Friday, March 22, 2013

Prepping For 2013 Shad Run | Potomac River | Custom Shad Flies

Its been a busy couple of weeks at the kitchen table. That's where I tie my flies these days. I've been cranking out flies by the dozens per session. I've knocked out about 130 size 8 shad flies, several dozen 1/32 oz shad darts, about 50 size 6 shad flies, and about 100 damsel nymphs. Its been a mess.

I took a hint from SingleBarbed and picked up some materials at the craft store. I've been tying with Vinyl Rib for a few seasons but this stuff is much more economical. I like how light shines through the wraps and illuminates the thread color beneath. The beads can be of a variety of weights to sink the fly. The tail has to be just long enough that the fish won't nip at the tail and miss the hook.

If you want to book a trip, go to the website. 
Its the busiest time of the year, people are e-mailing me and someone may book their spot between e-mails. I will not put you down on the books unless I receive a deposit.

Lets look at the pictures in the out of order way they were uploaded.

This is the 1.5mm cord I use on the size 8 hooks. Its $2.49 for 4 meters.

 You will find below some low budget quality fly tying tutorials for my shad flies. I've stuck to this pattern now for two seasons. After watching TPFR member and former client Kyle land the biggest shad I've ever seen, I was convinced its my go to pattern (next to a damsel)
 I've been tying up a lot of flies. This entire package of polarflash was destroyed. I cut the plastic over the package so that 1" of material sticks out. That way I know I'm always cutting the same amount of material. Its more efficient.
 Here is my 1/32 shad jig.
 The 100th fly tied from a 100 pack of hooks.
 Close up of the big eye shad fly.
 That's a winner.
 This was a custom fly order tied for a client.
 Another custom fly assortment for a client.
 A handful of flies.
 Part of my 100 damsels.
 Another handful of flies
Here is a variety of the stretch cord. These were all procured from the Michael's in Reston. The fart putty was for my nephew.
 A variety of cord. They come in several sizes. Black and clear.
 Some other options. I opted not to use them.
 Beaded chain from Bill's Hardware (29 x Glebe)
 Not fun cutting these into individual dumbells.
 This is my favorite size, the 1.5mm.
 Another craft store, I think this was Joanne's.
 So there you have it, all of the fly tying prep. I will also crank out some 1" Clouser minnows made of calf hair. Just not yet.

As for the river, its still too cold for a solid run. A few hickory shad have been caught on spin gear. I was out again today and nothing. I'm not going to take any clients to the bridge just yet.

Here are some major trees that washed down over the winter. They will be in our way for casting. Clients, work on that roll cast!
 The view from the back way down to Pimmet Run x Potomac. This will be over grown come May. All of these feeder streams seem to be sterile. No bugs, no fish, no crustaceans.
 The beach looks nice and clean after I pulled out a bunch of beer bottles, latex gloves (people don't want to touch their bait) and chicken liver containers.
 Looking up to the GW Parkway.
 The river pays me back with a cheap can of free beer. People here always leave full cans and bottles behind.
 Looking upstream from the bridge. Super windy here. You can see the eddys on the right. I don't guide there.
 "The Platform" walk. Notice how high up in the trees flood detritis is? I almost wiped out on ice here today.
 Weekend kayakers.
 Didn't see any carp in the canal.

Here are the low-budget quality videos of me tying these patterns:


Thanks for the great post. Lots of good info in there.

Looking forward to the Shad run this year!

You da man! I'm going to head up to Bill's hardware.

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