No, we’re not talking about a Gotcha, they work great on South Andros! We’re talking about that subtle brownish discoloration at the back of the fly. That’s a sign of rust, and that’s a bad thing.
While stainless hooks certainly hold up better in saltwater, they are not rust proof. Rinsing off your flies with freshwater after a day on the flats is always a great idea, but over time saltwater can cause the hook to rust under the tight thread wraps of the fly (where a quick rinse doesn’t quite reach). We’ve ‘heard’ of many double digit bonefish lost due to a broken hook, only to find the slightest discoloration at the break point.
So, before tying your next fly, take the time to look it over and avoid the heartbreak.
Bob McLeod says
Another issue is guys that come out with grampas’ old fly box. I have seen so many guys get frustrated because of hooks breaking for no reason. There didn’t have to be a fish lost. Most times the only tip off is numerous missed strikes. You finally stop and check the fly to find that the hook is missing beyond the body. Most of these needed to be put up on the wall because while they are nice looking flies, you don’t know how long it’s been since they were in good shape. Some won’t show signs of rust because of the body color.
In the time I was guiding on the Skeena, I saw many people get frustrated and quit the sport because they “didn’t know”.
Wayne W Walts says
When you change flies do not put that fly back in your fly box.
Keep a separate small box to put your used flies in. When back at lodge
wash off flies ,boots and socks. They will usually dry over nite and they will be ready to use after you sharpen them.