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Spring - Summer 2009 • $3 fedflyfishers.org

Conserving, Restoring & Educating Through Fly Fishing

Inside:

OFFICIAL SHOW GUIDE

BEACH 'NOURISHMENT'

Dredge-and-Fill

DETRIMENT ~T

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TAILWATER Wyoming's Gray Reef Solunar Theory

FACT OR FICTION? UGLY BUGS Catch Big Smallmouth

BASS


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FEDER

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Thank You!

The Federation of Fly Fishers sincerely thanks these fabulous lodges for their generous contributions to the 2008 International Fly Fishing Show and Conclave.

JAY BURGIN FIVE RIVERS LODGE MONTANA

WWW.FIVERIVERSLODGE.COM WWW.ROCKYRIVERLODGE.COM BERNIE GOLLIG’S ROCKY RIVER SPORTSMENS LODGE ALASKA

WWW.PATAGONIAFISHINGHOSTS.COM JOHN BELL CARRILEUFU LODGE PATAGONIA


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The Voice

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DEPARTMENTS Just Fishing

An angler who listened to her inner voice is rewarded as she pursues a fish. By Wendy Williams 19

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Looking with anticipation at the 2009 Conclave in the Rockies. By Bob Long.

‘Beach Nourishment’

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The real definition of this term gives cause for concern. By Brandon D. Shuler

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Solunar Tables

Meet Dwight Klemin.

Can they be used to catch big smallmouth bass? By John Johnson

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Thinning the Crowd

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Beginning Fly Fishing Some great starting tips. By Bob Shirley

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Board of Directors Bios of the FFF board candidates. Mail in the card to vote!

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Ugly Bugs Those biting hellgrammites can be used to your benefit. By Terry and Roxanne Wilson

Home Waters Fly-fishing news and notes.

How to dodge the thundering herd on one of Wyoming’s top tailwaters. By Chris Madson 28

Letters I Am a Member

Book Reviews Woman’s Outlook The benefits of looking at “bad” events with a sense of humor. By Carol Oglesby

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Tying the Bead-Loop Knot

Casting Try these casting exercises and techniques. By Tom Tripi

A handy way to tie on flies. By Jim Andrews 38

Fly Box Caddisflies and the Mother’s Day Caddis. By Verne Lehmberg

Cover photo: Anglers Andy, a guide at 4UR Ranch, and Sarah Lee enjoy a Colorado treasure. Join us this summer in Colorado for the 2009 Fly Fishing Show and Conclave in Loveland. Find the official show guide following page 24. Photo by Brian O’Keefe.

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Biology on the Fly Tips for fishing caddis in all its phases. By Bill Toone

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At the Vise Ruby’s Caddis. By Russ Forney

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Fly Rod Corner What makes a bamboo rod so valuable? By Dave Mosley

Below: “Beach nourishment” has been the clever label given by engineers and coastal developers for the practice of filling in beaches in an attempt to fend off beach erosion for the purpose of development projects. But is it “nourishment” or a massive dredge-and-fill operation that has negative repercussions? Story on page 19. Photo by Brandon D. Shuler

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Fly-Fishing Heritage A fishing experience painted upon the mind. By Jon Lyman

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Fly Tips How to retrieve your fly when it is stuck in the trees. By C. Boyd Pfeiffer

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Annual Donor Report Thank you to all who contributed in 2008.

C o n s e r v i nMagazine g, Resto i n gFederation a n d E d u of c aFly t i nFishers g T h r o•u g h F l y- Summer F i s h i n g2009 Volume XLII, No. I ofr the Spring

FEATURES


The Federation of Fly Fishers Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing Board of Directors

Executive Committee

Don Bishop: (406) 388-1181 • db.flyz@yahoo.com 10370 Dry Creek Rd., Belgrade, MT 59714

Chairman of the Board: Philip Greenlee 1911 Bechelli Lane, Redding, CA 96002 (530) 222-5285 • philipgreenlee@att.net Secretary: Herb Kettler 750 Clinton Pl., River Forest, IL 60305 (708) 771-6703 • herbkettler@worldnet.att.net Treasurer: Mike Stewart 215 Loomis St., N. Granby, CT 06060 (860) 653-4203 • michael.stewart@hs.utc.com Conservation Comm. Rep.: Rick Williams 524 W. Two Rivers Dr., Eagle, ID 83616 (208) 938-9004 • troutdna@cableone.net Editor-in-Chief – Flyfisher: Bill Toone 198 Game Trail Rd., Bozeman, MT 59715 (406) 556-7241 • btoone@3riversdbs.net Education Comm. Chair: Jon Lyman 808 Fritz Cove Rd., Juneau, AK 99801 (907) 789-3571 • jonlymanak@gmail.com

Ron Cordes: (208) 754-0448 • troutbeck@ida.net 738 N. 3750 E., Rigby, ID 83442 Richard Diamond: (508) 879-1139 richard.diamond@comcast.net 20 Vaillencourt Dr., Framingham, MA 01701 Dave Duffy – Council Presidents’ Representative: (307) 548-2283 ext. 215 • dduffy@mtnarea.net P.O. Box 533, Lovell, WY 82413 Philip Greenlee – Chairman of the Board: (530) 222-5285 • philipgreenlee@att.net 1911 Bechelli Lane, Redding, CA 96002 Keith Groty: (517) 290-8284 • groty@msu.edu 3496 Josephine Lane, Mason, MI 48854 Sheryl Knight: (817) 478-8930 sk3366@sbcglobal.net 2810 Monthaven Dr., Arlington, TX 76001 Herb Kettler – Secretary: (708) 771-6703 • herbkettler@worldnet.att.net 750 Clinton Pl., River Forest, IL 60305 Bob Long: (208) 357-5353 • boblong@ida.net 1224 N 1150 E., Shelley, ID 83274 Roger Maler: (352) 293-3322 •rmaler@comcast.net 3073 Gulf Winds Cir., Hernando Beach, FL 34607 Paul Moseley: (406) 542-9151 • phmose@aol.com 11220 Bench Rd., Missoula, MT 59808 Rick Pope: (214) 821-8172 info@templeforkflyrods.com 8115 Sovereign Row, Dallas, TX 75247 Tilda Runner: (503) 819-3415 tildarunner@gmail.com P.O. Box 23054, Tigard, OR 97281-3054 Tom Sadler – Government Affairs Comm. Chair: (540) 248-4554 • tsadler@midrivgroup.com 179 Bald Rock Rd., Verona, VA 24482 Bob Shirley – Membership Comm. Chair: (361) 949-3162 • cordaandbob@aol.com 13561 Royal Fifth Court, Corpus Christi, TX 78418 Mike Stewart – Treasurer: (860) 653-4203 • michael.stewart@hs.utc.com 215 Loomis St., N. Granby, CT 06060 Bill Stroh: (305) 854-0824 • imedstro@bellsouth.net 1800 Espanola Drive, Coconut Grove, FL 33133 Greg Stumpf: (909) 594-8847 gregstumpf@roadrunner.com 1825 Pepperdale, Rowland Heights, CA 91748 Rick Williams – Conservation Comm. Rep.: (208) 938-9004 • troutdna@cableone.net 524 W. Two Rivers Dr., Eagle, ID 83616 Don VanBuren: (440) 635-1165 vanman@windstream.net 12037 Claridon Troy Rd., Chardon, OH 44024 Carl Zarelli: (253) 460-7752 carlzarelli@comcast.net 4630 Memory Ln. W., University Place, WA 98466

Financial Development Comm. Chair/ FFF Foundation President: Earl Rettig 19928 Antler Point Dr., Bend, OR 97702 (541) 330-9670 • herettig@msn.com Government Affairs Comm. Chair: Tom Sadler 2215 Fordham Dr., Alexandria, VA 22307 (703) 765 2535 • tom@tdtc.biz Membership Comm. Chair: Bob Shirley (361) 949-3162 • cordaandbob@aol.com 13561 Royal Fifth Court Corpus Christi, TX 78418 Legal Counsel: Jim Schramm P.O. Box 828, Pentwater, MI 49449 (231) 869-5487 • jdschramm@oceana.net Council Presidents’ Representative: Dave Duffy P.O. Box 533, Lovell, WY 82413 (307) 548-2283 ext. 215 • dduffy@mtnarea.net

Council Presidents

Eastern Rocky Mountain: John Marvin 1242 E. Yaqui, Sierra Vista, AZ 85650 (520) 803-6697 • jtwocats@aol.com Florida: Bill Gunn 101 Marion St., Indian Harbour Bch., FL 32937 (321) 773-5334 • wtgunnjr@aol.com Great Lakes: Jim Schramm P.O. Box 828, Pentwater, MI 49449 (231) 869-5487 • jdschramm@oceana.net Great Rivers: Contact Chris Curran at cagneycac@gmail.com Gulf Coast: Glen (Catch) Cormier 2014 Timberwood, Baton Rouge, LA 70816 (504) 751-6848 • glen_cormier@albemarle.com Mid-Atlantic: Mary Ann W. Lewis 5951 Winchester Ave. • Inwood, WV 25428 (304) 229-5344 • mlewis@fire-x.com North Eastern: Rodney Priddle 1 Angle Ln., Mechanicville, NY 12118 (518) 664-3509 • rodney@nycap.rr.com Northern California: Roger A. Miller 1107 E Fedora, Fresno, CA 93704

(559) 226-4351 • rogfly1@hotmail.com Ohio: Don VanBuren 12037 Claridon Troy Rd., Chardon, OH 44024 (440) 635-1165 • vanman@windstream.net Oregon: Tilda Runner P.O. Box 23054, Tigard, OR 97281-3054 (503) 819-3415 • tildarunner@gmail.com South Eastern: Lynn Scott 4424 Paces Battle N.W., Atlanta, GA 30327 (404) 572-4602 • lss918@yahoo.com Southern: Michael E. Ames 411 Normal, Harrisburg, AR 72432 (870) 578-2557 • aflycaster@sbcglobal.net Southwest: Greg Stumpf 1825 Pepperdale, Rowland Heights, CA 91748 (909) 594-8847 • gregstumpf@roadrunner.com Washington: Carl Johnson P.O. Box 1206, Monroe, WA 98272 (360) 863-9889 • flyfishalso@verizon.net Western Rocky Mountain: Bud Frasca 2699 E. Packsaddle Dr., Coeur d’Alene, ID 83815 (208) 762-2631 • grizzking@aol.com

FFF Headquarters & Fly Fishing Discovery Center

Federation of Fly Fishers 5237 U.S. Highway 89 South • P.O. Box 1688 Livingston, MT 59047 (406) 222-9369 • fax (406) 222-5823 www.fedflyfishers.org Chief Executive Officer/President: R.P. Van Gytenbeek • van@fedflyfishers.org Conservation Coordinator: Leah C. Elwell conserve@fedflyfishers.org Conclave Coordinator: Jessica Atherton conclave@fedflyfishers.org Director of Development: Josset Gauley

josset@fedflyfishers.org Education Specialist: Matt Wilhelm educate@fedflyfishers.org Office Assistant/Bookkeeper: Judy Snyder bookkeeper@fedflyfishers.org Admin. Assist./Membership/ Casting Certification/ClubWire: Barbara Wuebber fffoffice@fedflyfishers.org Assist./Presidents Club/Donations: Angie Gill angie@fedflyfishers.org

Flyfisher: Magazine of the Federation of Fly Fishers

Editor-in-Chief: Bill Toone Flyfisher is published for the FFF by: Keokee Co. Publishing, Inc. P.O. Box 722, Sandpoint, ID 83864 (208) 263-3573 • fax (208) 263-4045 keokee.com • flyfishermag@keokee.com Publisher: Chris Bessler Editors: Al and Gretchen Beatty Art Director/Designer: Jackie Oldfield Copy Editor: Billie Jean Plaster Advertising Director: Clint Nicholson

Flyfisher is the official publication of the Federation of Fly Fishers, published two times a year and distributed by mail free to members. Send membership inquiries, fees and change of address notices to the FFF Headquarters in Livingston, Montana at the address above. Flyfisher is produced for the FFF by Keokee Co. Publishing, Inc. Address all editorial and advertising correspondence to the address at left. Contents of Flyfisher copyright © 2009 by the Federation of Fly Fishers. Written permission required to reprint articles. “FFF,” “FFF & Reel Design” and “FFF & Fish Design” are registered marks of the Federation of Fly Fishers. PRINTED IN THE USA

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

Please remember to recycle this magazine and any other appropriate material.


CONCLAVE IN THE ROCKIES

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am excited to have the opportunity to tell you a little about the upcoming 2009 Fly Fishing Show and Conclave in Loveland, Colorado, on July 28-August 1. Sitting at the base of the Rockies below Estes Park, Loveland is a small city of about 70,000 people. It is an outdoorsman’s paradise and an art lover’s heaven; it is particularly well-known for its sculptors. While the FFF has always been made to feel welcome by the communities where Conclave has been held, Loveland has rolled out the red carpet and is genuinely excited to have us there. The Larimer County Fair will be going on at the same time, so we will have an opportunity to attend that function in our off-hours and enjoy some of the local food and culture. The Conclave will be headquartered at the Loveland Embassy Suites Hotel, Spa and Convention Center. This is a brand-new hotel, just opened in March of this year and it is truly a world-class facility. The hotel has offered us an incredible rate of $109 per night with up to four people in a room for no extra charge. Each room is a suite and has either a king bed and a sofa sleeper or two queen beds and a sofa sleeper. Each also is equipped with a coffee maker, microwave and refrigerator. The rate includes a made-toorder full breakfast and an hors d’oeuvres-and-drinks manager’s reception each evening. As always we will have a full slate of workshops taught by the experts of our sport. Every time I think about the variety and quality of instruction available at our Conclave I must marvel at what the FFF has accomplished in fly-fishing education – from fly tying, casting (both single and twohanded), bamboo rod building, fly-fishing classes of many varieties, a woman’s fly-fishing workshop and a youth camp. If there is any part of the sport that you would like to learn more about or increase your expertise, then attending the Conclave in Loveland will be the place to do it. In addition to the workshops, there will be a number of casting demonstrations where you will be amazed, entertained and astounded at the abilities of the various casters. Our exhibit hall will be larger this year, and we are expecting to see all of the latest gear as well as many nonfishing exhibitors. We are expanding the exhibit hall schedule to four days. It will be open from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and from noon to 8 p.m. on Thursday. Thursday will also be our free admission day as a way for the FFF to say thank you to the local community for their hospitality and to let anyone that would like to attend come and find out what the FFF is all about. From the National Board of Director’s meeting on Tuesday morning through the closing barbecue on Saturday evening, the week will be action-packed, educational and just plain fun overall. Tuesday evening we will have a “Welcome and Thank You Reception” for all of the volunteers, workshop presenters, program presenters, exhibitors, etc. We hope to see all of you there for this event; there will be a special surprise presentation that night that promises to be a great deal of fun. On Wednesday evening we will have our “Chairman’s

Photo courtesy of Gale Doudy

By Bob Long

Besides the great fishing in local waters around Loveland, a quality fishing experience awaits the visiting angler on the Gunnison River a couple of hours west of town, thanks to the hard work of the Gunnison Gorge Anglers, the FFF club located in Delta/Montrose, Colorado.

Banquet and Awards Ceremony.” An elegant and memorable occasion, the banquet is when we gather to celebrate the year in the life of the FFF by recognizing special individuals who contribute to and strengthen our organization. On Friday evening we will have a reception followed by our “Live Auction and Raffle.” The variety and quality of items offered this year will be sure to provide something for everyone. There will be a number of destination trips, some incredible fly plates and other works of art, flies from award-winning tiers, and great deals on gear, trips and a variety of non fly-fishing items. The auction is the single biggest fund-raiser that the FFF has annually, and the proceeds from it go a long way in helping us continue to provide the programs that we do. There is sure to be a surprise or two during the evening that will have you laughing so hard you will be in tears, so definitely plan to join us, have a great time, spend a little money and help a great cause. On Saturday we will bring the festivities to a close with our “Closing Barbecue,” always a fun but bittersweet event. We say goodbye to old friends we have known for years, new friends we just met at this Conclave, and start making our plans to attend next year. I want to invite every person who is a fly fisher or anyone interested in fly fishing to join us at the 2009 Fly Fishing Show and Conclave. There is not a venue in the world where you can have a better time, learn more about fly fishing, have fun and make friends. FFF is, of course, the initials for the Federation of Fly Fishers, but as my fishing partner and Lapis Lazuli winner Buck Goodrich is fond of saying, “It also stands for friends, fun and fly fishing.” Members of the FFF, this is your show. It is through your efforts and contributions that the FFF is the organization it has evolved into. Come join us and celebrate all you have accomplished, as well as all of the contributions made by all those that came before and who made this organization what it is today. I will see all of you in Loveland. Bob Long, the Conclave Chair is from Idaho Falls, Idaho where he has been involved in the Federation of Fly Fishers for many years. Please refer to the Conclave insert in this magazine to register for the show, schedule meal functions and reserve workshops or programs.

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Just Fishing


Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Letters

1

Conclave Photograph Winner In the Autumn 2008-Winter 2009 issue of Flyfisher, I noticed the second place photo winner for Native Fish of North America was “Brown Trout Up Close and Personal.” Am I mistaken in thinking brown trout are “native” to Europe, but are not native to North America? J.H. Fenner, Ph.D., PE Colonel, U.S. Air Force (retired) FFF CEO/President R.P. Van Gytenbeek answers: You are correct, of course. Many appear to confuse native and wild, but there is no excuse for us making that kind of error. Thanks for bringing it to our attention. The photo in question, shown above, was mistakenly included in the "Native Fish of North America" category for the 2008 FFF Photo Contest.

2

Competition Isn’t All Bad While I agree with the writers who oppose fly-fishing tournaments that resemble Bassmaster Tournaments, I must disagree with them that all fly-fishing contests are wrong. My Federation club holds a couple of one-fly competitions during the year. We usually fish for no more than two hours on one of our local warmwater lakes. All fish caught are released immediately; scoring is on the honor system. The point count favors those who catch a variety of species, not the most poundage. We pair up veteran fly fishers with those who are newer to the sport to even up the odds. The entry fee for competitions is three flies. First prize is first pick from the flies donated. The names of the winners and the names of the winning flies are added to our homemade trophy (which, between tournaments, resides at the local fly shop with a red clown nose attached to the nose of the carp that tops it). The flies are considered the stars of the tournament, not the people who fished with them. Our club also held our first 12X12X Tournament last year, which eliminated all participants who did not have at least 12 inches of 12X tippet remaining at the end: The participants tried not to catch a big one. We got a bonus point for every

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

fish that was longer than our 3-inch-by-5inch scorecards. Not very many of us had bonus points. When we have a tournament, we invite our families and prospective members to join us. We grill food, laugh and enjoy the camaraderie of a group of friends. Many of the members are glad when they lose their fly or break their tippet so they can stop fishing and have a beer with the folks on the sidelines. Anyone who took the competitive aspect of it too seriously would soon find themselves the butt of jokes: We’re there for the fun (and the food) much more than the fish. Yes, fly fishing by nature is a contemplative, solitary sport, but it doesn’t always have to be. It can also be a group activity that draws strangers together, strengthens friendships and provides opportunities to bring the family members of club members into our circle. We have a very active club that involves members in all sorts of activities. We don’t need competitions to keep our members interested and involved, but they provide variety and an opportunity for new members and old members alike to fish side-by-side and see what happens. We practice catch-and-release and

have no reason to be concerned that the local bluegill population is imperiled by our occasional tournaments. Just because it is a competition doesn’t mean we leave our ethics and concern for the fishery at home. Struggling with your fishing buddies to skillfully land a 6-inch bluegill on 12X tippet is fun. Declaring the fisher who succeeds a winner and sending him or her home with a handful of flies is hardly an exercise in greed or excess. It’s a lot more fun than reading all this holier-thanthou howling about fly-fishing tournaments destroying the soul of the sport. I suspect that the kind of fly fishers who would prohibit Federation clubs from holding any kind of competition on the grounds that they encourage an unhealthy interest in inches or pounds are the same fly fishers who meticulously record numbers along with the inches and pounds of all their bigger fish in their diaries. I can think of at least one well-known writer who has, within the same book, railed against fishing tournaments and those who pursue record-setting fish but related story after story that included the exact number of fish caught on any given trip and the inches and pounds of the largest fish caught. Who is


I recently visited an FFF booth at a nearby fly-fishing convention and was given a complimentary copy of your Autumn 2008-Winter 2009 issue of Flyfisher magazine. In reading “A Fishsimple Quest” by Jon Lyman, it appears to me that fly fishing has evolved into the status of a religion for some, who consider nature to be above all else. Fly fishing is therapeutic in many ways, but it falls far short as a religion. While I enjoy fishing as much as any and more than most, they are, after all, just fish. All the variety and unfathomable intricacies of each species and the world we share with them shout out the existence of a Creator. While the glory of the Creator is partially revealed in his creation, it is the

unhealthily obsessed? Club members who enjoy a friendly competition at a local lake among friends that entails figuring out how to land a tiny sunfish on wispy tippet, or those who meticulously record for posterity the length and weight of every fish they’ve ever caught, many of which were caught on expensive trips to exotic locales? Competition is like compulsive recordkeeping: an obsession where either one is a bad thing, but a little bit of either one is probably good. Personally, I think a little friendly competition on our local waters does a lot more to promote our sport than the obsessive focus so many fly-fishing publications have on the pursuit of large fish in exotic places. If we want to attract and keep succeeding generations involved in the sport, we would do well to encourage more affordable, friendly contests on local waters and discourage the sport’s obsession with accumulating grip-and-grin shots of fish in exotic places that the vast majority of us can’t afford to visit. Niki Christopher Free State Fly Fishers of Lawrence, Kansas Via the Internet

Creator alone that is representative of truth, justice, compassion and all the other qualities that are worth aspiring to. A religion without power is an illusion at best. I am not talking about the power to change our stress level or even, through self-help programs, some of our bad habits; I’m referring to the power to change our hearts. That kind of power doesn’t come from a fish or communing with nature even at its finest. It doesn’t even come from inside us. In fact, we are often blind to what really needs changing in us! The power to change comes from the source of power, the One who created those beautiful streams and the wonderful fish that inhabit them. Paul Mullett Via the Internet

….unique ….exquisite ….exceptional ….amazing

www.hexagraph.com

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

3

A Fishsimple Quest


DWIGHT ‘KLEM’ KLEMIN Residence Salem, Oregon FFF Council Oregon Member since 1999 Homewaters Northwest streams and rivers that hold trout and steelhead

Favorite fish Trout Reason for being a member Education has been an important aspect of my adult life. Retiring from music education, I felt the need to continue teaching. Fly fishing has been my passion for years. A perfect marriage between teaching and fly fishing naturally developed. Retirement offered me the opportunity to pursue certification. First, I passed the FFF casting instructor certification, then the two-handed certification. I attended the Oregon Council meeting as president of the North Santiam Spey Casters and accepted the position of vice president of education. This position offered vast opportunities to develop educational programs in Oregon. I was back to my roots of education. The involvement

Photo courtesy of Dwight Klemin

Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

I Am a Member that started innocently turned into a rewarding experience. Your involvement can also have a positive outcome on others and yourself. Consider involvement.

Memorable fishing experience My memorable moment happened on the Deschutes River when my first hookup on an Idaho B. (a very large steelhead) spooled me. Mr. B. decided the ocean was a better place to be than on my stinging hook. He violently turned behind a rock, straightening the hook. I could sense him laughing at me. The big boy was free and I saluted him! What a thrill. I can still smell the Deschutes Canyon sweetness, feel the wind in my face and sense my heart go thump-thump-thump-thump when I open that special cubbyhole.

What others say Tilda Runner, Oregon Council president, said: “I got to see Dwight’s teaching style at a Women’s Fly Fishing Seminar that the council put on and I volunteered at. I have used some of his teaching techniques ever since. Dwight

IVER

has a passion for casting and for teaching. Because of his contagious enthusiasm and hard work for the Federation, Dwight was awarded the Oregon Council Federator of the Year in 2008. I feel very fortunate to have him as the vice president of education.” Does your council or club have an individual you would like to be considered for a future “I Am a Member” Profile? If so, please e-mail Bill Toone, Flyfisher Editor-in-Chief, at btoone@3riversdbs.net with your consideration. Please include a brief bio (25 to 40 words) along with the reason you feel this person exemplifies the best of the Federation of Fly Fishers.

AQUARIUM CHILLERS for

Trout & Salmon Incubation Simple, Efficient, Tested Reliable Used Successfully Nationwide in “Trout in the Classroom” Programs For price and details contact: Glacier Corporation 1021 Fuller Street • Santa Anna, CA 92701 714-557-2826 • www.glaciercorp.com Discounts given to Schools, FFF & TU Chapters

C. Boyd Pfeiffer AVAILABLE FOR SHOWS & CLUB EVENTS Slide shows Seminars Workshops Banquets

Visit us at the Conclave in Loveland, CO

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

For information: 410-527-0717 • cbpfeiffer@msn.com


Home Waters To su conserv pport any FFF ati educati on, restoratio on prog n make a ram ple or ta a se x d e du bution to : The Fe ctible contrideratio Fishers, n of F P.O Livingsto . Box 1688, ly n, MT 5 9047.

CONSERVATION NEWS with Leah C. Elwell

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ime, not money, creates a successful conservation project: FFF Adopt-aStream. We all know that sometimes the little things that we do are actually what make the biggest difference. When it comes to conservation projects, the same can also be true. We don’t need to spend thousands of dollars and years of planning Now that is a clean up crew! The 2008 Clean Up Day crew with the Anglers of the Au Sable. to execute a successful fisheries conservation project. The River of Michigan for 14 years. Last year close to 300 people Adopt-a-Stream program is a good example. Aluminum volunteered to wade 75 miles of stream and filled a 5-yard cans, plastic bags and water bottles, or forgotten tennis shoes capacity dumpster with trash. – there is really no telling what you might find on the edge If you would like to get started on your club stream of the river or lake. Usually there is more trash that pollutes cleanup, there are a few easy planning steps to take: 1) Pick our waters than there are treasures. a stretch of river, beach or lakefront that has public access; Your club or council can help clean up your favorite 2) Pick a date to conduct the cleanup, and get club memstretch of river or beach. Within a few hours a group of peobers to volunteer to show up; 3) Contact your local newspaple can pick up an amazing amount of trash. The Anglers of the Au Sable have been doing a fall cleanup on the Au Sable

Continues on page 10

FFF EFFORTS ON THE WEB Invasive species mean serious business when it comes to the harm they cause to our native habitats and species. Two new ways to show your support and learn more about invasive species are now available. Show your support by sporting an all-organic cotton T-shirt or hat. Browse the full line of merchandise at www.cafepress.com/CleanAngler

Also, you can keep yourself informed with the Clean Angling News. This is a monthly e-newsletter that provides current information on invaders, industry efforts and more. Sign up for the newsletter at www.stopans.org. The Clean Angling Pledge asks you to join with us and help protect our native fisheries from the threat of invasive species.

See all our current conservation efforts at www.fedflyfishers.org

Index of Articles Adopt-a-Stream Returns Big Dividends . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9 FFF Efforts on the Web . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .9 Fly-fishing Film About More Than Just Fishing . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 FFF Events and Casting Certification Calendars . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 FFF Grant Supports School’s Class . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 New Kiosk Features California’s Golden Trout . . . . . . . . . . . . .11 Support Your Local Fly Shop . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11

Act Generates Land Conservation Funding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 Casting for Recovery Gains New Sponsor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13 Stripers Forever Can Use Help . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .13 Incredible Donation For the Conclave Auction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 Project Healing Waters Is Growing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 FFF and the Wild Trout Symposium . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 Obituaries . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .15 FFF Members, VOTE for your FFF National Board! . . . . . . . . . . . .16

Photo courtesy of John Russell and the Au Sable Anglers

Adopt-a-Stream Returns Big Dividends


CONSERVATION NEWS with Leah C. Elwell

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e have entered a new era in which fly-fishing films are commanding prestige and presenting real entertainment value. Films are showcasing exotic destinations and adventure, as well as addressing conservation issues. A new documentary film, “Rivers of a Lost Coast” by Skinny Fist Productions focuses on the history of fly fishing and the loss of wild salmon and steelhead fisheries in three West Coast rivers. From the 1940s-90s, Bill Schaadt

C ALENDAR F F F

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E V E N T S

May 2009 FFF Washington Council - Fly Fishing 1-2 Fair. Kittitas Valley Event Center Ellensburg, Washington www.washingtoncouncilfff.org FFF Gulf Coast Council - Expo. Lakefront Civic Center - Lake Charles, Louisiana

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July 2009 FFF Headquarters Annual 28-1 Conclave - 2009 Embassy Suites Hotel Conference Center Loveland, Colorado www.federationconclave.org

and Ted Lindner were two of the most successful and dedicated anglers fly fishing ever produced in Northern California; eventually they became bitter rivals. Interviews from well-known anglers describe the mystique of the once bountiful fishery and the rivalry between two legendary anglers. Their longtime pursuit of steelhead gracefully shows us how these fisheries have been altered. The full-length feature film is narrated by Tom Skerritt and will be

Courtesy of Skinny Fist Productions

Fly-fishing Film About More Than Just Fishing

showcased in select locations on the West Coast. For full details or to host a film showing, visit the Web site, www.RiversofaLostCoast.com.

Adopt-a-Stream Returns Big Dividends Continued from page 9

per and radio station to announce your spring cleanup day; 4) Provide plastic bags to collect trash; 5) Hold a social barbecue or fishing outing following the cleanup; and 6) Send a press release to your local newspaper or radio station that describes your accomplishment. The Adopt-a-Stream program can go further than just cleanup events. You can do stream monitoring,

macroinvertebrate sampling and stream restoration. If you would like further help or instructions on how to get started with Adopt-a-Stream, contact the FFF conservation coordinator, conserve@fedflyfishers.org or 406-222-9369. Leah C. Elwell is the conservation coordinator for the Federation of Fly Fishers. She lives in Livingston, Montana.

October 2009 FFF Florida Council Conclave 23-25 Orlando, Florida www.fffflorida.org

FFF CASTING INSTRUCTOR CERTIFIC ATION *Schedule subject to change – see most current schedule with details under the “Instructor Certification” tab at www.fedflyfishers.org. The following events offer FFF Casting Instructor Certification. Pre-registration is required. Call 406-222-9369 to register. There is a $50 fee for Certified Instructor (CI) Testing and $100 fee for Master Instructor (MA) Testing plus a $50 fee if you pass; for Two-Handed Casting Instructor (THCI) there is a $100 test fee plus $50 pass fee. You must also be a current FFF member.

May 14-17 – CI. Test #913 – Lake Charles, Louisiana May 28-31 – CI, MA. Test #911 Segovia, Spain May 29-31 – CI. Test #922 – Pine Mtn, Georgia

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July 28-Aug 1 – CI. MA, THCI. Test #918 – Loveland, Colorado Oct. 1-3 – CI, MA. Test #923 – Mtn Home, Arkansas Oct. 23-24 – CI, MA. Test #912 Orlando, Florida

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

FFF GRANT SUPPORTS SCHOOL’S CLASS By Gary A. Miller

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ascade Christian High, an accredited, non-denominational Christian high school located in Oregon’s Rogue Valley in Medford, began its Compleat Angler flyfishing class in 2005. In the years since inception, 75 students have learned to tie flies, cast and build their own custom fly rods during a full semester Life Skills class. On a recent visit to the class, longtime Federation of Fly Fishers (FFF) member Tony Brauner noticed a lack of reliable fly-tying vises and encouraged the school to apply to the organization for a grant. In a short time, we received a grant and purchased 15 new rotary vises for our students. The equipment has allowed them to really

develop their skills. Cascade students regularly participate in fly-tying expos with the Southern Oregon Fly Fishers. Two of the students were featured at the Northwest Fly Tying Expo in March 2008. Cascade Christian High is grateful for the support from the FFF, which allowed us to integrate the art of fly fishing into the school curriculum. Gary A. Miller instructs the Compleat Angler fly-fishing class at Cascade Christian School.


NEW KIOSK FEATURES CALIFORNIA’S GOLDEN TROUT Photo courtesy of Gary Davis

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alifornia’s official state fish, the golden trout, is depicted in a colorful new information kiosk in Kernville, California, thanks to the efforts of volunteers including members of the Aquabonita Flyfishers and both the Sequoia and Inyo National Forests. Volunteers from these groups joined forces last year over Labor Day Weekend for the installation of the new kiosk, the result of a six-month project. The installation was accomplished through the efforts of approximately 15 volunteers. The project replaced an older, damaged kiosk and consists of three panels depicting California’s golden trout – its origins, history and future. Aquabonita Flyfishers Club is a nonprofit Federation of Fly Fishers organization from Ridgecrest, California. The club name represents the scientific name of the Volcano Creek golden trout (now called golden trout). The club’s goals are to improve and increase the sport of flyfishing, promote and work for the betterment of fishing waters, and encourage and advocate conservation of fishes, waters, and watershed. Steve Anderson, resource officer on the Kern River Ranger District, helped coordinate the installation. “I want to thank these volunteers for their efforts,” Anderson said. “The signs are a vast improvement, and we really appreciate the work and support from the volunteer organizations. It

The Blackrock kiosk in Kernville, California, is the end result of hard work by many volunteers, including the Aquabonito Flyfishers.

was great to be a part of this project. This will be a big benefit to our forest visitors, promoting a better understanding of our native trout and the state fish.” For more information on golden trout and volunteer projects visit www.CaliforniaGoldenTrout.org.

SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL FLY SHOP By Wolf Schrey

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t takes two to go fly fishing. What two? One of the two is obviously us – the anglers. The other is our supplier – fly shops and sponsors. I cannot say it often enough: Support your local fly shops and sponsors. We can only have a successful fund-raiser because of our fly shops and sponsors. Where else would all those donated items come from? Where would our fund-raiser be without their support? What anglers should do: Please identify yourself as members of your local club or the Federation of Fly Fishers (FFF) when you visit a fly shop. Thank them for their generous donations and tell them how much you appreciate their support. Folks, we need those fly shops and sponsors as much as they need us. Anyone who has ever asked for donations will tell you that a good and

courteous relationship based on friendship is important in order to have a successful fund-raiser. Fellow FFF members: Please build a good and lasting relationship with your local fly shops and sponsors because in so doing, we will all win. Here in my area in Michigan, we just lost a major fly shop – Orvis, of all things. We are down to one fly shop in our area, the Great Lakes Flyfishing Company in Rockford. A few years ago, there was an Orvis store in Grand Haven, a small but well-stocked store with a great young man running it. He was a fly fisher and also taught fly tying. He was always happy to help. Now that shop is gone as well. Schmidt Outfitters (www.Schmidt Outfitters.com) in Wellston, Michigan, is one of the premier fly shops. Why? Schmidt generously sponsors and sup-

ports clubs. This complete shop offers not only lodging, destination trips and clinics, but it is involved in every part of fishing-related legislation – a benefit to all of us. Owner Ray Schmidt paid his dues. When you step into his small shop, it will be crowded with anglers from all over the United States. They know a good thing when they see it, and they support their fly shop. Here is my question: Do we want professionals who really fly fish and know the area waters as our advising counselors? Or do we want unattached salespeople from the big chains advising us? In some cases, the individuals handling the fly-fishing section in these stores do not even fish. So, what do we want? I think the choice should be clear. Wolf Schrey is a long-time Federation supporter and president of the Grand River Fly Tyers.

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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ACT GENERATES LAND CONSERVATION FUNDING By Tom Sadler

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inding funding for important land conservation programs is never easy. Today we face even more challenges as economic conditions pinch federal budgets and force belt tightening on all of us. There is some good news, however. In 2000 Congress created an important land conservation-funding program to help federal agencies acquire critically important tracts of land for fish and wildlife conservation, public access, and outdoor recreation. As part of bipartisan legislation to conserve the Baca Ranch in New Mexico, Congress passed the Federal

program has successfully funded nearly $34.5 million in projects, protecting more than 9,000 acres throughout the western United States. FLTFA embodies the concept of “land for land,” using the proceeds from land sales to acquire key lands. It provides a balanced approach for conservation and economic development, complements the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund, and leverages federal and non-federal funds. In a time of increased budget pressures, this is an excellent way to use the sale of non-essential, BLMowned land to generate funds to

In a time of increased budget pressures, this is an excellent way to use the sale of non-essential, BLMowned land to generate funds to acquire high-priority land for conservation and outdoor recreation. Land Transaction Facilitation Act (FLTFA), creating a special account to receive the proceeds from the sales of public lands in 11 Western states (Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wyoming), and Alaska. Sales covered by the Southern Nevada Public Lands Management Act are not included. FLTFA allows the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Park Service and the U.S. Forest Service to use the funds from sales of certain BLM lands to purchase in-holdings within designated areas or adjacent tracts that feature exceptional resources. In the last few years, this

acquire high-priority land for conservation and outdoor recreation. FLTFA conserves land without using appropriated money or adversely impacting the federal budget. In order to understand how FLTFA works, it is helpful to understand the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA). FLPMA requires the BLM to develop and revise land use plans, through a public process, to guide the management and disposal of public lands. FLPMA authorizes BLM to sell or exchange public lands identified for disposal in an approved land use plan. In order to dispose of land, BLM must determine, through its public planning process: The tract is difficult or uneco-

nomic to manage; is not suitable for management by another federal department; and that the disposal of the tract will serve important public objectives, such as economic development, that outweigh other public values, such as recreation and scenic values. Congress established a goal for FLTFA to “promote consolidation of the ownership of public and private land in a manner that would allow for better overall resource management.” FLTFA requires that these lands be “identified for disposal” in an approved land use plan that was completed by the date of enactment (July 25, 2000). Funds from this account are used to acquire inholdings within areas designated as of the date of enactment or tracts that feature exceptional resources adjacent to designated areas. Since enactment, the BLM has sold excess public lands and deposited those funds in the FLTFA account. In the last several years, the U.S. Department of Interior and Department of Agriculture have used these funds to acquire key properties from willing sellers. Today, fishermen coming to Wyoming, Idaho and Oregon enjoy increased access to prime fishing spots. Hikers enjoy new trails and vistas in New Mexico, Colorado and California. Hunters now have access to more waterfowl and game habitat. History buffs have access to cultural resources like petroglyphs, rock dwellings and historic trails. Beyond these recreational benefits, FLTFA funds have been used to protect scenic view sheds, important fish and wildlife habitat, and migration corridors. Funding for habitat is never going to be easy or provide enough resources to meet the need. The ability for federal agencies to use FLTFA-generated funds has provided important new opportunities to conserve and enjoy our wonderful public lands. Because of these past successes and important new opportunities, FLTFA should be permanently reauthorized in the next Congress so this important source of conservation funding will be there in future years. Tom Sadler is a conservation advocate, freelance writer and a member of the FFF’s board of directors. .

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009


CASTING FOR RECOVERY GAINS NEW SPONSOR By Kate Fox

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asting for Recovery (CFR), a support and educational organization for breast cancer survivors, is pleased to announce that Albright Tackle, LLC, of Jericho, New York, has signed on as a 2009 national corporate sponsor. “Albright Tackle has been a generous friend to Casting for Recovery for the past several years, and we are very grateful for this significant increase in their commitment,” said Thomas Hayes, chair of the board of trustees for CFR. “It’s a pleasure to be able to announce this gift as we strive to sustain, as well as to expand, our ability to serve women in their journey beyond breast cancer.” Michael Kahn, owner of Albright Tackle, joined the CFR board of trustees in 2008, and emphasizes his strong belief in the CFR mission: “While there are many worthwhile causes, Casting for Recovery is unique in that it uses fly fishing as a healing tool. We all have been affected either directly or indirectly by breast cancer, and to those involved as participants, CFR is one of the most life-affirming, healing and heartwarming experiences possible. CFR’s motto is “To Fish is to Hope” – and the program brings new hope to every woman served.” Albright Tackle’s passionate commitment has been demonstrated not only by contributions of tackle for individual programs, but also by financial support. The company celebrated the holiday season with a special program allocating a portion of the sales from their Yellowstone rod line to CFR. The Albright Tackle support of the national efforts of Casting for Recovery is made at the level of Patron, which commits to an unrestricted gift of $10,000-$24,999.

1996, CFR has served almost 3,500 breast cancer survivors with the help of 1,000 volunteers. CFR retreats provide emotional and medical support in addition to teaching new skills through catch-and-release fly fishing. For 2009, 43 retreats are scheduled in 28 states, serving women across the country.

About Albright Tackle Created in 2003, Albright Tackle strives to effectively and affordably provide an increased level of performance and quality to its angling customers. The Albright Tackle line, which features six series of fly rods and five fly reels, as well as lines, waders and boots, is available through its Web site at www.AlbrightTackle.com.

CFR National Sponsors Casting for Recovery is supported by generous donations from individuals, foundations and corporations. In addition to Albright Tackle, national sponsors include The Hartford (www.TheHartford.com), a Fortune 100 company that is one of the nation’s largest financial services and insurance companies and a leading provider of investment products, life insurance and group benefits. Another sponsor, the Orvis Company (www.Orvis.com), is the oldest mail-order company in the United States and has been outfitting customers for the sporting tradition since 1856. Orvis operates a chain of retail stores including its flagship store in Manchester, Vermont. It also donates 5 percent of its pre-tax profits each year to environmental programs. Finally, Under Armour® (www.Under Armour.com) is a leading developer,

marketer and distributor of branded performance apparel, footwear and accessories. Its Power In Pink program is an effort to help educate women about the important link between physical activity and winning the battle against breast cancer. Casting for Recovery is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization. For more information about the program, please call 888-553-3500 or visit www.CastingforRecovery.org.

STRIPERS FOREVER CAN USE HELP By Brad Burns Today we are appealing again to members of Stripers Forever to take an easy and important step to help wild striped bass. You don’t have to leave your computer and you can complete the task in just a few minutes. We’re asking you to send an e-mail message to your fishing friends to help sign up as many new members as possible. Membership in Stripers Forever is free, and with that membership you and your friends have the chance to shape the future for striped bass. Ask your friends to go to our Web site at www.StripersForever.org and join. This is a critical time for striped bass. We are preparing for the introduction of our Massachusetts bill to make striped bass a game fish in the upcoming legislative session. We will need every member’s help to make this a reality. Help Stripers Forever successfully advocate for the protection of the wild striper by “Making It A Game Fish.” To learn more about this important objective, go to the Web site and click on the “Why a Game Fish” menu at the top of the page.

About Casting for Recovery Casting for Recovery hosts retreats that incorporate counseling, educational services and fly-fishing opportunities to promote both physical and mental healing. Casting for Recovery provides an opportunity for women whose lives have been profoundly affected by breast cancer to gather in a beautiful, natural setting and learn fly fishing – “a sport for life.” Since Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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INCREDIBLE DONATION For the Conclave Auction By Bob Jacklin

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eorge Gehrke, who passed away in 2002, was one of fly fishing’s great inventors and flamboyant characters. He invented and manufactured Gink Fly Floatant along with several other items useful to the fly fisher. His last great gift to the fly fishing community was designating and manufacturing his Bastard Bamboo Fly Rod (the name was later changed to Gehrke's Bamboo Fly Rods because some people took offense to the original name). A year or so before his death, I was working a Sportsmen’s Show in Portland, Oregon. Gehrke was displaying his fly-fishing items and also his newest creation, the Bastard Bamboo Fly Rod. He asked me if I would be willing to cast his new, custom-built cane rod. I answered that I would be happy to test his new rod. After casting a nice 8-foot, 5-weight rod, Gehrke looked at me and said, “I have never seen anyone cast and work a bamboo rod that nice. I would like you to have

this new rod of mine.” I was thrilled to receive this very nice gift and also thrilled and impressed with the quality of this wonderful work of art. A letter and telephone call followed because Gehrke wanted me to endorse his new line of bamboo rods. I respectfully declined his offer because I was happy with my arrangement to endorse St. Croix Rods. In my opinion, Gehrke’s was the finestcasting bamboo fly rod that I have ever cast. I never could bring myself to fish it, it was just too beautiful. The rod is new and in the original case along with an extra tip and a letter to me from George Gehrke. I am donating this great rod (including the case, tips and letter) to the Federation of Fishers to be used in their live auction at the 2009 Conclave in Loveland, Colorado. Thank you, George, for your friendship and your contributions to our fly fishing sport

PROJECT HEALING WATERS IS GROWING By Ed Nicholson

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t has been another very exciting year for Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing (PHWFF). We have continued to dramatically grow our program in both numbers of participants as well as in the number of geographic locations served. We have established programs at 50 different locations, increased the number of volunteer regional coordinators to 10, and have more than 20 “in-the-works” program initiatives ready for a 2009 start, including one in Canada. A sampling of more than 40 of our 2008 outings include: the Fly Fishing Show in Somerset, New Jersey; the 2008 National Casting Call in Washington, D.C.; a five-day float trip on the Smith River in Montana; and a casting session on the lawn of the vice president’s residence in Washington, D.C., with a visit from President George Bush. A list of our outings, complete with a full story on each one, can be found at www.ProjectHealing Waters.org under the “Event and Activities” tab in the “Event Archive.”

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

This year’s winter activity was rod building, which included a friendly contest for the best rod. PHWFF purchased 40 rod kits and sent them out to participants who wanted to give it a try. In early spring of 2009, the rods will be evaluated, and the winners will get an opportunity to have first pick of the big trips we have scheduled through the year. We added two salaried staff members early in 2008 to provide the critical support needed to grow the program. We were excited that one of those staff members, retired Capt. David Folkerts, is a past program participant. Folkerts is medically retired after being wounded in Iraq. Folkerts now serves as our program manager, supporting the 10 volunteer region coordinators. We were also pleased to hire Sandy Pappaianni, our financial and administrative officer, who brings a great deal of corporate experience and enthusiasm to our organization. With their help, we will hold even more events than we did in 2008.

and way of life. Editor’s note: This rod is the “No Excuse Model” (No. 3 of 100) worth well over $1,000 and should bring an excellent price at the auction. Our special thanks must go to George Gehrke for his contribution to our sport and to Bob Jacklin for his most generous donation. Bidders, come prepared!

FFF AND THE WILD TROUT SYMPOSIUM

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he Federation of Fly Fishers has been a co-sponsor of the Wild Trout Symposium since 1979, with Marty Seldon still representing us on the Organizing Committee. FFF President Peter Van Gytenbeek was one of the primary founders along with retired U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Assistant Regional Director Frank Richardson, who ran the Resources Symposiums at FFF Conclaves. Now in its planning stages, Wild Trout-X is scheduled for September 27-30, 2010, at the Holiday Inn in West Yellowstone, Montana. This unique forum not only offers the latest in wild trout status, technology and projects, but it also provides fishery conservationists and professionals a format for international interaction in an informal setting that would otherwise not be possible. Check www.WildTroutSymposium.com for more information, and please consider attending. Now is the time to get involved! The Symposium Program Committee seeks suggestions of people you may know, or members of other groups, authors, anglers and professionals who might be willing to present their thoughts, opinions and projects relating to any aspect of wild trout and other salmonid angling or conservation efforts. Marty Seldon is working with the FFF’s Leah Elwell, Symposium Publicity Committee chair, to develop an e-mail database of individuals who should be invited. Feel free to send your contacts to him at mmseldon@sbcglobal.net.


OBITUARIES

To read the full-length obituaries, please visit www.fedflyfishers.org

Dennis Eugene Brakke

sored the club’s active Trout in the Classroom program. FFF members have been touched by some aspect of Powell’s involvement in the fly-fishing community, and his passing has left a void that will be felt by many. A memorial service was held Sunday, March 15, 2009, at River Ridge Ranch in Springville, California. The family requests that any donations be made to the Kaweah Fly Fishers to support the club’s Trout in the Classroom efforts. Donations should be sent to: Kaweah Fly Fishers, P.O. Box 3704, Visalia, CA 93278.

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ennis Eugene Brakke, age 58, died Saturday, January 17, at home in West Valley, Utah, after a short battle with cancer. Brakke married Gayle Leland in October 1973, in Billings, Montana. He is survived by his wife, Gayle, and children Brian, Jason, David, Kirstin, Stephanie, and Daniel; grandchildren Mason, Emma and Christian; and parents Vernon and Lenora. He was preceded in death by his son Kyle and his sister Vicki Brakke. Information courtesy of Mike Andreasen.

Eric J. Schubert

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ric J. Schubert passed peacefully at his home on Thursday, February 12, 2009. Schubert had been a Los Angeles police lieutenant until he retired in 1986 due to health reasons and moved to northern Idaho. He truly enjoyed his retirement years, spending much of his time fly fishing the lakes and was an active member of the Federation of Fly Fishers (FFF) and the North Idaho Fly Casters. He was a past president of the North Idaho Fly Casters and also on the board of the Western Rocky Mountain Council (WRMC) of the FFF. He wrote the Fly of the Month for the FFF News Wire and co-authored a book called “The Flies of North Idaho.” Schubert was one of the folks that started a foundation for law enforcement and fire officers, Kootenai County Police and Fire Memorial Foundation (www.KCPoliceand FireFoundation.com), which aids fallen officers’ families. Please send any donations via the foundation’s Web site. He was a dear friend and fishing companion and will be missed by all who knew him. You could always count on him and he was always true to his word. I will truly miss him, and I am a much better person for having known him. Contributed by Bud Frasca of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, president of the Western Rocky Mountain Council of the FFF.

Jack C. Hutchinson

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ack C. Hutchinson, longtime historian and collector of Northwest angling memorabilia and books, passed away at his Everett, Washington, home on December 9, 2008. He was 80 years old. Hutchinson was a member of the FFF, the Evergreen Fly Fishing Club of Everett and the Washington Fly Fishing Club of Seattle. For many years he served as librarian for the two clubs, helping each establish collections of fly-fishing books and videos. Born July 16, 1928, in Oregon City, Oregon, Hutchinson moved with his parents to Washington state as an infant. He graduated from Everett High School in 1946, attended Everett Community College, and transferred to the University of Washington where he received a degree in art. He served in the U.S. Army Signal Corps in Japan, and resumed school at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York, where he earned a second degree. He returned to the Northwest in 1960 where he began working as a furniture designer and resumed his hobbies of fishing, fly tying and experimenting with patterns for Northwest waters. To honor Hutchinson’s legacy, the Fly Fishing Collection has established the Jack C. Hutchinson Memorial Fund. Donations to the fund will be used for further book purchases. Information about the fund is posted at the on the Web site listed above.

Dwight Thornton By Bruce Staples, Buck Goodrich and Vince Esparza

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By Marty Seldon

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t the age of 75, Milton “Mickey” Powell lost his 15-year battle with cancer. On March 3, 2009, he passed away peacefully at home with his wife, Rosalie, and family. Powell was Buz Buszek’s son-in-law. Buszek’s widow, Virginia Buszek Perry was responsible for the Federation of Fly Fishers’ prestigious Buz Buszek Memorial Award. The fly-tying award was established as a memorial to Buz Buszek, the well-known international flytier and the 1943 founder of Buz’s Fly Shop in Visalia, California. Powell took over ownership of Buz’s Fly Shop, now in Bakersfield, California, and was a founding member of Visalia’s Kaweah Fly Fishers (www.KaweahFlyFishers.org). He accomplished much at both the local and national levels in the world of fly fishing. Of the many, they included being the first chairman of the Public Advisory Group for the Kings River Fisheries Management Program and spon-

Photo by Rick Hartley

Milton “Mickey” Powell

wight Thornton passed away at his home in Idaho Falls, Idaho, on Saturday, January 17, 2009. Dwight was a World War II veteran of the U. S. Navy, doing service in the Pacific Theatre. He spent his working life in several divisions of aerospace industry ending that career in Idaho. Born in Salt Lake City, Utah, on October 9, 1924, Thornton enjoyed fly fishing and became a life member of both Trout Unlimited and the Federation of Fly Fishers (FFF). He held offices in the FFF on the national, regional and local levels. Thornton was an accomplished flytier and an FFF-certified fly casting instructor. He was recognized with the WRMC Award of Excellence, WRMC Man of the Year and his latest, the 2008 WRMC Fly Tier of the Year. He is survived by sisters: Marie Landis, Peggy Calvin, Billie Cluff and sister-in-law Betty Thornton, as well as numerous nieces and nephews. Thornton will be missed by all in the fly-fishing community. A memorial remembrance will be performed for him at the 16th Eastern Idaho Fly Tying and Fly Fishing Expo Banquet on April 18, 2009, at the Shilo Inn in Idaho Falls.


FFF MEMBERS, VOTE FOR YOUR FFF NATIONAL BOARD! By R.P. VanGytenbeek

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ince our last full board election in 2005, the board has suffered normal attrition. These vacancies have been filled through nominations from the nominating committee (council presidents plus Executive Committee) and by vote of the board. As there are a significant number of new board members since the membership’s last opportunity to vote, the board decided to once again have a full board election. Please note that while the board normally consists of 24 members, 27 are offered for your consideration. This is because of the difficulty in properly filling vacancies as they occur. Thus, the board may constrict without having to immediately seek replacement members. There are 27 seats to be voted on. This slate is presented by the Executive Committee and the council presidents; vote yes or no on each nominee. You must be a current member of the FFF to vote. Terms for each director will normally be three years. However, to establish the three-year rotation with this election, terms for the nominees are staggered from one to three years. Following are brief biographies for each nominee. The adjacent tear-out postcard is your ballot. Please exercise your right to VOTE as an FFF member!

Don Bishop – 1 Yr. – At Large MT FFF Life Member. Co-Founder www.Ask AboutFlyFishing.com Internet radio. Fervent believer in goals of FFF and its unique role as advocate for all fly fishers. Dr. Ron Cordes – 3 Yr. – At Large

ID Recently stepped down as chairman of the FFF Board. Retired CEO Plasma Quench Technology. All waters fly fisher.

Richard Diamond – 3 Yr. – NEC FFF

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Principal commercial real estate firm. Past President, NE Council FFF. Trustee FFF Foundation. FFF Board of Directors and Project Healing Waters. All waters fly fisher.

Bud Frasca – 1 Yr. – WRMC FFF ID Dealer in antique tackle. Fly Shop owner. President of the Western Rocky Mountain Council of FFF. Well known in fly tying circles. All water fly fisher.

Tilda Runner – 3 Yr. – ORC FFF

Philip Greenlee – 1 Yr. – NCC FFF CA Past President Northern California Council. Retired real estate and banking professional. Past president of CAFF United, a founding FFF club. 30-plus year FFF veteran. All waters fly fisher.

Tom Sadler – 2 Yr. – MAC FF VA President Congressional Sportsman’s Foundation. Regional representative U.S. Olympic committee. Instructor L.L. Bean Fly Fishing Schools (among others). All waters fly fisher.

Don Gimble – 3 Yr. – At Large MT Investment manager for small New York firm. Major clients in China, Southeast Asia and Australia. Recently moved to Montana from Connecticut. Just learning fly fishing.

Bob Shirley - 3 Yr. – At Large TX Retired business executive. Past President WA Council. Past President WA Wildlife Council. National Director/membership development. Teaches basic fly fishing and tying. Administered Adopt-a-Stream program. All waters fly fisher.

Keith Groty - 3 Yr. – At Large MI Retired VP of Michigan State University. Past president of FFF. Nationally known arbitration manager. Chairman Michigan Wildlife Conservancy Board. Teaches fly fishing and tying. All waters fly fisher. Herb Kettler – 2 Yr. – GRC FFF

IL Communications industry executive. FFF Secretary. Teaches fly casting and fly tying. All waters fly fisher.

Sheryl Knight – 1 Yr. – SC FFF TX Insurance executive. Past president Southern Council. Active FFF builder wherever she has been. All waters fly fisher. Michael Kyle – 2 Yr. – SC FFF MO FFF President’s Club, fly shop owner, president SW Missouri Fly Fishers, officer of the Southern Council. Teaches tying and casting. All waters fly fisher. Bob Long – 2 Yr. – At Large

ID Principal founder of SPCPro business systems. Donates management of the FFF Web site. Conclave chairman in 2009. All waters fly fishers.

Roger Maler – 2 Yr. – At Large FL Semi-retired owner/operator of a major commercial construction business. Past president, Southern Council FFF. Current national director. All waters fly fisher. Roger Miller – 1 Yr. – NCC FFF

CA Retired USAF (Civilian) procurement official. President NCC FFF. Active in club and Federation organizational building. All waters fly fisher.

Paul Moseley - 2 Yr. – At Large

Dave Duffy – 2 Yr. – Council Presidents

MT Principal Ruby River Ranch. Activist, conservationist in WA state and MT. All waters fly fisher.

Liaison WY Past President Southeast Council. Mine manager for Georgia-Pacific Co. Specializes in teaching fly fishing and tying for small mouth bass. FFF Certified Casting Instructor. All waters fly fisher.

Rick Pope – 1 Yr. – At Large TX Owner TFO. Major supporter of Project Healing Waters (for FFF), Casting for Recovery and a multitude of other worthy fly-fishing causes. All waters fly fisher.

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

OR President Oregon Council and of the Women’s FF Club that she started in greater Portland. Creative manager. All waters fly fisher.

Mike Stewart – 2 Yr. – NEC FFF CT Chief engineer aerospace industry. FFF board treasurer. 21-year board member, Connecticut Fly Fisherman Association. Fly Tying school instructor. All waters fly fisher. Bill Stroh – 2 Yr. – At Large

FL Senior VP and portfolio manager Northern Trust Co. Board member the Trout and Salmon Foundation. Lifelong fly fisher. All waters fly fisher.

Greg Stumpf – 3 Yr. – At Large CA President SWC FFF. Active conservationist. Conceived the monofilament recycle receptacle for docks, access points etc. Currently going national. Jim Teeny – 3 Yr. – At Large

OR President of the Tackle Co that bears his name. Longtime active conservationist locally and nationally. All waters fly fisher.

Don VanBuren - 1 Yr. – OHC FFF

OH Business Executive. President OH Council, which he helped create. Active in club and council affairs. All waters fly fisher.

Dr. Rick Williams – 3 Yr. – ERMC ID Ph.D. Ecologist and geneticist at University of Idaho Center for Salmonid & Aquatic Species at Risk. FFF Conservation VP. FFF master casting instructor. Principal the Idaho Angler. Ron Winn – 3 Yr. – FLC FFF

FL Principal of CPA firm. Nominee for FFF board treasurer. Past treasurer of the SE Council. Treasurer FL Council. “Treasurer for Life” of the Back Country FF. All waters fly fisher.

Carl Zarelli – 1 Yr. – WAC FFF

WA Current member national Board, chairman Financial Oversight Committee. Past president of the Puget Sound Fly Fishers. Served on the Washington Council of the FFF. Longtime federator. FFF master casting instructor. All waters fly fisher.


Book Reviews 100 Best Flies for Montana Trout Thomas R. Pero Photographs by Ted Fauceglia Wild River Press, 2009 5” x 7”, 200 pages, $24.95 ISBN 978-0-974642-77-2

This is the first complete collection of 100 top-producing fly patterns for Montana waters as chosen by noted fly designers and anglers: John Bailey, Craig Mathews, Dean Reiner, Duncan Oswald, Marty Downey and Michael Hoiness. The book features superb close-up color photos to accompany the actual recipe on the facing page. If you plan to visit and fish Montana, this is your dream pattern book. A copy of it in your tying kit would be a great addition.

Till Death or Fly Fishing Do Us Part Tomas R. Pero Wild River Press, 2009 5.5” x 8.5”, 168 pages, $24.95 ISBN 978-0-974642-78-9

This unique book is a collection of eight hilarious essays as much about the ancient pratfalls of the human condition as to whether men prefer blondes or brown trout. We all know how it is in the fly-fishing world and how that obsession can affect – for better or worse – romantic relationships. The stories are true but the names have been changed to protect the innocent from embarrassment and the publisher from legal action. Anyone who has had to struggle to balance time between the love of your life and fly fishing will well understand the stories. Also the “note-on-theauthor” section is most revealing!

Flytyers of the World, volume one Steve Thornton VEM Publishing, 2007 8.5” x 12”, 208 pages, about $75 ISBN 978-0-955798-80-1

This great book was assembled and edited by well-traveled, innovative flytier Steve Thornton from the United Kingdom. It contains concise biographies, tying techniques and recollections of 20

world-class flytiers, each personally written by the flytier(s) or by a helpful friend. The publishers have chosen to allow the true personality of each tier to come to the fore through their writing style, individual quotes and enthusiasm for the sport rather than edit the book into one writing style from start to finish. Within these pages Thornton has introduced the reader to Hans Van Klinken, Dave Brandt, Steve Thornton, Mauro Raspini, Bob Mead, Mick Hall, Chuck Furimsky, Fabrizio Gajardoni, Roman Moser, Johan Klingberg, Phil White, Ted Patlin, Gigi Pironi, Harrison Steves, Keith Wallington, Agostino Roncallo, Al and Gretchen Beatty, Andre Brun, Igor and Nadica Stancev, and Paul Willock. The publisher said it all in his foreword: “The flytyers in this book are essentially very ordinary people but through sheer enthusiasm, hard work, dedication and passion for the sport they have risen to the pinnacle of achievement.” This is an excellent book for anyone interested in learning more about well-recognized, demonstration flytiers from across the globe. Available through www.vempublishing.com.

LaFontaine’s Legacy Al and Gretchen Beatty The Lyons Press, 2008 8.5” x 11”, 135 pages, $27.95 ISBN 978-1-599212-75-3

Gary LaFontaine became world famous for his innovative troutfly patterns. Unfortunately, his life was cut short by Lou Gehrig’s disease in 2002. Fortunately, his final fly designs were left in the caring hands of friends, authors and professional tiers Al and Gretchen Beatty who tied and photographed LaFontaine’s final set of undocumented patterns to create this book. The 26 patterns herein are the final legacy of a renowned American angler. Throughout the work the Beattys provide tying instruction accompanied by photographs to depict the various stages of each pattern as well as the completed fly. According to Fly Tyer magazine editor David Klausmeyer, “This book documents an important piece of American fly-fishing history.”

Rotary Fly-Tying Techniques Al and Gretchen Beatty

Fishing’s Greatest Misadventures

Frank Amato Publications, Inc., 2008 8.5” x 11”, 116 pages, $24.95 ISBN 978-1-571884-18-3

Tyler McMahon and Paul Diamond

Whether they use an inline rotary vise or not, most tiers do not understand the full potential of this great tool. Just watch most tiers use their rotary vise. In most cases they use it to look at the “other side” of the fly and not much more, but the rotary vise has many uses and advantages that go far beyond this point. In this book the Beattys share their decades of experience and knowledge to unlock the mystery behind this type of vise. The book explores a sampling of rotary vises currently available on the market, guides the tier through adjustments needed to “switch over” to a rotary vise, and then shares rotary tips and tricks that will help any person to become a better fly dresser. The Beattys guide the student through 36 flies using clear instructions and step-by-step photography. No other book available today explains rotary vises and their advantages.

Casagrande Press, November 2008 6” x 9”, 204 pages, $15.95 ISBN 978-0-976951-64-3

This book presents 26 true stories that cover the spectrum from terrifying to comical to downright bizarre. Within these pages, everyday fishers, pros and journalists tell their stories of freak accidents, fish attacks, pranks, idiotic decisions, unexplained incidents and other jaw dropping, adrenaline-pumping calamities. The stories bring to life the strange possibilities that await us once we cast our lines into known and unknown waters. Not all of the stories are fly-fishing related, but all of them are sure to grab your attention! This book covers every form of angling.

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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TheVoice Story and photo by Wendy Williams

F

ly fishing is a contact sport. You have contact with nature, contact with unfilled aspirations and contact with life, in this case, my guide Morgan Holbrook of Bows & Brown in Alberta, Canada. I was fishing the lower Bow River and was scanning the water when I saw a ring. I thought I could actually hear a slurp, and I began to rescan the water, but Holbrook said, “Wendy, look over there.” He pointed to a spot that was 40 feet from us where the main current merged with a smaller, slower branch of the river. There was a continuous string of subtle rises. I watched as Holbrook scooped up a handful of water to display a blue-winged olive sitting on the surface. He commented with a puzzled look, “This hatch shouldn’t be happening in August, it is too early.” My gaze returned to the original ring I had discovered a few minutes earlier and I silently counted the seconds until it appeared again. I wondered, “Why would a trout be in such slow-moving water?” It appeared to be at the corner of the far bank approximately 15 feet in front of a shallow riffle. Holbrook was pointing to the rises on the opposite bank urging me, “Try fishing over there with a small dry fly.” I glanced over at Holbrook and then back to what I had now realized was my challenge for the day. I listened to something within myself and decided to go after the fish that called to me rather than those Holbrook had brought to my attention. The voice was one that only I could hear, and it spoke as if to my soul. I observed the flow of water and determined my strategy would require patience and the two-step method. The two-step is what my mentor, Bill Boyd Jr., taught me to avoid spooking fish. You take two steps and continue fishing, repeating the process as often as necessary. I would have to travel directly up current in waist-deep water – a 75-yard jaunt. I started my slow but steady journey over a riverbed that was sandy and pebbled with slight vegetation. Thankfully it was fairly level with no deep holes for me to gracefully fall into and disappear. It was as though there was nothing else in my life but this part of Canada, causing me to feel like I was in a time warp. When I had successfully waded to my goal, I reassessed the situation. From what I could tell there was no safety coverage for my trout except the curve of the bank. Thankfully, I hadn’t spooked anything. I observed that there was a subtle change in the current, forming a narrow feeding lane. I added a length of fresh 5X tippet and a Foxy Lady nymph. I sharpened the barbless hook as I breathed deeply and listened to the voice. I stood motionless, watching for a sign the trout was still there. Had it gone into hiding? A wave of disappointment swept over me as I

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

pondered whether I would be given the chance to demonstrate the skills I had acquired. Then I saw the muted formation of a ring on the water. Relieved that I had not spooked the trout, my quest could continue. I made a presentation; the fish ignored me. I repeated the process, letting more line out, but still nothing! Then the voice said to me, “Let it swing wide.” I swung my line even farther and it suddenly tightened. The dance began; it is a tango led by the trout. I had good line control and, as the trout made its second run, I praised its efforts. If I did this right, I would find out if it were a brown or a rainbow. Gradually wading towards the trout, I brought in line and the dance continued at an upbeat tempo. Holbrook announced that he had a rainbow on, which meant we had a double hookup – totally awesome! But now neither of us could help the other net their catch. I was stripping line like a mad woman and praying I would not lose this fish. Then the trout turned back downstream as it flaunted a flash of silver. It made another run and yet another, indicating that this was going to be a test of wills. Once again, the trout was headed back to the riffles, but I had control of my line. The fish was now tiring, giving me the advantage. Now I was starting to think I might actually net the rainbow, so I moved it away from the riffles and slowly the fish swam towards me. I grabbed my net, immersing it in the water for it was hungry to feel the weight of this fish. Finally I landed my coveted trout. I was floating on air as I waded over to Holbrook, eager to display my catch. I was not floating because of the size of the rainbow, but rather because of the adventure and the journey. The voice had not only spoken to me, but I believe it had also spoken to the trout. At this moment in time we were kindred spirits enjoying what life presented to us. I knelt in the water and revived the fish, admiring its beauty. Once it had rested and regained some strength, it swam from my hands traveling towards its magical voice, the one that only it could hear. Wendy Williams is from Dayton, Tennessee, where she works as a nurse when she is not on the water chasing fish or listening for that special voice that nature can bring to us all.


A Sisyphean Day at the Beach: BEACH NOURISHMENT nour·ish·ment n. to supply or sustain with food

Story and photos by Brandon D. Shuler

M

y toddler son sat covered in sand as he worked hard to stop the incoming tide of the Gulf of Mexico from eradicating his sand castle. His efforts were in vain as the waves began lapping, then engulfing, the substructure of his multitiered fortress. Distraught and teary eyed, he shoveled sand furiously along the rapidly crumbling walls. Sadly, despite his best efforts, the sea took back what was hers and my son’s castle slowly disappeared into the waves. I watched in fascination and awe at the Sisyphean efforts Parker placed into the chore that was obviously a losing battle. His relentless effort reminds me of the challenges facing beach management, or what passes for it. As storms increase in intensity and possibly number, and as sea level rapidly rises, our beaches, in response, try to migrate landward. But they are caught between the ineluctable forces of nature and another powerful force – coastal development. Trying to save an eroding beach is not a new concept. Since the early 20th century, peoples’ desire to live near the sea has driven multibillion-dollar development and tourism. Early modes to protect our investments saw breakwaters built to eliminate wave action, sea walls to stop the creeping ocean rise, and perpendicular groins that attempted to slow the erosion created by wave and current action. When these structures proved to either make the problem worse or shift it along the coast, an unholy cabal of engineers and coastal developers thought to dredge up and pump in sediment usually strip-mined from the continental shelf. By building on top of the dunes, they created more demand for the practice and, in turn, the practice encourages more unsustainable development. But cleverly, they spun this practice as “beach nourishment,” “beach

What happens to this fish after sea walls to stop the creeping ocean fail and spawning areas are lost forever?

renourishment” or “beach replenishment.” A diverse cast of environmental activists, sportsmen and independent scientists decry these phrases as false advertising. If we were honest, they say, we would call these projects massive dredge-and-fill operations, or land reclamation. A number of coastal “management” companies are taking advantage of local communities and creating environmental nightmares for ecosystems that are already suffering from myriad global and local stressors, which often synergize negatively. For anyone who pays taxes, it is malefic tax dollar spending. For local businesses that rely on anglers, divers and a general tourism trade, nourishment hurts their revenues. For local, hard-bottom communities that in some places include coral, living reefs (such as worm reef) and other unique ecosystems, dredge-and-fill projects bury them in nonindigenous sands and worse, Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Surfrider’s regional manager in Florida, Ericka Davanzo block the sunrays that allow photosynthesis. says, “The Surfrider Foundation’s major concern is to help Bulldozing sediment on a beach is a lot like my son educate local town officials on project repercussions so their Parker’s attempt to save his sand castle – except far more communities are not thrust into another renourishment costly and destructive. Local communities pay exorbitant boondoggle.” Davanzo openly referred to a 2004 St. Lucie fees to engineering and dredging firms whose specialty is to nourishment project that went woefully awry. Coastal truck in, or ship in, huge loads of sand to thwart natural Planning & Engineering (CP&E), the same firm that beach erosion by piling the new sand on top of the existing designed the Reach 8 project, watched as mud was trucked beach. Communities trust the health of their beaches in and bulldozed on the second or third most important tur(including water quality and reefs and subsequent tle nesting beach in North America, which is lined with economies) on the scientific data supplied by the engineernearshore reefs. Much of it quickly washed onto the reefs; ing firm they elect to take on their project. What a conflict the remaining mud became as hard as concrete. The project of interest! In 2005, an extensive review of biological monihad to be redone – at the taxtoring studies done for payers’ expense. There were beach-fill projects showed apparently zero consequences, that the emperor has no except bad press for CP&E. clothes. Not surprisingly, Determined to stop the data supplied by engianother St. Lucie-esque disaster neering firms often failed to at Reach 8, concerned groups meet standards of scientific like Surfrider, the Snook rigor, and their conclusions Foundation and concerned citiwere based on assumption zens sued the Florida rather than scientific fact. Department of Environmental Orrin Pilkey, Ph.D., Protection for issuing the perwho is a renowned marine mit that will allow the project geologist and professor to go forward. The City emeritus at Duke University, Council of Lake Worth voted is a vocal critic of the U.S. unanimously to join the lawsuit. Army Corps of Engineers. Gibson says, “The project The beach nourishment is going forward to give a few, cabal often calls Florida “the privileged, dune-top residents outlaw state.” Florida is the an illusion of shore protecscene of the most aggressive tion,” and that this constitutes beach-fill programs in the an egregious instance of taxaUnited States. One protion without representation. In posed project has elevated 2007, the citizens of Palm the conflict between coastal Beach voted no on a referenwatermen and women, and dum to fund the Reach 8 projconcerned taxpayers, against ect in December 2007. the cabal like no other in However, Palm Beach history. Florida’s Lake City Councilman David Worth Pier, home to one of Rosow defends the city’s decithe best fishing areas and sion to move forward without oldest surfing communities Communities and wildlife must trust the health of their beaches to the the popular support of his conin the United States, is scientific data supplied by the engineering firm they elect to take on stituents. “No rational person threatened by a massive, $15 the project. What a conflict of interest! wants to waste money. million to $18 million projRemember, there isn’t a ect that will add more beach Department of Human Protection or Department of to a stable beach for a few privileged condo owners. Common Sense, just agencies that spend their days protect“The Reach 8 project is one of the most heinous and ing marine life and the environment. However, the town has unfair coastal management decisions I have witnessed in 10 a responsibility to act – not continue to study, yell, criticize years of my conservation writing career,” said Terry Gibson, and certainly not cast disparaging remarks,” he says. fishing editor of Outdoor Life. “The project will bury at least But the experts working with Surfrider on this case are 7 acres of nearshore tropical reefs with what probably is sure that this course of action is as wasteful as it is destrucmud. It will smother the crabs and surf clams that are vital tive. Scientists at Duke University have gathered decades’ to the survival of foraging surf fishes and shorebirds. It will worth of independent data showing that beach-fill nourishchange the bottom around the pier and screw up the surf. ment sand typically erodes two to 10 times faster than natuAnd it will interfere with sea turtle nesting.” The Surfrider ral beaches, mostly because sediment used for the projects is Foundation of Florida has joined forces with citizens like too fine or the wrong shape to stay in such a dynamic enviGibson to educate the public on alternative ways to seek a ronment. The material slated for fill on Reach 8 is much means to slow beach erosion.

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009


The author with a beautiful fish that is one of the end products of a healthy environment.

finer than the native beach sand, and large surf relative to the rest of the state routinely pounds the beach. Engineers rely on a “principle” called the Dean overfill quotient, which basically suggests that if, for example, you can only find sand half the grain size of the native material, you just pump twice as much onto the beach. (Keep in mind the dredger gets paid by the square yard.) But using incompatible fill leads to a number of environmental problems. Somewhere, Sisyphus is still rolling his stone up the hill. Here, my son learned the ocean tides return to reclaim what is hers to reclaim. Rosow is right: The town, in this case the global village, has a responsibility to act. We need to find viable, cost-efficient ways to help beaches respond optimally to rapid sea level rise, instead of throwing good money after bad, damaging our most important economic engines – our coastal resources – and setting neighbor against neighbor. So, how can a practice as innocuous and beneficial sounding as beach “nourishment” be such a harbinger for disaster? In some instances, when the science supports the use of proposed sand fills, the practice can be beneficial to the community and the ecosystem. However, when in-house research trumps independent research, and greedy developers use pseudo-science to back their claims of healthy beach nourishment, mayhem often ensues. In late 2008, the Snook Foundation, the Surfrider Foundation, the City of Lake Worth, and three individuals (Gibson, famed fly and light tackle snook expert Captain Danny Barrow, and the director of East Coast Surfing Association’s Palm Beach district) sued the state of Florida for issuing the Town of Palm Beach a permit to dredge and fill two miles of beachfront property. The Reach 8 Project proposed by CP&E and the Town of Palm Beach is one of those situations where the interests of wealthy investors outweigh those of taxpayers and the environment. Taxpayers for Common Sense describes the practice of beach nourishment as a “trickle up subsidy for wealthy beachfront interests.” However, the plaintiffs (fishermen, surfers and divers) of the outstanding lawsuit contend that the idea of trickle-up economics is erroneous. Unless you take into account the forever-eroding terrain they are placing their luxury condos and homes on, developers are a oneand-done organization. However, for recreational-based economies relying on returning surfers, divers and fishermen, if the habitats they come to enjoy are destroyed or damaged, what is the ultimate cost not only to the environment but also to the local tourism economy? Smack dab in the middle of the proposed dredge-andfill project is the Lake Worth pier. In an area imbued with privatized beaches, the Lake Worth Pier is one of the only access points to beachfront fishing. Gibson says, “North and

south of the pier, a tight knit fly-fishing community takes advantage of the beach/reef intergrading ecosystems and enjoys some of the finest surfzone fly fishing for snook on the planet.” In fact, a cottage industry of fly shops catering to the twohanded fly rodders has taken root due to the popular nature of the sport. Year-round Spanish mackerel, bluefish, permit, pompano, various snappers and groupers, and redfish and speckled trout offer excellent fishing. Arguably, the area is the best place in Florida to fly fish. The ultimate outcome will have resounding effects on other popular fly-fishing destinations such as Satellite Beach, the near-shore reefs of Vero Beach, and Sanibel Island. If the Town of Palm Beach wins, it will be virtually impossible to stop beach nourishment projects down the road. Unfortunately, the cities and coastal engineering companies responsible for these dredge-and-fill projects do not want additional legislation placed on the areas or types of sand consistency they should use. When in-house research is used to determine appropriate sands, if they are off by a few microns of measurement and the sand is too fine to support the indigenous wave and current tumulus, they simply have a new customer in two to three years when the project will have to be refilled. Now for the really bad news: If allowed, the project will bury at least nine acres of nearshore reef that is designated as Essential Fish Habitat and Habitat Areas of High Concern. Currently, mitigation requirements do not provide kind-for-kind habitat exchanges. Not to mention, the trickleup (to steal a term from Taxpayers for Common Sense) food chain relies on sand fleas. Sand fleas and other beachdwelling infauna provide a food network for shorebirds and surf-zone fishes. These “baitfish,” in turn, feed croaker, whiting and mojarra, which are essential for feeding snook to control the lipid/protein balance that allows them to produce large quantities of gametes for spawning. The largest snookspawning grounds are adjacent to the area proposed. Sadly, in the days of massive urban sprawl and muchneeded capital investment into our local coastal economies, the notion to leap before we look has made us overlook the impact we have on fragile local ecosystems. Parker, even as a child, quickly learned as he fought off the encroaching challenge of the rising ocean he was waging a losing battle. Sometimes if we simply sit back and watch a child’s reaction to a complex challenge, we learn the most economical and most common sense approach to attacking said problem. Developers and coastal residents could learn a lot from Parker’s reaction. He simply packed up his pail and trowel, took a dozen or so steps back, and started to rebuild. Brandon D. Shuler is a fishing guide and writer. His articles appear in Outdoor Life, Saltwater Sportsman, Shallow Water Angler and Environmental Magazine. His fiction work appears in numerous literary magazines.

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Solunar Theory:

Fact or Fiction?

WHAT REALLY ARE THE BEST TIMES TO CATCH BIG SMALLMOUTH BASS By John Johnson t was late October and, unfortunately, my fishing for the season was coming to an end. The weather was beautiful with the sun shining, the wind calm and the temperature in the low 60s. With the success we had enjoyed the previous day, I decided to try my luck again but this time starting our fishing trip closer to sunset. Baxter, my springer spaniel fishing partner, and I pushed off from a small sandy beach on the Tittabawassee River above my home in Midland, Michigan. The water level was high and clear. I assumed the large bass would be close to the bank in shallower water feeding on minnows and crayfish. Even with the sun disappearing over the horizon, we could see the bottom in five feet of water. I tied on a size 2, Lead Eyed Bunny Booger and cast it to a spot about a foot from the bank. This section of the river had numerous submerged logs, brush and chunks of concrete that stabilized the banks. The first half hour produced two rock bass and a 12- and 16-inch smallmouth. At 30 minutes after sunset, it was getting hard to see the bank in spite of the bright moon starting to move across the sky. After catching three more rock bass, a fish hit the rabbit-tailed fly. It made a hard, subsurface run. By observing the bend in the rod, I knew this fish was big. It made a serious attempt at a jump but only man-

I

aged to clear the water about a foot. I pulled it into the canoe, measured, weighed and quickly returned it to the river. It was 18 inches long and weighed 3 pounds, 5 ounces, not bad for cold water late in the year. In the next 15 minutes, I caught several more fish including a 14- and 15-inch smallmouth. The paddle to the takeout ramp was easy with the bright moon helping me find my way. The success with fishing on evenings with a full moon got me thinking about the effect it has on our fishing. I had talked with Ron Cordes, FFF chairman of the board, at a recent Conclave about my interest in the effect of the full moon on fishing. He mentioned that during his summers fishing in Minnesota he found that the Solunar Tables seem to be an excellent predictor of fishing success. I wanted to know more so I obtained a book titled “Moon Up Moon Down: Story of the Solunar Theory” by John Alden Knight. This was the first attempt at relating the effects the sun and moon have on our fishing. His book is full of examples of how the moon and tides affect various aspects of our life. Even mundane things like how often a frog croaks to how fast a secretary can type were attributed to the phases of the moon. I thought the concept was interesting but wasn’t totally convinced. With more than 1,200 hours spanning 25 years of fishing data in my computerbased log, I decided to put the solunar theories to the test. The Solunar Tables that are part of our daily newspapers and outdoor magazines are based on the tides. The tides are the result of the gravitational pull of the sun and the moon. There are two high tides producing two best fishing periods each

day. There are also two lower tides that generate two good fishing periods each day. For each of the observations in my database I identified whether it was rated as best, good or not rated. I also recorded the rating of each day (excellent, good, average and poor) for 600 observations dating back over the previous six years. Then I calculated the average catch rates for each of these factors. The Astronomical Applications Department of the U.S. Navy Web site provided data on sunset, sunrise, moonset, moonrise and date of full and new moons covering a timeframe from 1983 to the present day; it spanned 1,200 fishing hours in my database. I calculated the average catch rates for the data that was within one hour of sunset, sunrise, moonset and moonrise. I also calculated the average catch rates for my data that fell within two days of the full moon and the new moon. So what is the answer to our question, Solunar Theory: fact or fiction? I believe the answer to this question probably falls in the fiction category. To understand this rather evasive answer, one must understand some basic statistics. In introductory statistics classes, I had learned that to reach a conclusion identifying an effect that is significant, one must reject a hypothesis that the same effect is not significant. For example, I calculated the average catch rates for large bass for the best-rated fishing times at 0.41 fish per hour. I also calculated the results for the fishing times that were not rated at 0.42 fish per hour. These two averages are much too close to consider their differences significant. A detailed statistical analysis confirms this conclusion. The detailed statistical analysis uses large-enough sample sizes to estimate if the variability in the two sets overlaps each other. If they do, as in this case, there is no basis for saying that the fishing was actually better at the “best rated times” than at the “non rated

The Lead Eyed Bunny Booger – an excellent wet fly that is effective in early mornings and even late in the fall with temperatures in the 40s.


A 16-inch smallmouth caught in midsummer at dusk with a Sparkle Grub fly. Photos courtesy of John Johnson

A smallmouth caught on October 24 at sundown on a night with a full moon.

times.” With the averages about the same this is an easy conclusion to reach. On the other hand, when the averages are very different it can be more difficult to accept. For example, the Solunar Table’s best time of day predictions for small bass indicate that the good-day, average catch rates are three times larger than the non-rated day averages. Even this large difference was not found to be statistically significant. I also used a method called “multiple regression” to evaluate the ability of the Solunar Table to predict the best days of the month and best time of the

day. This analysis showed that these factors only predicted about 1 percent of the variance from the averages. Again it confirmed that it is unlikely that the tables are able to predict the best times to fish for large bass. Even with a sample size based on hundreds of observations, there is a large variation that is caused by many other variables besides the solunar factors. Weather, water temperatures, water levels, water clarity and type of fly used are all important variables in predicting the best times to fish for bass. The only chance we have of sortSUMMER SURFACE FEEDING ACTIVITY

Surface fishing monthly catch rate averages for medium and large bass drop off in the fall. Because of the other variables, however, this drop is not statistically significant. Small bass catch rates increase throughout the summer.

ing out the best times to fish is to look at some of the other more important variables. One of these variables is whether the fish are surface feeding on dry flies or feeding subsurface on wet flies. To determine the best time of year to fish for smallmouth on the surface, I made a plot of average, monthly catch rates for small, medium and large bass. The catch rate averages for large and medium smallmouth bass show a drop in September, but because of the numerous other variables, this drop is not statistically significant. The catch

SOLUNAR TABLE BEST TIME OF DAY PREDICTION

The Solunar Tables best and good times of day predictions do not correlate with high catch rates. Despite high small bass catch rates on good days, it is not statistically significant.

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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New Flyfishing Fiction The Flycaster Who Tried to Make Peace with the World By Randy Kadish 272 pages • $16 softbound This philosophical novel from Flyfisher contributor Randy Kadish looks at an age-old question – why are we here? – through the story of Ian MacBride, a young man coping with tragedy, loss and the horrors of World War I. Moving to the Beaverkill River, he retreats into the world of fly fishing, where, almost by accident, he finds a way to make peace with a world he cannot always understand. A novel of loss, faith and coming to terms, “Flycaster” is infused with the history of fly fishing, fly casting and the beauty and spirituality they encompass. Distributed by Keokee Co. Publishing, Inc. 1-800-880-3573 • 208-263-3573 Order online at:

www.KeokeeBooks.com [24]

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

rates of smaller bass indicate a significant increase from May through September. Subsurface feeding activity for larger bass is nearly constant from May through October but decreases in November. Medium-sized bass catch rates are constant from May through November but do not show a decrease in November as I observed on the medium-sized fish. Small bass show an increasing catch rate from May through September and then a rapid drop into the fall of the year. To determine the best time of day to fish with subsurface flies, I made a plot of average catch rates for each hour before and after sunset. All sizes of bass show constant catch rates during the timeline from early evening through an hour after sunset. During the evening, surface feeding for large bass is constant until an hour after sunset. Medium and small bass catch rates are constant in the evening but drop rapidly after dark. A plot of morning catch rate averages for all sizes of bass show that subsurface catch rates are higher near sunrise. On the other hand surface catch rate averages are low at sunrise and increase as the morning stretches into the day. The next time you are studying Solunar Tables trying to figure out what might be the best times of the day to go fishing, I would suggest that you consider better spending your time in the backyard making a few practice casts or maybe at the vise tying a few flies. I personally think it is unlikely that these tables will be any help in predicting your best times to fish. I hope that some of the suggestions as to when to use wet flies or dry flies at different times will be helpful. Don’t forget that it is important that we all practice catch and release so that these great sport fish will be available for our grandchildren and their grandchildren. John Johnson is from Midland, Michigan, where he spends much of his time catching smallmouth bass and tracking his fishing results. You can contact him at jocko@tm.net. Editor’s note: The opinions herein are those of the author and may not be those supported by the Federation of Fly Fishers.


Thinning the Crowd HOW TO DODGE

THE THUNDERING HERD ON ONE OF WYOMING’S TOP TAILWATERS

Story and photos by Chris Madson

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wo or three times in my life, the requirements of employment or education have led me accidentally to one or another of the continent’s great migration corridors. These are the routes that lead from primary habitats to seasonal ranges, and at the right time of year, the masses of wildlife moving along them provide some of America’s most impressive outdoor spectacles. I was a resident of Madison, Wisconsin, in the mid-1970s when the Ski-Doo and Arctic Cat migration from Chicago to northern Wisconsin began in earnest. On any Friday afternoon in January, I could count a hundred snowmobiles an hour passing any given point on Interstate 90-94, all northbound on trailers to the land of guaranteed snow. The following Sunday, the reverse migration was even more intense. Some years later, I moved to Pratt, Kansas, a town with a threeblock business district and one stoplight where U.S. Highway 85 north and south meets U.S. Highway 54 east and west. One of our favorite autumn entertainments was watching that intersection on the first Friday evening in November (it was, as I have pointed out, a very small town). When the light stopped the westbound traffic, 10 or 15 vehicles stacked up, each vehicle stuffed to capacity with men and boys and bird dogs, all of them straining at the leash and fogging up the windows in anticipation of the Saturday pheasant opener. Sunday evening the cavalcade returned from southwest, cars coated with dust, faces unshaven, dogs lame, everybody grinning. These days, I live in Cheyenne, Wyoming. My route to and from the office takes me over Interstate 25, the main north-south route across the high plains of Colorado and Wyoming. Beginning around Valentine’s Day, I try to grab a quick peek at the interstate traffic on my way home in the evening, looking for the first northbound migra-

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tion out of the Denver area. The leaders are easy to spot – they’re trailering driftboats and rafts or car-topping the occasional one-man pontoon craft. When the first reports get back to the fly shops along the Front Range, the Grand Passage begins. I’ve never counted the number of green-mountain Colorado plates flowing north on a Friday afternoon in March, but the effect is a lot like Monday morning rush hour in downtown Denver. In fact, the local merchants seem to think the crowd is big enough to justify mass advertising. Up north of Glendo, Wyoming, there’s a billboard featuring an angler holding an 8pound brown and inviting the public to “Fish Casper.” The only other place I’ve ever seen a full-sized fishing billboard was on Interstate 35 north of Minneapolis, a region known for its widespread walleye madness. It was a 60-foot image of the world’s most popular fishing plug with a single word: “Rapala.” As I recall, there was a pullout in front of the sign where anglers could stop to worship. The Colorado hordes are headed for Gray Reef, a tailwater fishery below Alcova Reservoir on the North Platte River upstream from Casper, Wyoming. Besides the mounting pressure of cabin fever at this time of year, there are several reasons for the seasonal rush. While there are browns and cutthroats in this stretch of the Platte, it’s really a rainbow stream, and they get more active in March as the spring spawning season approaches. Since the average rainbow here weighs about 2 pounds, many fishermen are inspired to visit. It’s unfortunate that the best fishing on Gray Reef doesn’t coincide with the halcyon days of early summer. The Bureau of Reclamation uses the river to move water down to Nebraska for irrigation, which means flows are relatively low during the winter and early

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

spring and then much higher during the growing season. The heavier current dislodges algae and submerged vegetation on the bottom, turning the river into a sort of tossed salad. By May and June, a fly line with any weight on it will collect floating algae on the drift, all of which slips down to the fly on the swing, forming a wad of green gunk the size of a baseball on your small midge pattern. Even a dead-drifted dry fly picks up algae during the summer. The frustration drives most fishermen to other waters in the summer and forces them to consider fishing Gray Reef during seasons most people spend in saunas and hot tubs. In any temperate latitude, March weather is notoriously fickle. In Wyoming, it’s psychotic. A couple of years ago, the temperature hit 69 degrees one sunny March afternoon on the banks of the Platte; four years before that, a fine, crisp March morning dawned at 10 below. It’s not unusual to have 2 or 3 inches of snow on the ground and not impossible to get 2 feet. Not many Marches ago, I stopped at one of the public access areas along the Platte to wet a line. It was about noon when I walked down to the river, mostly sunny with a few cumulus clouds racing across the sky. There was the usual breeze – the sagebrush shivered as the gusts passed, and an occa-

A beautiful North Platte River cutthroat


sional shower of dust and sand came down off the cut bank behind me. There has been much discussion about the proper equipment and techniques for fly casting in the Wyoming breeze. Experts of my acquaintance recommend a 7- or 8-weight rod with plenty of weight and a short line. I believe the safer approach is to teach yourself to cast with either hand – that way, you can work the line on your downwind side so that, when the inevitable gust hits as your loop starts to straighten, you won’t drive the point of a No. 2 Woolly Bugger into the back of your neck. Another approach is to pick the side of the river that allows you to keep the line downwind, although this can require repeated river crossings and the occasional brisk dip in the deeper runs. It’s strange that there has never been a fly fisherman strangled by his own line on the Platte. This may be a tribute to the modern generation of fast rods and the casting skills of regulars on the river, or it could be that the victims have so far been aging bachelors who have not yet been missed. I started with a tandem rig – a scud with a little Hare’s Ear underneath – but, as the breeze freshened, I kept getting tangled, so I eventually trimmed back to the scud. I may have caught a couple of fish in the next hour or two. I seem to recall at least one bent rod. Mostly, I struggled to

mend the line and dreaded the end of the swing when I had no choice but to try another cast. By 3 o’clock, the wind had come up perceptibly. The pool I was fishing had jumped up into respectable whitecaps, and the heavier gusts ripped the tops into spray. I had changed to a weighted crane fly nymph that I could deploy without casting. All I had to do was pick up the rod tip, and 30 feet of line came out of the water along with four tin split shot and the fly. Swing the rod tip upstream, drop it suddenly into the water, and – voila! – I had 10 or 15 feet of drag-free float. Unfortunately, as much fun as I was having, the fish had quit feeding, so I decided to call it a day. Up above the shelter of the riverbank, the wind was stronger. The horizon was blurred with dust, and as I walked up to the car, I could hear sand and small gravel rattling against the lift gate. I popped the back, peeled off my waders, and leaned in to rest my fly rod on the backs of the seats inside so it wouldn’t blow away. As I straightened up, something heavy hit me on the back of the head, and a shower of white cascaded over my shoulders. I ducked into the back of the car and saw another shower of crystal pour across the windshield and off the hood. The carpet in front of me was covered with pieces of safety glass. I puz-

zled over this phenomenon for a few seconds, and then looked up at the lift gate. A gust had hit the rear window and exploded it. The rear wiper unit – motor, blade and all – swung in the wind from its wiring while the last of the shattered glass slid lazily along the roof. Back to the southwest behind the Seminoe Mountains, the sky looked like a bad bruise, blue-black and green, and I began to contemplate the notion that it would be inconvenient to weather a thunderstorm in a vehicle with its back window blown out. I packed my rod and headed to town in search of a sheet of clear plastic and a roll of duct tape, the essential ingredient in all emergency repairs. As I drove, it occurred to me that I had just enjoyed an afternoon on one of the finest tailwaters in the West without having to put up with a single competitor. In this age of spiraling demand for quality trout fishing, parking lots jammed with SUVs and rivers bow-to-stern with driftboats, that is an infinitely precious experience. To those like me, who treasure such moments, I offer this strategy for avoiding the crowds on the North Platte River: It’s just a matter of picking the right day. When he’s not throwing a fly line, Chris Madson edits Wyoming Wildlife magazine and writes for a variety of sporting and conservation periodicals. He keeps his fly-tying vise and canoes in a modest dwelling in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Many anglers prefer floating the river rather than wade fishing.


THE BEGINNING

Fly Fisher

Often a fish will hide close to the bank and your first presentations upon entering the water should cover that area.

By Bob Shirley

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s a beginning fly fisher, you need to know a few things – some quite obvious and some only acquired after long hours of frustration or contemplation. My purpose here is to introduce you to some basic information and to provide a few hints on becoming comfortable with fly fishing. Possibly the most important thing to remember is that all fly fishers began where you are right now. No one is born knowing how to fly fish – this seems obvious, but don’t forget it. Measure your progress and skill advancement by your own standards and proceed at your own comfort level. Also, know that some part of fly fishing may interest you more than others and that you tend to spend more time and energy casting, tying, fishing or building – this is normal and quite within the bounds of accepted behavior. Now, let us look at the equipment. The various fly rods, fly lines, flies and knots appear to be complex and are intimidating by their sheer number and diversity. If you want to understand

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any of them you will either need a mentor or a good source of reference material. Many outdoor retailers mail fly fishing catalogs that can be of great value. These publications usually have photos of the flies listed with their names, so you can learn to identify flies and what they imitate – mayflies, baitfish, terrestrial imitations, etc. Fly rod “actions,” sizes and appropriate uses are often discussed in those catalogs to help you make an informed buying decision. It’s important to learn terms like weight of the rod – which refers to the appropriate weight of line to use with that rod and not the actual weight in ounces of the rod itself. Note how the reel is attached, the rod length and if it is made for saltwater, tubing, small streams or for big water. Two of the most important pieces of fly-fishing equipment are the line and the leaders. Catalogs sometimes go to great lengths explaining and illustrating tapers, floating ability, sink rates and specialized uses of fly line. This can be helpful. Having done your

homework out of a free catalog, you will better understand what they are describing. The leaders and their uses likewise will be explained and dissected for you. Other helpful reference material includes CDs, books and, especially, information on the Internet. Be sure to check the Federation of Fly Fishers (FFF) Web site, www.fedflyfishers.org/, and look under the Education tab to find helpful information, including a glossary and tools and resources available. Mentors may be the most important resource for obvious reasons. Mentors may be found by chance, but the heaviest concentrations of skilled fly fishers are at FFF clubs or fly shops. Now you may not be a joiner of clubs, but I think that is the best place to locate skilled help at a minimal cost (usually no more expensive


All photos by Gretchen & Al Beatty

Placing your thumb on top of the rod handle is a good starter position.

than your annual dues). Other sources include fly shops and some universities, but their programs may cost you more than the price of membership in your local FFF club. Another avenue to explore would be fly-fishing schools or other professional instruction. These are particularly helpful to improve your casting. There are some simple rules in fly fishing that have been reduced to time-honored comments to beginners uttered by old timers. One good example is “Less is more in fly fishing.” This comment is especially true in casting and tying. Using less physical effort and applying less power, and instead using better timing and technique will generally improve your casts. Usually, sparse dressing and fewer details on your flies catch more fish too. Some people refer to fly casting as an unnatural act. This is because there

The thumb on the top of the handle provides a good indicator to identify where the rod tip is pointing.

is no other stroke in sports quite like it. In most sports using a device (bat, paddle, club, stick or racket) the backstroke is slow and the forward or power stroke is hard and fast. Fly casting strokes are equal front and back. There should be little difference in power or timing between them, and they should look alike in the air unless there are special conditions or circumstances that require one to be different from the other. This sameness is unique and is also important because the backcast is “setting up” the forward cast. Another time honored expression in fly fishing is: “From now on you will not need to write out a Christmas list or tell people what you want for your birthday.” The only thing people will need to know is that you fly fish. From that point whatever they buy for you within the sport – from basic equipment to special application items and back-up rods and reels – will be

Save your hand by NOT using the hook keeper to store your fly. It is located at the top of the fly rod handle; instead use a guide further up the rod to keep the sharp point away from your hand.

something you can use. Fly fishing can become a significant part of your life, and I sincerely hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Bob Shirley from Corpus Christi, Texas, serves on the FFF Board of Directors and chairs the Membership Committee.

Terry and Roxanne Wilson Authors, speakers available for club events and shows. Slide shows, seminars, and tying demonstrations. Warmwater fly fishing. (largemouth and smallmouth bass, bluegill, and other species) terrywil@windstream.net • 417-777-2467

636-532-5242 Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Swift Water, Fading Light and

body for maximum action. By making these substitutions, we’ve fashioned our own hellgrammite imitation that we call “Wilson’s Jointed Hellgrammite.” The jointed body is activated by the current, while any rod manipulation mimics attempts by the natural to escape. The pattern has consistently given us good evening smalldusk and on into the night, a fact that mouth action. must not be overlooked when fishing Your own choice of rods for hellgrammite patterns. Their three-year stream smallmouths will deliver the fly life cycle enables growth to reach effectively, but we prefer a 9-foot, 5- or almost 4 inches in waters containing 6-weight. The rod length will allow for an abundance of nymphs and larva on “high sticking” where that method is which to feed. In healthy streams there perceived to be an efficient presentaare a wide range of sizes of this meantion. The rod weights also accommospirited, ugly bug from tiny wigglers to date the sinking line we sometimes gigantic old-timers. Those most availprefer because they enable the fly to able to the smallmouth population are be retrieved parallel to the bottom as between 1 and 3 inches in length, and opposed to being stripped toward the imitations should replicate that range surface. Fished on floating line with at of sizes. least a 9-foot leader facilitates the highEven knowledgeable anglers often sticking presentation, whereas leaders fail to recognize the importance of hellon a sinking line should be short (3.5 grammites because they seldom see to 6 feet) to prevent the fly from bowadult dobsonflies along the stream, and ing toward the surface, thereby negattheir rock-turning forays fail to uncover ing the purpose of the sinking line. true representations of the numbers The leader’s construction is best when that are available. This may be because it’s tapered to aid in turning over the the fastest section of the river is the fly, but under swift water conditions, hardest place to obtain samples. We tippet size isn’t a big issue. Ours tend shouldn’t assume their numbers are toward 3X to 4X, but slightly heavier low and fail to imitate these brownishtippets won’t cause a rejection. black nymphs so Presentation highly prized by depends, to a large the smallmouth extent, upon curbass population. rent speed. If the Fly-fishing riffle being fished is catalogs display slow enough to an array of hellallow slack line grammite patrecovery, casting up terns but few capand across insures ture the flattened the longest dragbody, a realistic free drift. simulation of the Intermittent action menacing can be imparted mandibles or the even with a sinking Big smallmouths are vulnerable to well-fished flexible body of line by lifting then hellgrammite patterns. the live version. dropping the rod Top of page, hellgrammites are the nymphal Recently tip; strip the line deceased fly-tying forms of dobsonflies. only to remove icon George slack. This lift, drop Grant, 1973 Buz Buszek Award recipiand strip retrieve is equally valuable in ent, used aluminum finish nails on swift currents which require a down either side of the hook shank to create and across cast as it can be employed a flat foundation for his weighted either at intervals during the presentanymphs. Substituting 50-pound test tion or at the end of the dead drift. monofilament for Grant’s nails and Especially if casting downstream, it is borrowing the mandible material advantageous to find positions from choice of another great flytier, the late which to cast that involve as little wadMichael Verduin, provides us a jointed ing as possible. Any silt, sand or gravel

Ugly Bugs Story and photos by Terry and Roxanne Wilson ong shadows stretched across the rain-swollen river as the towering ridge above glowed in fading, golden light. A thumping strike bounced the 5-weight’s tip before arching the rod as the 15-inch smallmouth bore into the murky current. Three memorable leaps and a strong run later, a hellgrammite imitation was extracted from its jaw. In a defiant flash of bronze, it returned to its rocky home downstream from the riffle. Spring showers raise the water level, causing it to turn cloudy, but smallmouth bass are on the move. The warm influx of water stirs their instinct to prepare for the spawn, and their first stop will be protective current breaks within and immediately downstream from a riffle at the head of a pool. The bass will feed opportunistically on whatever morsels the river provides, but in pale evening light the swift water of the riffle offers a dietary staple, hellgrammites. This larval stage of the dobsonfly, especially the Eastern species (Corydalus cornutus) is a mean-looking critter with heavy mandibles capable of pinching an angler’s finger. They have a testy disposition to match, which causes them to use those powerful pincers at the slightest provocation. West Coast members of the Corydalis family lack the enlarged mandibles. Hellgrammites, known to some as “toe biters,” are most commonly found among the large gravel and chunk rock in swifter sections of streams where they take refuge from the sunlight. There, although omnivorous, they mainly feed on other nymphs, including mayflies, caddisflies and stoneflies. They are most active at

L

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009


that is dislodged will be washed downstream through potentially productive water. If a dead drift is preferred, a reach cast, that is to say pointing the rod tip upstream as the fly is landing, will extend the length of the drift. High-sticking can be successful and involves landing the fly close enough to the caster’s position to allow the angler to hold the line off the water by utilizing the rod’s length to follow the drift causing direct-line contact with the fly. The result is a drag-free drift that enables the angler to target specific seams or breaks in the current. The tactic also transmits fish contact immediately to the angler, thus reducing missed strikes. Long leaders are necessary for high-sticking, and sometimes it’s helpful to extend the length of the leader if the fish-holding water is deep.

Another successful presentation involves pocket water (sections of water that look bumpy because the submerged rocks reach close to the water’s surface) that is swift enough to harbor hellgrammites. Casting down and across allows the fly to tumble among the rocks; then strip to intentionally bring the fly into contact with the rocks. This creates a clicking sound that causes nearby bass to investigate. This “rock-banging” tactic is particularly successful when the water is so turbid that smallmouths are having difficulty locating their meal by sight. Barbell eyes, cone heads and bead heads will do a good job of clicking against submerged rocks and attracting bass. Fishing a hellgrammite pattern may well provide great smallmouth

fishing, but it’s important to remember the nature of this ugly bug. It shuns the light, waits until near darkness to become active, and prefers the fast, well-oxygenated portions of the stream. Success with hellgrammite imitations is best near dusk, in and near riffles and at the heads of pools. Long rods and two spools for the reel, one with floating and the other with sinking line, will serve every situation. And remember, within weeks of your first spring smallmouth trip these same bass will be spawning. Return them safely to the water so they can replenish the river. Terry and Roxanne Wilson of Bolivar, Missouri, are longtime Flyfisher contributors focusing on warmwater fly fishing. For more articles, tips or to schedule them to speak at your club, visit their Web site at www.thebluegillpond.com or email them at terrywil@windstream.net.

Wilson’s Jointed Hellgrammite If you would like to give it a try, here are the recipe and tying instructions for Wilson’s Jointed Hellgrammite.

Abdomen and Tail Hook Hook: Mustad 3366, size 4 Thread: Black 6/0 Tail: Black saddle hackle, size 12. Tie in the hackle at the hook bend and make three to four wraps. Pull them toward the rear and wrap thread at the base to slant the hackle back. Body: 50-pound monofilament tied at both sides of the hook shank to make a flattened body. Soak in head cement. Tie in fine black wire to provide segmentation and dub the abdomen with Whitlock’s SLF dubbing, hellgrammite. Wrap to the hook eye, spiral the wire forward and whip finish. Remove hook from vise and, using wire cutters, clip the hook at the hook bend behind the tail.

Thorax and Head Hook Hook: Mustad 3366, size 4 Weed guard: 16-pound Mason hard mono. Secure to the hook shank and leave to trail behind the end of the hook bend. Connecting loop: 10-pound Mason hard mono. Secure along the

A reach cast in pocket water enables a longer, drag-free drift.

hook shank and through the eye of the completed abdomen and tail hook. Provide enough loop to allow freedom of movement and secure the unattached end of the mono to the thorax/head hook shank. Thorax: Secure two strips of 50-pound mono to either side of the hook shank and soak all the monofilament attachments with head cement. Tie in fine black wire and tie in hen hackle (black). Dub to the position of the head (approximately three-quarters of the hook shank) with Whitlock’s SLF dubbing, hellgrammite. Legs: Wrap the black hen hackle to the head position, and then wrap the black wire forward so as to secure both the dubbing and the hackle. Be careful not to trap the legs under the wire. Eyes: Extra small barbell eyes (black) Head: Whitlock’s SLF dubbing, hellgrammite Weed guard: Bring the weed guard mono forward and secure under the eye. Clip the mono and adjust the weed guard position. Burn the mono end to prevent slippage. Mandibles: Black rubber 3/8-inch O-ring. Cut 1/4 of the ring away. Cut at a 45-degree angle so as to represent the sharp mandible points. The overall length of the fly should be 1¾ to 2 inches from the end of the tail to the tip of the mandibles.

Wilson’s Jointed Hellgrammite incorporates weedlessness, a flexible body and realistic mandibles.


Tying the Bead-Loop Knot HELP FOR FAILING EYES AND FUMBLING FINGERS Story and photos by Jim Andrews

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ne thing many of us will face if we live long enough is vision loss. Unfortunately, I have arrived at that point in my life where I can hardly see a fly and forget about the possibility of seeing the eye of the hook. My disability has led me to using snelled flies and a loopto-loop connection system. A loop-toloop connection works to some extent, but once assembled the two pieces of monofilament will jam together, making them next to impos-

line (or leader) loop to help me keep track of that part of the assembly. Notice I’ve used extra large items to illustrate my point so we can see them better. I really urge the user to practice both tying and untying the assembly numerous times before going streamside. Failure to follow these instructions faithfully can result in a monofilament-to-monofilament knot, which can be a real mess and the very thing we want to avoid.

Regarding the fly-line knot itself: The leader should be cut back to a point where it is much stronger than the monofilament in the snell. Then an overload will break it rather than the leader. Although I developed this system as a benefit to those with poor vision, the time may come when all fly fishermen will be using the idea so they can spend more time fishing and less time tying on flies. I hope all of you find the idea useful.

The fly is attached to the leader or fly line by slipping the loop from the snell over the bead-loop knot and pulling the fly through.

Once the two loops are pulled together, it’s time to go fishing.

sible to untie and equally difficult to see. Here is where my idea for using a bead-loop knot has solved this problem for me. It may prove helpful for you if your eyesight is not as good as it once was. In my illustrations I’m using a section of white nylon rope to represent the fly line (or leader) and a black shoelace to illustrate the snelled section of monofilament that is anchored to the fly. I’m using a large red bead that is slipped into the fly

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Some people have asked me about the size of the bead. I think I would have to advise the smaller the better depending on any vision limitations. Personally I find a 5/32 diameter works well for me. Also I find one variation that is helpful for me is to pass the leader through the bead a second time. This allows it to maintain a central position in the loop without slipping around. Another variation I often use is a short length of very small plastic tubing in lieu of a bead.

Just grasp the bead and pull back on the snell to take the two apart.

Jim Andrews, 83, is from Austin, Colorado, and legally blind. He began his fly-fishing career in 1955 when he moved to Colorado and spent his first winter building a fly rod from a Herter’s kit. After catching his first brook trout, he was hooked on fly fishing. The bead-loop knot is protected by patent number 727290. Andrews has also developed a fly box (FLYLETM) to hold large numbers of snelled flies to further support his system. For more information contact him at andrews81410@tds.net. Editor’s note: We have adapted Jim Andrews’ idea to place a strike indicator where we need one. As we get older that seems to happen more often than we would like to admit.


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Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Woman’s Outlook REDEMPTION THROUGH A SENSE OF HUMOR By Carol Oglesby

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ad weather, bad guide, bad equipment, bad accommodations, bad partner, bad photographer, bad, bad, bad … fill in the blank. We all have stories of a bad fishing trip. Seeking redemption from a bad situation is the key to finding a shred of happiness, or salvaging a bruised ego and avoiding hard feelings between friends. It’s true, what’s said about being “in the moment.” Don’t judge the entire trip by one bad event. OK, it’s true, I’ve had a really bad moment, all day long, through a comedy of errors, with an inexperienced and naive guide, but he meant well and, after the fact, I’ve had hours of laughs retelling the implausible, but true, stories. Generally, there is a lesson learned from a bad experience. What’s the saying? Prepare for the worst but expect the best, or is it the other way around? Regardless, there is truth in either sense of the adage. After safety and common sense, the most important thing you may require from your emotional repertoire is a sense of humor. I’m not talking just a chuckle, snicker or a tee-hee; you may have to pull out the BIG SLAP-YOURSELF-ONTHE-LEG GUFFAW! When it comes to redemption at the end of a disastrous day, humor may be your liberator. I’m not referring to dire situations involving loss or irreparable damage, the things that gnaw at your gut forever. I’m talking about events where poor planning resulted in a substandard excursion, or something that was beyond your control happened that you just had to laugh about later. Listen carefully to the humorous stories from your friends, and heed the truth disguised in unspoken words. As I write this, I begin to think of things I hesitate to share but that may be of value to others, especially those of you who leave the details to someone else. I reluctantly offer a few examples and suggestions. Waiting with my friends and our guides at the put-in on the A Section of the Green River for our turn to launch, I happened to meet someone else I knew (a minister). He was in a party of six preparing to launch their raft – one of those small, yellow, rubber-ducky-type

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rafts designed for Photo by Pat Oglesby four people, maximum. This party of six included two small children. My heart sank as I watched the yellow boat “banana” when the six piled in and paddled off as water lapped well up the sides of the raft; it oddly resembled a strike indicator as it bobbled in the water. They were not a jovial bunch, and there seemed to be trepidation in the way they shoved off. I’m not Catholic, but I crossed myself and offered a silent prayer as I watched my friend’s raft rise and fall out of sight as it floated miraculously through the tongue of a fast stretch of water. I Sharon Buzzell of Rigby, Idaho, misses a “photo op” during a float couldn’t help but on the South Fork of the Snake River. think about them during the day as find the fish hungry and eager to munch our group enjoyed a great fishing trip. I streamers, so the day got away from us, heard no horror stories that night or the what with catching so many hearty rainnext few days, so the rubber-ducky must bows. have arrived safely at the takeout – probNot to be overburdened with ably because my minister friend had a weight, I had put only two bottles of direct route to the top of the prayer line! water in my vest. Wearing neoprene Confession: Years ago, during the waders, I grew hotter and hotter, high spring runoff, and prior to breathalthough I tried to stay in the river to able waders or filtered water bottles, conserve my precious water. Late in the four of us anglers decided to hire a jet day, we discovered we were only half boat to run us up the Gunnison River the way downstream to meet up with the and drop us off to fish our way back unpredictable and impatient jet boat down the frothing river. At the end of driver, and my water was depleted! the day, we were to meet the boat back Running the trail in neoprenes proved downstream at an appointed place and disastrous. I became lightheaded and time to be shuttled across the roilycontinually had to sidetrack to dunk in brown feeder stream that was too high the river and cool the steam rising from to wade. The morning air was cool and my waders. Dehydrated and babbling our shirts flapped behind us as the boat like the swollen river, I was relieved to skimmed the surface of the high water. hear the grating drone of the jet boat The temperature rose unseasonably as engine just as we arrived at the desigthe cloudless, royal blue sky reflected in nated cottonwood tree. Fortunately, we the swollen water. We were all elated to had extra water and snacks in the truck,


Weather/Comfort I learned this during a January saltwater trip to the Yucatan – it most certainly does get cold during a tropical deluge! Spend the extra forty bucks on the better rain jacket with sealed seams. Water resistant does not mean waterproof! Slip sliding out a greasy, clay road I heard, “A little voice told me we shouldn’t be in here when it rains.” Sometimes “things” happen and you get wet – yes, really! Throw in a change of clothes; remember an extra layer of long underwear, another pair of gloves, etc. Don’t you love that friend who always throws in another fleece hat or three – just in case?

Organizational Need I say, “Keep all your fishing gear in one place”? Then you will always have your wading boots, waders, sunscreen, bug spray, hat, gloves, sunglasses, extra socks, camera … fill in the blank! You got lost because you forgot the maps? I’m a firm believer in more is better and pack heavy – remember first aid kits, sleeping bags, dry clothes, cooler with food and water. Forget the diet – toss in another protein bar and a six-pack of Gatorade. You got up late and didn’t have time to pack a sandwich?

Pets Remember the snacks for your pet, and do not leave them in a hot vehicle. That sign did say, “No Dogs

Allowed,” didn’t it? So, you weren’t watching your dog when it tangled with the skunk, porcupine, snake, badger … fill in the blank! You didn’t see, until it was too late, when your dog swam after, and nabbed, your (former) friend’s hooked fish that he’s positive would have broken a world record!

Travel Didn’t that sign just say “Road Closed Ahead”? Remember that bumpy, dirt road and your friend who said, “I think that sign said ‘Narrow Road, No Pull-out for the Next 40 Miles’ ”? Were you talking when you missed the sign that said, “Four-wheel drive required”? Overheard going through customs at the airport in Cancun: “I’m sorry miss, but it is illegal to have a pocketknife in your carry-on luggage, even if it was an expensive gift from your boyfriend!” You got lost because you didn’t trust the GPS?

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General Common Sense Hmm – not a good idea to bring only alcoholic beverages on a scorching hot day! There are sharp sticks in a beaver dam, and they will puncture your breathable waders! You were catching too many fish, so you hiked out in the dark, and the batteries in your flashlight were dead? Ask my husband, Pat, about this one: “Oh, too bad your wife’s new camera, that you-bought-her-for-a-present and, you-decided-to-take-for-a-trial-shoot before-you-gave-it-to-her, fell in the drink because you didn’t have the strap around your neck when you leaned over the river to land your friend’s fish.” “Cockleburs stick to neoprene just like Velcro,” I said, as I tried to pry my legs apart! I would love to hear examples of your asinine experiences! Keep a sense of humor, and have a safe, sane and glorious time fishing. Remember to keep the wind at your back! Carol Oglesby from Grand Junction, Colorado, is a regular contributor to Flyfisher on female fly fishers’ interests. She may be contacted at pcoglesby@bresnan.net.

GREAT READS Tibetan Adventure – by Jack L. Parker Two kidnappings; a faked death; the mythical yeti; a powerful secret formula; and a hidden culture deep in an exotic land all come together in the intricate plot of the Tibetan Adventure. $11.99 (book 1) Patagonian Adventure – by Jack L. Parker Join hero Jeff Thornton in Argentina as he has near death experiences with a ruthless one-eyed gaucho and a huge killer puma, all while attempting to hook the biggest fish in the river. $13.99 (book 2) www.tatepublishing.com • Amazon • Barnes & Noble

e Sinc 1996

• Fully outfitted Hyde Drift Boat with licensed guide • World-class trout and smallmouth Arkansas rivers • Photos of trip • Full- and half-day trips

(479) 273-0276 www.justfishinguides.com Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

and I drank heartily as I mulled over the embarrassing message in my thirst! It is always a good idea to become acquainted with the fishing regulations in any place you travel. Just because you practice catch-and-release doesn’t mean there isn’t something else you should know. For example, some states may have certain waters closed for the protection of threatened and endangered fish or during the spawn of particular native species. Know if lead is prohibited or if there are laws requiring barbless hooks or single flies. Don’t risk paying hefty fines or accumulating points against your fishing/hunting license. Some of these tidbits may sound proverbial but please read the next group of tips with care:


PRACTICE AND EXERCISES

Techniques to Try in the Pre- or Early Season By Tom Tripi Photo by Tom Tripi

Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Casting

A

s I write this column, the early season for 2009 is here! About now, most of us are spending any free time possible pursuing some sort of flyfishing activity, making up for lost time and shaking the “off-season blues.” Although opening day is near, weather problems still abound – bringing cold spells, snow, sleet and rain, the resulting dirty water, and long non-fishing periods. In short, everyone experiences early season lulls before the “real” fishing season begins. So, do you hang up that wispy, 7-foot, 2-ounce piece of dry fly magic and wait until next week, or, dare I say, next month? I don’t. When extended downtime affects you (or me) and you have a little yard space or even 12 feet of inside floor area, then you can at least spend constructive time honing skills or improving your techniques while gaining some muscle strength and tone. I recognized the value of pre-season practice 35 years ago while conducting a casting class in the Catskills. An experienced, elderly “student” and I were discussing casting and the forthcoming off-season. He thought of casting practice as “simulated fly fishing.” He loved the sport so much that casting practice could actually fulfill his need for a “fishing fix.” So when not on the water, he practiced, and even more so in the off-season. Here are a few ideas on how to occupy idle time with practice before “the big hatches” begin.

Indoors Practice Perfect companions for pre-season or off-season indoors practice: lots of room, a pair of 4-foot fly rods and a warm fire.

Casting Practice on the Water I’m lucky to have my own ponds, so I can practice techniques during the off- season or any time I have a spare minute. My usual practice routine is to run through the master testing program, typically using shorter casts than required by the exam. Short casts may sound easy, but few fly fishers practice short casts enough to be proficient. I use the ponds to practice those basic presentations; however, bayous and shorelines with the nooks and crannies encountered during fishing season create the best areas for specialized cast-

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around logs and trees using overthe-shoulder techniques. Occasionally, we practiced rightand left-handed casting. Casting with the opposite hand can get your fly into pockets you never thought possible, and two anglers can cast with opposite arms in a small boat without tangling each other’s line. Now that I think of it, learning to cast with the opposite hand would be a great off-season project!

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

ing practice. You would be surprised how different a familiar area looks without leaves. The lack of foliage also reveals the secret haunts of summertime prey while practicing how to overcome casting problems; I like to think of it as a two-for-one deal. Although such outings are not intended for actual fishing, sometimes a hungry bass just can’t pass up a good meal. For example, New Year’s Day in 2000 came in cold and clear. I convinced my partner Jeff Sympson to make a run down the bayou just to practice while testing the swimming dynamics of a new fly design I eventually named the “Deceiving Popping Spoon.” The fly swam, wobbled and popped just as I hoped. I could see I was going to have a great time probing the inlets and cover along the steep banks. My humble contemporary had no choice but to man the trolling motor (he said his fingers were frozen to the handle anyway). I wanted to practice tight loops, penetrating under the tunneled foliage. When the first cast yielded a fat, 3-pound bass, Sympson’s fingers seemed to thaw very quickly. Later we discovered great bass hideouts behind wispy branches that just touched the water, so we practiced skipping flies under those overhangs. Aside from the skipping casts, most of our on-water practice involved various, short curve or hook presentations

Casting practice indoors can be pursued just about any time or anywhere – home, office or shop. Tools of the trade include very short fly rods, rod tips, dowels, etc. I like a 4-foot, slow-action, single-piece bamboo or graphite rod made from broken rod pieces or tip ends from damaged rods. The 20-foot end of a DT5F fly line and a hand-tied, 4-foot leader that matches the taper of the line make a great practice line. Just pass it through the guides and anchor it to the stripper guide or fly reel. Alternatively, a 10-foot length of rug yarn attached in the same manner as the fly line works just as well for shortdistance practice. You will need 10 to 12 feet of clear floor area with an ottoman or footstool in the middle. I sit on the ottoman and cast side arm in front of myself parallel to the floor, letting the line rest after each forward and back cast. Carpeting is the best surface for indoor practice because it provides just enough resistance to add a little tug on the line. However, the flooring in our house is ceramic tile and it, like wood, requires a slower casting stroke, which tends to defeat the effects of the slick surface. (Long carpet runners also remedy slick flooring.) A practical cast for indoor use is the Tip Cast. (See page 39 in the Spring 2008 issue of Flyfisher or go to www.tomtripi.com, click on resume/articles/Tip Cast). The critical practice element here is mastering the tight loop. Apply the same wrist snap/stop used in actual casting to create fine, narrow loops on both sides of


while throwing the discus in college and haven’t stopped since.

Conclusion Endless numbers of practice techniques and exercises can be used in the off and pre-season to keep the “ol’ casting arm” in shape. The important thing is to do something! You’ll reap many benefits, and your arm won’t feel like it’s “falling off” at the end of the first week of fishing season. If you are interested in additional exercise or casting information, check out The Loop archives on the FFF Web site (www.fedflyfishers.org) under the “Instructor Certification” tab. It is a valuable resource as it contains almost all of The Loop articles from 1994 to 2008.

Casting Exercises Casting exercises include just about anything that will strengthen and condition the casting hand and arm. If you don’t think conditioning is important try casting a 9-foot, 9- to 12-weight rod for a few hours and see how your arm feels. My two favorite exercisers that I use all year are a spring-loaded hand exerciser available in any sporting goods store or an isometric device I fabricated called the “Car Caster.” The Car Caster simply consists of the butt section of an old bamboo rod cut to a length of 15 to 20 inches and finished with a cork handle, minus the reel seat. The Car Caster was so named, as I first used it in the car for exercising while on long summer trips from Louisiana to upstate New York. My wife drove and I exercised. I begin exercising by placing the rod tip under the dashboard in front of my seat and starting the motion of a typical pick-up for a backcast. I like to keep steady upward pressure on the rod tip for about 10 seconds, then relax, wait a minute or so and repeat the process until I’ve completed 10 repetitions. Then place the rod tip on top of the dash and apply downward pressure for the same duration to practice the forward cast. These exercises help work out the “casting muscles” as well as increasing wrist strength. I use this technique to retain muscle tone when I’m off the water for extended periods. Don’t have a Car Caster? A stout dowel or butt section of a four-piece fly rod will serve as a good substitute. Also in a pinch, your index and middle fingers can be used in the same manner as the tip of the Car Caster. The top and underside of your desk or workbench at work can be used in place of an automobile dashboard, and hand exercisers can be used just about anywhere. My favorite times for this type of training are in the car

The Car Caster in action.

when carpooling to work or involved in long-winded phone conversations at the office. Five repetitions of 100 squeezes with a three-minute break between each set works best for me. This exercise is one of the fastest and easiest methods to increase hand and arm strength, thus reducing hand fatigue during extended fishing sessions. I started using handsprings

Master Casting Instructor Tom Tripi is from Folsom, Louisiana, where he uses a fly rod and canoe to pursue his favorite fish, teaches casting to students of all ages, and studies astronomy in his spare time.

Here’s what Joan Wulff has to say about the Federation of Fly Fishers: “The FFF has been an important part of my life since 1967. I’m pleased to see its role become more defined – that of educating men, women and children to further both the enjoyment and conservation aspects of this wonderful sport.” Joan Wulff

Make the FFF a part of your life, too.

FEDERATION

OF

FLY FISHERS

215 E. Lewis, Livingston, MT 59047

www.fedflyfishers.org

406-222-9369 Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Photo by Cheryl Dunworth

the cast. One can also practice short hook and curve casts in less-confined areas. The repetitive motion used while practicing indoors forms muscle memory that you’ll use every time you cast while actually on the water.


Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Fly Box CADDISFLIES AND THE MOTHER’S DAY CADDIS Story and photos by Verne Lehmberg Editor’s note: In this issue of Flyfisher, Verne Lehmberg’s popular Fly Box column is closely related to Biology on the Fly contributed by Editor-in-Chief Bill Toone. While Toone’s piece offers techniques for fly fishing during different life stages of the caddis, Lehmberg’s column provides more details on the bug’s biology and visuals of effective caddisfly patterns.

C

addis patterns are some of the most productive flies to use, especially on Western rivers. Some of the best spring fishing occurs when a small caddis, Brachycentrus occidentalis, makes its appearance on rivers in southern Montana and other Western states. This fly is the Mother’s Day caddis, with emergence occurring in the middle of April in the warmer Firehole River, around Mother’s Day in May at lower elevation rivers, and late May to early June in Henry’s Fork of the Snake River. This same genus emerges again in late summer on the Bighorn and other Western waters, when the famous black caddis is the most abundant trout fare. A favorite time to fish Montana’s Bighorn is late summer; the streamflow is low and clouds of black caddis fill the air. After mating, the female black caddis skitters along the surface and dives below the water to glue her eggs to underwater rocks and structures, coating waders and boat bottoms with whitish-green eggs. Allowing a CDC adult pattern to sink to just below the surface and drag a bit will mimic this behavior. Match fly patterns to the caddis’ life cycle, which is generally one year long. After the caddis eggs hatch, they live in the water as larvae, many species building complex cases of sand, vegetation or shells that protect the larvae and add ballast. Trout will take cased caddis, but the caddis species that are free-living – without cases – are often more attractive to them. The worm-like, free-

LaFontaine Cased Caddis The caddis larvae case mimics the natural case material, vegetation or sand. Tied by Heather or Gary LaFontaine.

living caddis roam the stream bottoms looking for food and are more vulnerable to the fish. After spending most of their life in the larval form, the caddis pupate and spend a week or two hidden in a silk cocoon, getting ready to transform into an adult. After cutting itself out of its cocoon, most caddis species rise to the surface, aided by the gasses between its pupal skin and the adult body. Helpless and very attractive to fish, they sweep up to the surface. At the surface the caddis readily fly to streamside bushes, ready to mate and lay eggs. Sometimes the Mother’s Day caddis will float for a while on the surface before flying, forming clusters of adults that are available to the fish. Caddisflies are probably as important as mayflies as a trout food. They are found in many cold streams and lakes, and come in all colors and sizes, from tiny gray micro-caddis to the giant orange-cinnamon caddis. I have used a No. 6 orange-cinnamon caddis in Oregon lakes, working the imitation along the surface, just as I worked a Jitterbug bass plug on the surface of still, swampy East Texas lakes many years ago. The large Oregon rainbows took the giant caddis with the same enthusiasm of an erupting black bass. Recommended books for caddis imitations and how to fish them include: “Caddisflies” by Gary LaFontaine, 1989; “Complete Book of Western Hatches: An Angler’s Entomology and Fly Pattern Field Guide” by Rick Haflele, 1981; “Soft Hackle Fly,” Sylvester Nemes, 1993; “Handbook of Hatches” by Dave Hughes, 2005; and a reference book, “Caddisflies: The Underwater Architects” by Glen Wiggins, 2005. Verne Lehmberg from Dayton, Texas, is a longtime Federation member and an excellent photographer. His contribution to Flyfisher is always appreciated.

Find tips for fishing a sand-cased caddis and all other stages of the caddis’ life on page 40.

Photo by John Johnson

Green Caddis Pupa This fly represents the free-living pupae, getting ready to ascend and emerge, or a green caddis larvae. When tied with a bead head or weighted, it probably most closely resembles free-living caddis larvae. Tied by Al Beatty.

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

Peeking Caddis This cased caddis larval pattern by Gretchen Beatty should be weighted and drifted along the stream bottom. A strike indicator helps signal fish interest. Tied by Gretchen Beatty.


Nemes’ Mother’s Day Caddis This pupal pattern fished so that the soft hackle undulates as it sweeps toward the surface resembles the caddis’ swimming legs. Sylvester Nemes popularized this fly. Tied by Sylvester Nemes.

Rhyacophila Pupais Oliver Edwards, one of Europe’s great fishers and fly originators, believes that the long, center pair of swimming legs and the drooping, dark wing pads on a ready-to-emerge caddis pupa are even more important trout-stimulating triggers than the air bubble sparkle that Gary LaFontaine recommends. This size No. 14 is an Edwards original. The free-living genus Rhyacophila are prolific and are widespread in many U.S. and European trout streams. Tied by Oliver Edwards.

The Zug Bug Like the Hare’s Ear, this is a good searching pattern. It represents cased caddis larvae or pupae, mayfly nymphs or other aquatic insects. Tied by Gretchen Beatty. Gold Ribbed Hare’s Ear This example of a classic is often fished to resemble a pupa; or tied with wings it resembles the underwater adult laying eggs. This is a good searching pattern when a fisher needs a general pattern that catches fish. Tied by Char Simpson.

X-Caddis Craig Matthews, of Blue Ribbon Flies, and Jon Juracek originated this pattern that imitates the adult floating in the surface film, still trailing the nymphal shuck. Tied by Craig Matthews.

Elk Hair Caddis This standard adult pattern floats and fishes well in rough water. It may be tied in many colors and variations. In the evening, clouds of caddis often swarm in mating flights over shoreline bushes, and then lay eggs underwater that adhere to rocks and structures. Tied by Paul Simpson.

Searchlight Caddis Pupa This fly floats in the surface film and, because of its white wing post, is easy to spot and follow as it drifts. Commercial tie.

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

LaFontaine Emerging Sparkle Pupa The Antron pupal skin should be loosely tied allowing a translucent “gas filled” impression. Tied by Al Beatty.


Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Biology on the Fly CADDIS FLY-FISHING TECHNIQUES By Bill Toone

W

ith around 1,200 subspecies of caddisflies, they are arguably the most import aquatic trout food for fly fishers. Since their development involves a complete life cycle, meaning they evolve from egg to larvae to pupae to emerger to adult, caddis are available in four, distinctly different, fishable forms. Therefore, many experienced fly fishers have a box solely dedicated to caddis patterns. Tips and techniques for fishing any fly pattern, caddis or otherwise, can vary based on geographic region, specific waters or hatches and even to individual anglers. I think the following general tips and techniques that have served me well on both Eastern and Western waters may also prove useful to you.

terns such as the Peeking Caddis, although I have found other generic patterns such as a Gold Ribbed Hare’s Ear to be excellent choices. In my experience, it doesn’t seem as important to specifically match larvae patterns, as it is to more closely match color and size of the natural insect. I’ve found using general nymphing techniques effective; however, getting my fly as close to the bottom as possible is most important, even if I have to add a split shot or two in order to do so. I always use an indicator, setting it one and a half to two times the depth of the water I am fishing. I also find casting both straight upstream or across and down using dead drift techniques to be effective as well.

Larvae

Unlike mayflies and other similar aquatic insects, caddisflies do not emerge directly from a nymphal shell on the surface or shore but transform into a pupae stage first. As pupae they develop in their case including wing pads and antennae. They will then leave the case, ascending quickly towards the surface to emerge as adults. This is an exciting stage to fish as trout often ferociously attack the escaping insects. A number of good pupae and soft hackle patterns may be used when fishing this stage; however, I find the fly rising through the water column a more important considera-

Caddisfly larvae generally involve themselves during a hatch in what is called the behavior drift. In other words, they intentionally allow themselves to be swept downstream in an attempt to balance the population distribution of that specific subspecies over as wide an area as possible. During these periods of behavior drift, the caddis larvae are highly vulnerable to predation by trout. As a result I have found the mornings generally the best times to use caddis larvae pat-

Pupae

tion than the selected pattern. I fish this stage similar to the way I present a nymph, but I do not add any split shot. In this situation I want the pattern higher in the water column and find the best technique for fishing the pupae is using an across-and-downstream offering. As the line tightens and swings towards the bank, it causes my pattern to rise in the water column just like a real pupa. Allowing the tightened line and pattern to hang downstream in the current for a few seconds before making another cast increases chances of success. At this time, the take can be aggressive, so be prepared. Often a swirling rise during a caddis hatch is a good indicator that trout are taking the pupae as it rises to the surface. Even with adults on the water, trout often remain focused on this stage of the emergence.

Emergers Since caddisflies do not need to struggle out of a nymphal shell on the surface like mayflies, their emergence from pupae to flying adults is much faster. Even so, there is a brief period of transformation as the insect struggles in the surface film; hence, fishing emerger patterns can be quite productive and exciting. In fact I find emerger patterns to be my most productive group of flies when fishing a caddis hatch. On many occasions I have found an emerger pattern to be the difference in determining whether I have a frustrating day or a successful day on the water. Patterns such as the Sparkle Pupae or Spotlight Emerger are my go-to patterns, although there are many other good ones. Splashy rises are often a telltale sign of fish feeding at the emergence stage, even when you see a lot of adults in the air or on the water. I think a dead-drift, on-the-surface offering is best, and I use a little floatant on my fly to be sure it stays there.

Photo by John Johnson

Adults Despite the productivity of fishing the pupae and emerger stages, dry fly patterns like the Elk Hair Caddis, Many species of caddis create cased homes out of sand, sticks and debris as seen above. The case protects the caddis while it is in the larval state.


Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Parachute Caddis and Goddard Caddis are a must for your box. While these patterns can be used anytime you see caddis in the air, I find them most useful in the evenings, particularly when the streamside vegetation holds many of the natural insects. A typical dry fly, dead-drift presentation works well, but I also like using the across-and-downstream technique. The fish seem to find the fly quite attractive when I allow my line to come tight in the current, and swinging it toward the bank causes the pattern to duck under the surface for a second or two. I find this technique can be particularly productive in faster, riffle water when the fish has less time to study the fly. I have often hooked fish using this technique, although I must admit some of them were hooked inadvertently because I was waiting for a boat to drift by or trying to decide where to cast next. Another productive technique occasionally is pulling my pattern under the water for a moment and then allowing it to resurface during a dead drift. This maneuver can imitate the egg-laying behavior of some caddis sub-species who dive under the water to deposit their eggs. In cases where there is a blanket hatch of caddis on the water or the fish are gorged from heavy feeding, I find using a Trude pattern one size larger than the natural insect can really improve my success ratio. I think the slightly different offering catches the fish’s attention – among the other hundreds of flies on the water. Whatever the attraction may be, this technique often saves the day for me. Caddis hatches can be some of the most prolific and exciting times to be on the water. Try these techniques on your next trip, but don’t be afraid to experiment with your own ideas. After all, experience is the best teacher. Bill Toone is editor-in-chief of Flyfisher magazine, a master certified casting instructor, and a guide and instructor for the Yellowstone Fly Fishing School. He and his wife, Arietta, live in Bozeman, Montana.

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

At the Vise RUBY’S CADDIS By Russ Forney

R

uby’s Caddis is a lively emerger pattern flaunting a transitional shuck on a curved hook. Jim Schollmeyer and Ted Leeson describe transitional shucks in their book, “Tying Emergers,” as a three-part design consisting of a trailing shuck, a lower body resembling the nymphal case, and an adult-like fly on the upper portion of the hook shank. Perhaps the biggest obstacle to overcome when tying a fly with a trailing shuck and two distinct body segments is the tendency to get too much going on at one time. Transitional patterns take more tying space on the hook to craft each component, requiring a longer hook shank or, as in this case, tying farther down the shank of a curved hook to effectively “stretch” the length of the tying area. Ruby’s Caddis is all about anima-

tion, a key feature in a pattern designed to imitate insects struggling to rid themselves of their nymphal skin. Manipulating contrast, light and texture helps convey the energetic process of emergence. The soft, flowing tips of ostrich herl are an enticing feature of the fly, adding to the sense of motion and activity in the drifting fly. The spiral wraps of herl also capture small air bubbles along the lower abdomen, enhancing the impression of movement and contributing a bit of flash to the fly. The elk hair downwing design gives the upper portion of the pattern excellent flotation and allows the shuck-end to hang below the surface film. The low-riding, suspended body dances with each ripple and crease in the current. There are endless ways to adapt fly designs to match specific hatches or to achieve a desired result. Ruby’s

Caddis is no exception; altering color or texture of dubbing, substituting marabou for ostrich herl, deer hair instead of elk, and no-hackle versions are all practical alternatives to the basic recipe. An imaginative tier could experiment all winter long with the possibilities of this design. Fishing a heavy caddis hatch is an awesome experience; the excitement is sure to make even the most ardent angler giggle like a kid. Explosive strikes, stout currents, feisty trout, and the satisfaction of being in the midst of Mother Nature’s finest aquatic festival guarantee a smile. Memories of a good caddis hatch can keep you grinning for weeks, a fit reward in exchange for a few hours at the tying bench. Russ Forney is an accomplished writer, photographer and Federation supporter from Beulah, Wyoming. This is his first article in Flyfisher.

MATERIALS

Hook: Size 12 to 18, curved nymph or scud Thread: Black or color of choice Shuck: Cream Antron fibers, three gray ostrich herl tips Back body: Gray ostrich herl, wrapped

Front body: Green caddis dubbing Wing: Blonde elk hair, tied Trude style Hackle: Light ginger

1

Step

Secure the hook and tie in about one-quarter of the way down the hook shank. Wrap about 50 percent of the curved hook shank to form a smooth thread base; occasionally counter-spin the thread to keep it flat. Add four or five strands of Antron to form the first part of the trailing shuck. Secure and trim off the excess Antron.

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009


Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

2

Step Add three ostrich herl tips to the trailing shuck; leave about one shank-length of the tips extending beyond the hook. Secure the herl along the hook shank with four or five wraps of tying thread. Fold the ostrich herl back toward the tail end of the fly and wrap with tying thread back to the trailing shuck. Return the tying thread forward to the midpoint of the hook shank.

4

Step

3

Step

At the end of the shank, tie on a black Chickabou feather by its tip. Also tie on a section of fine gold wire to later serve as the rib.

Dub the upper body with green caddis dubbing, again covering about one-third of the hook shank.

6

Step

5

Step

Clean and stack a small clump of blond or light elk hair, tie in the down wing and trim off the excess hair. Form a smooth, tapered thread base over the cut end of the hair wing.

Tie in a saddle hackle by the bare quill with the convex side forward, and wrap three turns to form a collar. Tie off and trim the hackle, leave an eye-length of space behind the eye to finish the head. Build a thread head, whip finish and trim as needed.

BT’S ROTARY TYING STATION The Station includes the vise, pedestal/tool base, and seven brass tools.

BT’s Fly Fishing Products 11965 W. Reutzel Dr. • Boise, ID 83709-4414

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(toll free phone & fax) http://www.btsflyfishing.com albeatty2@aol.com Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

The Fly Rod Corner ALWAYS REMEMBER ‘CAVEAT EMPTOR’ WHEN PURCHASING Story and photo by Dave Mosley

L

ast year at the Whitefish Conclave while I was on a break from working in the bamboo rod booth, I met an old friend and her husband. We chatted, and then the husband brought out a bamboo rod in a hexagonal wooden tube that he had just purchased for $165 and asked me to evaluate it. He appeared to be happy with his purchase. I really didn’t want to be negative, so I suggested that he fish it, and if he liked it, then its purchase was justified. After all, the primary purpose of a fishing rod is to fish it. Or is it? There is a mystique regarding bamboo that fascinates many fly fishers. That, in conjunction with the opportunity to purchase a new bamboo rod for what appears to be a low price, can be irresistible to some. Many fly fishers are aware of the cost of a new bamboo rod from some of the better-known builders. When Glenn Brackett led the building efforts at R.L. Winston Rod Co., the price of a rod was approximately $3,000. Even at that price, Winston was selling about 100 rods a year. Other wellknown individual builders charge more and may have long waiting lists of customers desiring one of their rods. Other not-so-well-known builders charge much less, but still a quality bamboo rod will cost approximately $1,000 and up. Why so much for a fishing pole? Why is the price difference between a pole and a rod at least a thousand dollars? Cost of materials and components are rising, even though prices of rods have also risen in the last decade. A nickel-silver ferrule set, one female and two males, can cost $50 and up depending on the size of the ferrule. A high quality reel seat can also be $50 or more. Buying in quantity reduces the price for builders but requires large purchases. Self-manufacturing components helps reduce your cost in dollars but increases the time required to complete the project. I don’t sell my rods, but I do calculate costs: The retail price of a two-piece rod’s materials and components is approximately $200. Labor costs must also be consid-

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Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

Rods have different values based on the materials used in their construction, their taper and who built them.

ered, and even when calculated at minimum-wage rates, those costs are substantial. The most frequently asked question I get at a gathering where I am demonstrating rod building is usually “How long does it take to build a bamboo rod?” This depends on the builder, what methods are used, quality demanded, the number of steps required to construct the rod, and many other variables. The best estimate I can give is somewhere between 50 and 70 hours, depending on errors that may have to be corrected. Professional bamboo rod makers spend less time in building because of the increased use of machinery normally not available to a part-time rod builder, in addition to a division of labor among their fellow craftsmen. The cost of a bamboo rod also precludes a large market, and the rods by famous makers do increase in value over time. Collectors pay many thousands of dollars for high-quality rods from builders such as Jim Payne. If the rod is in excellent condition and the taper is recognized for its fine casting, then thousands of dollars may be required to purchase it. I have noticed in the past year the good fiberglass rods by noted builders are increasing in price. I have a twoand four-piece rod built on the same taper in fiberglass by Scott Rods; their

value has increased fourfold since I purchased them. The value hasn’t kept up with inflation, but it is nice to know that their quality is appreciated. Graphite rods are different in that their prices range from less than $50 to more than $1,000. Oddly enough, I ask fly fishers I know if their graphite rods are worth more after purchase and use. I usually receive a resounding “No.” A graphite rod with all the desirable characteristics and in mint condition will increase in value if the demand in the future is greater than the supply. Only time will tell if graphite rods will grow in value. The acquisition of a new rod is always a pleasure, and the purchase of an old rod that seems to have great value can be doubly pleasurable. However, always remember, “caveat emptor” (let the buyer beware) when purchasing a rod. There are many reputable dealers of older equipment available through the Internet or by subscribing to their catalogs. Notice the picture from a Jim Adams catalog. Adams has attended most conclaves as a vendor, has an excellent reputation, and is a friend whose judgment I would trust in appraising and selling old equipment. Dave Mosley is retired from teaching and has been active in the FFF since the early 1980s, holding various offices and organizing bamboo rod activities. He resides in Hamilton, Montana.


A RETURN TO MILL CREEK By Jon Lyman

FLY TIPS: Retrieving Flies Despite our best casting skills, it is not uncommon to get a fly stuck in a tree. This is particularly true during spring trout fishing.

Push the rod up while pulling the line/leader through the guides to slide the tip top over the hook shank. Pull on the line to tear the fly from the leaf edge. If pushing to back out the fly, use extreme care so as to not stress the rod and break it.

An example of the beautiful cutthroat trout.

against the rushing water, each thrust bending the rod more deeply. It cut back and across, pulsing the cane until I was able to slip the trout into the net. It reached nearly end-toend in the landing net, a Western cutthroat of about 16 inches, a nice-sized fish for Mill Creek. The rose color of its gill plates faded into a blush, a bright fish with deep orange swipes under each jaw. Cutthroat trout are tied in my psyche to be the best of the West: eager, open fish, making no pretense. They live in beautiful places and survive under difficult conditions: slow to reproduce, easily caught and not abundant. The cutthroat rested. I had landed it as quickly as possible, but it was a good fish and the water was warm. It took a few seconds to right itself before starting to nose downward in the net. When I moved the hoop forward and dropped the edge, the cut splashed me and sprinted into the current, then swept back to rest in the pocket of quiet water behind my leg. I watched it for a few seconds, reached into the stream and cupped it in my palm until it shook me off and finned away across the pool. I hooked the fly into the hook keeper on the rod and wandered back downstream. I had what I came for: one good fish. I might have tried for more, but why spoil the end to a perfect day? Jon Lyman from Juneau, Alaska, is the Education Committee chair. He is writing a book detailing aspects of our fly-fishing history. It should be a great read.

By C. Boyd Pfeiffer Remember that a lost fly is better than a broken rod. Pulling the line while cradling the hook with the tip top works well to free the fly or create a hole in the leaf for backing out the fly. C. Boyd Pfeiffer is an internationally known sportsman and award-winning photo journalist on fishing, hunting and the outdoors. His 27 books include many on fly fishing and fly tying.

Here, a fly rod has been used to pull the fly through the tip top, enabling the fly to come out of the leaf and freeing it from this casting snag mishap. Pulling on a fly is done with line and leader – not with the rod.

Photo by C. Boyd Pfeiffer

To retrieve a fly, pull down on the limb on which the fly is stuck in a leaf. If the fly is too high and can’t be grabbed, reach it with a fly rod to pull the fly free or back it out. With a 9-footlong fly rod when grabbed at the butt and an average upward arm length of 7 feet, this gives you a maximum vertical reach of 16 feet.

Photo by BT’s Photography

W

eaving between the rusted barbed wire and boulders into the rushing water above the falls on Mill Creek, it looked just as I remembered, except that spring floods had rearranged the glides and pools in the meadow in the years since my last visit. No fish rose where a favorite run now spread out into a fan of thin water near an undercut bank below the county road. Fishing it would require long casts and thin tippets to reach water where only minnows might rise. I hurried up the stream, not bothering to stop until I saw dark water that carved a hollow bank. Unfortunately, no trout worked in the sunlit foam and no bugs drifted in the bright pool. After a few casts I continued my hike up through the riffles, against the flow and back toward the shadows across the valley. I carried a blond rod high above the brush, and it glowed in the lowering light, catching the color of the warm peaks as shadows lengthened into evening. The creek curved back to the hill and regained its old bed, becoming familiar once again. Close at hand wild raspberries clung to heat-withered vines. Savoring their bright sweetness, I fished the first deep pool, raising one small trout, then long-distance releasing it by lowering my rod tip. Before I could no longer thread the hook’s eye due to the fading light, I changed to a larger royal Trude, its great white wing easy to see – both by the fish and me. I slipped and slid my way up the cobbled stream as the day cooled and the last light crept behind a pile of driftwood along a favorite pool. The twisted roots of a new snag would make the casting difficult, but the run had not changed; I knew there would be a good fish rising at last light. After a few minutes quietly observing the pool, I saw two small rings appear near the far bank when a nice fish rolled beneath the surface. I waited for it to rise again then managed a steeple cast that dropped the fly into the near side of its feeding lane. Miracles do happen: The fly floated over the fish but it wasn’t interested in my offering. One more cast and the great white wing landed in the surface film. The trout hit and carried my fly off toward the bank, the rod throbbing in my hand with each twist of its head. The fish ran upstream toward the riffle, flexing its tail

Conserving, Restoring and Educating Through Fly Fishing

Fly-Fishing Heritage


FFF ANNUAL DONOR REPORT Each year the Federation’s general revenues depend on the generous support of individuals and organizations to sustain our programs. The board of directors would like to express their sincere appreciation to the contributors noted below who provided that support in 2008. Special Recognition ($5,000+) Long, Bob Moseley, Paul Stroh, Bill President’s Club (Pledge of $5,000+) Honorary Chairman Jack Nicklaus Platinum Moseley, Paul Gold Long, Bob Schramm, Jim and Dorothy Silver Bishop, Don Breslin, John Brown, Richard and Mary Cordes, Ron Diamond, Richard Great Lakes Council FFF Grant, Gary Jindra, Tom and Debra Shirley, Bob Stroh, Bill Trisman, Fred Van Gytenbeek, Van Bronze Gibbs, Larry Greenlee, Philip and Helen Groty, Keith James, David Johnson, Carl Kettler, Herb Knight, Ron and Sheryl Kyle, Michael and Kristina Lovell, Doug Maler, Roger and Tracie Mazzier, Arthur Miller, Roger and Sandra Northern California Council FFF Southern California Council FFF Sadler, Tom Schmitz, Fred Scientific Anglers, Dell Kauss Stewart, Michael Patron ($1,001 - $4,999) Knight, John Mikita Foundation, Southern Council FFF Von Raesfeld, Robert Walter, Jonathan Benefactor ($501 - $1,000) Blackhills Fly Fishers, Brown, Richard and Mary Central Oregon Fly Fishers Chouinard, Yvon Groty, Keith Heide, Ralph Herritt, John Hoffman, Henry North Star Consulting Group Inc. Serviente, Barry Southern Council FFF Stroh, Bill Tritsch, Robert

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Woodard Family Foundation Advocate ($251 - $500) Aguabonita Flyfishers Almanas, Robert Arvanites, Dokson Bolling, Timothy Cargill, A.S. Cordes, Ron Hosfield, Skip Kosmicki, Nick Mason, Brendan McKinstry Co. Miller, Roger and Sandra North Coast Fly Fishers Rainey, Jim and Meg Reed, Keith Sales, Robert Shirley, Robert Stewart, Michael Utz, Paul Washington Fly Fishing Club, Washington State Council FFF Wilkens, Rich Supporter ($101 - $250) Albertson, Peter Beatty, Al Beatty, Danny Broomhall, Peter Budliger, Kurt Cook, Pete Cordes, Herman Crosby, Chris Derby City Fly Fishers Derksen, Dirk and Margaret Donaldson, Broderick Donnelley, Donnelley Foundation Duffy, Dave Everest, Clark Frost, John Garber, Larry Gerrie, Paul Giuliano, Michael Grabski, Daniel Guggenheim, Daniel Harpole, Jim Henemuhle, Robert High Sierra Fly Fisher, Chuck Newmeyer Hill, Gordon Hoffberg, David Horner Family Foundation, Dr. and Mrs. Ira Hanan Johnson, Carl Johnston, William Larson, Gene Lewis, George Lewis, Herb Lower Umpqua FlyCasters McRoberts, James Mercurio, Michael Munemitsu, Dr. Saylo Myers, Jerry Neuman, Richard Nevins, Bill Palcanis, Greg Palo Alto Fly Fishers Poisson, Michael Reap, James Reed, Nathaniel Rorex, Thomas Rose, John Rossachacj, Robert Runner, Matilda Seldon, Marty Southern Oregon Fly Fishers Spottke, Albert

Sternberg, Terry Storer, Peter Sullivan, John Van Gytenbeek, Anthony Vynalek, Jim Wallace, John Weitz, Paul Wood, Francis Woodward, Gary Wyosnick, Craig and Sandra Zahn, Michael Zarelli, Carl Contributor (Up to $100) Abernethy, William Abrazzini, Mario Acuna, Ferdinand Adams, Cliff Adams, Lynn Aiassa, Mark Alaska Wildland Adventures, Kirk Hoessle Amendt, Alan Anderson, Bob Andrew, Josh Anker, Stan Antilla, Rodney April, Thomas Armstrong, James Arnold, Rowland Arnold, Albert Arnold, Robert Arrowhead Fly Fishers Asahina, Stuart Atherton, Daniel Atkin, Darwin and Anna Aubrey, Jim and Donna Avery, Chris Backcast Products, Roger Glave Bagby, John Baker, Anne Baker, Sean Baker, Bruce Baldwin, James Barbaris, Ernest Bargsten, Dale Barnhart, Teddy Barnhart, James Baron, Richard Barton, Clint Bass, James Bates, Bob Bay, Kenneth Beauchamp, Joseph Beckstand, Jay Beeby, Eric Behnke, Robert Bell, Richard Bell, Lewis Bennett, Linda Bennett, Greg Berg, Edward and Cliffe Berggren, Mark Berman, Jeff Berry, John Berryman, Jack Best, Brad Bettzig, Robert Bienfang, Matt Bishop, Don Blakeslee, Ernest Bleakley, Mark Blockey, Julie Bloom, Dr. R Lee Bohigian, George Bolduc, Francois Boller, John Bolstad, Donald Bonner, Stephen Borowski, William

Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

Bourgeois, Jim Bowers, George Bowman, James and Judith Braud, Ronald Brodman, Carol Brooks, Chris Broom, III, John Brown, Rodger Brown, Robin Brown, Barbara Brown, David Bruce, Joe and Jean Brumitt, Clint Brunskill, Ken Bryson, Hank Bullington, John Bunke, Jay Burchette, James Burdick, Butch Burian, Dan Burns, Michael Burwell, Gregory Busby, Dan Bush, John Bush, Gary Butler, Horace Cain, Jim Callaway, Kenneth Calleton, Richard Campbell, John Campbell, Eric Carl, Michael Carlson, Arthur Carpenter, Dave Carter, Fred Casey, Dan Cates, M.L. Cederwall, Mark Chase, Philip Chatas, George Cheatum, Tim Chevalier, Arthur Christian, David Christian, Fred Clark, Hugh Clark, Gary Clark, Robert Clark, Betsy Claussen, Willie Clay, Phillip Clayton, James Cochrane, John Cohn, Stuart Conner, Irwin Connolly, Greg Connor, Brad Conolley, Edward Cornue, David Coven, Dale Cowan, Joe Crawford, Graham Crawford, Thomas Criss, Jerry Culp, Steve Dahl, Kristin Dahmer, Edward Daniel, Ron Davis, Ramona Day, Joel De Fouw, Eugene Debord, Deborah del Vale, Albert Dempsey, Thomas Dennis, Ben Dennis, Craig Depoe, Kenneth Desjardin, Alfred Dette, Mary DeVore, Jeff Dew, Richard Diamond, Richard Dice, Jeremy

Diener, Terry Dierks, Clark Doggett, James Domoto, Paul Dotson, David Doughty, Russell Drab, Joe Drake, James Drake, J. Wesley Duffield, Curtis Dugan, John Dugger, Benjamin Dunbar, Roy and Roanne Eadie, Francis Eaton, Rodney Edwards, John Edwards, Warren Egli, Arnie Ehren, Grant Eisenkramer, Rabbi Elliott, Alice Elwell, Russell Emrick, Bill Erickson, Richard Estell, Cody Ester, Leslie Eves, Gerald Faber, Will Fano, Tony Fauntleroy, Tom Fechner, Roger Felsens, Oscar Ferguson, Elsie Ferroggiaro, Rob Fiala, William Fields, Randy Filippini, Michael Finesilver, Alan Finke, John Finlay, Dick Finney, Lowell Fitzer, James Flad, Deborah Flannery, James Fleenor, Geoffrey Fletcher, Shane Floyd, John Fluke, Chris Foote, Daniel Foster, Joseph Fowler, David Fox, Robert Freeman, James Friis, Belinda Fry, Bill Frye, Lawrence Fullerton, Clement Gallagher, James Gallavan, Michael Gantt, Gene Gardner, Charlene Gartner, Richard Gauley, Jean Gaunt, Sandra Gay, Dennis Gay, Olga and Tom Gerace, Joseph Gierada, Peter Giffin, Larry Gilbertson, Brittany Gold Country Fly Fishers Golddston, William Goodwin, Paul Goss, John Gostlin, David and Allison Gough, Fran Grabowski, Thomas Graham, Charles Grantham, Ronald Gray, Dudley Graybrook, Michael Gregory, Robert

Grimes, George Gruhn, Gerald Grunderstrom, Ed Haan, Brian Hackney, Janice Haeck, James Hale, Jeff Hall, Richard Hall, William Hallock, Allen Hamlow, Harvey Hansell, Robert Hanzel, Edward Hapstack, Richard Harang, Bruce Harford, Frank Harness, Hugh and Susan Harris, Larry Harris, Steve Harrison, Robert Hart, Richard Hart, Doug Hartgrave, Roger Haskell, Stephen Havens, Daniel Hayden, Robert Haynes, Louis Head, Tom Hedeen, Kurt and Amy Heidel, Ed Helm, Judith Henderson, Thomas Henry, Bill Hicks, Randall Higa, Neal Higgins, Mark Highland, James Highley, James Hines, Jeffrey Hoffman, Carl Holden, Stan Holder, James Holding, Peter Holloway, Maurice Holmes, Philip Holmes, Lyle Homes, Russ Homeyer, Mark Hoover, Walter Hopkins, Nate Hoyt, Dick Hoyt, John Hubert, Jeffery Hubiak, Bruce Huckstep, R.J. Hudson, Mike Huffman, Bob Hughes, John and Kathryn Hult, Dennis and Marcia Humphrey, John Iona, Calvin Irving, Gail Ives, Mike Jacot, Kenneth Jauquet, Joseph Jaworowski, Ed Jenkins, Felton Jenne, Richard Jennings, Frederic Jernigan, Tom Johansen, William Johnson, Robert Johnson, Howard Johnson, Richard Johnson, Stanley Johnson, Warren Johnson, John Johnson, Greg Johnson, Robert Johnson, Ray Johnston, John Jones, Dundee


Jones, Peter Jorgensen, Ron Joseph, Michael Kalivas, Risty Kautz, Bruce Kaylor, Paul Keck, Stuart Keeton, Jerry Keller, Walter Kelly, Duane Kennedy, Phil Kennon, Richard Kerr, Michael Kieffer, Wayne Kikumoto, Edward Killat, George Kim, Kathy Kimsey, Joseph Kingsley, John Klarquist, Kenneth Klasner, John Klingberg, Daniel Knerr, Bob Knight, Ron and Sheryl Knitter, Henry Kobin, Walter Kossow, Michael Kotowicz, William Kovars, Richard Kozuki, Mits Kratochvil, Randy Kreider, Bob Krupiczewicz, Wesley Krzysik, Anthony Kuhre, Alan LaBranche, Leo Lacina, Sam Lafley, James Laing, Michael Lamarand, Nick Lambert, David Lange, John Langedyke, Bruce Larison, John Larson, Allan Larson, Dick Latrobe, Jack Leasure, Robert Lebo, Stephen LeClaire, John Lee, Jim Lee, Don Lessner, Richard Letchworth, Jerry Levinthal, Dick Lewis, Stephen Leydecker, Byron Linsenman, Bob Lockett, Dennis Long, Robert Lovell, Eunice Loyd, C.W. Lund, Jon Lyman, Jon Macburnie, David Mack, Martin Mackay, William MacMullan, David Magee, Thomas Mahoney, Michael Majewski, Dennis Mako Fly Fishers Malencik, Dean Maler, Roger Malloy, Mary and David Maloney, Roy Marler, Charles Marshall, Ed Martin, Durward Martin, Robert Martina, Gerald Marvin, William Marx, William Masonis, Robert McCabe, George McCaffery, Michael McCann, Dennis McCarthy, John

McDonald, Edward McDougal, William McGannon, Michael McGarrell, Ed McGrath, John McKeller, Chad McKey, Tom McLean, J. Allen McSwiggin, Bob and Rose Marie Mechelke, Bill Mefford, Ken Meiler, Elmer Melvoin, Foundation Director Mercer, Julia Meyers, Joepaul Michael, Joseph Millar, Paul Miller, Gary Mills, Chuck Minke, Herbert Miranda, Carmen Mitchell, William Mitchell, Marianne Mittelstaedt, Don Mittleman, John Mogk, Patricia Moore, Robert Morris, Barry Morrison, Arnold Moser, Robert Mosure, Gary Moubray, Michael Mudge, Gary and Sharon Munday, Pat Munger, Stanley Murphy, Steve Murray, Kenneth Myers, Gerald Myers, Charles Naber, Richard Neal, Gregory Nelson, Keith Nelson, John Nelson, G.A. Nichols, Kristin Nicholson, Ed Nicol, Lisa Nielsen, Arthur Nightingale, Richard Novak, Walter Oblinger, Dick Ochsner, Peter Oechler, Herbert Ogburn, Phillip Olsen, Susan Olson, Randall Orcutt, Tom Orup, Dr. Osborne, Brown Osterman, Kenneth Owens, Howard Ozog, Mark Padgett, Richard Paisley, Lewis Panasci, Tony Paskach, Tom Patterson, Henry Paul, Josey Pearce, Vernon and Summer Pearson, Ted Penobscot Fly Fishers Pepin, Randy Perkins, Frank Perkins, Lynn and Jan Perry, Stephen Perry, Carl Petersen, Vernon Peterson, Clarence Peterson, Willis Peterson, Roger Pettersen, Geir Pettine, Ann and Eric Phalen, Richard Phelan, Ed Phillips, Marty Phillips, Tom Phillips, Ron Phoenix, James

Pigott, William Pijacki, Paul Ports, Norman Potomac Valley Fly Fishers Powell, John Powell, Dow Power, Alice Jean Prevette, John Price, Robert and Ruth Prufer, Shawn Psomas, John Puckett, Will Pugsley, Milton Quintero, Jorge Radtke, Philip and Lori Rahija, Rick Ramon, David Ramsdell, Lew Rasmussen, Thomas Rathborne, Robert Rayne, Clive Redman, Bill Reeners, Robert Reichert, Matthew Reinhardt, George Rendon, Rick Rettig, Earl Rew, Lois Richmond, James Rickards, Denny Riddell, Brian Rivett, Dan Robbins, Tom Robinson, Stephen Robinson, Charles Rock, Thomas Rog, Joseph and Joan Rogers, John Rogers, Jerry Rogers, Michael Rood, C.G. Rose, Frank Rosenberg, John Ross, Henry Rossi, Daniel Rowe, Pat Rowland, Patrick Ruhl, Donald Russen, Jack Ryan, Peter Ryan, Bill Sacks, Yale Sammon, Ed Sargeant, Bill Sato, Morio Sauer, Frederick Sauer, Charles Saxon, Richard Sayer, Fred Scally, Thomas Schaad, Douglas Scherer, James Schlatter, Herbert Schmitz, James Schneider, John Schotts, Todd Schramm, Dorothy and Jim Schroeder, Dwight Schuetz, Terry Schuler, Glen and Carol Schumacher, Thomas Schwartz, Joseph Schwarz, Ronald Scott, Leslie

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Thank You! Flyfisher Spring - Summer 2009

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Federation of Fly Fishers P.O. Box 1688 Livingston, MT 59047

Non-Profit Organization U.S. Postage

PAID

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Profile for Fly Fishers International

Flyfisher Spring-Summer 2009  

BEACH 'NOURISHMENT' , Dredge-and-Fill, TOP TAILWATER Wyomings Gray Reef, Solunar Theory, Can they be used to catch big smallmouth bass? By J...

Flyfisher Spring-Summer 2009  

BEACH 'NOURISHMENT' , Dredge-and-Fill, TOP TAILWATER Wyomings Gray Reef, Solunar Theory, Can they be used to catch big smallmouth bass? By J...