A nice corbina landed by John Whitaker. photo by John Whitaker.
Jim Solomon with a surf slam of corbina, yellowfin croaker and surf perch. photos by Jim Solomon
Al Q with three beans all landed on the holy moley crab fly.
I always say, When those purple jackarandas start to bloom, the corbina are staging to feed in shallow water.
Me and the boys hit the beach early Sunday morning after hearing about a good yellowfin croaker bite. We were all spread out down the beach of sight, connected only by cell phones. When I got down to the beach in the early morning light I stopped to observe the pattern of the waves and look for structure. To my surprise the Corbina were feeding in the shallow water right at our feet in multiples, sliding and tailing. It was weird because the water temps on my app were showing cooler water, they shouldn’t have been doing this but the water was warm. I told my buddy, dude, change flies, put on a sand crab fly, stay way back and cast, the beans are working. It felt like the middle of the summer, only there was no one fishing, the beach was empty, it was cold with the early June gloom, and no sun. But nobody told the fish. It was a very cool and welcome early season start to the Corbina patrol…The water temps today showed 67 degrees, which totally makes sense! I personally like 68 but what do I know? It’s officially summer bean time, its on!
Qman working the trim. Photo courtesy of Graham Day
Group pic. Photo courtesy of Al Quattrocchi
Some of Graham’s lovely bonefish flies. Photo courtesy of Graham Day
Table full of activity. Photo courtesy of Al Quattrocchi
A fine fly selection ready for the fly box and flats. Photo courtesy of Graham Day
Pre trim Micro Crab. Photo courtesy of Graham Day
I had five awesome students this past Saturday at Bob Marriotts Fly Fishing store that were ready to conquer six classics flats patterns and we all did it! We got into a few fun techniques like making my original “Pinche Claws”, dubbing fly bodies with synthetics, and making mono eyes, DIY style with Tuffleye Core. I also demoed the classic hand whip finish and connecting your fly to your tippet with a non-slip mono loop! All in all, an info packed, four-hour intermediate class that was lots of fun for me to share. It was my first fly tying series class and there will be more. I hope some of you can get in on the next one. It will be more of an advanced master class with a limit of six fly tiers, we will announce some dates next year. I would like to do one on Popovic’s Big Bucktail streamers (Beast, Bucktail Deceiver, and Bulkhead Deceiver) and maybe one on Crustaceans (red crab, pinche crab and crayfish). I will try my best to up your game and show you many inside tying tricks, so don’t get shut out…happy holidays!
I will be doing an intermediate/beginner fly tying class on some classic saltwater flats patterns that I have personally used with success. The class is on December 15th, right around the corner at Marriotts in Fullerton. (info below)
The class is limited to 6 tiers and unfortunately just sold out…
We will cover 6 classic flats patterns. A modified Enrico Puglisi/Crab, Squimp, McVay/Gotcha, Fernadez/Snapping Shrimp, Ververka/Mantis Shrimp And Nauheim/Crazy Charlie. Also time permitting, I will demo how I make my DIY silicone crab legs and mono eyes…it should be a fun session, I hope to see ya there.
Next year I will try to do two more advanced fly tying classes: one on big saltwater streamers and baits, may throw in the Beast! …and one on warm water bass flies.
tight lines… -Al
Flats Fly selection tied by Al Quattrocchi.
My friend Wade Yoshi, is in my humble opinion, one of the best permit fly fisherman on the planet, with well over 300 to hand. I am fortunate to be able to listen and take notes every chance I get when we talk about these crazy fish. I developed my “Pinche Crab” a few years ago based on Will Bauer’s original crab fly, which Will taught me to tie back in the nineties. I modified it, using my home-made sili claws. It makes me happy when an accomplished angler like Wade lets me know we are on the right track…
Hey Al Q,
Been having some bad luck, past few trips. LDR (an acronym for long distance release) 5 fish in both Oct and November. Then this trip, not many shots again, but had every permit see the fly, attack the fly but no hook ups. Today, first shot same thing. Second shot landed the permit, but hook was bent, and broke when we tried to fix it. My guide picked one of your flies, and next shot we landed this nice single. Then for my 4th shot of the day, I casted to a push, and landed a nice bonefish on your fly….
Local angler and fishing buddy, John Whitaker lands a nice baby tarpon on one of my new Pinche crab prototypes a few weeks ago in the southern Yucatan. Seemed like this tarpon liked it. Click to enlarge. Photo courtesy of John Whitaker.
As soon as I am comfortable with how this fly swims I will post a step by step. Still working out the kinks… 🙂
I just sent out a few of my Sili-Crabs to a good buddy back east to target permit on the flats. These crabs legs are hand crafted out of a artist woodcut block, sprayed with release and then poured with a fast cure silicon. I can color them silicone pigments or after they cure with water-proof markers. Once the legs are made the rest of the fly is pretty easy to finish. I will try to put up a tying sequence soon. My inspiration for these realistic crabs were the Hiromi crabs which set the bar for crab flies a few years back. Hiromi hand cut the legs for his crabs individually out of rubber gloves. My tend to be a little more production style. When I do the article on these I will show how these can be weighted in various ways.