Saturday Shoutout / One Life One River

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Water, work, cancer, and a thriving will to live, on the water.

Becca Klein’s story is truly an inspiration. You’d never guess, meeting Becca, that she has survived two cancer diagnoses. You wouldn’t guess that anything could slow her down or dampen her irrepressible spirit. Maybe that’s the key because while many see cancer as a death sentence, in Becca’s case it’s been more of a sentence to live.

It was through cancer  that she discovered fly fishing, and through fly fishing a love of a river, the love of her life, and a career in conservation. If this story doesn’t warm your heart, you need to see a doctor.

CHECK OUT THIS GREAT STORY FROM DUNN MAGAZINE.

“ONE LIFE ONE RIVER”

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Orvis Mirage LT Fly Reel: Video

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Orvis has a great new light weight trout reel that’s made in America.

Orvis introduced it’s Mirage fly reel a couple of years ago and it’s proven to be a workhorse. Their goal of producing a quality, made in America reel was certainly achieved but the Mirage was certainly aimed at the big game market. This year they are offering the Mirage LT with a focus on trout fishing.

CHECK OUT THIS VIDEO FOR ALL THE DETAILS ON THE ORVIS MIRAGE LT FLY REEL.

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Low Flows

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By Jesse Lowry

Late summer out here in the Kootenay’s of British Columbia means hot days and low flows.

Despite the recent heat wave, water temperatures this year managed to stay in safe ranges thanks to a solid snow pack in the alpine. These type of conditions are some of my favourite to be out on the water. It’s still safe for the fish, as the rivers are hanging well below 20c (68f in Murica). The weather’s fantastic, a lot of the rivers are too boney to float, which reduces pressure, makes wading across the entire river a breeze, and you can cover a lot more river on foot as a result.

These western freestone rivers tend to get pretty channelized this time of year, which you would think concentrates the fish into smaller more obvious areas and it does, but that doesn’t necessarily translate into making them easier to catch. Log jams, downed trees, tight deep corners with tricky currents and all sorts of obstacles that make clean drifts a tall order, are where the fish tend to hang out. If you want to catch them you’ve got to put your fly into some sketchy places, and a lot of the time they aren’t coming back out. Losing flies out here is just part of the game, and if you’re not losing them, chances are you’re not fishing some of the best water…. or you’re a Jedi. 

I also tend to lose more flies as I do something a little different with my leader/tippet. I use lighter tippet than I typically would and I don’t make a smooth transition as I don’t actually want my fly to turn over completely. In these situations I want the tippet to pile when it lands, so I can get that extra foot or two of clean drift which can make the difference in these tight conditions. To achieve this, I tie my tippet to a thicker leader (i.e., 5x tippet to a 3x leader) to create a bit of a hinge point. A bit of curl in the tippet helps as well. Also throwing a size 8 hopper on 5x adds to this tippet pile, as the 5x has trouble transferring enough energy to turn a chunkier fly over. This way when you get to the end of your drift, the piled tippet and your fly can continue to go with the flow for a little bit longer and maybe get you into that pocket deep in the rhubarb where the big guys hang out. 

As well, another added benefit with piled tippet is that your fly

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Take the Time to Research Your Boat Ramps

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It’s really easy to get excited about a last minute trip when your buddy calls and says the fish are biting and then not take the time to research the logistics of where you’re going to be fishing. Much of the time things work out in the end when we’re doing what we love but every now and then, no matter how hard you try to make things right, you’re bound to get screwed. That was the case for us during our final day of our recent musky trip with our good friend Charlie Murphy in West Virginia. Due to poor water conditions, we had to go with a Plan B and change our fishing location the final day of our trip. Charlie had taken an friends word that we could launch our boat at the designated spot with no problem. Unfortunately, his acquaintance thought we were launching a drift boat, not a john boat, and that turned out to be and impossible task, without the aid of a cheap pvc roller and a 20 foot section of rope. Now, I’m known for being able to back up a truck and trailer with the best of them and until this day, I was batting a 1000%. So much for my perfect batting average of backing up, because this midget boat ramp put it to me. I tried like hell, but it just wouldn’t fit.

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Simms’ Women’s G3 Guide Waders: Review

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By: Alice Tesar

Simms’ Women’s G3 Guide Waders are a change worth making.

I’m a skeptic for change. I’ve worn my leaky waders for 2 years now because I like the fit and the weight of them. 2 years of settling for cold, wet legs after standing for hours with (dry) clients in the river. I’d patched and re-sealed my waders numerous times but it only held for so long. When I researched my options I’d find myself frustrated that there were limited choices for women’s GORE‐TEX® waders and I wasn’t going to spend $500 on a pair of men’s waders that didn’t fit me. That’s changed now. 

No longer my fellow anglers will you sneak a peak of me changing into dry pants before hopping into the truck on a brisk fall day. The Simms Women’s G3 Guide Wader is 3- layer GORE‐TEX® Pro Shell in the upper body and 4-layer GORE‐TEX® Pro Shell from the butt through the legs. GORE‐TEX® Pro Shell offers durability, breathability, and a fit that allows me to focus on my clients and their catches instead of slopping around in wet wool socks and a garbage bag. 

I’m 5’9” and wear a size 9 1/2 shoe, I wear medium weight socks with my waders and I fit a medium in this Simms Wader. I also run cold (even on clear, summer days I’m wearing my down jacket ’til noon), fitting a heavier layer or two under the waders is not a problem. With the scalloped top opening I don’t feel like all my extra top layers are strangling me. 

I spend plenty of time on the river with my 1-year-old son in a backpack, the low profile wading belt and loops don’t catch on the backpack or my fishing pack, which I wear reversed. The suspender straps are 1.5” wide and are not overly padded but rather comfortable even with all the extra weight and additional pack straps.

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3 Options For Attaching A Leader To Your Fly Line

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There are a couple of easy ways to attach a leader to a fly line, but which is best?

I know the method I like, but there are pluses and minuses to each. In the end, the best method is the one that works best for you and the way you fish. I’ll go over the three most common ways to attach a leader to a fly line and you can decide which one is for you.

The Nail Knot

The venerable Nail Knot has been attaching fly lines to leaders for as long as there have been fly lines and leaders to attach. If you have been fly fishing for a long time, it’s probably how you learned to doit. It is, for the record, my least favorite and I have not used it for years. Still, it does have its advantages.

The Nail Knot uses friction to hold the leader to the fly line. It’s fairly simple to tie, though some kind of tool helps. You can use a nail or small tube, a Nail Knot tool of course, and I have always used hemostats.

The upside of this knot is that it is the easiest to bring through your guides, especially if you coat it with a little UV resin. That I suppose, is helpful if you are a euro-nympher. I personally have not felt the need to bring my leader into my guides since sometime in the 1980s. It’s just a good way to break off fish, in my opinion. If you like to do it, the Nail Knot may be a good choice.

The downside of the Nail Knot is that it’s the weakest connection you can use. That’s a pretty big drawback, for me. It’s not that there is anything wrong with the knot, but

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Sunday Classic / Organizing Your Bonefish Fly Box Makes For A Better Day Of Fishing

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OPTION PARALYSIS EATS UP VALUABLE FISHING TIME.

I’ve found myself, more than once, staring into my fly box as if I’d wandered to the refrigerator in the middle of the night, with no idea why I was there. That’s fine, unless you’re surrounded by feeding bonefish and your guide is wailing in tongues. Even if your not under pressure to make a quick fly choice, having your flies organized in a logical fashion will help you choose the right fly for the conditions and that means catching more fish. Here are some tips on how I organize my bonefish box and how I use that organization to make better fly choices.

Keep It Simple
Bonefishing is not generally a match-the-hatch situation. Bonefish are highly opportunistic and presentation usually trumps pattern. I know guys that carry a thousand flies on the flats boat. They might fish three of them in a day. I keep it to one box. I probably cram a hundred flies into it but that one box has everything I need.

Making Smart Choices
When paring down your fly selection it’s important to understand

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Saturday Shoutout / Alignment 

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Join Eric Jackson on his search for alignment in British Columbia.

What does it take for you to be completely aligned? For Eric Jackson, and a few others, it’s steelhead and snowboarding. In this beautiful short film Eric and his crew, including my good buddy Curtis Ciszek, spend a winter in B.C. doing some amazing snowboarding and catching some big Skeena river chromers. Even if you don’t snowboard or steelhead, you’ll enjoy this great film.

FIND, “ALIGNMENT”

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2 New Wading Boots From Patagonia

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Patagonia teams up with Danner to make the toughest wading boots ever.

The new River Tractor and River Salt wading boots from Patagonia are not like any other wading boot on the market. Even from a distance you can spot the rugged look of classic Danner construction. Made in Portland Oregon, these boots’ with their leather uppers and stitched on soles, have a pedigree that goes back to the Marine Corp. 

The idea behind these new boots is that they could be the last wading boots you need to buy. They are built, not only to last, but to be repaired. The construction allows for the boots to be resoled or repaired over time. Patagonia sees this as a plus for environmentally conscious anglers who don’t want their boots being landfilled every year or two. I’m sure there are plenty of anglers who will like that idea, and plenty who won’t care, but there is no downside to a boot that lasts.

There are two models to meet your fishing needs. The River Tractor is a classic cold water boot, designed to be worn over waders and is offered with the option of aluminum traction plates. The River Salt is a wet wading boot that’s light and built to hold up to trail hiking and sharp coral for the flats angler.

WATCH THE VIDEO TO LEARN ALL ABOUT THE NEW WADING BOOTS FROM PATAGONIA.

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4 Ways To Up Your Streamer Game This Fall

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By Kyle Wilkinson

While fishing streamers can certainly be a productive way to put fish in the net year round,

there is no doubt that “streamer fishing” and “fall” go together like peanut butter and jelly (or if you’re like me, chicken fried steak and Coors). I know I’m not the only person who has recently spent a hot summer day dreaming of how good it will feel to need a few extra layers of clothing and a 6-weight in the months to come.

As many of you know, I talk to a lot of anglers, both in the shop and guiding. Whether it be a beginner/intermediate or more advanced angler, streamer fishing seems to get in a lot of people’s heads and in my opinion, causes a lot more confusion than is necessary. I tell these folks in simplest terms, it’s really not that complicated. You just have to do it. And more importantly, commit to it. This is where I think many people struggle — the ‘committing’ part. They don’t realize that a different mindset is required to become a proficient streamer angler, that you have to work your butt off, making countless casts, fully prepared to go hours without a strike.

I pride myself in my streamer fishing abilities but I’d be lying if I said there still weren’t times on the river where I find myself getting a little too worked up between the ears. There’s no way around it — some days are just a flat-out grind. On the flip side though, not every day is like that and if you fish streamers enough you’re going to find yourself on the river one day where the fish are in the mood to chase down your offering and give you explosive eat after explosive eat. If you’ve ever had one of those days then you know what I’m talking about. I’d also be willing to bet those days are some of your best on-water memories to date.

SO, TO GET WHERE I’M GOING WITH THIS, IF YOU’VE GOT IT IN YOUR HEAD THAT THIS FALL YOU’RE GOING TO IMPROVE YOUR STREAMER GAME, HERE ARE FOUR SUGGESTIONS ON HOW TO MAKE THAT HAPPEN.

Keep On Movin’– Everything listed below is built on this foundation. When streamer fishing, you HAVE to cover a lot of water. There’s no way around it. If you’re wade fishing, this means possibly logging many miles on your boots that day. You know that run you love to nymph and have found yourself spending hours in before? Be prepared

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