Thank You For Reading My Blog

This blog is about my life as a fly fisherman, guide, and fly fishing instructor in and around Northern Virginia and Washington D.C.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

February Beer Tie

What a turnout for a Beer Tie.

Many thanks to Port City Brew for stopping in and planning on some cross over events with local craft beer and the fly fishing scene. The bar ran out of the 2 cases of Monumental IPA brought by the brewery. Port City also had pins, koozies for pint glasses, stickers, and coupons for drinking at their brewery.

I arrive early to set up the tying table where I teach novice tiers to tie their first flies
 Then I eat. Avalanche burger. Remember, Monday is half price burger night
 Others eating and drinking before tying starts
 Chad from Port City setting up
 A first fly for a novice tier. These are my shad puffs.
 Dan interrupts the tying (others bring their vises to fill their boxes) for announcements, raffles, etc
 Chad and a full house
 Not Smurf beer, its raffle tickets. This is  how the club raises funds
 "Nemo" and her first shad puff
 Another first time tier with their shad puff. Super easy. We'll be filming a tutorial tonight
 The aftermath. Lots of Flashabout, chenille, and dumbell eyes all around.
 See y'all at the next Beer Tie

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Another Strange Winter At Four Mile Run

Four Mile Run (4mr) is a tributary of the Potomac river that has about 1.5 miles of tidal water. About half of that is wade able.

During winter this body of water is normally full of fish. The fish seek out the warm water (~65F) that is discharged from a sewage treatment plant. The warm water allows the fish to be active when the rest of the fish in the river are lethargic due to their body temps being equal to that of the river. These fish include goldfish, tilapia, gizzard shad, channel catfish, blue catfish, common carp, crucian carp, bluegill, black crappie, golden shiner, red ear sunfish, red breast sunfish, largemouth bass, and a variety of minnows.

Last winter was a slow one. Not many fish were up there. My hypothesis was the lack of fish was due to loud noise as a result of a bridge being removed.

I am seeing the same results this year, one year after the bridge was removed. I have not seen schools of monster sized carp. A few years back there were stretches where you could stand on a bridge and look down and not see the stream bed as there were that many carp.

Where are the schools of goldfish? These schools normally have 2-3 dozen orange/white/black fish.

Not a single catfish has been spotted in several months.

Largemouth bass are in there, the large ones have hung out by the bridges while juveniles upstream. In fact, we encountered several small bass over the past weekend that would take a Snowhite Damsel with gusto.

Mixed in with those small bass were large schools of red ear sunfish and bluegill. All willing to eat a fly (some on top). These schools blacked out the stream bed. The only problem with these fish was the crowd on Sunday (about 8 fly rodders in one small stretch-the air temp was in the 60s). These fish were taking small flash back nymphs and damsels.

The outflow usually holds loads of fish. We spotted one singular bass in there over the weekend. The past few trips to the outflow have not produced the amount and size of fish I'd expect. No lack of crowds this past weekend.

Looking down from  the rte 1 bridge has not been entertaining. We didn't see a single fish down there at low tide on Sunday. I have seen a hand full of bass and a single goldfish in weeks past.

I'm open for ideas on why the fish are not present and in the densities of winters past. What are your thoughts?

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Somerset Fly Fishing Show Post Mortem

Some afterthoughts to the blog

1. Everything can be tied in to a Seinfeld episode. I think everyone should have a name tag at these events. Just a sticker at the door they can fill out. So many people nowadays has a pseudonym for their online persona. I'm sure a lot of us would have more fun if we all knew who we were talking to that we read about on a daily basis.


2. Second, as I type this I feel like arse. My body hurts and I want to chunder. This is either because I came  home to a  house full of sick ladies or I shook too much hands at the show. I should have washed my hands at the show more often. This does give me a chance to indulge in a big cuppa of Earl Grey (haven't received my tin of Lady Grey in the mail yet from the Amazon) with lots of honey and some full cream.

3. At the next show I am going to stop by each booth and find out what they do and take a picture of their booth for the blog. 


4. Food trucks. I'd want local food trucks to be outside. That would give me more incentive than eating shite all weekend. Something with healthy options AND a clever name.

5. Crock pots. I'm over crappy cup of noodle and canned Beefaroni. If there won't be food trucks I'm going to bring a crock pot to my station. Velveeta, picante, jalapenos, canned chili. I'll have chip too. If your hands aren't too grimy I might just offer you a chip.

6. Implementation of a farting lounge. To avoid the constant crop dusting (yes this was a theme brought up several times over the weekend. It is only masked by the smell of mothballs and Aqua Velva on old men. I propose a designated farting lounge like the smokers have at the airport. A negative air pressurized suite will keep the funk contained. If not you will know who may have sharted (you can't un see this image be warned. This is a fly show not a 'FLY Show') and is now walking around quietly dispersing their flatus. Justin and I were caught in a cloud of mustard gas as we walked the 'tunnel' form the venue over to TK's. It was heinous. It was as if everyone waited until that moment to deflate on their way from the show floor to the bar. My eyes burned and my nostril hair was singed.

7. Maps. Is there a map available to show where all the booths and tiers are located? If so, I want one.

Monday, January 26, 2015

2015 The Fly Fishing Show From Somerset, NJ

Here are some pics from the last few days at Somerset. Check out the pics, listen to the podcast, and check out the companies, tiers, and organizations I covered.

Update: Stream The  Podcast

Last minute supplies from Home Depot

 These arrived just in time
 Passed William of Eastern Trophies

 The Potomac. I crossed and the wife called. Said I forgot my sign. Had to make a u-turn and head back. That added about 40 min onto the trip

On the road. This car had a bumper sticker saying it was fast, she drove like snail
 Conowingo Dam
 Rte 1 in Maryland. I had to get on 95 once the traffic lights got bad
 Setting up for the show

 First look at the Allen Exterus soft goods
 Helping Pat Cohen unload his punk rocker flies
 Meat market car
 Giving Reba her bourbon

 Double rat. I want one of these to drag along the Tidal Basin wall at night. Pat Cohen
 I ended up sharing my booth with four others. We had to rotate in and out. I wanted to sell flies to help offset the cost of the trip. That didn't happen
 AFFTA happy hour. Tucker giving a talk

 Lots of catching up to do since IFTD
 I punished the roast beef and turkey

 Others punished a keg
 Signs for Friday
 Why can't I get bulk estaz like this
 My first look at and it was hard to recognize Cortney
 He shaved
 Budget lunch
 Dan from Bonefish Tarpon Trust getting his lunch
 Love me some Easy Cheese
 My take on Pat Ehler's Grim Reaper
 Japanese beetle
 The line for John Geirach
 Some dude brought a stack of books for him to sign
 Camo for fishing at Disney
 Our Project Healing Waters CEO laying out some line
 Pete from Orvis bending some glass. The amount of glass rods for sale is directly correlated to The Fiberglass Manifesto's hard work.
 Woke up to snow after a disappointing dinner at Ruby Tuesday. Maybe because the bartender lacked flair

 Saturday morning was slow. Snow kept a lot of people from the show. Dan knocked out some ghost shrimps. I'll have him on for a podcast soon
 A gift from Chagrin River Outfitters was consumed
 Justin rocking the Angling Bookstore
 This was breakfast at the hotel. Just about everything I ate this weekend had brown or yellow as the main color. Rather nasty
 The hotel was under a renovation so we ate in an empty room
 The gutless frog was the most popular fly I tied. I chatted with Rob Meade the creator last night. He had positive things to say about my take on his pattern and some suggestions for improvement
 Tenkara USA founder Dan on the pond (the pond was leaking in our section)
 The purple curly tail. I got my 2nd snakehead on one of these. I'm now using Copic markers to color the tails

My blank canvas. Size 1 Matzuo America worm hook. I am a member of their pro staff now. These hooks are incredibly sharp. These are my go-to hook for my bass and snakehead flies

 My  Hoh Bo intruders. Got some praise from  Greg Senyo about them and some positive criticism

 Lefty drawing a crowd. Small crowd as snow kept many away
 After several years I still have no idea who this man is. I'm terribly curious about his hair
 A hot lunch
 One of my favorite booths and interviews.
 I can't escape him
 Kevin Arculeo continues to amaze me
 Shad puff. I've got an order of 3 dozen to complete tomorrow
 I've known the guy in the black hat since our old days of fishing the Little J. He told us to get a shirt with 'titanium buttons' for the rather busty girl that worked for Orvis at the time. Said hers were about to pop off

 Close up
 Dan's ghost shrimp
 Fly Vines I dropped off a bunch of lines to them and was gifted with a new bracelet and a lanyard for my id

 First tie of Sunday. I only had a few hours to tie. Sunday was quite busy and I sold most of my flies yesterday. It would have been nice to have tied all day. I like tying flies over walking and spending money at the fly shops
 This sums up Somerset
 I picked up a bunch of saltwater stuff for Holt and Potter
 A sit down with John Geirach. I've been reading his stuff since 1993

Sale items
 I asked Pat Cohen to add his tail legs to my frog. Awesome
 My tying caddy is running out of space
 Realistic stonefly by Dan who tied next to me
 Close up of Allen jaackets
 Senyo flies
 This things is hay-uge

 Display flies at the Regal booth.

 I'm picking up a new jacket this week. The Kast Hell Razor Hoodie. It has a hood. I don't like cold wind on my cranium
 I spoke to the owner of Finn about Frogman Outdoors as I spoke to a lot of others. He straight up offered a fly wallet to use as a raffle item for our next fundraiser. How awesome is that? Please give him a like and follow.

 Chuck Kraft developed tails and such
 Pat Cohen developed tails and bodies and such
 A happy dog
 Picked up some bodies for Frogman Outdoors

 Some warm water flies for western Pa

 Andrea and Zeb I bumped into them right before I left. Almost missed them. I bought her permit print on a Simms shirt for the wife
 This is a lot of tying material
 The not for profit hallway

 Blue Halo rods got balls. If I actually ever get out to fish I want one of their rods
 PK showing off his annual ink updates from Eric Hornung

 Jorge Martinez art
 Driving home
 Yup, by now you already know about the storm
 A horse driving behind me

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