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Tarpon
Fly Tying
Steve Gobin
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Tarpon
Tarpon have been called "The Silver King"....King of fly rod game fish. The reputation is well deserved. Big tarpon can be truly intimidating. Medium size tarpon can be exhausting. Baby tarpon can be exhilarating, miniature replicas of their behemoth parents.

Tarpon remind me of over-sized, lazy trout in a very rich lake. They have their feeding cycles but don't waste any energy. They are however, capitalistic feeders and will often take nearly any fly if it is really easy to catch. A straight-on shot will usually get results. The odds go way up if the fly is presented at a level slightly above the fish's eyes and retrieved at a pace to keep it about two feet ahead of his nose for at least five seconds.  Fly action is important. Flies that have a lot of wiggly, flowing materials are most productive. Tarpon are 

nearly like steelhead in that they move freely between fresh and salt water. Tarpon can migrate many miles inland, up rivers and roam head water lakes and creeks. Some jungle rivers are turbid. At times, usually during freshets, tarpon seem to enjoy the cover. As in all rivers, when there is bed load shift, there are a lot of prey species exposed for exploitation. Tarpon within these turbid rivers can be very aggressive feeders.  The greatest of these tarpon rivers in Central America is the Rio Grande, which is the border between Costa Rica and Nicaragua. Silt load

from the Rio Grande stains the blue water of the Caribbean for several miles. Tarpon school here in unbelievable numbers. The trick is getting them to find your fly in the muddy water.  

Dan Blanton has fished this area a lot. He reasoned that if tarpon couldn't see the fly, maybe they could hear it. He fastened large, hollow bead-chain eyes to a bulky fly. It was an instant success. The holes in the bead chain act the same as air blown across an open pop bottle. They whistle. That is what he called it, the Whistler. Whistlers are productive anywhere tarpon hold in deep or muddy water.

We have modified the Whistler series for the jungle river waters of southern Belize such as the Monkey River which in flood can be nearly thick enough to plow. These flies are tied with extra large eyes, and are heavily dressed to buck a lot of water. Fluorescent feathers and hair are combined with liberal amounts of holographic flashabou for maximum visibility.  Want to know more about Tarpon Flies click here.


The Monkey RiverWhistler

HOOK:  TMC 800S, #3/0

THREAD: fluo. orange 210 denier flat waxed
TAIL: black bucktail and silver holographic Flasabou
BODY: round ball of fluo. orange chenille
HACKLE: fluo. orange dressed large & heavy
EYES: extra large nickel plated bead chain

This has proven to be a very productive Tarpon fly not only in muddy water, but also where Tarpon are holding and feeding in deep water.  Some Tarpon have been taken at depths of 30 feet with this fly presented with very fast sinking shooting heads.  While not as exciting as fishing shallow water, it beats catching no fish.


Free Seminar !!!
January 7 - Steve Gobin ties classic spey flies at The Fly Fishing Shop.
Click for more information.


Maxima Leader

Many anglers believe that there is no stronger, more durable leader material than Maxima.  Period.  It has gained fanatical following of the most renowned trout, bass, steelhead, salmon and saltwater anglers. This is because of its 100% constancy and total reliability. Maxima has a high durability finish that avoids nicks and abrasions. This finish also helps to control knot slippage, which is a major factor in knot breakage.

We have a good supply of Maxima Chameleon, Ultra Green and the hard-to-get Clear Maxima Tippet Material.  You will like our new lower prices. (click here) !!!

If you would like to read a  detailed Deschutes River Fishing Report, click here.

*  Sandy River Fishery Information Bank

Daily Fishing Report
Watershed Over-view
Sandy River Book
Biology Etc. 
Watershed Council Web Site
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Mark & Patty

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