The late Jack Gartside created quite a number of fly patterns during his long fly tying and fly fishing career. Jack’s Soft Hackle streamer is a one of his most popular and earlier fly patterns. The Soft Hackle Streamer has been adapted for targeting a number of sportfish species. These include bass, pike, snook, baby tarpon, trout, striped bass, steelhead, and Atlantic Salmon to name a few.
The fly can be tied for either saltwater or freshwater. Choose hooks based on where you plan to fish the pattern, and for the species you want to target. The colors selected should also be tailored for the specific species. The fly is tied similar to the famous Alaskabou or Popsicle fly designed by west coaster George Cook, but there are a few differences in the fly patterns. The Gartside fly is tied with a front hackle of water fowl and the marabou is tied in butt first.
The marabou is an excellent choice of material and imparts a lot of life and action to the fly when it hits the water.
There are thousands of variations of Russel Blessing’s Woolly Bugger out there, and I like to tie a few for a couple of my boxes. I’ve even been known to tie a few up for my pike box. Here is a cool variation from Lou DiGena (http://flyandfin.blogspot.com/) that I really liked and wanted to share. I am picky about my own buggers and hate seeing poorly tied or monotone flies. Patterns that incorporate grizzly or badger hackles with a nice taper in the hackle are always welcome in my box. Lou uses pearl braid as the body material here and when the hackle is wrapped to sit between the wraps of the braid, it will really add some durability to the pattern. That combined with the counter wrapped wire will make sure it sees many fish before it needs to be retired. Enjoy the show and drop by Fly and Fin to thank Lou for the video! Also be sure to check out their other content on their youtube page.
It’s groundhog Day woodchuck chuckers and so after a bit of a hiatus, I’m back. I just finished watching my obligatory session of the movie Groundhog Day and now I offer you a selection of flies inspired by the hair of the great hog (rat….)