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Thread: Large Tarpon Flies - what style is best

  1. #1

    Default Large Tarpon Flies - what style is best

    What in your experience works when fishing for large Tarpon?
    Lefty's Deceivers, Clousers Minnows, Seaducers, ALF, Key Style, Cocokroach?

    If you have a favorite fly what hook size and colour do you find is the most successful?

    What advice would you give on how to fish it?

    Tight Lines
    Craig moore

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Jackson Hole, WY
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Large Tarpon Flies - what style is best


    In my experience many flies work depending on what the fish are doing. If they are up and rolling on top you want flies that stay close to the surface. If they are belly rubbing across the flats ( staying close to the bottom) you need a heavier fly that will get down to their depth.

    I've used toads, cockroachs, double bunnies and EP mullet imitations on 1/0 or 2/0 hooks. Best bet is have a variety of fly types on hand and switch out till you find one they like.

    As for how to work the, get it in front of them and keep workin it until they take it or break off. You want to keep the fly in moving right in front of them. Think of it like teasing a kitten with a string, pull it to far away to fast and you lose their interest. And be ready cause the takes are explosive!!

    Good Luck!!!
    My worst day on the water beats my best day anywhere else hands down!!

    Upstream Anglers and Outdoor Adventures

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Northern California
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Large Tarpon Flies - what style is best

    Size of the fly is going to matter where you go. Check with the local boat captains or outfitters for their size recommendations. On the Holbox side of the Yucatan, the guides prefer that their clients use 5/0 and 6/0 hooks for the large migratory Tarpon. On the Campeche side of the Yucatan, recommended flies are going to range from 2/0 to 4/0. I've read that some Florida boat captains are telling their clients to use 2/0 flies.

    I am partial to the splayed feather style flies (Cockroach, Marquesa Sunrise, etc.), but EP fiber flies and Toad style flies are very popular.

    As for tactics, I would defer to the boat captains.


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    south florida

    Default Re: Large Tarpon Flies - what style is best

    I like fishing for tarpon early in the day and late in the day into the night But especially early- like in position fishing before the sky even starts turning grey . On the run to where I'm going if the shrimp are running, there will usually be some that jumped into the skiff on the run to the spot. But a Q-beam shined around will light up their eyes in an any event. So I use a streamer with barred hackle on a 3/0. I tend to use bigger hooks than most of the quides do.

    It there are a lot of mullet around, I'll start with a mullet immitation. If I don't see squat and water is not real clear, bayside I start a black and purple toad deep. Oceanside and clear, a red and yellow splay tailed old school fly or a smaller one in bright colors tied like a cockroach.

    But like Davo said, the presentation is the most important thing. Single file fish moving along the edge of flats are very hard to get the bite from than if two or three are in a V. If one's fins start quivering, likely they will both/all want it, so get ready. Keep it moving in front of them as long as possible, and position the skiff on the flat, if possible, casting from shallow to deep. Then they won't run towards you after the bite when heading for deeper water.


  5. Default Re: Large Tarpon Flies - what style is best

    Having fished for Tarpon on both the gulf and Atlantic off of the Florida coast, I have always asked the boat captain what is working well at the time. I think it depends on location.I have gone fishing in Florida many many times and I have tried my own sizes and varieties but I think the Captain knows best.

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