Video: How to Tie a Bully Bluegill Spider

The Bully Bluegill Spider, tied by videographer Tim Flagler, is the subject of this week’s featured fly tying video.  Says Flagler: “On a nice, light flyrod, bluegill can be a ton of fun and this fly all but ensures you’re going to catch a bunch. I like to hang it a foot or two off the back of a floaty fly, like a Chernobyl Ant, and after I cast, allow it to sink toward the bottom. The ant will telegraph even the slightest of takes allowing you to set the hook and attach yourself to 5 or so inches of tail-walking, gill plate-rattling fury.”

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The World of Trout: First International Trout Congress, October 2016

The first International Trout Congress will be held October 2-6, 2016 in Bozeman, Montana. The “World of Trout” Congress will bring together conservationists, scientists, educators, anglers, writers and artists from around the world.

Read more in the press release below. Continue reading

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Video Hatch: “The Calm of the Mountains”

Melinda Withrow, a pole vaulter and Olympic hopeful, is also a fly angler. This short film features what she views as success: a day on the river with her dad. Via Lululemon.
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Tippets: California’s Golden Trout, Fly Fishing Basics

  • The golden trout is a species native to a small section of the Kern river in California, “found in cold and swift streams high up in the Sierra Nevada mountains.” Read more about fly fishing for this stunning species via Amberjack Fishing Journal.
  • From gear and rigging to locations and classes, Howard Horton outlines the basics of getting yourself or others started in fly fishing. “Learning to fly fish does not have to be intimidating, difficult or expensive,” Horton writes. Read more via Colorado Outdoors Magazine.
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New Fly Fishing Books

  • What a Fish Knows: The Inner Lives of Our Underwater Cousins by Jonathan Balcombe draws on the latest advancements in cognitive science to examine the questions of thought, memories, and social structure of fish species. Balcombe, an ethologist, takes the reader “under the sea, through streams and estuaries, and to the other side of the aquarium glass to reveal the surprising capabilities of fishes.” Scientific American / Farrar, Straus and Giroux (June 7, 2016).
  • Angling Days: A Fly Fisher’s Journals by Robert DeMott is a collection of the author’s numerous journal entries. They read as essays in the angling tradition of “channeling the tranquility of fly fishing into creative endeavors.” Tom McGuane calls this book “A cultivated, unpretentious and useful contribution to our literature.” Skyhorse Publishing (June 28, 2016).
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Winston Hires Jeff Wagner as General Manager

Winston has announced that Jeff Wagner has joined the company as new general manager. “Jeff’s impressive professional and fly fishing background will help us grow the business while maintaining an unwavering focus on product quality, customer service and continued innovation,” says Winston Chairman and Owner David Ondaatje.

Read more in the press release below. Continue reading

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Vermont Felt Sole Ban Repealed

Effective July 1, 2016, a five-year ban on the use of felt-soled waders in Vermont will be lifted. Anglers are reminded to continue to use preventative strategies for invasive species: “the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department is asking anglers and other water recreationists to thoroughly clean and dry all of their equipment after leaving any water body before going to another.”

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Tippets: Fly Fishing for Gar, Vote for America’s National Fish, Bass on Topwater Flies

  • “Few anglers can resist an actively working fish,” writes Zach Matthews, “especially one that will eat a fly.” In a recent article published on Fly Rod & Reel, Matthews writes about the biology, behavior, and techniques for chasing gar on a fly.
  • Vote for America’s National Fish and enter for a chance to win a Sage Pulse Rod (size of your choice). “In the primary, salmonids reigned supreme with Brook Trout, Steelhead, Rainbow Trout, and Cutthroat Trout finishing as the top 4 vote-getters. Largemouth Bass rounded out the top 5 with a healthy margin between it and the sixth place finisher – King Salmon.” Cast your vote before 11:59 PM June 28, 2016. Via Moldy Chum.
  • Catching largemouth bass on topwater flies can be fun but also difficult to achieve. “Bass aren’t like northern pike, almost always willing to chase down a big meal,” writes Phil Monahan. “In fact, bass can be quite picky and will often ignore big, noisy topwater flies.” Read Monahan’s top three tips for topwater bass, via Orvis.
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Tippets: Action for the Tongass, History of American Shad, Britain’s Chalk Streams Under Threat, Restoring Guadalupe Bass

  • Senator Lisa Murkowski has introduced language into a draft wildfire bill that would stop the Tongass Land Management Plan, putting vital salmon habitat at risk. Take action here and ask Senator Murkowski to drop this provision.
  • Sarah Laskow writes about the saga of American shad, “The problem isn’t that we aggressively overfished shad populations or consciously exterminated them. We just made it much, much harder for them to reproduce.” The problem is dams, which prevent this native and once abundant fish from reaching spawning grounds. Read more via Atlas Obscura.
  • Britain’s famous chalk streams are under threat from multiple directions, including agricultural and road run off. But anglers are leading the way to restore healthy ecosystems, insect populations and fisheries. Via The Telegraph.
  • Matt Miller writes about restoring Guadalupe bass in the Blanco River in Texas’ Hill Country, and how oddly enough, native fish restoration in the Blanco “received a big boost from the most unlikely of sources, a devastating drought.” Via The Nature Conservancy.
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Video Hatch: “One Cast at a Time”

This short documentary film features Mike Fisher, who spent a year traveling the United States in his van catching a fish on a fly rod in every state.
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