flies for my trip to the keys - Fly Fishing Forum
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Old 03-06-2002, 09:24 PM
sean's Avatar
sean sean is offline
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Rhode Island
Posts: 2,160
flies for my trip to the keys

So I have my tickets, wading locations scoped out, tide information, and possibly a day with a guide set.

So now I have started tying some flies.Not going to need a whole bunch and have narrowed my list to the following patterns:

Crazy charlies
bonefish clousers
Del's Merkin crab fly
Decievers and maybe some needlefish patterns for cudas

So what sizes should I be tying for the gotchas and charlies?

What color combinations will I need? I know I should have tan versions but am curious what others I should tie?

Also what materials are best for the wings on the gotchas?

Thanks for the help as usual,

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Old 03-06-2002, 10:48 PM
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striblue striblue is offline
President of CAC
Join Date: Aug 2000
Location: Plymouth and Chatham, MA
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Sean... tye them on #4 and #6's... also I think it would be well worth it for you book collection to pick up Dick Brown's pattern book, since it not only has the recipes but how and where to fish them. The Gotcha wing is blond craft fur ( or polar fiber) and kristal flash

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Old 03-07-2002, 12:22 AM
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Adrian Adrian is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2001
Location: Connecticut/New England
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Sean, I would add few few 2s as well. I've not fished the keys but from what I can tell they fish bigger flies than in the Bahamas. The good news is the bones tend to run bigger too
When sight fishing, look over your shoulder from time to time, you never know who's behind you
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Old 03-07-2002, 07:05 AM
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juro juro is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Steelhead country|striper coast|bonefish belt
Posts: 20,594
Tie up some beadeye shrimp with a blond craft fur wing spotted with gray pantone and grizzy hackle palmered under the wing. I tied my eyes on the bend, and used microfibbet antennae. This fly worked for me on Bahia Honda.

Felt crab are easy and very effective too although the merkins ride better in the water due to lack of planing effect there is no difference in crawl retrieves.

Throw a couple of good pilchard patterns in the box too - although I was too chicken to cast, huge tarpon were busting the pilchards off the edge of the flats.

If you can find the american wire co. steel leader it's the easiest to tie knots with, I'd guess 17# would be the best match for the leaders you will likely have on. Might have to replace the tippet after using the wire cuda condom.

I will make a call re: meeting our Keys correspondent today, will keep you posted.

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Old 03-07-2002, 09:30 AM
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capt_gordon capt_gordon is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2002
Location: Cape Lookout, NC
Posts: 340
All of the above are good recomendations you should also try a pattern called a "Kwan". When I asked about what flies to get when I was in fly shops down there last time, that was all I saw. Crab patterns of any kind are always good. If you are wading on the Atlantic side a Gotcha or Charlie may work but the fish in the Keys see a lot of flies. If you want to catch a tarpon fish around any of the bridges at night on the outgoing tide. Don't fish from the bridge but rather fromt he shore along the sides. Bring a stripping basket and some waders, it gets a little hairy wading in the dark with just wading shoes on down there. No telling what is swimming by.
Make sure you stop by Bonefish Bob's in Islamorada. it is right next to Sandy Moret's. Bonefish Bob's is where I actually got good info on where to fishthe last time I was down there too. They didn't just try to sell me something. Good luck and have a great trip.
Capt Gordon
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Old 03-09-2002, 07:56 AM
Capt. Mel Simpson Capt. Mel Simpson is offline
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 86
Sean, all of the above is very good info. I'll be down there from the 19th thru the 26th, I pull my boat, about a 6 hour drive. I'm meeting another guide and we will fish with some old friends and customers. Any info you think I can help with please feel free to ask.
Bonefish Bobs is an absolute, I always call him before I leave and he updates me on what's going on. I stay in Islamorada, so I always visit him too, neat guy.

Good Luck, Mel
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