out Graylinging

a surprise fly-fair popped up (well, sort of… ) in Argentat, France and the best part is i’ll be demoing single-hand spey and presentation casts but the really best part is the organizers don’t even know it yet ! :mrgreen:

outside of the weather service saying it’s supposed to rain all weekend and seeing great friend Fabrice, this part of the Dordogne river is the only river in France still open to grayling fishing. (trout and grayling waters all close at the same time in France. apparently, most anglers can’t tell the difference between the two or how to fish for them separately… ) anyhow, even though grayling are a despicable species and since carping waters are mostly mud, the opportunity of fishing ‘trout’ waters even surrounded by a bunch of frogs is too hard to pass up !
lines need to be lubed, bags filled and i need to find my good-luck Punto-Blanco boxer shorts and buy tons of chocolate. i hope you all have a great weekend !

for some strange reason, should you want to know very little more about this event and can deal with incomprehensible french, click the pic.

good food !

i’m not on the poster yet but i’ve been invited by the UFO to demonstrate and hold Presentation Casts workshops and eat hot-spicey-yummy food. who could resist ! ūüėÄ

the fly fishing camel

four extra-bonus points for bringing a camel to a fly fair!
it amused the kids, giving them a welcome break from the boring tediousness of “Oh, another moose… “ and us fly tiers where given sample packs of long cover hairs “That make lovely salmon fly wings” and underfur dubbing.
i was told that camel fur floats. i also find that funny.

Bug-Bond to the rescue !

special Bug-Bond therapy moment at the Stockholm fair last week-end !
Ulf Hagstr√∂m rescued this poor (“Here look ! I painted them myself, really !… ) woman’s broken nail with BB Original !

the hubby applies a few drops…

a few seconds later Ulf blasts her with the Pro-Torch !
miracle ! no more crying and worrying, the two left with a big smile and continued their shopping day in peace…
modern scientific Ultra-Violet light cured fly tying adhesives save the day once again !

eleven fantastic fly tiers,

and eleven friends. here’s the tying crew from last week-end’s fly fair in Stockholm.

it was quite an honor to be surrounded by such talent. ¬†i’ve learned so much !
thanks to all, specially Jussi Sjölund of Mountain Media who organized the tiers section and made sure we had an all-around  great time over the four days.
also big thanks to our ‘Paparazzi’ Mikael for the pic !

‘fly fishing urinal…

Erlebniswelt Fliegenfischen (Experience the World of Fly Fishing) Fair in
F√ľrstenfeldbruck, Germany is¬†one of the best fly fairs there is.
great wieners, casting and tying demos from some of the best and most importantly, luxurious toilets. who could resist !
special bonus, we’ll be holding the second Federation of Fly Fishers ‘Gathering’ there this year. something no instructor or candidate would want to miss.

i hope to see you there.

Casting sideways and upside down, Uppsala-Style

today i’ll be demoing upside-down Uppsala Roll and Spey casts at the Moler Bil mini fair in Uppsala, Sweden. not only am i gonna wear a tie but i’m quite sure the Swedes have never seen anything like this. i hope they bring video cameras !

the fair is held in a car dealership and i’ll be casting between parked cars. the availible space is very limited so the focus will be on small stream tactics, how to maneuver the line and present the fly.

here’s a pic from last year. except for all the cars being all shiny and new, it’s like fishing in a junk yard, including three big and bad and blue yard dogs to make it a bit more ¬†realistic ¬†!

as it’s the first fair of the season it’ll be great to catch to catch up with old and new friends, try out a new bamboo prototype and i’ll be doing my best to empty the coffee machine.

hope you all have a fine day !

Veni, Vidi and not really Vici

i went to the Salon de la Mouche Artificielle in Saint-Etienne last weekend, the biggest fly fish only fair in France and i’ll have to say right away that it wasn’t all that interesting. however i did have a really nice encounter with a small group of people.¬†over by the casting stand, having just had a rod that i was trying out literally taken out of my hands for the SECOND time¬†from a sales person¬†(the number will eventually get to four… ), ¬†i turned around scanning the fair to see who’s rods and lines i could try out next.

the place was crowded, an incessant white noise background filled the ears but all of a sudden on the casting ground i heard people behind me shout-grunting and making slapping sounds in a very expressive and strange manner.

hot-blooded foreigners ? early morning drunks ? onlookers gagging from having one of these non-loop casters tangle their line around someone’s neck ?

well no, not at all. as i turned all i saw was three friends that just happened to be hearing and speech impaired, two of them who were already familiar with the wand were helping the third one out on his first go.

they immediately seemed to be a good natured and fun loving bunch, their big smiles setting them apart from the stern and dismal faces which constituted the vast majority of the oh-so-serious attendants.¬†i observed them for a while and analyzed how they were going about it and just thought to myself, ‘what the heck, this is a good opportunity to help people with their casting, just jump in !’

this was an interesting challenge that gave me the chance to put a few instruction thoughts into application that had been going around in my mind for a while.¬†to sum up briefly, it’s about not using too many words in conveying information when teaching casting. too many words confuse and isolate the student and have a negative effect. the Golden Rule is K.I.S.S. ‘Keep it Short and Simple’. ¬†easier said than done but¬†here i didn’t have a choice.

i had noticed that they would lip read when people communicated with them so i tried to keep that to an absolute minimum.¬†since i don’t know sign language i went about it by simultaneously depicting with my left hand, pointing, visually describing through gestures, attracting attention to the specifics that i was trying to convey while demonstrating the actual movements with my right hand.

at first they were a bit surprised but very soon a comfort level set in and things were rolling smoothly in less than a minute.¬†from the first second it was a lot of fun.¬†to see how happy and smiling they were, to see the spark in their eyes as things ‘clicked in’ gave back a sense of purpose that had been trailing off as to why i became a casting instructor in the first place.

we started off by pantomiming Jason Borger’s Foundation Casting Stroke and in five minutes all three had a much better slack-less control of the line and nice looking loops. pretty darn fast learners.¬†as usual, the total beginner, not having previously acquired bad habits picked up the motions faster than the other two.¬†at the end of our ten minute encounter he was correctly correcting his friends !

this all grew some attention from the crowd who cheered them on as they progressed and a kind older man offered his casting lane so that we could do horizontal pick-up and lay-down and roll casts. combined with the standard aerial casts, these would serve as the bases of fly casting they could work on later on their own.

the moment ended with a quick pic and a warm goodbye and i was left alone with the rod. the owner and maker of that rod came over, grabbed it and said “now that they’re finished, i’ll take that back.”

i never had a chance to try it out.

* this story is several years old and was first published on my first blog Fly Casting France

stockin’ for Galway

uh-oh, the¬†Irish Fly Fair in Galway’s in two weeks…

as usual, i’m way behind but who’s to complain when you have little gremlins to help tie up the last foam aberrations for the show ? not me !

tying music by Thom Yorke – The Clock

brainwashem’ young- Robyn

my friend and colleague Lasse Karlsson taking baby Robyn for a walk at the FFF’s first European Conclave earlier this year in Kolding, Denmark. both mom and pop are casting instructors and hold several titles in national and international fly casting competitions. Lasse is not only a FFF-Master but the first European to be on the FFF’s Board of Governors.

i often wonder if ¬†Robyn will catch the ‚Äėbug‚Äô later on. i hope so.

Irish International Fly Fair 2011

the IFFA, held in Killyleigh, Norther Ireland will be the place to be in Europe on the weekend of the 2nd and 3rd of July. unlike your average fly fair with all its constraints and stress, this one’s not just a big shopping center. the atmosphere is as humble, good-natured and informative as i’ve ever seen.

fly tiers, fly casting instructors and lecturers from around the World will come to share their passion benevolently as all proceeds go to the Dibney River Trust to help this river’s restoration and conservation.

last year i was invited to give a few casting courses and demonstrate presentation casts on the castle grounds, in semi-gail winds !‚Ķ this year¬†¬†I‘ll be safely inside at the tiers row tying prototype still-water foam aberrations with the hope of offending as many traditional fly purists as possible. (all on Partridge hooks of course ! ;D )