Monday, February 29, 2016

February Wrap Up

NEWS: I will be attending East Idaho Fly Tying Expo in this coming April. I had great time last year and am very much looking forward to getting back. Besides my floor sessions, I am conducting a Workshop where I introduce and instruct flies for Livingston's spring creeks. Besides hands-on instructions, as an active outfitter and a spring creek specialist, I will discuss concepts of fly development and how to fish with those flies.
Expo website will be updated more as the days get closer. Keep checking and, either floor or workshop, see you there!!

Today, the Leap Day = an extra day once in every 4 years = , is a perfect day for me to make this post. Last week was so very productive. I am wrapping up the month with happy notes.
I visited DePuy's Spring Creek in afternoons of Thursday and Friday. On Thursday, following the previous week, I spotted rising trout. Midges, very very small ones, are hatching.  I had a couple of close calls but no real hook-ups on my dry-flies or suspending pupa patterns. On Friday, I was determined. At the first spot, another couple of close calls! - those trout in the group were in respectable sizes. Actions slowed down but it was hard to leave the spot. Yet practically I left the spot for the another potential rising spot. Luckily I guessed right. I spotted another group of rising trout. Trout seemed smaller yet they were also feeding on micro-midges with so-so eagerness. I admit I had a fear of losing again. With some more concentration, I induced a violent rise!! I knew it wouldn't be a monster size but was fighting very feisty. I scored the first match-the-hatch trout of the season!
See how small midges were (plus suggested nymph patterns).

Then my Atlantic Salmon Fly season is also successfully wrapped up as of last week!!
My very last attempt was Tippetwitchet (Major John P. Traherne) on Partridge HE2 2/0 - a giant hook, I ever worked on!! This pattern really challenged my nerve and patience, besides all other salmon fly requisite techniques.............
I finished the cheek & throat like this on purpose. Besides I was a bit short of blue feathers in the same size, by doing so, other side is Golden Butterfly.

And then final procedure is framing. I started framing one by one for single framing, in order of fly completion.

Two more to frame........... I'm always up for custom orders and commissions with salmon flies. It's just the time to wrap up my own projects and from now on, I will work on trout flies (orders and filling boxes). Then I will go fishing more! and I will get ready for the Expo!!

March will be busy and content too!!

Monday, February 22, 2016


As of this typing, it's cooled down to winter-like temperature, but last week it got really warm (and we are soon expecting back the same), up to Upper 50F!!
I got over the cold (kinda......) and was able to get back fishing to DePuy's Spring Creek. In a good way, fishing condition has not been changed much, meaning it's VERY GOOD for this time of year!!
Several browns I have caught are very strong, just like those from last year this time.......
It seems (and I mean "seems") rainbows has been into "spring run" without taking much break from "winter run"............
Indeed majority of them are nicely colored up!
And then I did observe insect hatches and rises and I even fished for them (showing no pictures tell you how it went........). Just about the same date as last year............
Do these findings hint us the "cycle" of upcoming season and what to expect? Perhaps.........

Another cycle I'm following is at my bench: Atlantic Salmon Fly season. Projects that I assigned to myself are about to wrap up.
Following the Unnamed Pattern, I completed two more for single-fly frames.
Napoleon (Geo. M. Kelson)
It's on a Harrison-Bartleet 4/0. I personally like how hackles turned out. From the body-butt = claret hackle, through body-hackle = grizzly, to throat = yellow & blue & claret, barb lengths are increasing nicely. I did not pull down the grizzly hackles down on purpose, which is common in our modern methods, because I wanted them to match with the claret body-butt.
Evening Star (Major John Popkin Traherne)
 It's on a Harrison-Bartleet Dee 3/0, a very long shank hook. All the patterns by Major Traherne are challenging and intricate. It's easy to say artistic but hard to achieve. Over all very rewarding to work on. Though pictures don't show, three Jungle cock pairs are dressed on the top of hook shank too (The longest pair under the shank is considered as throat). They are hidden by Amherst feathers.
Originally I was planning 3 flies for 3 single-fly frames. But since these two came out well and smooth without any hassle, I decided to work on one more = a truly the last one for my own project (orders and inquiries are welcome all year around!).

Hope to report some dry-fly actions soon!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Unnamed Week

Toward the end of last week, I caught a little cold, instead of any trout on the creek............ So in spite of warm conditions, I stayed inside and let it go.
No fishing report but luckily my salmon fly routine had not been affected. Rather I concentrated more than ever. But also I knew other reasons: I'm feeling my salmon fly season is coming to the end as spring approaches. I have a couple of single-fly framing plans. After two biggest group framing projects since last fall, framing one fly is definitely easier and less pressure. But, as always, no salmon fly comes easy. And I tend to choose challenging ones........
The first fly I completed was one of my all time fancies.
 An Unnamed Pattern From The 19th Century, introduced by Al Cohen.

 Dressed on a 6/0 Partridge Sprite Pryce-Tannatt, this is the largest fly I ever accomplished.
It'll soon be framed.

Although I'm not fishing, I do experience the weather. I honestly feel like spring already....... Will it be like this time of last year? I will find out when I go back to the waters.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

February - Things Are Moving

I know I still need 4WD, woodstove, misc other warm clothes but, as February rolls, I can't help but thinking winter is seeing its end - at least on the calendar. Plus, I have many plans and schedules going on. I want to wrap up couple of things during February also. Mostly fly-fishing related. So it could potentially be a month of transition early in the year. Let me see what's going to happen.

I was able to hit DePuy's Spring Creek during the fine afternoon. It was good! And that's one of reasons that indicates "transition".
Nice rainbow!
It was quite a head-shaking leaper!!

I was quite happy yet it wasn't over. Right after the fine rainbow above, I got even a bigger hookup!! I controlled and netted carefully.
Can I call this "spring-run" or still "winter-run"?
And then I was finally able to wrap up the second biggest project for the season.
Now it's revealed. I've been working on Plate 1 in How To Dress Salmon Flies by T.E. Pryce-Tannatt (1914). With Holiday Season in between, plus many other things, it took me a while.
I had no reason to hurry and worry, as I knew it would come one by one and that would be the best progress for the final result.
All flies are dressed on Partridge of Redditch Sprite Pryce-Tannatt 4/0.
This time, I really simplified my framing/matting. With 9 gaudy flies all in one frame, they talk about & show themselves. I just figures "no frills needed!"
Yet, I'd like to mention I've done some painstaking effort for planning and calculating in the back of the single mat...........

So February seem to be going to be full!!

Monday, February 1, 2016

The Last Two

January went by so quick!
Besides trying to make weekly fishing reports, I've been working on another grand framing project. And to achieve that, I first have to have Atlantic salmon flies that would be worth framing. And those don't come easy and quick. The plate I've working on, which some readers who are familiar to the subject would notice by now, contains nice patterns. I just numbered the order I would dress at the beginning. That had no particular reasoning but just my feeling. I numbered two most challenging patterns, not only in that plate but also in general, toward the end.

That needed my full attention through the last week. Also winds weren't cooperative so I decided not to go fishing rather dedicated everything to complete two flies. Here they are.

Jock Scott - Dr. Pryce-Tannatt
Once in a while, I show my "weak" side in public.........
A dramatic effect!
And the very last one is The Popham.
For this pattern, besides over all achievements, I really like how Indian Crow substitution feathers, that I dyed on my own, look like and come together.
So I got vital parts for the frame. I already have ideas and plans. So far, I've been achieving what I had planed and schemed. Let me see how it goes this time. Over all it will be another challenging and rewarding  project!