Techniques, Tips and Musings from the FFT Blog
We all want to be better at fly fishing. It takes time, practice and most importantly the right instruction along the way. My hope is that the following articles will serve to help you become better at fly fishing overall and put a few more fish in the net.
I’ll share pearls of wisdom on casting, rigging your gear, reading the water,tying knots and general fly fishing insights and pointers to make your fishing endeavors more successful.
The Articles will be divided into eight pages
(1) Musings from the Big Kahuna – Essays, Stories, and who knows what!
(2) Technique Articles from the FFT Blog
(3) Stillwater Tips and Techniques
(4) Fly Casting Tips from the Pros – Tips to improve your casting techniques
(5) Drift Boat 101 – Tips for Rowing and Fishing from a Drift Boat
(6) Nuts and Bolts – Tips on knots, rigging and equipment
(7) Fly Pattern Articles – Articles from the FFT Blog featuring favorite fly patterns
(8) Gear – We’re all gear hounds aren’t we?
Tips and Techniques Archives Page
There’s a Tips and Techniques Archive Page that will have an index to all of the articles posted to the site listed according to the above mentioned categories. This is the easiest way to view the current list of articles.
Musings From the Big Kahuna
The Musings are thoughts and sometimes rambling of the mind of the “Big Kahuna”, the fearless leader of Fly Fishing Traditions.
SAMPLE ARTICLE: Fishing The Skwala Stonefly Hatch
In early Spring we all look anxiously forward to the Skwala Stones. The water is usually off color and you’d thing why even bother. We know better. It’s Skwala Time. When matching the Lower Yuba River Skwalas remember that the bugs here locally are different in color than their cousins in Washington and Montana. A lot of the patterns for sale in the flyshops or on-line are different in color. Our local Skwalas have an abdomen that is a dirty yellow with a slight olive tinge. Also, the wings are dark gray. This is where it really pays to collect some specimens from the river and take them home to match the color.
Look for the shucks around the bushes and rocks to give you an idea on recent hatch activity. Catch an adult, turn over some rocks and catch a nymph. Match the color and size and go fishin’
Technique Articles from the FFT Blog
The Techniques Articles will focus on fishing and presentation techniques to help you fool our wily adversaries.
SAMPLE NYMPHING TIP: When in doubt, Set the hook
If you are like me, when I first started nymphing with indicators and shot, I would always be asking myself, “is that a hit or the bottom”? Unfortunately most of the time all I did was ask and not react.
Trout fishing legend, Jack Dennis, took an underwater camera into a local stream to discover what really happens when anglers made presentations to fish beneath the surface.
Among his more revealing discoveries: Anglers failed to detect 40 percent of the strikes they received using conventional nymphing techniques, particularly with indicators. That’s right 40 percent!
Stillwater Techniques and Tips
The fly fishing in lakes is often forgotten by us river and stream fly fishers. Lakes are the most misunderstood and underutilized fisheries in the Pacific Northwest. I recently decided to start exploring the stillwaters of our area and in Idaho and Montana. My personal journey has included meeting Phil Rowley and I attended one of his Stillwater Schools the took place at Sheridan Lake in Idaho. This school inspired me to share my journey and the things I have learned about the art of stillwater flyfishing. I want to personally thank Phil Rowley and locally Mike Williams for giving me the inspiration to start my quest to become a competent stillwater fisherman.
So explore the FFT Stillwater Techniques and Tips articles and I’m sure even the well seasoned stillwater fishers will learn a thing or two
Casting Tips from the Fly Fishing Traditions Blog
I’ve always been on the look out in magazines, books, internet articles, blogs and the like, seeking tips to take my game and casting to new level. One of the gems I’ve come across is “The Little Red Book of Fly Casting”. It is a collection of 250 tips from Kirk Deeter and the late, great Charlie Meyers. You can pick up this gem from Amazon.com. Make sure you have a copy in your fly fishing library. You won’t be sorry.
Click Here to Go to Fly Fishing Traditions Casting Tips Page
SAMPLE CASTING TIP: Watch That Thumb
Do you every get frustrated when your line bunches and just dies on the forward cast. This is usually caused by traveling too far with your backcast, which creates an open loop. You can’t load the rod tightly and keep a tight loop.
Here’s the trick. Try to keep your casting thumb in your peripheral vision at all times. if you lose sight of your thumb, and you’re going back too far. Simple as that.
Get out on the lawn and try this tip and you’ll see an immediate improvement with tighter loops and with better control.
If you want more tips like this you should pick up The Little Red Book of Fly Fishing – a new collection of 250 nuggets of fly fishing wisdom from Kirk Deeter and the late, great Charlie Meyers.
Nuts & Bolts Article from the Fly Fishing Traditions Blog
The Nuts and Bolts articles will include techniques for rigging and presenting your flies in different situations that you will find on your fishing adventures.
Click Here to Go to Fly Fishing Traditions Nuts and Bolts Page
SAMPLE NUTS AND BOLTS ARTICLE: Selecting the Right Indicator
There are many indicators for nymphing available on the market. I’m going to cut to the chase and give my two cents on the on-going debate of “What is the best indicator to use?” I’ll clue you into the indicators that I and some of my guide friends have used on our local rivers. As for the local rivers, I am talking about the Lower Yuba River, Feather River, Lower Sacramento River, Trinity River and the Klamath River. I’m really talking about an indicator that has to support a lot of shot and 2 or maybe three flies. This discussion is not about the pinch-on or micro indicators.
The indicators that I typically like to use and will discuss are the;Boles Float Rite, the Thing-a-ma-bobber and the Frog’s Hair Indicator ……Continue to go to the full article – Selecting the Right Strike Indicator
Drift Boat 101
Click Here to Go to FFT Drift Boat 101 Page
I have posted some articles from the Fly Fishing Traditions Blog for the principles of safely rowing a drift boat, fishing raft or a pontoon boat. It is very important to spend the time becoming familiar with the rowing techniques required to maneuver down a flowing river with obstacles like boulders, logs, drops and such. This is my attempt to help you become a good rower that can safely and get down the river and hopefully hook a few fish while doing so.
Click Here to Go to Fly Patterns Page
Introducing “The Yuba Skwalanator”. I’ve been on a quest since last winter after being humiliated by refusal after refusal of every Skawala dry fly I had in my box, to come up with a better pattern to match the Skwalas on our local Lower Yuba River. I had decent luck last February and March with the standard patterns I carry when fishing the nervous types of water, but when the fish would move down into eddy type water or the flats below riffles where they could really take a good look at the flies, no takers. They turned up their noses and said “Fakers go home!” They would take live Skwalas inches from my dry fly put no dice.
Click Here to Go to The Gear Page
For anyone in the market for a waterproof camera that doesn’t want to spend $300 to $350. A new camera has just been introduced to the market. I read an article in the Winter 2010 issue of Flyfishing & Tying Journal which described the Fujifilm WP.
The Fuji Finepix Z33 WP Waterproof Camera with 10 megapixels and 3x optical zoom is available at Amazon.com for about $140. I’m not sure if you’ll get the color you want for that price, but what the heck. The retail price is listed at $179.95 and comes with a kit that includes the camera, battery and battery charger.
Fly Fishing Traditions Archives
You can check out all of the Articles features in the Techniques Pages by going to the Techniques Archives below.