Welcome to Just Old Flies

Welcome to 'just old flies,' a section of methods and flies that used-to-be. These flies were tied with the only materials available. Long before the advent of 'modern' tying materials, they were created and improved upon at a far slower pace than todays modern counterparts; limited by materials available and the tiers imagination.

Once long gone, there existed a 'fraternity' of anglers who felt an obligation to use only the 'standard' patterns of the day. We hope to bring a bit of nostalgia to these pages and to you. And sometimes what you find here will not always be about fishing. Perhaps you will enjoy them. Perhaps you will fish the flies. Perhaps . .

Part Thirty-six

Old Salmon Guides

By Old Rupe

There are good guides, bad guides, young guides and old guides but few good old salmon guides.

These individuals are a treasure like a favorite hat, or a favorite rod always leaving a pleasant taste in the mouth even after a hard day on the water with no fish. They are always professional. Everything is in order. Your gear is left with them and they check it before you arrive. The boat is just so. If you are old and decrepit they are never impatient with you. The phrase "no problem" slides off their tongue like honey. They take pride in their work even though guiding is a part-time thing for them.

All of the guides have some knowledge of the river but its nice to see someone who has loved and fished the river for sixty years or so and catch a glimpse of that love in his eye on occasion. What a fine thing.

A week or so with a salmon guide requires more than a wife could provide. He will console you on your stupid losses, and there will be some. Give you hope for the future and try to lead you down the "right" path. All the while making you think you are the smartest "sport" he has guided in the last fifty ears or so. When a stupid fly is tied on the comment "that looks like a killer" is uttered with hope and when it doesn't perform "maybe you could try a better fly." This of course referred to the big three - The Mickey Finn, The Black Ghost, and The Golden Eagle.

They want the sport to succeed. It hurts them when it doesn't happen. I think they are innately very privately proud people. Always a little at a distance but always ready to assist in any way he can.

It's a pleasure to have a man fish you on the section of the river he's known and loved for sixty years or more.

Meet Elmer Silliker, (298 Northwest Rd, Exmoor N.B. E9E 1L3,) my guide on the Miramichi. Elmer if you read this - Thanks for laughing at my stories - and your four horse motor did fine - never give in to the urge to run and gun. I'm taking your advise and walking more. If my ship comes in, I hope to do it again. ~ Old Rupe

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