Fishing TackleHow to Fish

Fly Tying – The Gurgler

Saltwater Gurgler Fly

Editor’s note: Capt. Rick Worman has spent a lifetime chasing Florida’s famous inshore saltwater gamefish. He enjoys taking his clients to share these experiences via his Flatline Guide Services. Often they tempt the most wary predators with his creations from the fly tying vise. Check out the next in his series of patterns.

This fly pattern was first created in the 1980’s by Jack Gartside.

It is a very popular fly and catches fish in both salt and freshwater. It mimics a variety of prey on the surface and can be tied in a variety of color patterns and sizes. With this particular pattern, I am trying to mimic a shrimp. When fish are feeding on the surface this top water fly is by far the most fun way to entice them with the long rod. This fly produces vicious surface strikes from a wide variety of species.


I personally love throwing this pattern to our residential juvenile tarpon population.


  • Hook- Gamakatsu B10S size 4
  • Thread- Copper Flat Waxed Nylon
  • Eyes- XLG Mono eyes
  • Tail- Tan Craft Fur
  • Body-Dark Copper Estaz/ Brown Closed Cell Foam

Step 1– Cut the foam for the body to desired shape. For this pattern the foam was trimmed to 3.5 inches long by 3/8 inch in width. Trim both ends of the foam to a taper for tying-in purposes.

Step 2– Begin the thread wraps towards the rear of the hook.

Step 3– Tie in the craft fur just before the bend of the hook, trim off excess and secure.

Step 4– Bar the craft fur with brown permanent marker.

Step 5– Advance the thread to just in front of the hook eye and tie in the tapered tips of the foam. In order to do this the foam must be doubled over. Then tie in the foam evenly to the hook shank working your way back to the tail material.

Step 6– Tie in the Estaz and advance the thread to the tie in point of the foam.

Step 7– Palmer the Estaz forward stopping and tying off at the thread.

Step 8– Lay the foam body over the hook shank and secure. Be sure to start with loose wraps slowly increasing pressure while securing the foam.

Step 9– Tie in the mono eyes using x-wraps.


Step 10– Advance the thread under the lip of the fly just behind the hook eye, whip finish and cement.

For Central Florida residents, this fly and all materials can be purchased at Harry Goode’s Outdoor Shop located at 1231 East New Haven Ave., Melbourne, Fl. For those of you who do not live in the area just give them a call at 321-723-4751 to order the materials needed to tie this pattern.

Harry Goode’s is Brevard County’s premier outdoor outfitter. To book your inshore adventure on the Indian River Lagoon contact Capt. Rick Worman at 321-525-3893 or [email protected].

Capt. Rick Worman
Capt. Rick Worman is a fishing guide who specializes in fly and light tackle sight fishing on the Indian River Lagoon located in east central Florida....