Sculpin patterns for searuns

Jim Kerr

Active Member
When it used to be leagal to kill searuns, there were a couple of old timers that fished some of my favorite spots at dawn (theres a tip) almost every good tide. They always took home two beuties each. Sculpins, live or cut in strips were the prefered bait, over hering or candle fish.
I tie a number of different sculpin patterns, there are a few things about fishing them that are a little counter intuitive, often its not necesary to fish them deep, the heavily weighted ones often fish best on the dead drift, you can't tie one thats too big. Who knows?
wb-- There are several ways to get the hook to ride upright without resorting to eyes. Two that come to mind quickly are: using a bend-back hook and using an offset worm hook as used by bass fishermen. The only problem with the latter is finding one small enough. The smallest I've seen in current offerings is a #2, which is a pretty large hook. I've got a stash of offset hooks down to #6, and they do work well for keeping the point upright. However, I add some lead to the body for its keel effect.

I can recall Skip Morris tying a sculpin pattern at the Fly Fishing Exposition in Port Townsend this year. was quite the fly incorporating a red and white dubbed body to imitate the belly and gills and using Hung. Partridge feathers for the pectoral fins and "horns" that most bullheads possess. Was tied clouser-style to enable it to be dropped into rocks etc. without a possibility of snagging the bottom and losing the fly.

Maybe someone here took some better notes than I did or has found a link to the recipe elsewhere???


The reason you only catch small fish on buggers, is because of your strip. Or because you are using flies you haven't tied yourself..... ha ha. My bugger type fly has caught numerous large cutties over 18 inches. Including the largest of 22 inches!!! I always caught smaller sized fish on humpies on top, or poppers.

Asked nicely, and I will tie you some of my bugger flies for you Josh!




A day not spent wasted is.....wasted.
Mingo said:
Of course I have woolhead sculpins, the usual muddler variations and others for rivers but I never gave one thought to trying them in saltwater :confused:
:ray1: But I just read an article on sculpins or maybe a book that discussed sculpins and their place as large trout food items. I am also sure, absolutly sure that I read that sculpins exist in the ocean as well. Yeah, I was suprised too. I guess there is like over four hundred different genres of sculpins and sea dwellers at that. I am sure you could find a good picture of one in a fish book of the puget sound or something or the other.


Active Member
I just bought some brown, olive, and golden brown dyed deer hair I'm thinking I can layer the different colors and spin and shape a flat wide sculpin type head Make a dubbed body, a little matching marabou for a tail, for some action, don't know if I'll use squirrle for a wing, or turkey, maybe try some with marabou Weighted or not? I'll tie some both ways, try em' out on a couple of beaches after work next week