‘Tis The Season (Fly Gear Check)

Tarpon season is finally here! Although a little late this year, migratory fish are starting to trickle in to Central Florida waters and I have been seeing more and more every weekend. Whether you prefer live bait, artificial lures or fly one thing is certain, planning is an essential process in catching these powerful fish. As a “fly-guy” I know that a quality hook, a well placed fly and strong leader construction is key to getting a big Tarpon to the boat. The time spent in front of the vice, tying leaders and testing equipment is equally as important as being on the bow of the boat. Here are a few fly tips I practice that may help give you the upper hand.

-Keep your Box full

Spend a little extra time behind the vice and make sure your flys are tied and you have plenty in the same color. You never know what color they will hone in on that particular day. Water quality, cloud coverage and geographical area all play a factor in choosing the color and pattern for the day. A quick change in presentation is often key in getting the fish to eat.

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– Use quality equipment and materials

*Strong hooks are essential: Owner, Gamakatsu & Tiemco are some of my personal favorites.

*High-Grade Leader: Berkley Vanish, Seaguar Premier & Yozuri HD usually hold their end of the bargain.

*Quality Fly Line: Royal Wulff, and my new favorite Air Flow Ridge this line cast and shoots very well and now has a clear FLOATING tip. Perfect for fishing the beach and other clear water areas.

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-Test your equipment

I like to pull on my constructed leader, fly and fly line with about 12lbs of pressure or so before I ever wet a line. I use an O-ring I have attached to my door frame in my tying room. Always keep in mind “your equipment is only as strong as it’s weakest link”.

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Now go catch em up!

–  Sawyer