Iron Fly - Lander, WY

Iron Fly - Lander, WY Dec 3 6:30 @ Lander Bar's Coalter Loft

The after-Thanksgiving update...a new vid from GeoBass

With Thanksgiving in the rear view, and Christmas looming large on the horizon, many of us in the angling world head into an amazing time on the water.

Despite the chill in the air, there's plenty of action on the rivers, so don't give up just yet.  A pair of long underwear and a decent pair of socks can add warmth to your waders.  So, get out there and go fishing.

To keep you in the fishing mood, check out the latest from GeoBass...

The GeoBass guys spent some time at Christmas Island (how timely is that).  

The 2015 Holiday wish list - Part 1

Time for the second annual, Christmas wish list.  Here's what's on the radar so far this year.

It's time to start dropping hints to those significant others. Or just buy this shit for yourself.

You can't go wrong with something warm to wear on the river.  Patagonia has introduced their Down Snap-T Pullover.  $199 -

Also warm, but a bit more affordable and made by a good guy - check out sweatshirts from Crooked Creek Holler.  Designed by Danny Reed of Asheville, you can wear some fashion from a talented artist.  $40 - 

Tis the season to throw a two handed rod.  And, you can't go wrong with a Scott rod, so east your eyes on the L2H.  It's a 6wt, 11 foot, 4 piece setup.  $545 -

Good clean living' is what they say.  Check out Flood Tide Co.'s Grateful Red 3/4 shirt.  $34 -

Friendship, fishing and forgiveness.

You've maybe read some other posts here.  It's been a while, but there was (and will be again) a series about my fly fishing family.

A while back, I met some guys that shared a lot of common interests.  We spent a lot of time hanging out, working together, tying flies, fishing a bit (at least with one of them) and developing a friendship.

Everyone knows how life can be.  Sometimes, shit happens and things go pear shaped.  Sometimes, everyone needs a bit of time to work stuff out, and eventually there might be a day when it can start to get better.

Jeff, Bobby and Dale at Tuckaseegee Fly Shop - Bryson City, NC.

Fishing is better with friends.  Sometimes, shit happens.  Sorry it happened with all of us.  Hope to see you guys soon.  

Thoughts for the day

When you fish, what fills your mind?  Do you think about work? Money? The wife?  Kids?  Bills?  Sports?

Is your mind focused on fishing?  Do you watch that strike indicator go past with the patience of a saint?  Are you plotting every cast?

Yesterday, I made an effort to think about fishing while I was fishing.  I spent the morning in a spot that I haven't seen since the spring.  It was empty, but for me.  There was no traffic, no barking dogs, no pestering tourists.  It was just me and my thoughts.

At first, I could't get the stress of the world out of my head.  I was worried about some bullshit person at work, some unpaid bills and wondering how to get through this upcoming winter without the railroad to keep me busy.

After twenty casts, I realized I wasn't even really at the river.  I was back in town, at home, under stress.  Why the hell was I even holding a rod?

I took a deep breath, made the cast, set the hook and landed a small brook trout.  It was perfection.  The world around was in harmony.  There was no one else, anywhere, that could have any chance of changing this moment.  As the fish swam away, it all made sense.

I spent the next few hours hopping around the river.  There are a few hole in the stretch that I explored.  As I did, I thought only of fishing.  I did allow thoughts of other people to creep into my mind - but they were people that I have shared water with.

Stephen was reminding me to haul my line.  Nome was telling me to mend my line.  Dave was telling me that my cast sucked, but telling me that it would work.  Tim was telling me that a good cast is rewarded with a fish.

The voices came and went as I needed them to.  The morning was perfect.  It was nice to spend it with my thoughts and my friends.

Yeti Films: Engler

Great vid from Yeti.  Check it out.  

'Tis the season...for tying flies.

It wasn't long after I started throwing a fly rod that I was introduced to fly tying.  I was fortunate enough to be surrounded by world class anglers and fly tying experts, so it was inevitable that after learning enough about throwing a line, that I would learn to craft some flies suitable for catching a few fish.

Winter weather in the Northeast made for plenty of opportunity to learn the craft.  Clearwater Fly Shop was outfitted with tables, chairs and enough supplies to make pretty much anything that an angler could dream up.

Of course, I started with the basics.  There were Woolly Buggers and simple wet flies.  Streamers were my favorite from the beginning.  

At first, my crappy technique was tolerated, but soon, the real education began.  Dave had put up with sloppy measurements, poor thread wraps and the like, but there came the day that he ripped my "fly" from the vise and started tearing the materials off the hook.  He told me that the hook was worth more than that, and what I was doing was a real waste.  

That's when I began to pay attention to what went into the craft of building a proper fly.  Soon, my flies improved.  They didn't fall apart upon touching water.  They resembled actual invertibrates and various trout food sources.  Dave stopped tearing my shit apart.  Tying became a part of fishing life.  

One day of every weekend was spent at Clearwater Fly Shop.  There would be nine or ten of us.  Jim would bring a maple pie, Dave would have six dozen Reese's.  Nome would call the local Thai food place and order our food with a Thai accent.  But most of all, we would tie flies.  

One of the best things we ever did in our tying sessions was the "trash can challenge".  As stupid as it might have been, it taught me valuable lessons in tying.  We would take scraps of material, candy wrappers - actual trash from the bucket - and challenge each other to make something with it.  

Tying has become less and less part of my days.  Work gets in the way, and life has other demands.  This cool fall weather still encourages me to grab the vise and spend some hours crafting up some flies.  Fall fishing might be transitioning into winter fishing, but there's always hope that spring will be here soon.  Might as well start whipping up something for the longer, warmer days.  

Steelhead from the OP - Video

Cool weather and the upcoming winter has me thinking of steelheading.  Sigh.