August 17, 2010
Cermele: The Sexiest Fly in the Bahamas
By Joe Cermele
Quick story. The first time I ever went bonefishing was last November on my honeymoon in Turks & Caicos. At one point during that trip, I was surrounded by 300 bonefish that would eat a piece of hot dog if I threw it at them. Fast forward to today, where I just spent nine hours looking for a repeat performance on the flats surrounding Green Turtle Cay in the Bahamas. Guess what? I got spoiled the first time around. Today's fish were spooky, snobby, finicky, and loved to tease. They tracked my flies all day, turning away at the last second. But all that changed when guide Rick Sawyer broke out the sexiest bonefish fly I've ever seen.
At first glance, the "Hot Tina" might not look like much, but even so, Sawyer asked me not to show the fly in a way that's too easy to copy. You see, he's the only man in possession of true Hot Tinas. More accurately, he's the only person in possession of the soft black hair used to tie them. It once belonged to a stunning Canadian model Sawyer met on the island. "Your hair would flow beautifully in a fly," he told her (good pick up line, by the way, fly guys). So the next time she got her locks cut, she mailed Sawyer the bag of trimmings and the Hot Tina was born.
Problem is, that was many years ago and the raw materials are running thin. Sawyer says he's been offered $100 for two Hot Tinas in the past and he refused to sell. I'll admit that the hair on these flies has a little bit different shimmy, and after tying one up, the next bone in my range suddenly decided not to track and turn away, or daintily peck the fly, but slurp it down like a vacuum cleaner and it was game on. I feel honored, because Sawyer only busts out one of these gems when the going gets really rough. Is that true? Who knows, but I dug the story. That's one of the coolest flies I've ever had a guide tie on for me. Seen anything that compares to the Hot Tina? - JC