Tail Fly fishing Magazine is coming to print September 2016.
Visit the new website http://wwwtailflyfishing.com and subscribe today
The pleasure of being an editor is to live in the stories that constantly come across your desk. As always, this issue contains an exciting assortment of tales from various corners of the earth, all of which explore the theme of why saltwater angling generates such passion.
In J.P. Samuelson’s current piece, “South West Pacific”, the desire to “get deep into the…backing” fuels a quest of epic proportions for a desperate angler. Following Samuelson’s narrative, one is struck by the almost manic urgency that simmers beneath the mission to find fish. Likewise, in Dave Winters’ “Bad to the Bone”, the fish are not always the only targets of deception on a crowded flat. “Getting into the backing” is a universal compulsion that reappears throughout this issue as the authors battle seasickness, face the threat of shark attack and return again and again to places they know so well.
Fly fishing lends itself to good stories and it has done so in the Western canon since Dame Juliana Berners first attached horse hair to hook in 1496. Since then, we have come a long way. The stories in this issue of Tail explore the desire to fish and those elements of the experience that are most fundamental.
Editor in Chief
Often as one year closes and another begins, I fight back a sense of nostalgia. The temptation to reminisce and examine the year’s events is an annual impulse that waxes in that time between Christmas and December 31. In some ways, perhaps because I am an editor, our turn around the sun always feels like a work in progress that on the stroke of midnight must be signed, stamped and submitted.
Reflection upon the year, a ledger of achievement and loss, challenges us to find meaning in the tumult of everyday life. For me, the sight of false albacore leaping over a white capped sea or the glow of a harvest moon shining down on a striper’s flank comprise the season’s best elements. And yet the valleys that lie opposite those peaks are deep indeed. Our exuberance for the next season is tempered by thoughts of those who will not be here to share it.
Editor-in-Chief John Melfi, well known to the angling community for his fly fishing and writing skills, died suddenly this autumn. John is remembered for his friendly, generous character and enthusiasm for pursuing all fish species. His loss has been felt by all, especially those who were closest to him both on and off the water.
Norman MacLean understood the loss of a great angler. In his exploration of grief along the Big Blackfoot River, immortalized in A River Runs Through It, the river itself provided a language of understanding.
“Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it. The river was cut by the world’s great flood and runs over rocks from the basement of time. On some of those rocks are timeless raindrops. Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs.”
Thank you John for your own words, your service to Tail magazine, and most of all your passion for fishing that continues to inspire others to take up the long rod.
Looking ahead to 2016, there is hope beyond the snow banks and frozen wastes that ensconce my home in New England. Elsewhere in the world, brightly colored fish are prowling along sun dappled flats as they forage within an angler’s reach. Thoughts of warm currents and exotic destinations may jump start the imagination from its winter torpor (or drive mad those who are unable to dig out).
The articles in this issue of Tail can easily stave off the symptoms of cabin fever. Join a DIY bonefish angler on the island of Guanaja or cast crease flies (yes, you heard me correctly) for bones on the flats of Andros Island. Take a tour of the Clutch fly rods factory or delve into the colorful hyper-realism of artist Ashton Howard. While I cannot shovel the snow for you, this is about the next best thing.
Happy New Year and tight lines from all of us here at Tail Fly Fishing. May this season be one that brings personal bests in every way.
Editor in Chief
Tail Fly Fishing Magazine – Issue 20
Welcome New Editor Joshua Wrigley!!
As November arrives, anglers in the Northeast heave a sigh knowing that the
fall run is nearly at its end. Aside from a few late fish that may show up around
Thanksgiving, the majority of them have already passed by on their way to warmer
haunts in the Mid-Atlantic. Evenings no longer involve the ritual of preparing
tackle for the next day’s outing, carefully tying on leader and fly so that it can be
transported in the darkness.
Now that the season has reached its twilight, the accumulated sand of months spent
traipsing up and down beaches spills from trouser pockets along with line clippings
and bits of stray bucktail, all mementos of the unending quest for striped bass.
In this issue, you’ll read the latest on striper conservation, see what other anglers
have in their fly boxes, untangle the ins-and-outs of fly lines and ponder the
question: What is fishing really about?? Ruminate on these and more with us here at
J O S H W R I G L E Y
Editor in Chief – Tail FlyFishing Magazine
SELECTING THE RIGHT FLY
Selecting flies for a trip can be difficult and time consuming even though a labor of love.
Picking bonefish flies is incredibly difficult due to the diverse habits and diet of this species.
In the coming months we will be doing a full color feature in Tail Fly Fishing Magazine on bonefish flies for the top destinations throughout the world. With a focus on crab and shrimp we plan to highlight the species and the patterns we make to imitate them.
Here’s a very short preview of the feature coming to TAIL:
Belize – Ambergris Caye (San Pedro) to Xcalak in Mexico
The bonefishing in the southeastern Yucatan can be rough if you don’t have the right flies.
Bonefish here are typically smaller and forage for crabs and shrimp along the reef and in the eel grass.
Dark patterns that blend into the grass are absolutely necessary or you will not get an eat.
We learned this through trial and error and talking to the guides that fish there.
Patterns that are small, we are talking really small work best.
Use hook sizes #6 and #8, on occasion you can get away with a #4 hook.
Tie sparsely if you are tying your own and use lots of dark tans and brown, as well as olive.
Orange and pink flies don’t work here, you might get an eat on an pink fly but there won’t be many.
SALT premium flies by flyfishbonehead now offers a 12 fly selection specifically for the bonefish of northern Belize called the Ambergris collection.
Our AMBERGRIS COLLECTION is a must if you are planning to fish Ambergris Caye or elsewhere in the southeastern Yucatan or northern Belize. You can wade for bonefish along the beaches in San Pedro but you better have some of these with you. The finicky bones in northern Belize demand a compact, dark,and sometimes flashy fly.
These are well tied flies that won’t fall to pieces after a catch. Fish with confidence, knowing that if
they don’t eat these flies…they’re not eating!
We will be featuring more tips for bone fish on the fly for places like, Hawaii, Christmas Island, Turks & Caicos, the Bahamas and many more.
Stay tuned for more info and check out Tail Fly Fishing Magazine.
You can read it for free anytime online
19 – TAIL FLY FISHING MAGAZINE is the totally free publication of Flyfishbonehead. Your support is greatly appreciated and without you, this wouldn’t be worth it. Please help spread the word by sharing articles and links and, if you have a Facebook account, like us and our posts! We encourage you (if you haven’t already) to join our growing army of saltwater fly anglers and become a member of Flyfishbonehead.
Hunt Giant Trevally (GT) on the Fly
What’s the next fish species you’re hunting? If you’re up for a challenge, we highly recommend the Giant Trevally. This fish of many names is quickly becoming a premier target for fly fishing fanatics every where to pursue.
Here’s what an angler should know before embarking on a trip to land a GT…
An incredibly strong, ferocious and aggressive reef fish. It is a large member of the jack family and is also known as the Giant Kingfish, Pacific Jack Fish, Goyan Fish, Lowly Trevally, Barrier Trevally, Ulua in Hawaii, Mamulan in the Marianas, Rōnin-aji in Japan and just plain GT for short. The Giant Trevally is similar in shape and appearance to a number of other large jacks and trevallies, having a large profile secondary to its muscular compressed oval body. GT’s are normally a silvery color with occasional dark spots although males may be black once they mature. The fish grows relatively fast, reaching sexual maturity with a length of approximately 60 cm at three years of age. With a documented maximum length of greater than 5.5 feet (~2 meters) and a weight of 175 lbs. (80kg), fish this big (or even close to this size) are extremely rare, with the species only occasionally seen at lengths greater than 3 feet (~0.8 meters). The Hawaiian Islands seem to have the largest fish, so if you are aiming for a trophy….Aloha, GTs over 100 lbs. (45 kg) are there.
Keep in Mind: Only three GTs over 100 lbs. (45 kg) from non-Hawaiian destinations have been reported to the IGFA.
GT’s Geography: The Giant Trevally is distributed throughout the tropical waters of the Indo-Pacific. They range southward from South America in the west to Hawaii in the east, as far north as Japan and southern Australia. They range along the coasts of three continents and many hundreds of smaller islands and archipelagos in the Indian Ocean.
GT’s Location Preference: GT’s inhabit a wide range of ocean environments as well as some non-marine environments. They usually start as juveniles in the safety of estuaries, shallow bays and lagoons, as most species do. These juveniles are also well known to live in waters of very low salinity such as coastal lakes and upper reaches of rivers. They tend to prefer brackish waters similar to baby Tarpon and Jack Crevalles. GT’s move to deeper reefs, offshore atolls, large embayment’s, bombora or drop-off channels as they become adults and realize their speed and power.
How to Hunt the Flats King:
Keep in Mind: You have a GT on the line? Prepare yourself, it’s time for battle against the ferocious beast. They know their domain, are incredibly strong and they will do anything to get off your line, except jump.
Most of the time, you will be chasing solitary GT’s on the flats. They are not difficult to locate since they aren’t quiet as they are pushing a lot of water. Solitary hunters have an advantage over pack hunters when you throw a fly at them because they are the only hunter there to attack. They will aggressively assault your fly and you will know that there is a GT at the end of your line. Some larger and bolder GT have been seen eating a lobster head first while it’s in a defensive stance. So you can image what they would do to a fleeing fly. The name of the game is creating the illusion of distress. If you cast a fly into the range of a GT, strip it effectively making lots of noise thus creating the impression that it is a desperate bait fish fleeing for its life, you will probably be successful. They are there to eat and you should be able to entice one to attack. That being said, they aren’t injudicious so it might take some convincing for them to come on to the flat which is why many anglers will just chum for them..
Once hooked it is absolutely essential to high stick (Click HERE to read about how to “High Stick” to get your GT on board) as you have just infuriated one tough fish. The run of a GT is not like the run of a bonefish. They go in a zigzag motion and frequently turn around to come straight toward you which is pretty much the opposite of the blistering straight line sprint of the bonefish.
GT is no doubt the strongest flats fish on the planet. If you get to fish for and land it, reminisce and treasure the experience.
Keep in mind: It’s a difficult species on many levels.
Flies to Use:
Baitfish imitators, but our friends in Australia really like poppers.
Depending on size of fish you can tie them on hooks from a 1-0 to a 5-0.
Most Big Poppers (Yellow/green Blue/White & Pink/White)
Trey Comb’s Sea Habit (for almost any big salt water fish)
Enrico Puglisi’s Peanut Butter (Black/White, gray/White)
Any Glass Minnow
Shop the Flyfishbonehead Fly Shop or contact us for special order items.
Search our HD Video Fly Tying Library for specific flies and fly tying videos.