By Tom Nokes

The Zonker was made famous by taking a very large rainbow on Flaming Gorge. Since then it has been fished in a variety of different situations and performs well in most of them.

This pattern should not be overlooked in spring streamer fishing as the larger fish put weight back on after a hard winter.

Try tying this one with several different color combinations. There are basically three colors of mylar tubing in three sizes, gold, silver, pearl and small, medium and large. Several companies offer stripped rabbit in a broad color range. I think my favorite color combination is a pearl mylar body with a dyed olive rabbit strip. You decide for yourself.

Hook: 4X long streamer hook DAI-RIKI 700

Size: 2 to 8

Thread: Rear-red flat waxed nylon Front-Brown 3/0

Body: Mylar tubing

Wing/Tail: Stripped rabbit

Cheek: Ringneck pheasant breast feather

Step 1: Attach flat waxed nylon in a separate bobbin to the bend of the hook. Prepare a piece of mylar by removing the center core and flaring one end. Then slip the tube over the hook with the flared end towards the back. The flared fibers will allow the mylar to slip over the nylon thread. Tie down the rear of the mylar.

Step 2: Pull the mylar back a bit and attach a second bobbin containing the 3/0 thread. Tie down the front of the tubing and trim any excess off.

Note: Before tying the front down, you may wish to slip a small cut out shape into the tubing to give a fish silhouette. This is usually cut out of aluminum in a teardrop shape.

Step 3: Cut a strip of rabbit equal to 1 1/2 the length of the hook. Trim the hair from the front 1/8 inch and clip the remaining leather into a point so there is not as much bulk to tie down. The rabbit should be tied in with the hair Iying down towards the back of the hook. Make sure that the strip is secure. Add the cheeks to both sides. You may wish to lacquer them for a more solid shape prior to tying them onto the fly.

Step 4: At this point wrap a smooth tapered head and whip finish. Trim the tying thread from the front of the fly. Now the rabbit strip needs to be secured at the rear of the fly. Separate the hair over the top of the rear bobbin. It may be necessary to wet the rabbit hair to get it to stay forward out of the way. Once you have the hair under control take several wraps with the red flat waxed nylon to hold down the strip at the rear of the fly. It is next to impossible to finish off this section with a whip finisher, so unless you can whip finish by hand you will 4eed to tie several half hitch knots. While the fur is forward add a drop of head cement to secure your knot. Trim the rear thread and lay the fur back down over the body, again with grain running towards the back.

Fish this pattern deep and hold on tight. Fish on!