Over years some things stay the same, and some grow. And then there are those that get smaller in size. Flies for educated fish fall into that category, even though for the most part it’s been assumed that larger size indicates better food to fish. “In the 1950s and 1960s you could hit the last fish in a string in the tail with a 4/0, 5-inch long fly and it would wheel and eat the fly,” Stu Apte recollects about tarpon flies. “Do that today and the whole pod heads for Cuba.”
It follows that today’s tarpon flies are increasingly sparse yet full of movement; and adaptive fly tying being key to success, make sure to check out Fly Life Magazine’s feature article by Don Reed.