Pre-Labor Day Odds & Ends

I can tell everyone’s busy elsewhere, and that’s good. Enjoy the last blast of summer! Normally, I’d be pounding up slab smallies on the Hous, but I’m playing an everlasting gobstopper-type game with the flows, which still aren’t below 500cfs. So, we wait. In the meantime:

One of my flies, the Soft-Hackled Flatwing, will be featured in an upcoming issue of On The Water magazine.

I’m speaking at the Long Island Flyrodders next Tuesday, September 4. The subject is “Trout Fishing For Stripers,” but I’m pretty sure it’s a members only gig. So if you’re a member and you’re reading this, see you then!

The Soft-Hackled Flatwing is an oldie but goodie. Play around with colors and let the stripers tell you what they like!

SofthackledFlatwings

 

Book Review: “Nymph Fishing” by George Daniel

I love the concept behind Nymph Fishing: after writing Dynamic Nymphing, George Daniel went out and did a whole bunch of nymph fishing with the goal of being able to write this terrific follow up — detailing what works and what doesn’t in multiple situations, what’s new, what’s changed, how he’s adapted, what he’s playing around with, all the while encouraging you to do the same.

And that may be what I like best about George. He’s a giver. He’s insatiably curious, and detail-oriented enough to take notes, write it all down, and share it. Now, I consider myself to be a pretty good nymph angler — I teach nymphing, after all — but it’s evident that George’s nymphing knowledge base far exceeds mine. What’s more, he doesn’t think he’s all that, and that gentle yet confident humility is what often marks the dividing line between a good teacher and a great teacher. His writing style is easy to read and follow, which cannot be said of many how-to fly fishing books.

You’ll find all kinds of leader diagrams, step-by-step photographic instruction, and fly patterns (hooray for tying nerds like me). But what I like best is that George squarely addresses the pros and cons of contact vs. suspension nymphing, and guess what — I can now point to one major nymphing authority who won’t snicker at me with my home brew yarn indicators dancing across the surface of the Farmington. Fly fishing is problem-solving, and there are many, many ways to do so.

The copy of Nymph Fishing they sent me had a big sticker on the cover that read, “REVIEW COPY NOT FOR RESALE NON RETURNABLE.” Yeah, right. This one’s mine. You’ll have to get your own.

In the interest of full disclosure, George is a friend. Those of you who know me, though, know I’m a straight shooter. This is an excellent book, and if you want to become a better nympher, you should be reading it. Nymph Fishing by George Daniel, Stackpole Books, ISBN 978-0-8117-1826-4

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Needs must have Farmington River flies

The results of a wee tying binge for myself and customers: summer nymphs and dries for ye olde Farmington River. All eagerly awaiting a hungry mouth(s).

Rainbow Warriors, Frenchie variants, soft-hackled PTs, wingless March Browns, Usuals, Catskill Light Cahills, Magic Flies. Be prepared to downsize your dries to 20s this time of year. (Although I had success last week casting big (8-12) stuff to smutting trout in frog water.)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Inside a master rod maker’s workshop

I spent a few hours yesterday with old friend Andy Manchester. Andy is a highly skilled rod builder, and I am fortunate to have a few of his rods in my quiver. (I have three favorite rods, and Andy had a hand in two of them.) I’m really not an equipment junkie — I don’t own anything rare or valuable — but I do appreciate craftsmanship, and fishing with gear that was created by someone you know carries a certain je ne sais quoi. We had a blast casting several of Andy’s creations (did I mention that he’s an extraordinary caster?) and I wanted to share a photo of his workshop.

Where it all happens. See something you like?

AndyRodShop

~

I love old stuff. There’s something so Lee Wulff about the chattering of a click-and-pawl reel.

OldReels