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Eye of the Guide
The Fly Fishing Enthusiast's Online Magazine
'The Fraternity of Fly Fishers'
Oct 20, 2014
"It's bad to have an empty purse, but an empty head is a whole lot worse." Anonymous
This fall's Baetis hatch at DePuy Spring Creek (www.depuyspringcreek.com) was indeed a "classroom of fly-fishing", filled with too many valuable lessons. I was catching up with trout feeding on these unusual Baetis and fly-patterns for them. Not quite perfect but I was getting somewhat comfortable about the whole situation. Then in one afternoon, they appeared in another different and unexpected color…
There is no doubt that Florida offers some of the greatest saltwater fly fishing found anywhere in the world. The saltwater fishing can be so overwhelming that it is easy to forget that Florida also has excellent fishing for largemouth bass. In 1975 the largemouth bass became the freshwater fish of the State of Florida. I know anglers that never fish the saltwater here in Florida because they are consumed with the excitement of fly fishing for largemouth bass. Besides there are days when the wind can drive you from the salt flats and the fishing for the other freshwater species of gamefish can offer a pleasant change of pace and it fun and exciting in its own right.
My old fish basket was falling apart, and when I checked and I discovered that my current model is no longer made. So, I started hunting for a new fish basket. I did not want a wire basket like the last one I owned. I got a notion while I was looking thorough a fishing magazine
It had not rained for two days but it was still too wet to drive into many places. A few folks were trying to harvest, but were getting stuck as the ground was too soft.
I decided it was a good day to do some fishing so I grabbed a 1 weight and a 5 weight bamboo rod and headed off to a pond. I decided to hike in to one of my favorite ponds. hiking in as I want to fish one of my favorite ponds. The temperatures have been going down and the water is getting cooler so I was hoping the water temperature had gotten back to the best temperature for fish to feed.
Driving past the lake I could see the parking area near the water about half full with visiting day-trippers. Inner-tubes bobbed with folks cooling off, and little ones were in the roped off wading area. From appearances they all looked to be having a great time escaping the August heat. Me on the other hand, I was heading upstream. I was going another half mile upstream of the impound where the small stream that fed those day-trippers with their cold water wound its way down through hemlocks and meadows. It was upstream of that small county lake where the hemlocks shaded wild browns and native brook trout. A place where the creek, in some places, was small enough to cross with one large hop and the water remained cool and flowing. Today I would be "small box fishing".
The nymph is no different than any other type fly - presentation is still more important than pattern choice. The nymph, for optimum effect, has to drift at the eye level of the trout. When fish are feeding on items near the bottom, a drift a few inches over their heads makes the best looking fly mediocre and a drift a foot over their heads makes the best looking fly worthless.
It is easy to imagine insects, scuds, worms and eggs in the currents, filling the water column top to bottom. In reality objects caught in the flow concentrate in a narrow mixing zone. Entomologists estimate that 70 to 80 percent of free-drifting life forms move at any given moment in an interface between the dead water of the rocks and the unobstructed water of the open flow. This turbulent band, with its circling eddies, tenaciously holds organisms until they reach an area where the flows are slow enough for them to settle to the bottom.
Yes I love grass, but not the kind that you cut with a lawn mower or smoke so that one can take a trip without leaving the farm. The grass that I have had a love affair with for nearly 60 years is Pseudosasa amabilis, [formerly known as Arundinaria amabilis], Tonkin Cane, the bamboo that is used to construct the finest fly rods in the world.
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