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aggie182 01-13-2014 11:31 AM

Non-rope Gar Flies?
Call me crazy, but here is what I am trying to accomplish:

I am going to Louisiana in 3 weeks or so to chase bull reds with the fly rod. We are going guided on a skiff for 2 days, then paddling kayaks the next 2 days. I paddle a Jackson Cuda 14 which I can comfortably stand and paddle in. I have cast the fly rod standing, but never hooked a fish standing.

There is a 6-7 acre somewhat shallow detention pond that is said to have a lot of gar about 2 miles from my house. I have caught some on a crank bait fishing for bass and seen others catch them too so I know some are there at the very least. What I am looking to do is hopefully sight cast and hook in to a gar standing up in the kayak. I am trying to see if I can effectively hook a fish, sit down, and fight the fish so I don't care if I land the fish, as long as I can keep him on long enough to know if I can hook a fish and sit down. I'd rather find this out now than over an oyster bed in Louisiana.

I have read that rope flies, or similar, are the most effective flies for these fish but I don't want to have to untangle a gar from a ball of tangled frayed rope in the kayak. Any ideas? I tied a few sparse 6" long EP fiber flies one a size 1 stinger hook thinking the EP fiber might act as the rope, but be more forgiving on the fish. Any effective patterns would be appreciated.

brookfieldangler 01-13-2014 11:39 AM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
Rope flies definitely work but totally take the fun out of catching gar - especially when it comes time to releasing them.

Getting a hook into them seems to send them into more of a battle mode or at least it seems that way in my experience.

The best hook system I have been able to come up with is almost like a salmon or trout fly with the trailer hook. Tie any flashy baitfish pattern you want on a shank but tie a small, very sharp, trailer hook in. I recommend using some braided multistrand wire for this.

Gar tend hit towards the back or middle of the fly the most so keep that in mind when determining how long to make that tag.

You will definitely miss/lose way more fish than with the rope fly but I guarantee you its way more fun with a hook in their mouth rather than a tangle mess of rope.

A fly rod with a good backbone will help drive that hook home but you will need a softer tip to help absorb some of the headshakes without popping the hook.

bmbailes 01-13-2014 11:58 AM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
thats one of my goals this summer. ive caught a few nice ones by mistake on clousers but that was luck. could you post some pics of streamers you've tied with stingers.

brookfieldangler 01-13-2014 12:12 PM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
I'll see if I can get some tonight

delopez 01-13-2014 12:25 PM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
I fish gar here a lot. I do use rope flies, but often catch them while targeting carp. The best hooks that I've used are small and barbless and very sharp. Tie a pattern, but keep it a high tie. Tie on a trailer just in case they nip the back. A tiemco barbless will go right through the snout, but you'll need a rod with some serious hooking power. I usually double up with a rope fly and a barbless hook. I'm sure larger barbless hooks would work, as well, but I'm just use what I know works. Hope this helps! :)

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aggie182 01-13-2014 12:39 PM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
I plan to go after them with my Sage TCX 9-weight since that is what I will be targeting the bull reds with. I ought to be able to cross their eyes on the hook set with that rod. I have no plans to target them unless they are a lot of fun. I think they are readily available in this detention pond. If they are pretty thick, I can see myself going after them more often, but we'll see. The summer months are probably better but I am going to try Friday. Odds are I will paddle around standing up and not see a darn thing or if I do, screw up the cast. Ahh, I love fly fishing.

---------- Post added at 12:39 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:36 PM ----------

I am thinking about throwing the gopro on my head for this little excursion. In the event I hook in to one, it might be nice footage and in the event I go for a swim, it might be nice footage too.

delopez 01-13-2014 12:41 PM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
They are torpedoes. If you get one big enough, they'll send you right into your backing. However, you might o
Turn most around with the nine weight. Make sure you have an adequate bite guard. They won't bite you off as much as they'll nick the tippet causing you to break off. I use 50 # hard mono. I would think 25 pound would work though.

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stl_geoff 01-13-2014 01:16 PM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
20LB mono leader, this fly on a Gamakastu octopus hook. Game over for them

I catch 100% of the gar I cast at this fly this summer.

They also really enjoy thing in the white/red color combo. So anything in those colors work well. I get em to chase pretty much everything I throw at them , eats come from white/red and the black ops.

delopez 01-13-2014 01:20 PM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
Looks like a black ops variant ;)

oops should have read further and I would have seen the word "black ops" :p

stl_geoff 01-13-2014 01:35 PM

Re: Non-rope Gar Flies?
True story. I use a size 6 I think it is for em.

But those Gama hooks really stick into em good

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