Individual taste in books varies as much as the favorite rod or fly. With that in mind, we hope to review books and videos from the ever-growing fly fishing world, and share them with you. Books will be the best of all worlds, new and old. Many of the old books are now available in reprint, and the wisdom contained is timely today. Others can be found in second-hand book stores, or by mail order dealers. As we find videos we feel are outstanding they will be included. Be assured, reviews are based on what we have actually read, and due to that fact, may not appear weekly.

January 5, 1998

Pike on the Fly
©1993 by Barry Reynolds and John Berryman
Published by Spring Creek Press



Two guys, who became fishing buddies, give the reader the advantage of the "want-to-be" who really does learn to put all the parts together. And that is exactly what they do for you. It covers pike gear, favorite pike flies (with photos and instructions,) how to find and catch trophy pike, and planning a trip to Canada the pike angler's mecca.

It also contains great fly fishing stories. Here is an example:
"I was wading along a flat, casting into about two feet of water. To tell the truth, I wasn't paying very much attention. There were better areas to fish, and as soon as some other anglers moved on, I planned to leave the flats for more productive water. Then I got a strike. Not the greedly little tug that meant a small trout had managed to sneak in front of its betters to gulp down my streamer. Not the solid belt followed by a strong pumping run that meant that I'd hooked a decent trout. The strike was faster, and it was hard.

In a heartbeat, I was looking with great alarm at my rod, which had assumed the shape of a horseshoe and seemed to be trying very hard to further transform itself into a Hula-Hoop. My line hummed as it cut a lightning-fast zigzag through the water. My poor little trout reel howled, and line disappeared from it at a rate that should have caused a backlash. Six-pound tippet suddenly seemed like a very bad idea.

Then things started to get exciting. For the next fifteen minutes, my first-ever northern pike proceeded to show me who was boss. It methodically beat the hell out of my tackle, and when it finished with the tackle, it started in on me. On four occasions, I got it within fifteen feet of me. On four occasions, it found strength for another run. Finally, it rolled, gasping, at my feet."

One of the things especially interesting to me was state-by-state pike fishing information, including top spots, and state records as of 1993. Also, the tactics differ from one kind of pike to another. And from one season to the next. There are tons of photos, black and white, so the reader does know these guys are as good as they claim.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Pike on the Fly, and I'm not a piker ... pun not intended. If you have fly fished for northerns, tigers, or muskies and want to improve your catching or if you think you might just want to try it, look no further. It's all here.

If you have ever been, or live where, pike are available, you can't pass this by. It's a winner. Pike on the Fly Soft cover, $16.95.~ DB

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