Throughout the Fall angler's in the Lowcountry witness glimpses of frantically leaping shrimp from the shallow depths of tidal creeks and flooded marshes. If you're looking to put a spin on your fishing this season, it's a clear signal to change out those heavy weighted flies for surface working ones. There is nothing quite like seeing a ferociously feeding redfish’s mouth come out of the water opened in a diamond like fashion to inhale a topwater fly. In similar fashion, fishing a Gurgler can be one of the most thrilling ways to catch a fish. It can entice and excite even the most reluctant redfish to smash it as you work the fly across the surface. Therefore, I’ve revisited a classic topwater fly pattern invented by the late tier and iconoclast Jack Gartside to fish effectively and frequently from the “Dog Days” of summer in the grass through the fall low tides.
Hook: Gamakatsu SS15 1/0
Thread: Danville’s 210 Denier Flat Waxed Nylon (Tan)
Tail: Pseudo Hair (Cream)
Flash: Krystal Flash (Root Beer)
Body 1: Thin Fly 2mm (Tan and Brown)
Body 2: Cactus Chenille Large (Root Beer)
Body 3: UV Polar Chenille (Olive Copper UV)
Marker: Sharpie (Copper)
Guards: 40lb Monofilament Weed Guard
Place a hook in the vise. Wrap a layer of thread on the shank. Once the thread is worked back towards the bend of the hook, tie in the Pseudo Hair. In similar fashion, tie in the Krystal Flash.
Cut the two pieces of 2mm foam into half inch size strips.
Cut the strips in a V-shape. (As shown in the photo)
Tie the two pieces of foam on the fly by the freshly cut V-shaped ends. Work your thread forward then backwards towards the bend of the hook to lock down the foam material.
Tie in the UV Polar Chenille.
Tie in the Large Cactus Chenille.
Advance your thread forward. Wrap the Large Cactus Chenille forward. As you wrap the Chenille towards the eye of the hook, palmer the material backwards in order to lay the material down.
Advance the UV Polar Chenille forward sparingly causing a rib effect over the Cactus Chenille body. Tie off with your thread.
Pull the UV Polar Chenille down.
Fold both pieces of 2mm foam over the combined UV Polar and Cactus Chenille body. Tie the foam down just behind the eye.
Measure out the UV Polar Chenille and cut the access material just past the point of the hook.
Tie in a 40lb monofilament weed guard. Whip finish. Add epoxy to complete the fly.
Take your Sharpie and bar the tail several times.
Kyler Gartner of Charleston, SC is a fly fishing enthusiast and brand ambassador for Marsh Wear clothing.