January Fly of the Month: Bonefish Scampi

Henry Cowen’s Bonefish Scampi has long been a favorite flats pattern and holds a permanent spot in my bonefish box. It’s got a ton of inherent movement whether you’re actively retrieving it or just waiting for the big flats ghost to move a little closer for better inspection. Like most bonefish flies, it’s fairly durable, both fast and easy to construct. I mostly tie these in shades of tan or pink to match whatever the predominant bottom color is in the area I’m fishing. As often sparks the love affair with a particular fly, I caught a bonefish right off the bat on the first day I ever fished the Scampi in the Mexican Caribbean. It continued to produce bonefish throughout the morning until it was eventually tattered beyond recognition and redemption. Next time to travel to the flats, be it in Mexico, Belize or the Bahamas, crank out a few Bonefish Scampis and put them to the test. It’s a fantastic pattern, visible from a distance and is sure to pique the interest of many a discerning bonefish.

Bonefish Scampi
Hook: #4 Daiichi 2546
Thread: 140 Denier Fl. Orange Ultra Thread
Eyes: Medium or Large Bead Chain
Tail: Medium Pearlescent Mylar Tubing
Body: Pearl Flat Diamond Braid
Shellback: Tan Rabbit Zonker
Wing: Tan Craft Fur
Flash: Rootbeer Krystal Flash

Confluence Beer Pairing:
While probably the last thing I’d want to be drinking on a tropical flat, Wander’s Correspondent Stout is a perfect wintertime companion here in the cold drippy Northwest. I’ve been digging this dark malty elixir for years after an icy day afield but it had kind of dropped off my radar lately until a generous soul gifted me a four pack a few weeks ago at the shop.