Saturday, March 26

trout unlimited, not just coffee and doughnuts.

In case of emergency, break glass.

The three seperate TUs left in the Lehigh Valley (Monocacy, Forks, and Hokey) had their combined event today. Money was raised. There were doughnuts, and coffee. Money was spent on raffle tickets.

Raffle was fun. Surprised, actually. Won a box of flies.

Classy, like. I've always wanted to make that sort of thing, but I'm lazy, so I won't. Its a whole set of wet flies. I like wet flies. Its got a Tup's Indispensable in it. I like that name. Its got character.

So this was the combined Lehigh Valley Trout Unlimited 9th Annual Spring Event. I admit, I went in skeptical because I'm a jaded prick, but I'm very glad I took it in. Money was raised. There were doughnuts. That's a good time. See people you know. Raffles. That's a good time. 

What confuses me is how is it I know all these guys? Small world, etc. Was nice to see so many people get together, money goes towards something useful, you get coffee and doughnuts, and watch a guy put on a presentation.

Oh, and if you're into free coffee and doughnuts, the Monocacy guys are doing theit stream cleanup on April 23rd, 8:30am at the Illick's Mill parking lot. I'll bet you could go fishing afterwards, too. What a day!

Anyways, was good. Some dude who liked the Misfits was the presenter. How do I know this? Because he named his flies after Misfits songs. I'm fine with that, but like, what if the fly has nothing to do with like, the name?

Thursday, March 24

Hatches, matches, and the introduction of the LVLS Book Club.

Flies, yes. Fish, no.
So, there's life in the air, and maybe something on the water, but now that you've got a box full of stupid little hooks bedazzled in the most expensive feathers you could buy, what the hell do you do now?

If you read a book or hang out like one of the wallflowers in the fly shop, you know that Serious Flyfishers seem to experience glossolalia at these sort of junctures. They stand around, speaking in tongues, and getting quite animated over intricacies that most people shouldn't give a shit about. Why not? Because it doesn't have to be that hard.

The phrase match the hatch is, in my not so humble opinion, one of the most trite and over used in our sport. Its valid, sure, and its helpful, but its such a stumbling block that people think having a degree in entomology is an important part of this sport.

Its not. Just having a pair of working eyes and a few neurons that still fire is.


Tuesday, March 22

Beginning fly fishing, buying the fiddly bits.

You've got the combo. Everyone starts with a combo. Well, lots of people. Some people go to the fly shop and do it by just waving a hand and letting the sales person get on with the salesing. Not an option for everyone, certainly not if you're a budget kind of guy. That guy can skip this post. That guy probably never would've put the words in the google to get here to read this post, either.

So, you got the combo from the box store, or as a gift from someone who thought you'd like it. Remember this moment, because when you're eyeball deep in jungle cock someday, you'll want to recall this time when you were naieve and innocent and didn't wonder if you needed to re-buy all your equipment because you bought the silver finish instead of the titanium.

Because, yeah, the combo while exceedingly important, that's only the first part.  Your typical fisherman with a vest packed solid with gear, this is not an accident, dude, that's by purpose.

Didn't say it was neccessary, though. You'd be surprised how little is neccessary.

Sunday, March 20

Pointless gear reviews: Vivarelli Semi-Automatic reel.

Why'd I buy this? Coz you don't have one.
Man, I love dumb shit. I don't mean dumb as in not smart, but as in... Dumb shit. OK. Not smart. 


Not only that, but I'm into reels. They're just cool. Machined steel, assorted clicky bits, gears and all sorts of fancy stuff.

Man, I eat that up. 

So, when I stumbled on a pair of Franco Vivarelli automatic reels for sale by the Feathered Hook, I knew I needed to own one. These are exceedingly uncommon in the US, and unusual as Hell. So, I bought the Newstar.

There aren't many reviews on this thing out there, and after giving it some serious use, I think I'm ready to opine.

Friday, March 11

The Royal Family.

The Royal Coachman, tied for dry use.
The Royal Coachman, tied for wet use.

From rags to riches: The humble beginnings of the Royal Line of trout flies.

No fly better represents this freewheeling era [late 19th century] in fly tying than the Royal Coachman, which among the general public may be the world's best-known fly. Its name has the right combination of romance and class to appeal even to people who don't fish, and the fly has such a commanding appearance that few fly fisherman can resist having some permutation of the pattern in their fly boxes, even if they never use it. Most of them don't know it, but the Royal Coachman is the first great American fly pattern. - Paul Schullery, Lore and Legends of Fly Fishing.
Is there any more iconic fly in the fly fishers' arsenal than the aptly named Royal Coachman? It would seem anytime a casual display of fly fishing is mentioned, one can often find the tell tale scarlet band of the Royal Coachman in evidence. Wether it be displayed, or its classic lines drawn in any number of impressionistic displays, the Royal Coachman stands tall, a symbol and ambassador of the sport of fly fishing to the masses seemingly since its inception in 1878.

As one of the crown jewels of fly fishing patterns, the Royal Coachman's beginnings are even more interesting. The story of the pattern can be traced to its originator, Tom Bosworth, thanks to the writing of David Foster in his 1815 text, Scientific Angler:

Thursday, March 10

Zombies on the Monocacy.

Are corpses in season, or do you need to C&R?
Lower Nazareth man, 75, identified as killed in Monocacy Creek:
When relatives of Joseph Novack found his rake near a Monocacy Creek bridge Wednesday morning, they called police. Novack, 75, who had been clearing debris from the bridge, was missing.

Tuesday, March 1

And you thought rock snot, frack fluid, and poachers were a bitch?

Gator left out in cold, police looking for owner
Bethlehem police took [an] alligator into custody Monday night after a city resident found it in the 1400 block of Schoenersville Road, near the Monocacy Creek and the Bethlehem Racquetball Club.
The one found in Bethlehem only weighed 5 pounds.
DiLuzio said this is the fourth or fifth alligator he has seen in his more than 20 years with the department.
"We've had snakes, we've had alligators, we've had bears," DiLuzio said. "So far, no lions or tigers. 
Do you see what I have to deal with, here? Fucking alligators! At least the rattlesnakes warn you before they ruin your shit, but alligators, well...

Yarn style indicators.

Bobber-style indicators, such as the Thingamabobber, are nice but can be expensive. Yarn indicators are quick and easy to make durable, land softer and can be almost as buoyant.

Simply wrapping poly yarn with thread can be done in under a minute to yield a simple, and effective, indicator. Best off, they're free and can be customized in any colour you want, and are painfully simple to make.

The simplistic version can be tied in only a few minutes, with any form of yarn and thread.