Thursday, March 22, 2018

My Little "Pocono Stream"

A precious little wild trout stream. This beautiful stream flows through the forest of eastern Pennsylvania in an area known as the Pocono's. I have fished this stream many times and each time I had the feeling that it was my first time. The trout both brook and brown are as wild as can be. Their beauty, stamina and tenacity for life can not be overstated. This stream will never produce a monster trout, but instead will yield you a six inch masterpiece of color. There will never be banner catches of ten or twelve trout, but more like three or four. As I wandered the banks of this stream there was a strong sense of belonging. A strong sense of peace that one gets from the solitude found only in a small stream environment. This stream holds a special place in my mind. So special that I chose it for the cover photo of my book.

Come late April or May I again will visit my friend.

Chestnut and Starling....this fly, in it's simplicity will bring a trout to hand in my little Pocono stream.

"Sulphurs"...a clean, crisp profile. It to is simply tied, the brown trout in the pools of my Pocono stream will rise to it whenever it drifts so lightly upon it's evening waters.

Monday, March 19, 2018

March, "Outback" Time

Since the options for small streams has dwindled, reason is because the state closes most of them for about a 6 week period, I guess there is good reason. That being the case the streams open present good fishing when several things come together, one being weather and one being weather again. On this day the weather ran the table. There was snow, damp feeling air, brilliant sunshine and a neck full of melting snow compliments of the trees. The section of stream chosen to fish is not ideal from an anglers point, it contains some nasty briers and thorns. There are places where access is tough but can be done with careful movement.

What I love about winter fishing is the clarity of the water. You can gaze into the stream and it looks like there is no water, without movement it seems as if it is not there.

Early on I fished this run, in the past I have taken tiger trout here, several times in fact. I worked it from head to tail and found what I was looking for.

Not a tiger but one half of one. This wild brown was as spunky as can be...handsome too.

On cold days trout will be found in slow moving water, hunkering down near the bottom. This is true for the most part but not always.

This brown was located at the end of the broken water. Just as the fly was swept up towards the surface by the current he struck.

No tigers today, but two awesome wild browns from the "outback"

Saturday, March 17, 2018

"Smile Friends, Smlie"

"Top "O" The Morning" folks. St. Patrick's Day 2018. Sitting down to a slice or two of Irish soda bread, with several cups of "Green" Mountain coffee, and dreaming of a great supper of corned beef, cabbage, potatoes and carrots. I love this day, it's a happy day, one that has always been festive since the days of my childhood. I can remember my mom singing "oh the Clancy" a tune that has stuck in my head for all these years. I found out this morning that the first St. Patrick's Day parade was held in Boston, who would have ever thought that "big smile" I say to all, today we are all Irish, Happy St. Patrick's Day... lift your glasses and cups and enjoy.

In this day of GPS, cell phones and the like, it seems as if the day of the paper map is going the way of the dinosaur. Exception, not with me. I still use the old fashioned paper map to find out where I'm going, and where I've been. The DeLorme Atlas like the one above is always in my car. I at times will map out directions to those "thin blue lines"... I have several DeLorme atlases in different states with CT. and Maine seeing the most use with Massachusetts closing in.

How many of you still use maps like this?

A "blue line" found with the aid of a map, and it's the little blue lines that feed this stream that will be on the list to check further.

Smile, spring is but a few days away.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Betters And Gartside

The longer I fish the more I come to rely on certain flies to get the job done. Looking back over the years most of my successful patterns have had in their material list a few materials that have made them so great. The materials also have been favorites of two very special fly tyers. Fran Betters and Jack Gartside two gentleman who created so many successful flies, flies that have a following world wide.

A favorite material of Fran Betters was the Australian opossum and which he dyed rusty orange. Quite a few of his patterns used this material as dubbing. Jack Gartside had a love of the ringneck pheasant. These feathers were used in so many of his patterns. So I took these materials and worked them together to make some "fish appeal" flies. The photo above shows the marabou of a hen pheasant. Most tyers bypass this insanely fish taker feather and choose to use only other feathers in the skin. Using these pheasant marabou feathers I create wings in several patterns...they work.

Now Mr. Betters dyed his possum rust orange, some of the hair came out "real" orange, and some not so. The not so has some nice features and when dubbed on a fly it creates a nice difference in the body.

This pattern uses an orange dubbed body. It does not incorporate a wing, only a soft hackle collar.

This pattern uses an orange dubbed body, with a light colored marabou wing. It features a soft hackle color of bleached starling.

This pattern features Jack's and Fran's materials in one fly. The body is a darker colored possum body, a dark colored marabou wing, and a pheasant feather for a collar.

You can see some of the materials, different ones at that here. One constant was the fact that Fran's favorite color thread was used.