Hardy Zenith Rod Review

This is a quick, first-hand review of the Hardy Zenith fly rod. I first tried the Hardy Zenith fly rod in the summer of 2013 while staying out at Campfire Lodge in West Yellowstone. At the time I only lawn cast it in front of their Cafe/fly shop. I was surprised how easily I could throw a lot of line and yet still drop it where I wanted it. They sold 4 Hardy Zenith fly rods while I was staying there that week. Later on I ended up getting a 9 foot, 5 weight, 4-piece Hardy Zenith rod from Jim … Continue reading

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Whiting Hackle – Wall to Wall

I received an email sales newsletter tonight from JimsFlyco.com and they seem to have even more Whiting hackle in stock than what I saw last Fall while out at Campfire Lodge (see photo below). I snagged some of the Whiting hackle they had in the newsletter and listed it below for anyone interested. This should make any fly tier drool!! Whiting Red Label Capes (http://www.jimsflyco.com/whiting-red-label-hackle/) Whiting Gold Capes: Brown, Light Ginger, White Whiting Silver Capes: Grizzly dyed Olive, Grizzly dyed March Brown, Grizzly, Furnace, Speckled Badger Whiting Bronze Grade Capes: Grizzly, Barred Medium Ginger, Golden Badger, Barred Dark Ginger, Grizzly … Continue reading

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A Trout’s Window of Vision

Reading last night the book The Trout and the Fly by Brian Clarke and John Goddard. It was a good refresher for me to remember what a trout is able to see floating on the surface from the world below. This has also been written about in several other excellent books in the past, including A Modern Dry-Fly Code by Vincent Marinaro which is worth reading as well. Below are the diameter of a trout’s window (also called the cone of vision) in flat calm conditions from the book. (I am keeping this simple and avoiding any discussion of the … Continue reading

Posted in Trout Feeding Habits | 1 Comment

How a trout might view an emerger fly pattern

Playing around again this past weekend I tied a CDC Hendrickson parachute-style emerger pattern on a TMC 2487 curved hook. I attached my fly to 2 feet of 5x tippet and cast it several times into my aquarium to see how it would land. Every time the fly landed exactly as i wanted it to. Then I proceeded to take a few photos. Notice in the bottom right photo I have the camera submerged in the water. You can clearly see the fly’s body hanging below the surface film but because of the mirror reflection caused by the surface film you … Continue reading

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So What Do Trout See From Below?

I have often pondered what does a trout actually see and why does a trout eat our impressionistic fly patterns that actually do not look anything like the real insects? These questions popped into my head again early in the morning on this New Years Day. So I grabbed an early morning cup of coffee and began to ponder these questions that I have done so many times before. In my small fly tying cubicle I have once again this year added a 10 gallon aquarium full of water and no fish. I prefer to use it to see what … Continue reading

Posted in Fly Tying, Trout Feeding Habits | 2 Comments

Tying Fran Betters’ Ausable Bomber

One of Francis Betters legendary fly patterns that he designed for the Ausable River in upstate New York was the Ausable Bomber. It’s a wonderful searching pattern especially designed for fast water freestone trout streams. I decided to start tying this old Adirondacks pattern first this new winter tying season to use on some of my northern Wisconsin trout stream hangouts next season. The overall buggy appearance of this fly pattern along with its oversized forward slanted white wing definitely can capture the trout’s attention. Like Fran Betters’ Ausable Wulff the Ausable Bomber is tied with all natural materials and resembles … Continue reading

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As darkness falls on the trout stream

With snow on the ground and winter fast approaching I have begun my annual reading of various fly fishing books, some old and some new. Recently I have gotten the bug (no pun intended) to read about how we think trout see and how they use their eyesight to help detect their prey at distances in the water as well as on the surface. This has lead me to ask how well do trout see at dusk or in the dark? Is darkness an advantage to night time aquatic insects? We know trout possess eyes that contain both rods and … Continue reading

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What triggers a trout to eat your fly?

Since trout can’t talk the question of what makes a trout eat our fly pattern has been a question asked by fly fishermen for centuries. Recently I have read a lot of articles and blogs written about how fish see and how it relates to catching more trout. While scouring the Internet a blog post that caught my attention was: “What Does The Trout See?” on the Gink & Gasoline website. The author seems to suggest that different colors, or lack of colors, in different stream settings and conditions may help catch more trout. Once again we read about the … Continue reading

Posted in Trout Feeding Habits, Trout Fishing | 5 Comments

What is UV2 fly tying materials?

After reading on several fly fishing forums about UV2 fly tying materials I asked myself: What the heck is UV2 fly tying materials? Being a total fly fishing and fly tying nut this intrigues me because I love discovering new, innovative fly tying materials and seeing for myself if they are worthwhile. Don’t get me wrong, I still love the old classics, such as the Catskill dry flies too. Over the years I have relied on Spirit River Fine & Dry dubbing, duck quills and some other fly tying materials from Spirit River. I have always found their fly tying … Continue reading

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Whiting Farms Grizzly Variant Capes

Some of my favorite dry fly capes are the variants, especially the Whiting Farms Grizzly Variant dry fly hackle capes. The biggest issue for me is finding a good selection to choose from and being able to see the capes before making a purchase. Jim Slattery from Campfire Lodge Resort / JimsFlyCo has an excellent selection of the Whiting grizzly variant capes posted online and has taken individual large photos of each cape. This really helps take the guess work out of buying a cape sight unseen. Along with each photo is a short description which includes the feather sizes … Continue reading

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