Fly Of The Week
Pink Puff
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Fly Tying Terms

Pink Puff
Photos and text by James Castwell

'Pink Puff's' come in several sizes and material combinations, but most are a hook with some whitish material between two grizzly hackle tips and a pink head with some type of eyes. When it is tied on a number six or eight hook it is usually called a mini-pink puff, on a four or two, just a pink puff. You can vary the material in color to a pinkish to whitish, with or without some flash stuff, the head from pink to orange, the eyes from bead-chain to dumbbell. They will still be a pink-puff, so far I have not seen two tied exactly alike. Also, I have not seen any 'hatches' or 'schools' of these things while fishing. One thing is certain though, bonefish love the things. I tie them in two sizes, six and four and seem to do alright with them. They have long been our favorite fly for bonz. Not the only one we use, but, it is our 'go to' fly and usually the first one we tie on.

Materials: Pink Puff

    Hook:  Saltwater type, 4, 6, 8.

    Thread:  What ever you like from A to 6/0, I like to use 3/0 or kevlar or floss. Pink.

    Wing:  None.

    Tail:  None.

    Thorax:  Some whitish/pinkish/sparkly stuff, two grizzly hackle tips, pink/orange chenille.

    Eyes:  Bead-chain or dumbbell.

Tying Steps:

1. Bend down or break off the barb, fasten the hook in the vise and attach the thread.

2. Mount the eyes on top of the hook and get it tight, several wraps in an H and X pattern will do the job. Give it your favorite glue now.

3. Here I have tied in a bunch of Mirage, notice I have tied it in by it's middle, it will get folded back next. This locks it in.

4. Now fold it back and take a few turns to hold it. Notice the notch ahead of where it is tied down. This will help hold the ends of the hackle stems which come next.

5. Tie in two grizzly hackle tips, one on each side. Strip the ends first, notice how the ends hang over the eyes and that notch I mentioned. Tie the ends down tight in this notch which will secure them from pulling out.

6. Strip the ends of your chenille, tie it in and wind it around the eyes, tie off and glue the end.

Thought you might like to see where I tie.

Fishing Instructions:

Rather obviously, these in some way represent a shrimp life form. In skinny water use bead-chain eyes and strip it like a shrimp 'getting outta town.' Short strips, eight inches or so, pausing briefly in between. As you fish deeper water adjust the weight of the fly by using light or heavy dumbbell eyes. It is still a shrimp, fish it as above.

Rarely will you get a 'strike' but, the fish will pick it off of the bottom, munch it a bit and then tear off for the next zip-code. Be ready to control your slack line, get him on the reel, lift your rod high to keep the line off the water, try to keep the mist from your screaming reel from fogging up your glasses and try not to cut yourself on your fly-line backing. Your first feeling of any control will come when (the first time) you get your fly-line back on your reel. Runs of well over 150 yards are common, I use 250 yds of backing. By the way, if you see a shark becoming interested, lock your line down, point the rod straight at the fish and break him off fast. He 'may' have a chance if you do. Nothing makes a guy sicker than watching a shark devour a bonefish he didn't give a chance to. ~ JC

For more great flies, check out: Beginning Fly Tying, Intermediate Fly Tying and Advanced Fly Tying.

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