Zen Fly Fishing: Favorite Flies

The flies that I have greatest faith in are shown first. I try to keep fly selection simple and have a preference for flies that work over all seasons and conditions. I do continue to experiment and evolve the patterns. Click on the picture to see the pattern with application information or to go to other web sites.

Other flies that I have caught perch on are the Screaming Shrimp (orange or red), Micro Shrimp and Surfpercher Red.

It takes me a long time to get comfortable with a new fly. It is hard for me NOT to use my favorite fly on point. I typically use a new fly on drop. Sometimes, I use 2 drops so I can fish with 3 flies. With a lot time on the water, you will start to discriminate differences in performance.

Surf Miki
Surf Miki 3
I have a bias for the Surf Miki because it the first fly that I did really well on. The early versions were the hot fly for me in spring of 2002. Since then I have done really well on Jim T's tie of the F.C. Sand Shrimp Jr. I started using the Surf Miki 3 during the winter 2002/2003 season. It has evolved a little and is now my favorite point fly. I think it effective for BIG Barred Surfperch! I've caught my share of large spawners with it. In size-6, its profile is small enough that it still gets good small fish action. It catch fish in any water and over all seasons too.
Zen Worm
Zen Worm
This is called the Zen Worm because if its simplicity and because it is really effective. Although it is similar to other simple surf patterns, the body and tail materials are particularly compelling to Surfperch (and probably other surf species). It has been in use since about July 2003 and has proved to work effectively over all seasons with various water conditions. It gets a lot of hits and hooks a lot of fish because its small profile. It goes into a surfperch's mouth with ease.
Grub Fly
Zen Shrimp
The Zen Shrimp is my newest fly. I have been using it since May 2005 and it performs well. I have caught large and small Surfperch and small stripers so far. Walleyes love it! I have been using it on drop with the Surf Miki 3 on point. It has caught a lot of fish - even in drop position. I use a size-8 hook and no additional weighting (NO lead wrap, cone eyes or bead eyes). It is a very light fly and a good complement to the Surf Miki and Zen Worm.
Feather Craft Sand Shrimp Jr.
F-C Sand Shrimp Jr. (link is to Feather-Craft's Web Site, See Item 2006M-1269).
The F-C Sand Shrimp (especially Jim T's tie) was the hot fly for the 2002 summer/fall season). Pattern sheets and flies are available from Feather-Craft. Jim's tie uses antron fibers over the artic fox to improve abrasion resistance. You can see the outer, lighter orange fibers on the tail. The wing uses root beer antron in the same manner.
Rusty Squirrel Clouser
Rusty Squirrel Clouser (link is to Jay M's Web Site)
The Rusty Squirrel Clouser was my point fly before the 2002 season and I list it here because it is available in local fly shops or at Jay M's web site. It might still do well if I used it consistently. Jay M's tie is shown here. My last ties used an orange hair tail instead of rust squirrel tail and size-6 Tiemco 3761 hooks . I do believe that orange is a key color for perch flies because it is a bite trigger (sand crab roe) and aids visibility in turbulent water.

Questions or Comments Contact:
Glenn Yoshimoto
Los Gatos, California

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Last Revised: July 2, 2005
This page © Copyright 2002, 2003, 2004 & 2005 Glenn Yoshimoto