

Sep 09

McVay’s Gotcha

I’m not a wizard at the vice.  Mostly, I tie simple nymphs (like the Eng Theng) designed to fool trout and I find that trout are pretty easily fooled when it comes to nymphs (I’m in that “presentation-is-king” school of thought).  To satisfy my bonefish fixation I’ve taken to tying bonefish patterns.  When it comes to bonefish patterns the king (as far as I know) is the Gotcha.  The Gotcha is just a really easy fly to tie and it’s pretty easy to vary an element or two to make it your own.  I tie a lot of Gotchas.  Really, I tie way more than I could really use in the next decade of fishing.  Still… I keep tying them.

Pink Gotcha with some white fox tail

Turns out the Gotcha is McVay’s Gotcha and it has a pretty quirky birth… cab carpet fibers.

There is a tutorial here, at Fly Fishing In Salt Waters Magazine.