New England Salt Flies [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: New England Salt Flies

12-12-2005, 03:11 PM
I thought I heard almost a year ago that there was a new book about to hit the shelves that was a compiliation of modern saltwater flies for the Northeast. Has anyone heard anymore on this?

On a related note, as I was starting to get into some winter tying this weekend I realized that I have made a significant shift in my tying toward more synthetics rather than natural fibers. This is more true for my tunoid and blindcasting flies. For the flats I still prefer the naturals for that "buggy" look, but with the boat this year and the tuna showing up in July I didn't really dip into my "dog days" flats supplies. How many of you still tie with naturals as your primary material? Have you made a similar move to products like DNA, Mega Mushy, Angel Hair, Super Hair, Craft Fur etc..? These materials seem to be cheaper and are certainly easier to buy. No searching through bins to find just the right bucktail or neck.


12-12-2005, 03:44 PM
Sean..... This is the latest information to date.

Saltwater Flies of the Northeast: Update
Date: 10/25/2005 9:15:23 AM Eastern Standard Time

hello all,
Just a quick update on the status of the book. The book has been with the publisher for a couple of months now and is in the design and layout stage. According to the editor it is schedule for production and printing sometime betwen the latter part of the fourth quarter 2005 or the first quarter of 2006. It is almost there! Thanks again for all your help. I'll write back again when it is done.

Maybe you should put this book on your post Christmas list. :wink:

How many of you still tie with naturals as your primary material?

There still is plenty of uses for natural tying materials. Forget about the catching element for a second. Tiers need to pay attention to what you want the fly to do in the water, sink, float, hold positon. Natural materials are more bouyant and offer resistance in the water. Use this in your designs. Try balancing materials with hook wire sizes too to get the desired effects of your design.

12-12-2005, 04:29 PM
For me it goes in cycles.

It's no secret that certain fish inhabiting certain areas will be gullible for a pattern then learn and resist (as in thumb their snouts) at patterns and presentations that have become old news on the flat.

To not acknowledge this is to be left even more snafu'ed as you are when you do have the right medicine on the tippet. Many people get locked in, even from spring to summer.

I like to think of it as a rapidly evolving thing, not as fast as a virus but not as slow as a horseshoe crab.

As far as synthetics, I love 'em. However most of the new 'offerings' I plan to make to the flats gods this summer are naturals.

12-12-2005, 11:21 PM
I`ve got a couple of bins stuffed with bucktails that haven`t seen the light of day for a couple of years. I`ve switched over allmost entirely to DNA Holofusion. There isn`t much I want to tie that dosen`t lend itself to the DNA. Still keeping the saddles around for Deciever tails.

12-13-2005, 08:22 AM
For me its a foot in both camps but my preference is for natural materials wherever possible.

Simple, sparsely blended bucktail streamers on bendback hooks with a couple of strands of flash served me well on the flats this season even through the dog days of late July and early August.

The only downside is bucktail just isn't as durable as synthetics and the modern ones like DNA look very good.

I also did well with an EZBody crab pattern bounced along in the channels when the flats were quiet.

12-13-2005, 09:43 AM
Flats fishing requires a different mindset than fishing to blitzes and blindcasting channels. To me, forage imitations require subleties that generally cannot be duplicated with synthetics. As an example, rabbit, marabou, hackles, and tapered deer body hair, create subtle movements that cannot be mimiced by synthetics. Craft fur and sili-legs come pretty close, but not quite there. Most of the sand eel, shrimp and crab patterns that I tie for the flats use natural materials. The exception is a sprig of flash on some patterns. Typically these patterns are small, tied on #2, or smaller, hooks.

Having said that, when it comes to flies larger than #2s, synthetics rule because the materials, e.g. unique hair, kinky fibre, bozo hair, etc., are produced in long hanks, ideal for larger baitfish patterns. The exception would be flatwings.

12-13-2005, 10:35 AM
For beater flies for schoolies and bluefish I like to use bucktail because of it's natural taper. You can bang out jiggies and clousers by the doz. and when they get hacked up just put on a new fly.

I like synthetics for flats, big flies or tunoids because they are translucent.

12-13-2005, 10:46 AM
Big Dave hit it on the head for flats fishing with synthetics. The translucency (e.g. deep eel flats colors) has been a hot staple on the flats for years albeit lately a notable percentage of residents have been 'conditioned' :lildevl:

Another aspect I like about this pattern is the breadth of conditions it covers. It might not be the ultimate fly for each individual situation but it's probably the ultimate fly to cover ALL of them.

12-13-2005, 03:15 PM
I am also in both camps. For naturals. the bucktails from our sponsor The Saltwater's Edge are simply the best. The flies I like are called "guide flies." Simple to tie and very effective. Jim Bender's shrimp used by Dave Pearson is such a fly. Juro, your Deep Eel is an example of great synthetic pattern.