Friday, March 30, 2012

Sparse Grey Matter Fly Tying Festival 2012

On February 26, 2012 Shannon's Fly & Tackle and Dette's Trout Flies sponsored the 2nd Annual Sparse Grey Matter Fly Fest. This event is an informal get together of fly tiers and fishers.  It's open to the public at no charge.  Some of the best fly tiers in the region were there. And, go figure; they let me tie.

Here's a short video of the event.  Check out Shannon's Fly & Tackle and Dette's Trout Flies in the January 2013 for news on next year's event.  Who knows, they just might let me tie again.


Thursday, March 15, 2012

Sawyers Pheasant Tail Nymph

I think everyone knows the Pheasant Tail Nymph, but I'm not sure how many know Sawyers Pheasant tail nymph.  The pattern is dead simple.  And. like most patterns I tie, it follows the K.I.S.S. rule.

For those who don't know the pattern, it's a killer.  It was designed by Frank Sawyers to "Baetis" nymph, or  "olives."  I've found it's also a good imitation of the "Ephemerella" nymphs, which include the Hendricksons and Sulphurs nymphs.  For the "Baetis," tie the nymph in sizes 18 - 20, and for the "Ephemerella," tie in 14 - 16.  If you have long Pheasant tail, than a size 12 is possible.

Back in January 2010, I posted step-by-step tying instructions Sawyers Pheasant Tail Nymph - Tied with Parawire.

Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions filmed me tying the Sawyers Pheasant tail nymph at the Annual Sparse Grey Matter Fly Tying Festival on February 26th, 2012.

Sawyer Pheasant Tail Nymph from Tightline Productions on Vimeo.

I recommend you check out Tim's other videos at Vimeo. 

Friday, March 2, 2012

Winter Fishing So Far...

This winter is great, if you don't like snow. We've started this winter with a charged river system, which translates into higher than normal river levels. Since this fall and early winter the amount of rain and snow is off, resulting now in lower than normal steam levels. Historically, my home river, the South Branch of Raritan, should be at 110 to 140 cubic feet per second. Now the river is at 83 cubic feet per second. Here in the east we don't rely on the snow pack, but in the west it's still important. It's important for many of the same reasons anywhere else in the world. The main reason is the slow and steady release of cold-water help charges ground water without massive runoff.

Why, you might ask, is this important. Well in one word - hatches. These levels, coupled with the warm spring-like weather we've been having in the east, are likely to affect the spring hatches. It may only mean a day or two, but when you're trying to time your day on the water, it means a lot. Since the spring hatches are some time off it many not matter much if we get our normal spring rain.

For right now I've been enjoying the spring-like weather in the middle of the winter. February is usually our coldest month and everyone has a bad case of cabin fever. Not this February, here are some shots from this winter's outings.

Let's see if March marches in like a Lion, so far it's more like a YouTube kitten.
Here are some of the fish I've taken this winter.

Rainbow taken on the my Anchor Caddis
Fat Brown...
Ice Pheasant Tail Jig...
Happy Angler!
Winter Brown...
Ice Pheasant Tail Jig strikes again...
Nice Brown...
Long and lean...