Awesome Fly Fishing Photography, Get Some!

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This image and many others could be yours! If your not aware of the Colorado Greenbacks, you should be. I’m not talking about the beautiful and delicate native cutthroat, rather the enthusiastic group of anglers dedicated to saving them for the future. The Greenbacks are a sort of subchapter of Trout Unlimited. A group of young and energetic anglers that have grown tired of business as usual and taken off in their own vibrant direction. These guys are the future of TU, if not the future of Fly Fishing on the whole. On February 2nd the Greenbacks are are throwing a party. The second annual Surface Film fly fishing photography show. Prints will be on display, and for sale, from the best fly fishing photographers in the biz. I’m honored to be on the list. There will be eating and drinking and music and all the cash goes to conserving the wild trout water of Colorado, which is a national treasure. If you never fished Colorado get off your ass and get to it! It’s amazing, and it belongs to all of us not just the good people of Colorado. So please support the Greenbacks. The fish and the guys working so hard to protect them.   Louis Cahill Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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2 Alternatives for Attaching Your Split-Shot

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You’ve been fishing hard all day long searching for that perfect honey hole. You know the one I’m talking about, it’s the one that holds that trophy trout that keeps haunting you in your dreams. It’s getting late, your tired, and you know you should be heading back, but there’s a bend just up ahead, and your curiosity keeps pushes you forward with those powerful words, “This could be it, just see what’s on the other side”. Sure enough, as you round the corner you lay your eyes on a picture perfect run, offering everything a trophy trout could desire. You get into position, make the cast, mend your line, and begin following your strike indicator with your rod tip, when out of now where, it shoots under the surface like it was just attached to a iron dumb bell. You set the hook and feel the heavy weight of the fish thrashing its big head, and you’re immediately on cloud 9. The adrenaline rush doesn’t last long though. It’s quickly replaced by painful heart ache when you feel your tippet snap, and watch your rod go straight. The excitement is all over…, you won’t land that trophy fish or even be graced with a quick glimpse of it for that matter. The only memory you’ll have to remember that trophy trout by is the few aggressive head shakes. You bring your fly-less rig to hand and find the tippet broke at the split-shot. Has this ever happened to you before? If you attach your split shot too tight on your tippet it can weaken its strength significantly. Most anglers try to avoid this by tying a triple surgeon’s or blood knot above their tandem nymph rig, and attach the split-shot above that. The knot keeps the split-shot from sliding … Continue reading

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Joel vs The Shark

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My good friend Joel Dickey was not raised by wolves, but you might not believe it if you’ve ever seen him angry. With hair the color of a new penny and bright blue eyes that can be uncomfortably intense at times, the ruddy sun scorched complexion of a Bedouin, the build of a boxer and two gold hoops, one in each ear, Joel looks half Viking, half pirate. Born of a long line of Tennessee moonshiners and snake handlers, he has a great southern brogue that’s so deep you can hear the chicken frying when he talks. He has a heart as big as the Florida sky, and a temper to match. He caught his first rattle snake at age six. Joel has no fear. Fear is an important emotion. As humans, our fight or flight response has served us well, in evolutionary terms. Joel somehow missed out on the flight part of that, as well as the fear. He’s all fight. Any other person finding themselves face to face with a fifteen foot hammerhead shark might back down. Joel on the other hand… The heat there in the Florida Keys that day had been like penance. So had the fishing. It was a perfect day for tarpon. The weather was hot with just a little wind, not a cloud in sight. It was mid May. The peak of the season. The tarpon that had been everywhere just a few days before had vanished. The few we saw had no interest in a fly. This was exactly what we had been waiting for. There was a huge falling tide in the evening and it had been unseasonably warm. We had been looking at the calendar and the tide apps on our phones for six months thinking that this was the … Continue reading

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Covering a Hatch Starts with Carrying the Right Flies

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Have you ever been standing in the river watching a big hatch unfolding with rising fish all around you, but for some reason you can’t get the feeding fish to eat your flies? Covering and owning a hatch starts with you first carrying the right fly patterns. When you know you’re going to encounter a specific hatch on the water, always carry multiple variations (colors, sizes) and stages (nymph, emerger, dun, spinner) to make sure you’re covered. Trout can get really picky during selective feeding. This very situation happened to me last year running a guided float trip during an intense sulphur hatch. There was yellow everywhere, and fish were in a feeding frenzy, but the trout wouldn’t eat any of my sulphur patterns I tied on for my clients. Even my CDC go-to patterns that always work, were shunned by the feeding trout. I finally found a sulphur pattern after my seventh try that the trout consistently liked, and it saved the day. It ended up being nothing special, just a dun with in a slightly different color shade. The remainder of the float trip all I could think about was how important it was that I had so many different sulphur imitations on hand. It would have been a long quiet drive back if my clients witnessed an epic hatch with perfect conditions, and we ended up striking out on the water. Your standard parahcute style dun with a small nymph dropper off the back will not always work. Below are some examples of other fly pattern options for rounding out your fly box and owning a hatch: Drys Parachute Style (with and without trailing shuck) Traditional Style (palmered hackle) Thorax Style (Palmered Hackle with hackle trimmed off on the bottom so pattern rides low on the water) … Continue reading

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Sunday’s Classic / How To Make Your Fly Rod Cast Like A Dream

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What Fly Line Matches Up Best With Your Fly Rod? It always amazes me that there’s very little talk in the industry about how important it is to match your fly rod with the appropriate fly line. My recent visit to the ITFD Fly Fishing Show in New Orleans, I witnessed on more than one occasion, fly rod company’s matching their fly rods up with what appeared to be the wrong fly lines. If you spool up the wrong fly line on your reel, that $700 fly rod you just purchased will end up feeling awkward, and won’t perform the way the fly rod designer intended it to. Below are some quick tips on how to match your fly rod with the correct fly line so it ends up casting like a dream. Fast Action Fly Rods Stiff, fast action fly rods require fly lines with a more aggressive head design for optimum rod loading and casting. Since fly rods are generally meant to load at 25-30′ of fly line out the end of the rod tip, anglers often find it difficult to load fast action fly rods, particularly at short distances, unless they’ve matched their rod with the appropriate fly line. Both Rio and Scientific Anglers manufacture fly lines specifically for fast action rods. Try Weight Forward (WF) Rio Grande Fly Line or WF GPX Scientific Anglers. These two fly lines in laymen terms, are about 1/2 weight heavier than traditional fly lines by AFTMA standards. Pairing up one of these fly lines with your fast action fly rod will allow you to load your rod with less effort and it will perform much better at all casting distances. Medium Action Fly Rods Medium action fly rods call for fly lines with a more conservative and well rounded tapered design. Loading … Continue reading

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Saturday Shoutout / Fly Tying by Hans Stephenson & Surface Film 2

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This week’s Saturday Shoutout brings you a killer fly tying archive with over 70 popular fly patterns tied by Hans Stephenson with Dakota Angler. We also give a shoutout to the second annual Surface Film photography event. Fly Tying Archive by Hans Stephenson This is sure to get you your fly tying fix for the day, hell the year probably. The seventy plus fly patterns are all fish catching machines, and Hans Stephenson does a very good job in his videos teaching you how to tie these bad boys up. Check it out if you’re wanting to learn some new patterns. I’ll be right there with you tying along myself. The Greenbacks of Trout Unlimited are excited to announce the 2nd Surface Film event showcasing top professional fly fishing photography across the courntry at the Anthology Fine Art Gallery (635 Santa Fe Drive Denver, CO 80204) on Feb. 2, 2012. Framed prints will be available through a silent auction to benefit Trout Unlimited. If everything goes as planned this could turn into a traveling show. We encourage everyone to check it out if the event falls in your neck of the woods. Facebook Invite         Eventbrite Page        Website Keep it Reel, Kent Klewein Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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The Albright Knot

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The Albright Knot is a great knot for attaching a metal bite tippet to your leader. It can also be used to attach the leader to the fly line or any time you are attaching materials of very different size or stiffness. Here’s Capt. Joel Dickey, in the last of his three part series on better salt water knots, to teach you the Albright Knot. Louis Cahill Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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2 Scenarios For Greasing Your Leader

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1. Fishing with Tiny Dry Flies Many anglers out there shy away from fishing tiny dry flies because they find it difficult to see them and keep them floating during their drifts. Greasing the length of your leader with fly floatant can help your tiny dries float longer and make them easier to see on the water. A good scenario for this would be if you’re fishing a CDC pattern where you don’t apply floatant directly to the fly pattern. By greasing your leader you’ll increase the floatation of your pattern and it will stay afloat longer in more turbulent water. 2. Drifting Nymphs & Emergers in the Film If you find the standard dry fly dropper rig is failing to get the attention of feeding fish during a hatch, try instead tying on a single emerger or nymph  pattern that imitates the aquatic insects hatching. Then grease your leader from the butt section to within 6″ of your fly. This will allow your fly to drift in or slightly below the surface film where a biggest percentage of the hatching naturals will be found struggling to break through the surface tension. Complete each dead drift by letting your fly swing and rise to the surface to match the behavoir of the emerging bugs. Keep it Reel, Kent Klewein Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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The Bimini Twist

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The Bimini Twist may be the the most mysterious knot in fly fishing. I love the look you get when you tie one. It’s as though you pulled a rabbit out of your fishing hat. In reality, the Bimini Twist is not a difficult knot. Once you understand it it’s very easy to tie and it can not be beat for strength. It is the best method for attaching you backing to your fly line and a knot every angler should know how to tie. Here’s Capt. Joel Dickey to show you how easy it is. Louis Cahill Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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Why I Always Carry a Backup Gear Box

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Have you ever made it to the river after a two hour drive and realized when you got there, you had forgot to pack one of your crucial pieces of fishing gear? I’ll be the first to admit I’ve been that unfortunate angler plenty of times, and it can ruin a day of fishing. A few years back I was forced to spend a day on Depuy’s Creek in MT wading around in a pair of my Justin cowboy boots. It was really ironic because I spent the morning packing all the gear for my virgin fly fishing buddies, and I was the one that ended up leaving my damn wading boots on the front porch. Those Justin boots were surprisingly comfortable wading in but they had zero traction, and I looked like a moron. I’ve never forgot my wading boots on a fishing trip since. These days I always try to keep a box of backup gear in my vehicle at all times when there’s room. This way I’m covered if a piece of gear slips my mind during my packing or if I have gear break down on me on the water. Don’t get carried away with the backup gear box, just pack the essentials. I”m talking about focusing on the gear that will cause you to shout multiple four letter obscenities when you find yourself without them. Below is a short list of gear I carry with me at all times. Contents of My Back Gear Box 1. Cheap pair of Polarized Sunglasses 2. Old pair of Wading Boots 3. Old pair of waders (It’s all good if they have a small leak or two) 4. Cheap rain jacket 5. Hat 6. Cheap fly rod and reel with fly line 7. Hemostats, Nippers, Fly Floatant 8. Couple … Continue reading

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