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Thread: Tarpon Flies How To Book or Site? Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
03-26-2007 04:46 PM
juro I am no expert but I am starting to understand them much more with the exposure I've had in recent years.

My take is that lagoon tarpon are best in the morning and evening hours or in hard running tides when they get excited. Even in stagnant waters if they get on the prowl at dawn you can expect hot and heavy action.

Like any fish when they are hot to trot they will hit about anything including poppers and clousers etc. When you have jaded a few by jumping their brothers they start to get hesitant although they seem to stay curious they don't eat as well after a few hookups from a given pod. Smart fish actually.

Rovers in a lagoon are different fish and each is naive to your presence (see the video clip from StKitts). So you won't fish to jaded tarpon until the next time you encounter these same fish another day and if you're lucky more just keep coming.

Pods hanging around a fisherman's cleaning station are a different story, you can easily hook a handful but then the group seems to catch on and get real picky.

That's when the SW creeper does it's thing. They seem to eat the little shrimp fly even after their brothers have been tearing up the place whereas the creasefly or anything weighted requires a little more reckless abandon than they have to offer once spooked, and some flies like flashy deceivers actually made them swim away in a rush.

Then there are the restaurant tarpon. Hordes of 6 foot long beasts who are picky enough to prefer snapper and mahi mahi over french fries and fillers. No lie. I didn't fish for these as tempted as it was.

I did make casts to cruising 50#+ fish that moved laterally in strong currents to inhale the fly which was swung like it was in a steelhead river (PR had strong tides).

I still like the smaller sized tarpon best while on foot - not to exceed 50 pounds.
03-26-2007 02:43 PM
juro Oh that was just a reference to the Chapel Run on the Skagit where Pete and I fished one morning. I landed a hefty native buck on this fly.

As far as this fly I usually tie at least three after the butt (head) often 5 for steelhead. The more segments, the more creepy it looks and it seems to have better appeal.

Some of the best tarpon hooks are short so you can add a tube extension (plastic) or tie this as a tube fly. Probably would work well to do the toothpick trick so if the fish pops the leader you get the tube back.

When are you goin?
03-26-2007 02:12 PM
Eric Many thanks,

I'm off to tie up a few.

I'm guessing No. 1 or 1/0 for the 'poons? (I'm after smaller 'poons)

Also, Juro, I'm curious about the name. Whence "Chapel"?


03-26-2007 02:04 PM
juro Eric (,Pete)

It's more of a "creeper" which is the original summer run version before the more pronounced sandbug (winter dredging).

I will post a pattern but verbally...

materials include
scintilla shrimp dubbing
mallard flanks or wood duck
tan, red or pink hackles
pearl flashabou
dull orange thread

tie in three strands of flashabou then dub small ball of dubbing on the bend.

cut a forked segment from a symmetric wood duck flank to make horns

tie in behind the dub ball to flare

palmer hackle over

dub in the next segment, horns, hackle


this fly can be tied in any size and is a killer on steelhead

i've kept it a secret for over a decade, except for a few friends like leland miyawaki who has driven me crazy with his success stories with it over those years

tied in a larger size it just drives tarpon nuts!
03-26-2007 01:06 PM
Tarpon Sandbug

The Sandbug that Juro created is the one you are looking fro. For Tarpon, as Juro suggests, I tied some with more of a tan/sand color Vs. the pinkish color that I use for Steelies. The pheasant tippets are light brown/dark sand as is the hackle. Can't wait to tyr them out. I'll try to post a pic and recipe later on.
03-26-2007 12:36 AM
Eric I did a search on "Chapel" and turned up no fly by that name, although the Sand Bug was there.

Is there a dressing for the Chapel somewhere on the Forum and I missed it?

If not, please let us have it. Going to be in Tarpon Land in a few weeks and would really like to have this fly in my arsenal.


03-25-2007 06:51 PM
juro Pete -

Don't forget to tie some of those steelhead flies ala the Chapel. It's been a hot tarpon fly for me, seriously they love it.

Slightly more subtle colors, more of a shrimpy color best.
03-25-2007 06:42 PM
Tarpon Flies How To Book or Site?

I'm looking for a good book(s) that shows (pictures) various step by step techniques for tying Tarpon flies or a web site if anyone knows of any?

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