which also leads to this tip: if you need to dry off a fly by false casting, do this away from the fish to keep the flying line, its reflections and shadows away from their view. off the shoulder, side casting, whatever it takes, there’s almost always space somewhere around you to do this. when you feel the job is done switch back to the original casting plane and present. bingo !
~ G.S. Marryat
it’s funny, every once in a while i feel the need to do some Halford-bashing.
of course, i can’t help but feel sorry for poor Eileen but TheLimpCobra isn’t about attempting to solve marriage issues: if anything, it’s about celebrating fly fishing in all it’s forms and not imposing simple-minded, self-glorifying rules like Halford the Horrid did with his chalkstream-upstream-dry-fly-only ethos which he deeply impressed into the gullible minds of the tweed-worshiping simple-minded of his era: dry fly purists…
now, had those ideas of ‘purity’ stayed in the past we could just read about it say, when the dishes are done and we really don’t have anything better to do, and just smirk about it all. but ! just about everywhere i go, i’ll regularly get the born-again dry-fly-only preaching and guess what ? not only is it mind-numbing boring beyond belief but only a fraction of them have heard of and much less read from the Halford so all this ‘purity’ is ‘handed-down purity’ handed down by the tweed-worshiping buffoons mentioned earlier. the bastard just won’t die.
sure, the neo-purists have replaced the tweed by recycled synthetics and a lot have had the ‘Dry or Die’ credo tattooed (sorta like permanent bumper stickers) somewhere on their bodies for all to see,
but even if they might drive a sensible automobile and banned french fries from their menus, the fly fishing part of the brain hasn’t evolved. the blinders are still on but those blinders are good for the rest of us because, while they’re sitting there looking upstream for weeks and weeks dreaming and waiting for a Danica hatch, we get to go chuck bad-ass streamers and stuff, catch the big ones and spook the pools before the hatch even begins. ok, all that sounds a tad intolerant and maybe a little unsocial but it sure is fun !
anyhow back to Marryat. in what’s yet another chalked-up point against the over-popularized, Anti-Cobran Frederic M. Halford, here’s further proof of his…, ummm, ahhh, just fill in the blanks yourself, i’ve insulted him enough for today.
“Halford’s first work, Floating Flies and How to Dress Them, was published in 1886. Halford tells the reader that he drew heavily on Marryat’s natural talent and experience and he never made any secret of the fact that he wanted Marryat to be joint author, but the latter, ever keen on avoiding the limelight, declined. The extent of Marryat’s influence on Floating Flies can only be guessed at, but it must have been immense, given that Halford had comparatively little experience of fly-tying techniques – and, ironically, of fishing the Mayfly – at that stage. Indeed, in those early days, the majority of what Halford knew about fly tying was learned from Marryat. Dr. Thomas Sanctuary said, for example, that the idea of tying dry flies with paired upright wings was Marryat’s, rather than Halford’s, and although this was actually a much older idea, it shows how little Halford knew about fly design at the time of the pair’s first meeting.”
Marryat was a complete angler, one who was hungry to know. (and a wearer of fine hats) click the pic for the complete article on Thefishingmuseum online.
~by Allison Moir, “Love the Man, Love the Fly Rod”, in A Different Angle: Fly Fishing Stories by Women~
interestingly enough, in many if not most conversations amongst fellow anglers it would seem that those two ‘philosophies’ or rather, approaches fall into an either/or category. maybe because i have a hard time sometimes making my mind up about some things… i rather prefer to take the longer route and combine both.
after-all, observation, and not only for the sake of being a more efficient fisher is just part of the whole experience, besides, staring at the water all day makes me dizzy.
there really isn’t much to say about the ‘brown & fuzzy’ approach. pick, tie on, cast and present but before doing all that the lookers however have the possibility to use at least two more senses, vision and hearing (ok, it’s not like we can usually differentiate different species of bugs by their sounds but at least we can be alerted to their presence if they buzz around nearby). the more obvious methods being turning over stones from the riverbed, watching hunting birds, using a kick-net, or simply see what’s floating downstream or flying by.
Moir’s quote reminded me of another trick i was taught as a kid: search for spiderwebs. our little eight-legged friends do a great job at collecting and giving us the chance to have a rather perfect view of what the fishes might be eating.
if we’re lucky we might even get the chance to see the spider coming in for the feast ! (which is of course enthralling and would probably mean missing out on some fish and finally resorting to using ‘brown and fuzzy’ to make up for lost time…. )
~by Vincent C. Marinaro-1950
which is a good thing because while i was doing some left-handed Tenkara shenanigans at Lake Trouto (and for some reason trying to get this on film) all three of these fish came off…
overheard yesterday and just too good not to share, this and countless good-natured comments are to be found on Mike Barrio’s Fishing The Fly Forum. home-based on the banks of the river Don in Aberdeenshire, Scotland but with members from all over the globe, be sure to check it out and join up.
as for the Predator-like digi-camo fish, i get the feeling that our lives as fly fishers is about to pass on to a whole different level. level of what, i have no idea but it sounds like a challenge, to say the least…
not surprised the author chose to remain anonymous. it’s obvious the person has never been fly fishing because there’s nothing to hate about it: it’s all about love…
～Art Scheck via MidCurrent
or in other words, take your time, inspect and test. it’s well worth the extra seconds.
for a selection of recommended knots that suit our fly fishing needs click on the mess above.
“No, they are imaginary tales… But real life is only one kind of life — there is also the life of the imagination.”
~ John Steinbeck
a little something to think about. (or not… )
by George Herbert
i don’t understand that quote, however i see a strong resemblance between George and Vlad Tepes “the Impaler”.
” To frame the little animal, provide
All the gay hues that wait on female pride;
Let nature guide thee. Sometimes golden wire
The shining bellies of the fly require.
The peacock’s plumes thy tackle must not fail,
Nor the dear purchase of the sable’s tail;
Each gaudy bird some slender tribute brings,
And lends the growing insect proper wings;
Silks, of all colours, must their aid impart,
And every fur, promote the fisher’s art.”
-The Northern Angler or, Fly-Fisher’s Companion- by John Kirkbride 1837
some interesting points there. Stewart was said to be an old grump that didn’t hesitate to yell at people who didn’t share his opinions.
just to be on the safe side, from now on i’ll tie all my flies in either fashionable Black
or in multi-colored swirls as this Starl’-Wing Cripple so the fish can pick and chose their color.
i don’t like being yelled at…
quote by W.C. Stewart
～ W. Prime, 1888