Welsh saltwater fly fishing ace Darren Jackson heads to the coast to fish for Pollock and unleashes a truly devastating fly pattern – the Seethrough baitfish!
As much as I would like to take credit for this pattern I can’t, and I don’t know who the credit should go to for this superb fly! Whoever did was a very creative, forward thinking fly tier and angler indeed.
From the little I know I believe the pattern was originally designed for Seatrout in the salt by a Danish fly fisherman ( I could be wrong ?) I can’t find, or source, much info on it. I was instantly taken by the pattern and it’s use to me as a Bass/Pollock/Mackerel lure. I could just imagine it being a extremely effective pattern for when they are smashing small bait fish and so it proved to be on a outing a couple of weeks back on the Pollock.
I turned up at the mark at midday with every intention of targeting Bass but, faced with a sea of glass, clear skies and a blazing sun beating down I was not confident of many Bass being around. I’ve caught many a Bass in such conditions but I much prefer it overcast with a little chop on the water to give them some form of cover. It’s also been a tough start to my Bass season and they have been thin on the ground, with a couple of blank sessions under my belt already I don’t think they are here in any sort of numbers yet, certainly not where I’m fishing anyway. I was out to get a bend in the rod so decided to tackle down and setup for the Pollock; off with the intermediate and on with the Airflo Di5 40+ extreme fly line with a couple of feet of T14 on the end. The T14 sinking tip is a great addition and advantage at this venue, not only does it get my flies down quick but it sinks my line at just the right angle.
I’m fishing off huge boulders which slope away in to the depths at around 45 degrees, through experience and countless sessions at the mark I can count my flies down and bring them back right up the face with out to many losses. I’ve tried many a line and method but, this would seem to be the best, level sinking lines just pull my flies straight into the snags.
I set up a two fly cast with the new 20.2lb Airflo G4 Fluorocarbon; the fish at this venue for whatever reason don’t run to big sizes and a 5lb fish would be a good one. I’ve heard tales of big doubles but never seen one to date or anything close to that size, I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t or, couldn’t, throw out fish of such size,it’s a perfect location for them, deep water, cover and massive amounts of sandeel, baitfish, shrimp etc!. If I was expecting larger fish I certainly wouldn’t be fishing two flies for these power house fish. There really is no need to go any lighter than 20lbs, the fish are not leader shy and it has enough beef to take the knocks and bumps of being pulled over barnacle covered boulders. The first dive of a Pollock takes some stopping and if you don’t want them to run you in you gotta hold on, the 20lbs fluro gives me the confidence to give them nothing.
I put a small’ish olive bait fish pattern on the point and a seethrough bait fish pattern on the dropper. Almost from the word go it was a fish a cast and although I caught fish on both patterns it was quickly evident that the seethrough bait fish was out fishing my point fly by a massive margin, they just loved it. Just in case it was the position of the fly on my cast I swapped them around to see if it would make any difference , It didn’t. I eventually put two seethrough bait fish patterns on and for almost two hours it was just double shot after double shot of Pollock .I couldn’t even guess how many fish I caught ?, all I can say, it was lots, nothing of great size, the biggest would have maybe nudged 4lb with a average of around 2lbs but, it was incredibly good fun.
The seethrough bait fish is a fairly simple pattern to tie and I’m so pleased I stumbled upon it, I’ve really enjoyed playing around with different variations. I’ve used different materials to what the original uses and you can do the same if you chose to give them a go. As well as being a extremely effective saltwater pattern I think it could be killer for you trout boys on backend fry feeders.
There is a YouTube vid out there for tying instructions, check it out here: https://youtu.be/eGFx7w9xOtY