Cinder Worms Tackle Box
Fly-fishers have an advantage in a cinder-worm hatch because it’s difficult to match such a small bait with lures made for spinning tackle. Still, spin-fishers adapt by tying a cinder-worm fly a couple of feet behind a plug, then working it slowly. Some anglers employ a float and a cinder-worm fly two or three feet below it.
Regarding fly selection, cinder worms are in the red spectrum ranging from an orange-brown to reddish pink, so matching the color and size is a good place to start. I use a simple fly, a 1-inch red Zonker strip and an olive Ice-Chenille head tied on a 1/0 hook.
Rods: 7-foot medium- to light-action spinning rods, 9-foot, 7- or 8-weight fly rods
Reels: Smaller saltwater reels with smooth drags, such as Van Staal VS100 or equivalent
Lines: 15- to 20-pound braid, weight-forward floating lines for fly-fishing
Leader: 4 feet of 15-pound to 20-pound-test fluorocarbon, 8- or 9-foot tapered leader with fluorocarbon tippet for fly-fishing
Lures/Terminal Gear: Topwater plug with a 3- to 4-foot fluorocarbon trailing leader and cinder-worm fly, or a snapper-float and a cinder-worm fly two or three feet below it.
Cinder Worms Planner
What: Striped bass and weakfish
When: May and June
Where: New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts estuaries
Martha’s Vineyard, Tom Rapone, www.highlymigratoryfishing.com
Rhode Island, Robert Hines, www.flyfishri.com
Connecticut, Ian Scott Devlin, www.devlinfishing.com
Eastern Long Island, Paul Dixon, www.northflats.com
Western Long Island, John McMurray, www.nycflyfishing.com