Video: Remembering Jack Gartside, Forever a Boy


Today would have been Jack Gartside’s 73 birthday–he passed away in 2009–so here’s a couple of great profiles of the iconoclastic fly fisherman, tier, and example of how to make your life fit your passions. Gartside is best known for his patterns, such as the Gurgler and the Soft Hackle Streamer, but many folks loved him for his refusal to conform to society’s expectations. As you’ll see from these videos, he was one of a kind. Happy birthday, Jack!

4 thoughts on “Video: Remembering Jack Gartside, Forever a Boy”

  1. Jack was indeed a unique character. Talked with him annually when at the Somerset Fly Fishing Show. Had him down to our club in Seaside Park and had a good chance to chat with him. Talked about fishing Boston Harbor. He would do the unusual techniques you don’t normally think of. Also said he didn’t fish Chatham Mass. anymore because of all the seals and how the fishing there had tuned down because of it. He was right, not to mention the pound nets in the spring. He sure has a good legacy for all flyrodders.

  2. A VW van was parked at Baker’s Hole in Montana as a backdrop to the Madison River on a September morning in the fall of 1980. My wife, Patricia and fishing companion, Ken Miyata were fervently knocking on the back window crying out, “Jack, are you in there”. Ken spoke of Jack as a legend. I can only remember the head emerging from the door. “Let’s go up to Beaver meadows”. There are some big Browns in the beaver pond.

    It was a foggy morning in Winthrop on a cold and wet Spring morning in May, 2009. A friend and colleague, Brian Davidson had performed the lung biopsy. Jack and I had breakfast at a famous watering hole we frequented after a Striper dawn. Today we did not fish, but took a walk down memory lane. Carl, do you remember the memorial service for Ken Miyata. Yes, I replied. I remember his mother saying, “God should have taken me first”. Yes, but Ken went first. Jack stopped me at the street corner with his wry smile and said, “I am going to beat this, Carl”. I feel alive and happy. It is like catching a fish for the first time.

  3. Kate, cats, Corsair, soft hackles, butts and his own way. Met him at an early Salty Flyrodders of NY meeting and liked him right away. Always a smile, miss ya Jack.
    The Other Jack

  4. I had the good fortune to meet Jack at the legendary Stoddards shop in downtown Boston a number of times when I started chasing stripers in the 1980s. Always kind and always generous with his knowledge, he was a true gentleman and a giant of the sport. To this day, I still think about him when I go out in the Harbor and I’m working a fly in the current.

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