Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Warming Up and Catching Up

Things have been a little slow around here, I know.  The water in our rivers and streams is too hard to fish it, so much so that you can literally walk across the slower sections.  We had a great show this past weekend at Somerset - thank you everyone that for stopped by and said hi.  And of course, my first grandchild was born.
Henley Carpenter Reed is doing great, as are his mom and dad, Leigh and Nate.  Henley has to stay in the hospital for a couple of weeks as he had surgery shortly after he was born - nothing serious - so I won't be heading down to Charleston until he is home.  He is a beautiful child, just like his mom, and if you look at his hands you can see he will be a fine fly tyer, caster and presenter of those flies to trout.  He also has the look of a fine pilot, just like his dad.  Check it out for yourself if you don't think so, too.  
Being a fly tyer, I guess I'm a grandfeather to a 19.5" 5lb. 7oz. midge.
Sharpen your hooks! 

Friday, January 24, 2014

It's a Boy!!!!

At 6:34PM this evening, I became a grandpa to a 5lb. 7oz. baby boy - Henley Carpenter Reed.  He is the first child of my daughter Leigh Carpenter and Nathaniel Reed.  Both Leigh and Henley are doing great.  
Can't wait to get a fly rod in his hands!

The Fly Fishing Show Starts Today

The big fly fishing show is finally here, and we'll be busy presenting, tying flies, maybe signing a few books, and having a great time with like-minded folks.  The show runs today through Sunday - January 24, 25 & 26 at The Garden State Exhibit Center in Somerset, NJ.  Hours: Fri 10 - 6; Sat 8:30 - 6:00; Sun 9 - 4:30
If you are going, and why wouldn't you be?  Please stop by my tying booth and say hello, or come to one of the presentations I'll be doing.  Here's my schedule:

Friday: 10:00AM - Author's Booth
              12:15PM - Seminar - Fishing Dry Flies and Emergers

Saturday: 1:00 - 3:00PM - Regal Vise Booth Featured Tyer
                  4:00 - Author's Booth

Sunday: 1:30PM - Author's Booth
               2:30PM - Seminar - Fly Fishing Eastern Trout Streams
                              - The Hatches and the Flies to imitate them

The rest of the time I'll be at the tying booth demonstrating many of the flies you see in our videos and catching up with friends
For more full show click here:  The Fly Fishing Show Somerset, NJ

See you there.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Tagged Bluefin Recaptured 16 Years Later

This kind of stuff is so incredible.  The nightly news has got nothing on stories like this. 

A charter boat captain out of Rhode Island, Al Anderson, tagged a Bluefin tuna in 1997, when it weighed only 14 pounds - a mere child.  It was recaptured last year, sixteen years later, weighing more than 1,200 pounds! 

Click here to read the full story and some other fascinating tuna tales: http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/stories/2014/01/01_21_14tagged_bluefin_tuna_recaptured.html

Via: Cross Current - Joe Demalderis

Sharpen your hooks!

Friday, January 17, 2014

Newest Videos From Tightline Productions

Tim Flagler has been busy recently producing two neat videos, which follow here.  In the first he shows how he ties one of the best nymph patterns ever created - the Pheasant Tail nymph - in a very small size.  These small nymphs imitate many of the small nymphs that become what are known as Blue-winged Olives when they hatch.  The second video features some underwater footage taken today of the benthic life found in our home stream, the South Branch of the Raritan River.   

Can you name the nymphs seen in the video?  There is a stonefly nymph, three mayfly nymphs, a caddis larva and a scud.  Do you think these guys know the water is bone chilling cold?


Sharpen your hooks!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Winter Sunset

4:49pm January 15.2014 Braintree, Massachusetts

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Nymphing Spring Creeks - Douglas Freemann

Along with the temperatures around here, I've been under the weather the last few days, which isn't so good for inspiration and the subsequent ramblings that show up here.  Fortunately, our friend Doug was inspired recently and wrote a great article for his competition team website.  Not only can he fish and tie quite well, he can write about it, too!  Nice job, Doug. 
Link to Article:  Nymphing Spring Creeks - Douglas Freemann      
Sharpen your hooks!

Thursday, January 2, 2014

2014 Off to a Good Start

We made our annual New Year's Day pilgrimage to a trout stream yesterday, and despite the cold, it was a successful day.  I met Mr. Q. and Mike early in the afternoon and the first thing we had to do was find a spot on the river where there was room to fish.  Usually, we have the river mostly ourselves, even when the weather is fairly warm.  This year there were quite a few anglers on the water, many of them trying to catch Bubba, a big brown trout with a jaw tag that was stocked somewhere in a roughly two mile stretch of river by Shannon's Fly Shop a couple of weeks ago along with a few hundred "smaller" trout. 

It wasn't like the river was crowded, it wasn't at all.  Most of the anglers we saw were in the few more popular spots, so we didn't really have much of a problem finding a good stretch of water that had plenty of room for the three of us.  It also wasn't like we would be casting dries on flat water to rising fish, so we weren't too choosy about where we fished. Our goal was to catch the first fish of the year before we froze our butts off, and so we spent the afternoon casting big, weighted woolly buggers and retrieving them slowly in short, even strips. 

Here Mr. Q shows us how its done....how to pose like a pro.

Every so often we needed to stop fishing and pop the ice out of our guides so we could resume casting.  It wasn't a big deal, just part of the process when you are fishing in temperatures that are below the freezing mark.  The white stuff is ice that has accumulated around the guides....

And then of course, there is the payoff.  I caught my first fish of the year, a nice 15 inch brook trout that fought hard and quickly swam away after it was released.  A short while later I took a nice rainbow out of the same hole.  Mike also got his first fish of the year, a huge, fat rainbow that was likely stocked by Shannon's recently.  That pig is also back in the water to be caught another day by another lucky angler. Here's my brookie just before being released.

So we are off to a good start this year.  We fished on the first of the year, caught a few, and had a good time fishing with good friends. 

Sharpen your hooks. 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Tying Mathew's Zelon MIdge

Happy New Year everyone!  We're going to start the year off with a tying video, this one a midge pattern originated by Craig Mathew's of Blue Ribbon Flies fly shop located in West Yellowstone, MT.  Over the last few decades, Craig has designed many effective, easy to tie trout flies, many of which have become my go-to patterns on trout streams all over the country.
I tie this fly slightly different from Craig in that I use Australian opossum for the thorax, and I split the strand of Zelon to get a sparser trailing shuck and wings.  Craig use his Zelon dubbing for the thorax, which is a mix of rabbit and Zelon, which gives a spikier thorax than the opossum. And he uses a full strand of Zelon for the shuck and wings.  Tied either way, the fly is a very effective imitation.  Tie them which ever way appeals to your sensibilities, and fish them.     
And finally, I would like to thank Tim and Joan Flagler of Tightline Productions for another great year of making tying videos.  The process is truly a pleasure as not only do we love what we are doing while we are making the video, we always manage to get into talking about some facet of fly fishing or fly tying where we learn something new.    
Sharpen your hooks!