Tuesday, October 31, 2006

From tailwater to saltwater in two weekends

Things are getting pretty busy here around the Flyfishmagazine.com corporate compound. This coming weekend Paisley, Jay Moore, and I are helping host a corporate fly fishing outing on the banks of the Watauga River tailwater in Tennessee. The following weekend we (not including Jay and Paisley) jet off to Key West, Florida for an anniversary celebration with my better half.

I knew that I married well when my lovely spouse insisted that I spend at least one day of our anniversary trip fly fishing. Once I made sure that she truly meant what she said and it wasn't one of those "yes means no" conversations the fairer sex is known for, I quickly took her up on it and made my reservations with Captain Justin Rea of Sting Rea Charters. Fly fishing the flats of the lower keys will be a new challenge for me since I am a guy who is much more at home casting on small rivers and streams for trout. Wish me luck!

Outdoor Writer Jim Hardie dead at age 75

Miami Herald outdoor columnist Jim Hardie was found dead of natural causes in his home on Monday. Mr. Hardie wrote about fishing for almost 50 years and has ties to North Carolina.

James John Hardie III grew up on a farm in Winston-Salem, N.C., where he developed a lifelong love of hunting, fishing and the outdoors. While a student at University of North Carolina, he wrote freelance outdoors articles, and later was hired as sports editor of The Wilmington (N.C.) Star-News.

Here is a link to the entire article from the Miami Herald's website.

Halloween: From Devil Flies to Tickled Trout.

Since it is Halloween I thought I would break out the fly my son tied and named Jake's Devil Fly. The recipe is as follows (don't laugh - this bugger has actually caught some pretty nice fish):

Hook: long shank "bugger" style hook.
Body: Peacock herl ribbed with brown larva lace over a lead underbody.
Tail : Red marabou
Head: Olive thread
Horns: Goose biots - tied in with the curved side up.

This fly is best fished in the river Styx using a rather hasty retrieve. Feel free to dip it in brimstone to add the appropriate scent to the fly. Fishing this way is illegal but everyone else down their breaks the fishing regulations anyway.

Here are some links to a few more "Halloweenish" fly fishing items:

The Fly Fishing in Yellowstone National Park Blog has taken the bikini wars to the paranormal realm by posting pictures of scantily clad witches along with some other Halloween offerings.

Here is a story from last year about fly fishing in Vlad the Impaler's home waters.

Body armor, garlic and a shield are not typical equipment for fly fishing. If you're going to fish with Vlad, however, each is a must. The fish are odd. The locals with missing fingers and hands will fill you in. The "Impaler Pike" is known to react to being hooked by accelerating towards the angler and leaping from the water in the direction of one's nether region.

You can also get your kid a handy Fly Fisherman Costume so that they can look like Brad Pitt in "A River Runs Through it" while they harass your neighbors for candy. This is almost as popular this year as the Child's Fight Club costume but without all the complaints from bruised up kiddies.

If none of this carves your Jack-O-Lantern then perhaps a scary tale about the dangers of trout tickling will set the proper mood for your All Hallows eve?

Monday, October 30, 2006

Old Trout Mag

I don't know much about their politics, nor do I care to, but I do like the name of this publication: Old Trout Magazine.


This article about Kayak fishing reminds me that I need to go by my Dad's house and pick up my own hand built kayak and get it out on the water. My Dad has built these "yaks" out of basswood and cloth for almost as long as I have been alive. They are surprisingly durable and have even been on some runs down the Nantahala gorge (although not all of them survived). Expect to see photos in the near future.

A NC Moutain Fall Vacation

The Huntsville times has published a travelogue that describes a sophomore's fall vacation trip to one of our favorite places, the mountains of North Carolina. Here is his take on the fly fishing in these parts:

North Carolina also offers some of the best trout-fishing streams in America. However, you can't just take your rod and throw some worms in; trout are some of the pickiest fish on the planet, and you have to cast just the right fly at just the right spot and float it by the trout at just the right speed.

He also has some food suggestions:

A great vacation is also about food, and Blowing Rock caters to a wide variety of tastes, with the Woodlands barbecue restaurant and its live entertainment, a Mellow Mushroom pizza parlor, Blowing Rock Market sandwiches and Tijuana Fats Mexican cantina.

He managed to pick some pretty good eateries in the Boone and Blowing Rock area. Try the Mexican corn bread at Woodlands and be sure to check out the haunted fireplace at Tijuana Fats in Blowing Rock. He left out one of our favorites though, The Peddler Steak House in Boone is probably my favorite steak restaurant of all time. The soup of the day is always French onion and the steaks (cut at your table if you like) are cooked to perfection over hickory coals. I rarely visit the town of Boone without stopping check in with the Peddler.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Fly Fishing for the Made Guy?

The title alone meant that I couldn't help but pay attention to this novel by Brian M. Wiprud. " "Sleep with the Fishes." is a mystery about a gentle Mafia hit man who turns snitch, gets relocated and takes up trout fishing.

From a sexy trout dealer in crimson hiking boots to a cop married to a pregnant porn star, everybody in this little town has an angle, a grudge or a crush on somebody. And Sid needs to figure out these yahoos fast because with a vicious Mafia killer on his trail, a warden on his doorstep, and a highly incriminating videotape making the rounds, it turns out that the simple life isn't so simple after all....

A few words of advice to all of our friends with "family" connections who might be interested in fishing. If your pals invite you out on the boat, don't go!

Another Carolina Fishing Pier Closes

Yet another Carolina fishing pier has shut its doors. Sportsman's Pier in Atlantic Beach North Carolina will be demolished and replaced with beach front homes that will probably cost more than $7 a day to fish from.

In 1996 there were 32 pubic fishing piers on the North Carolina coast. Today there are only 19. All the more reason to support the efforts of the North Carolina Fishing Pier Society.

Devine Fly Fishing: Wee Wets

Harvey Clark of NZherald.co.nz of New Zealand discusses what he says is "The Fly that God Gave to Trout Fishers." In his opinion this is fly is the "wee wet" version of the Red tipped Governor.

The wee wets I use are Red-tipped Governors, Purple Grouse, Greenwells Glories and Twilight Beauties but my top choice by far is the Red-tipped Governor. I've had wonderful fishing with it from the rivers of Southland to back-country Bay of Plenty, and as far as I'm concerned its The Fly God Gave to Troutfishers.

Fishing and Trees

Here is an article about someone from Colorado who comes to North Carolina for a convention and ends up going fishing for smallmouth bass. The story ends up in the trees but not in the way that I usually end up in trees when fishing.

Interestingly the guide that the author of the article hired for the trip is Marty Shaffner of Tri-State Angler Guide Service. Marty is a regular poster on the only Fly fishing forum that we frequent: The Southeast Fly Fishing Forum.

Friday, October 27, 2006

You might be a redneck...

From the home office in Huntersville, North Carolina: The Friday Non-fishing Item of the week.

Kids can't spend all their time fishing or tying flies for their parents. Sometimes they need to spend time playing with educational toys that can be fun yet informative. The "GR8 TaT2 Maker" from Spinmaster toys accomplishes these lofty goals and much, much more.

"Open up your very own pretend play tattoo parlor. This easy-to-use tattoo maker kit includes an electronic tattoo pen and funky stencils. Using soft, safe pulsating action, the tattoo pen creates realistic, washable designs with dramatic effects"

Not only will this toy teach them the kind of spelling that will help them get by while they are pounding out license plates from their cell on Riker's Island, it will also teach them a lucrative jail house trade. Invest $14.99 in one of these today and scare your kid right into a college education.

(a virtual bob-O-the head to the Tommy's Table blog, without who we would not have believed this level of redneck zen possible.)

Thursday, October 26, 2006

A National Title For NCSU

When it comes to college football 2006 has not been kind to N.C. State University. The Wolfpack will however bring home at least one national championship this season.

On a blustery Saturday on Lake Lewisville in north Texas, Wolfpack senior Chad Craven and sophomore Alex Freeman used a clever mix of lures and tactics to capture the inaugural U.S. National Collegiate Bass Fishing Championship.

Since I am pretty sure they did not use fly rods, I can say that this title is a bit shy of my own Alma mater's National Clogging Championship. Go Lions!

Arkansas Fishing Report

Here is the latest Arkansas fishing report via the Associated Press. The White River is fishing well during the early morning hours.

Early morning fly-fishing is still strong. Olive green woolly buggers, rocky nymphs, soft hackles and sow bugs are still good.

Don't Kiss & Tell

John Street of The Clarion News writes about the downside of writing about a favorite fishing hole in books or national magazines.

If I had the money and wherewithal to buy up every copy of that magazine, I’d do it in a proverbial heartbeat; things haven’t been the same on the Clarion ever since. Although I have no proof that people from all 50 states showed up (even though it seemed like it at times), the place got awful popular with Northwestern Pennsylvanians and now, rather than having it mostly to myself, it’s rare not to find a bunch of people in my favorite spots.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Public Against Batten Kill Stocking

A few days ago we posted a Boston Globe Article that equated some folk's comments about the proposed stocking of rainbow trout on the Batten Kill River to class warfare. The comments are in and Fish and Wildlife officials have indicated that public comment about the proposal has been overwhelmingly opposed to the plan.

I have a binder of feedback that's about 1.5 to 2 inches thick, and I'm in the process of going through it now," Cox said. "I would say, as a general characterization of the input, the public is overwhelmingly in opposition to the plan to stock the river and in favor of going the route of improving the fish habitats."

Here is the link to the Bennington Banner article. This article says a decision could come as early as December of this year. Also check out Marshall Cutchin's take on this issue via Midcurrent.


Contrary to popular belief, fly fishing did not get its start in the movie about the river running through it. Dr. Andrew N. Herd's site, "A Fly Fishing History," gives an extensive look a the origins of "the quiet sport."

Here is an excerpt that talks about the Macedonian way of catching fish:

Now though the fishermen know this, they do not use these flies at all for bait for fish; for if a man’s hand touch them, they lose their natural colour, their wings wither, and they become unfit food for the fish. For this reason they have nothing to do with them, hating them for their bad character; but they have planned a snare for the fish, and get the better of them by their fisherman’s craft. They fasten red (crimson red) wool around a hook, and fix onto the wool two feathers which grow under a cock’s wattles, and which in colour are like wax.

More Fishing with Boobies

ebay provides us with a new variation of New Zealand's Booby.

West Virginia Hatchery Browns

Where do many West Virginia brown trout come from? Why hatcheries of course. The Charleston Daily Mail gives us the scoop.

"Some anglers don't really have a clue where the trout come from, but I think most of them are pretty well informed," said Mike Shingleton, assistant chief for Cold Water Fish Program. "They fish particular waters so they know where they come from."

Amenity Ranchers

Is the grizzled rancher of the West being replaced by fly fishing, yuppie weekend warriors?

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Skyblu - A Step Apart

A Step Apart is a blog that I have been following for some time. I enjoy it due to it's unique and insightful perspective. It's author. Skyblu, is by her own admission a "Not yet 40, environmental consultant who enjoys competitive shooting, fly fishing, cooking, and running." She is also an excellent writer.

As with all women who can out fish, out shoot, and out write us, we will do our best to stay on her good side. A long overdue sidebar link has been added (now that her disturbing entry (not safe for work) into the bikini wars has made it off the front page of her site).

By the way, while we are on the subject of bikini wars, did anyone notice that TC over at Trout Underground has "gone nuclear" and included no less than five scantily clad ladies in one single blog post? Does this make TC the new Kim Jung Il of fly fishing?

A Fly Fishing / Business Consulting Mash Up

Yet another reporter gets to try her hand at fly fishing and then write a news story about it. This always makes for a good chuckle for those of us for which angling is more than a passing fad. Reading about her experience leads me to reflect on the fact that anytime we try a new approach be it in the world of business, journalism, or fly fishing, one's efforts invariably follow a set path. Thus, I have de-constructed her article and reformatted it into the style that of a corporate business consultant.

One must make preparations that will insure one's best chance for success.

When Derby Evening Telegraph sports reporter Kerry Slack was invited to try her hand at fly-fishing at Press Manor Fishery in Derbyshire, her first dilemma was what to wear.

Never forget to make safety a priority.

I was passed a lifejacket, which was so not my colour and clashed with my jacket, but was told it could save my life should we fall in the water.

Remember that attitude is everything.

Now secretly, I was hoping not to catch. I'd forgotten to mention to Bernie that for the past 20 years, I've been a vegetarian and even the smell of fish turns my stomach.

Be prepared to cope with an initial lack of success or maybe in this case cope with success (I am not really sure).

Much to my relief, after about half an hour, neither Bernie nor myself had had one single bite. Not a sausage.

React to changing market conditions by making adjustments so as to maximize your synergy. (aka. Don't be afraid to pick the low hanging fruit first!)

And so it was here that I was introduced to a box of maggots. There they were wriggling around in an old margarine tub at the side of the lake, waiting for me to throw them to the fish.

Realize that even the best victories can include a bit of disappointment.

I've got a fish, I've got a fish!" I screamed, causing the other anglers on the lake to give me stern looks....

But as soon as the fish reared its ugly, wet head out of the water, I screamed and ran back from the bank, still clutching the rod....

However, I failed to pay any attention to what he was saying and whacked the poor fish first against one tree, and then against another so that by the time it was out of the water, it was dead.

Accept your own limitations and constructive criticism from others about same.

"While you did okay on your casting, I don't think you'll make an angler," laughed Bernie, after our five-hour session.

Next week we will attempt to apply the concepts of Six Sigma process improvement to the world of fly angling...or maybe not.

Lion on the fly?

Federally protected sea lions are having a major effect on fisheries including the Columbia River.

This spring, sea lions ate about four percent of the Columbia's total run of 88,000 chinook salmon.

This has prompted lawmakers to introduce legislation that would allow limited sea lion hunts. However, I bet they would put up one heck of a fight on my four weight.

Better late than never: Flytube

Social networking and video upload sites have been the rage on the internet for some time now. Not ever being ones to take advantage of early hype, we bring you something new from Flyfishmagazine.com that might interest the budding outdoor videographers among you.

We have been working on our very own Flytube site that will allow you to upload your own fly fishing videos for sharing with our readers. It is still in the testing phase but feel free to sign up and post your videos. You might even get discovered and end up a big time Hollywood director type some day. If so, please don't forget the little people, namely us.

More on the proposed Batten Kill Stocking

More on the controversy over the proposed stocking of sterile rainbow trout in the Batten Kill river.

To hardcore fly fishermen, the idea of stocking it with rainbow trout is like allowing Major League Baseball players to use aluminum bats. They're happy to release what they catch.

More casual anglers, on the other hand, want more more fish in the river -- and the right to keep what they catch.

The Boston Globe reports that some are calling it class warfare:

It's evolved into a class thing," said Arlington Town Clerk Birdie Wyman, who has lived her whole life on the Batten Kill but gave up fishing in part because there were too many other people using the river.

You will recall that Orvis threatened to withdraw a $100,000 if the state went ahead with the planned stocking. While the state recently agreed to re-think their position, the final decision will not be made until early 2007. Sadly, the battle here could boil down more to one of perceptions and nostalgia rather than the protection of wild trout.

You never see a kid with a can of worms fishing any more," Wyman said. "My grandchildren have no concept of how much fun it used to be to fish that river."

Quick someone take Mr. Wyman's grand kids fly fishing!

Monday, October 23, 2006

All I want for Christmas this year!

Here is something that might just catch your eye sometime soon on an South Carolina lake or even the intercostal waterway, an aquatic car. Unlike the $300,000 Aquada piloted across the English Channel by Sir Richard Branson, the"Hydra-Spyder will be more affordable (base price is 155k) and mass produced. The amphibious auto is being built in an unlikely looking South Carolina factory off of I-95 near Bluffton. Cool Amphibious Manufacturers International LLC founder John Giljam is excited about its prospects.

Giljam tingles at the idea of anglers taking their cars out on lakes for a day of fishing; of rush-hour commuters bypassing congestion by taking a river as an alternate route; of water-skiers bouncing along in the wake of a speedboat with four wheels.

No word yet if a casting deck is an option for the fly angler. If you decide to purchase one, you should be prepared for some stares:

One afternoon, moments after rolling the Hydra Spyder smoothly off a dock in Bluffton, South Carolina, John Giljam remembers how "a lady came running pell-mell down the dock, screaming: 'Don't worry! We've called 911! The fire department is on its way!"'

If a sport car is not your speed, perhaps they could interest you in a floating bus?

Here is a link to the CNN.Com / Associated Press article (Photo Courtesy of Cool Amphibious Manufacturers International LLC)

Shark Week

Du Dum.. Du Dum....Du DUM....It time for the annual South Carolina Shark Migration.

From Eyesore to Resource

Roanoke.com reporter Ray Cox writes about the positive effects that a delayed harvest designation can have for a river.

The happy news is that something terrific tends to start happening when urban waters have good game fish in them. People are in closer touch with their home waters. The old tire here, the mattress there, the paint can hung up in the tree roots, they're not so tolerable any more when they're at eye level.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Is that a booby in your eye?

Why it is a good idea to wear sunglasses when fly fishing. The fly is a "yellow booby" which makes the unfortunate angler subject to all sorts of pun and innuendo.

Proof from Smith Optics

Another part of the Smith Optics line of polarized eyewear is the "Proof." The Proof will be in stores starting during the month of October. Heres a portion of their press release.

KETCHUM, IDAHO (for immediate release) Combining easy-going wearability with superior polarized performance, the Smith Optics Proof is designed to be worn every day, all day long.

Powered by Smith's legendary polarized lenses, which neutralize distracting glare and 100 percent of harmful UV rays, the Proof is built with premium Carbonic lenses for lightweight, impact-resistant protection.

"From the ground up, the Proof was crafted to be a seven-day frame that's equally at home on the water, in the mountains, or on the street," said Peter Crow, general manager for Smith's Action Optics Polarized Collection.

The Proof's 8-base frames offer a distinctive wrap-style lens curvature and a medium to large fit. Thanks to Smith Optics' Tapered Lens Technology (TLT), a precise thinning of the lens from the center to the edges, the Proof eliminates distortion commonly found in other sunglasses. Additional features include a Grilamid TR90 frame which delivers maximum durability and comfort, a custom stainless steel logo plaque that serves up a touch of extra style, and stainless steel 5-barrel Italian hinges which compliment the premium fit and feel of the Proof. As with all Smith Optics sunglasses, the Proof is protected by a Lifetime Warranty.

The Proof is available in three frame and lens combinations including Black frames with Polarized Gray ($99); Dark Ale with Polarized Copper ($99); Stout Fade with Polarized Brown ($99). The Proof will be available in stores by October, 2006.

ABOUT SMITH OPTICS: Based in Sun Valley, Idaho, with a Southern California office located in San Clemente, Smith Optics, Inc. was founded in 1965 with the creation of the first goggle featuring a sealed thermal lens and breathable vent foam. Today, Smith is as well known for its diverse line of fashion and performance sunglasses as it is for its goggles. From Smith's distortion-free Tapered Lens Technology to the versatility of the Slider Series, with its patented, interchangeable lens system, the devotion to excellence, innovation and style is what has made Smith goggles and sunglasses the choice of action-sport athletes worldwide. Smith products are sold in more than 50 countries through sporting goods and specialty stores. For more information visit www.smithoptics.com.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Dam Bait Shop Deals

On the off chance that you don't get to visit the Dam Bait Shop this weekend, I wanted to take a moment to run down the current deals from our valued affiliate partners. Simply click the links to take advantage of their latest deals.

Overstock.com is offering a weekend promotion which gives you 12% off and 1$ shipping.

Overstock.com, Inc.

If you have ever ordered a pair of shoes online and didn't like them you might want to shop at G.I. Joes. Their pessimistic deal for the month of October is for free return shipping in the event that you don't like the shoes that you order. Odd yet helpful none-the-less.

GI Joe's

Flyfishmagazine.com's readers are most likely the very smartest in the world. We know for a fact that in between solving the world's problems and working complex quadratic equations, they enjoy a good book. Alibris offers substantial savings as well as coupon codes which expire October 31st: Save $3 off $30: THANKS3, Save $5 off $50: THANKS5, Save $10 off $100: THANKS10:

Alibris connects people who love books, music, and movies to thousands of independent sellers around the world. Search over 60 million used & new books, music, & movies to find great deals!

Finally, The folks at Sierra Trading Post always pony up when it comes to deal time. This month is no exception as they put 15% off web orders of $125 or more in our fly fishing trick or treat bag. Normally this offer cannot be combined with any other offer but if you use their new Google checkout function they will kick in an additional $10 off orders of $30 or more. All this expires 11-9-06.

Coupon 125x125

Remember it is only 65 days until Christmas!

Friday Fly fishy Quote Zen

Fly fishing may be a sport invented by insects with fly fishermen as bait.
-P.J. O'Rourke

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Sneaky Bastards Unite

We have always had our suspicions but now Tom Chandler over at The Trout Underground has finally admitted that when it comes to fly fishing, he is an expert at being a sneaky bastard. Guess what? Sneaky bastards catch more trout than non sneaky ones. Tom shares his secrets in one of his best postings yet, "The Stealth Fly Fisher: Catching Fish Through Deceit & Trickery"

New Georgia Delayed Harvest Water

The Weekly from Peachtree Corners, Georgia reports some good news for Georgia trout anglers. The Georgia DNR has designated a 1.3 mile section of the Toccoa River as the states fifth delayed harvest stream. The Georgia delayed harvest season runs from Nov 1st - May 14th.

"The delayed harvest section of the Toccoa River will be particularly attractive to fly anglers because the river is wide enough for the long, graceful casts associated with this particular style of fishing. Additionally, anglers using casting or spinning equipment also will find success on this river," says WRD Fisheries Region Supervisor Wayne Probst. "Delayed harvest streams are managed to provide high catch rates, making them a great place for new and seasoned anglers alike."

More information is available at www.Gofishgeorgia.com

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Movie Review: The Hatch

When I started fly fishing for trout here in the mountains of North Carolina, it soon became evident that in order to be successful your dry flies needed to be small. We rarely have hatches here that cannot be matched with a size 16 fly or smaller and more often than not a size 18 is called for. It is for this reason that I was so intrigued when I saw the trailer for the Felt Soul Media documentary, "The Hatch."

"The Hatch" tells the story of Colorado's Gunnison River and its yearly hatch of Salmon Flies. The intrigue of the salmon fly to me and other small stream anglers is that it averages three inches in length and hatches in large quantities, making the Gunnison River a haven for both trout and fly fishers alike. Trout love these meaty bugs and can put on a large percentage of their body weight in a short period of time by making use of this plentiful source of protein.

The DVD is filled with spectacular scenes of Colorado's rugged beauty and the videography does a great job of giving the viewer a sense of the massive scale of this remote and harsh landscape. Anglers wishing to fish the salmon fly hatch must descend over 2000 feet of craggy and barren landscape before the bottom of the canyon literally comes alive with the winding river. Their persistence and our eyes get rewarded with large trout who eat big bugs off the surface and fight very hard. While this documentary could be considered "fish porn" an integral part of the film is its message of conservation. Watch this and you will know that the film's makers have a love for this resource and want to protect it.

"The Hatch" was produced and directed by Travis Rummel and Ben Knight and is part of a new genre of fly fishing video designed to appeal to the "x-games" generation. Often times these productions aimed at the younger crowd leave the older folks scratching their heads. This is not at all the case with "The Hatch." In addition to the obvious "x-treme" appeal, the message and the art of the videography will keep even the non-angler's eyes glued to the screen. However, for the fly fishers in the room who dream about fishing for huge trout with size 2 flies, it amounts to an almost sinful experience.

"The Hatch" from Felt Soul Media runs 17.5 minutes. It is available for $25 via the Felt Soul Website www.feltsoulmedia.com. While you are visiting their site be sure to check out the trailer for their latest project, "Running down the Man".

***UPDATE - B2 over at Moldy Chum reminds me that The Drake Magazine website has posted the full trailer for "Running down the Man."

White River Fishing Report

The Baxter Bulletin gives us the latest fishing report from Arkansas' White River.

"Fly fishers have done well with little generation on olive woolly buggers, Zebra midges, scuds or sow bugs."

If the dates work out there is a good chance that Jay Moore and I might get to make a fall visit to the White to check things out first hand.

Is that an alpaca on your hook?

If you happen to live near a sheep or alpaca farm you might be in luck. Bill Pannell has found that they are a great source of fly tying material.

"It's very good for the body material, the modest Pannell said while sitting at his kitchen counter, practically hidden by fleece, fibre, polar bear hair, hooks, sparkles, thread, and the rest of the clutter of paraphernalia needed to keep up with his hobby. The flies move in the water. I don't know the technical stuff. They catch fish."

The simple yet effective creations take less than five minutes each to make. This makes me wonder where the wife hid her cashmere sweater?

Nantahala Silence

From Lowbagger.org comes the story of one fellow's unique way of handling some teens who were filling his campsite with hip hop noise pollution.

I strapped my .45 Auto onto my belt next to my largest Bowie knife and six extra clips. I draped my camo poncho over my shoulders with just enough bulge to generate great suspicion as to what sort or hardware might be hid there, yet provide no solid evidence that could be used to report the presence of weapons to Forest Service officials.

His solution is much more creative than it appears at first glance.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Utah studying whirling disease resistant trout

(Via our partners at ProtectYourWaters.net) Utah Wildlife officials have stocked a strain of whirling disease resistant rainbow trout in two reservoirs and are asking anglers to help in the study.

The WD-resistant rainbow is a cross between the Harrison Lake strain and the German-bred Hofer strain and are from eggs supplied by the DOW.

Read the entire article here.

Whirling disease has become a big problem in Utah and not just for anglers. According to this article in the Salt Lake Tribune, sales of Utah trout and trout related products has dropped from $1.9 million in 1998 to just $560,000 in 2005.

Jim Casada - Pasta and Persimmons

Jim Casada is a professor who is also an expert on fly fishing North Carolina's mountain streams. In addition to his academic and fishing credits, he is also the author of several cookbooks. His newsletter is a great read and I encourage you to sign up for it.

This month's edition includes recipes for everything from Pasta E Fagoli to Persimmon Pudding. As a kid it was always a big event when we packed up the family for a day of picking ripe persimmons.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Striking Out - No Joy In Muddville Tonight

At one time or another, every fly fisher has had the experience of coming away empty handed from a hard day of fishing. This experience often comes with feelings that can be described with words like disappointment, frustration, and even occasionally anger.

Some won't admit it, but anglers by their very nature are competitive. Some fishermen may compete against other anglers. However, all compete against nature and their wiley piscatorial adversary, the fish. In any sort of competition, sometimes your adversary gets the better of you. This brings up an important question, Why do even the most experienced anglers sometimes fail at their quest?

Some folks would say that the fish just weren't biting or conditions were not good. I fished with a fellow once who swore that what you ate the night before could come through your pores and impart a foul smell or taste on your fly that could hinder your success. I would venture that often it has a lot to do with the same reasons a basketball player chokes at the freethrow line or a football kicker shanks a game winning kick. It's often a mental thing.

An angler starts their day in a rush. He rushes to get his gear together and things are misplaced or left behind. He rushes to the river, rushes to get his waders on, rushes to get into the water, and rushes to catch the first trout of the day. All of this rushing about translates into problems on the water that might not even be visible to others fishing with him. Drifts are not long enough. Flies drag. Flies end up in trees. Flies are changed prematurely. Fish are spooked. The angler gets the urgent feeling that they need to hurry and catch a fish and the cycle repeats.

What can you do to keep what should be a great day of fishing from turning into a frustrating day on the water?

  1. Accept that sometimes you are going to blank. The old adage that "if it were easy they would call it catching" comes to mind here. Sometimes you should just enjoy act of trying. Babe Ruth struck out a lot but he also hit a lot of home runs and he took time to enjoy drinking and cigars.
  2. Get your equipment in order the night before and have everything ready to go. Don't expect to be on the water at daylight if you still have to load the truck, feed the dog, and make lunches for a party of 12.
  3. Take your time on the water. Study the river. Take in what is going on around you and make a plan before you wildly flail the water. Lots of tough fish are caught by simply watching quietly from the bank for a few moments.
  4. When all else fails, be like the Great Bambino and break out the single malt and cigars and enjoy them with good friends.

As you might be able to tell from the tone of this post, your humble editor is not immune to the goose egg himself. I look forward to hearing your thoughts about how you cope with the ever possible strike out on the water.

Fishhouse Chronicles

From the now frozen tundra of Minnesota comes the Fishhouse Chronicles blog. Its author, "Steelheader," writes about his favorite pastimes, Fishing and golf.

Buy Stuff - Save a Reef

I received an email from Jeff Snipes at ReefRelief.org about their second annual online holiday auction. Here is a chance for you to fill that Christmas stocking and help a good cause at the same time.

Holiday Shopping to benefit Coral Reefs Reef Relief Holiday Online Auction Nov 10–Dec. 15, 2006 Reef Relief, the nonprofit grassroots organization dedicated to protecting coral reefs, invites everyone to be a part of the second annual Reef Relief Holiday Online Auction, to run from November 10th through December 15, 2006, at www.reefrelief.org. "We've already received many great items such as artwork, hotel stays, celebrity events, memorabilia, and tropical merchandise and are adding new items continuously.

The Reef Relief Holiday Online Auction will provide all our members and supporters, no matter where you live, with an opportunity to do holiday shopping while helping save coral reefs at the same time,” notes Reef Relief’s Jeffrey Snipes, this year’s auction manager. Reef Relief is celebrating its 20th year of nonprofit efforts to protect coral reefs from its headquarters in Key West and works year-round on environmental education programs, policy guidance and marine projects that make a difference for coral reefs. “The auction sales help generate funds and are a great way to showcase our business supporters to a broad audience of ocean lovers who are looking for holiday gifts. Auction items include special events, merchandise, travel, lodging, dining, artwork, watersports, and more, " Snipes added. So make a point of checking out www.reefrelief.org on Nov. 10th to view all the great auction items and place your bids on your favorites. For more info: contact Reef Relief at www.reefrelief.org, email reef@bellsouth.net or call (305) 294-3100.

How to tip your fishing guide by Marshall Cutchin

Proper procedure for tipping when it comes to fishing guides is something that can perplex even the most traveled angler. Often it is expected, but at times it is looked upon with disdain. Marshall Cutchin from Midcurrent has put together an excellent guide to the often misunderstood etiquette for tipping your fishing guide. It may not as simple as 15 to 20% as this excerpt shows:

in parts of the Amazon for example, guides at some lodges I've visited were notorious for spending their tips on alcohol and not showing up for work for a week and a lodge manager may suggest that you gift items like T-shirts or fishing lures instead of cash. Rarely should non-monetary gifts be counted as part of your overall gratuity, however, unless you have made a special pre-arrangement with your independent guide.

Hall of Famer on the fly.

Red Sox great Bobby Doerr.

"Ted Williams used to say for every day you fished, it added a day to your life," said Doerr. "And I kind of think maybe it could be that."