Ballyhoo Fly (fished in Baja last week)

This is NOT a high quality video, but I think most tyers will be able to get the gist of how to tie this fly. I shot this on a Go Pro camera that insisted on focusing on my shirt instead of on the fly.

The point of this pattern is to imitate the ballyhoo fish shown below in an image I downloaded from the internet at imagearcade. My thanks for this image.


As you can see, these are large baitfish and may easily be 5 – 6″ long, so your flies should be similarly proportioned.


Hook – Gamakatsu 811-s size 2/0 or 3/0
Thread – clear mono or white
Belly – white material such as SF blend, Yak hair, varieties of sea hair
Lateral line – Hint of grey
Back – light olive, mackerel,  or tan
Top of back – (optional) a few strands (perhaps 6?) in black or peacock

I fished flies like this in Baja out of Gary Bulla’s in La Ventana last week and had a great time under difficult fishing conditions of wind and short supply of  baitfish. Several people in our party caught nice roosters but I did not. I did however catch dorado, skipjack and small jacks.

My week was most enjoyable owing to a combination of very nice fishing companions, experienced panga captains,   comfortable accommodations, wholesome meals, and Gary Bulla himself, a gentleman/host who is enthusiastic, experienced, and held in the highest regard by his guests, staff, and panga captains.

I will follow with posts on the adventure and gear as time permits.

My best to you and thanks for all of your good wishes.

Jay Nicholas May 24 2017

4 thoughts on “Ballyhoo Fly (fished in Baja last week)

  1. My wife and I fished with John of Pacific City Fly Fishing Guide Service today for black Rock fish.
    I had read about your experience about a year ago and bookmarkeven their website. We had planned a different trip closer to home but got blown out so called them to see if they were available. What a great time! What great people they are too! Anyone who hasn’t done this absolutely needs to give it a try . I would very highly recommend they go with John at Pacific City. We caught our limit of rock fish and Ling cod with a bonus limit of crab! We ate crab ìn their back yard while John took care of the fish. It was an unreal experience with unbelievably good people. Thanks for the tip !!!! It was a trip of a lifetime!

    1. Thanks very much for your note Gary. Everyone and I do mean everyone has a great time fishing with John in the Dory. My best to you. JN

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