The Rats Nest

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Could Spring Finally Be Coming?

Well, its above freezing this morning as I write this, seems kind of odd to say this considering how brutal this winter has been.  Round one of three rounds of heavy rain is behind us and although the rivers have risen, we are in pretty good shape, for now that is.  If you're gonna fish, today might be it until later next week if we get the rain they are saying we are slated to receive. 

The Farmington is in good shape coming in at roughly 400 CFS in the TMA.

The Housatonic on the other hand is right at 1,410 CFS and climbing, looking to go over 2,000 later today and much higher I'd assume.  

It won't be long before April is here, hopefully more consistent weather and some bigger bugs and eager fish.  We are almost out of the dark folks, only a few more weeks away from the fray.  I am putting the finishing touches on yet another chapter in the book this morning, the last of the nymph patterns and the 18th of I can't recall how many chapters.  Not sure how many will make the cut but I have roughly 30 chapters in all for this project.  I'll keep you all posted, I still have quite a bit of work ahead of me. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Tie One On

This weekend I will be making a bit of a road trip to the 3rd Annual Tie One On Fly Tying Rendezvous hosted by the  Iroquois Chapter of Trout Unlimited & Dette Trout Flies located at Barbagallo's 6344 East Molloy, Road.East Syracuse, NY 13057.  The show starts at 9:00 AM and runs till 5:00 PM and has a very notable list of presenters, fly tyers and celebrities from  fly fishing  in attendance, most notably streamer guru Kelly Galloup.  I'm looking forward to hanging with a few of my friends including Mike Schmidt and Pat Cohen, Kevin Compton, Allen Landheer, John Collins, Jim Froio, Brad Buzzy, Bob Mead, Dave Brandt, John Cavanaugh, Steve Silverio, Vern Burm just to name a few.  If you're in the area, stop on in and say hello and watch us all do our thing and talk about our passion.  I plan on tying some of my more notable patterns including the Headbanger Sculpin, Headcase Crayfish, Ice Pick and who knows maybe even a Hog Snare or two. 

My initial plans were to run up early and catch some Steelhead fishing prior to the show, but I've got too many commitments around here this week and the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament will be in full swing.  I will most likely be affixed to my computer or television with multiple games playing while production tying a big batch of Realistic Baitfish, spinning bugs for my own self, writing in the book or working out the kinks for the book photography while chasing around my girls who have a shortened week of school.  So needless to say it will be a short lived excursion for me this weekend, but one I am very much looking forward to.  Soon enough good weather will be here and fishing will be the main attraction on my free days.  Here's to the last show for me in the 2013-2014 winter season.  Cheers...


Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Shucked Up Emerger

The Shucked Up Emerger is just another snowshoe emerger style pattern that I never leave home without.  The pattern itself is adaptable to any mayfly hatch you could encounter, and a simple change in the wing and/or body color will do the trick.  I now use the Partridge Klinkhammer Extreme hook for this pattern as I feel it has the ideal shape and gap for this style of fly.  This pattern was just featured in Eastern Fly Fishing Magazine and is a relatively easy tie.  In another month we should be in the thick of the beginning of our trout season so tie a few up for yourself and have at it. 

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Feeding The Itch

So I finally got on some water in a much needed way, despite the weather being completely inaccurate in comparison to any reports I had seen for the day.  Due to a variety of factors, the most being the onset of hypothermia (OK I'm being a bit dramatic, but it was F*@$ing cold and my hands are still pins and needles) we called it a day early.  Slush, ice, 32 degree water (yes you read that right) and cold extremities we managed to bring a few fish to hand.  Yes we, I was out with good friends Dan and Tom Harrison at Harrison Anglers, we habitually try and fish together regularly, or not so regularly depending on our schedules.
Snaky Battle Ridden Old Girl

Despite conditions most wouldn't warrant as productive for large streamers, I suckered two decent fish into inhaling my latest streamer project.  This new fly is really earning it's wings, if all goes as planned you very well may see her here later this year.  Once I got home and defrosted my extremities, I managed to tinker a bit with some new materials that I think many of you will absolutely love.  My good buddy Pat Cohen spent the better part of the last year developing some really cool ultra-suede bodies for the fly tyer.  One of which, his hellgrammite is lights out in my book, and is what Pat calls a clean canvass right out of the bag.  What separates Pat's  from anything else you may have seen is they are white, so you the tyer can color them in any way you desire.  Not to mention the designs on these are just off the charts realistic, it helps when you have the artistic background of Pat.  Below is the big dog, I cut her up and articulated cuz that's how I roll around here.  Stay tuned for some more in the other two sizes and configurations that I have in mind.   For more on Cohen's Creatures click the link.

Watch Your Finger!  Tied on a Partridge Attitude Streamer Hook

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Some Bugs To Keep You Going

Here are a couple of patterns that are great producers in the month of March.  Have at it.  Click the links below each photo for the tying video.  Have at it
The Micro Stone
Rich's Micro Stone
The Shimmer Stone
The Shimmer Stone
Case Closed
Case Closed

Monday, March 3, 2014

Partridge of Redditch

Hooks are a very important piece, if not the most important piece of a solid fly pattern, heck any fly for that matter.  Spending your hard earned money on good materials is one thing, but putting the balance of that on hooks that don't quite make the grade is like putting four flat tires on a Lamborghini.  Great hooks and great patterns are synonymous with one another, and I like many of my tying brethren strive to use only the highest quality products in everything that I tie.  Not to mention, I have always had a couple of fly tying fetishes over the years (sounds a little raunchy I know), one of them being hooks.    I am very honored and excited to be a part of the Partridge of Redditch Team, and in the forthcoming year I will be transitioning most of my pattern recipes to Partridge hooks exclusively.  Now, this doesn't mean that I do not like the other models that I once displayed or discussed, they are all still top shelf irons by all means.  I am just very happy to say that I have found the company that produces a very wide range of hook styles that meet my needs the most. 

To go hand in hand with that, I plan on showcasing a few of my favorites in blog posts, as well as a detailed  lowdown on what patterns the showcased hook will work well with.  Take a look at the page, when I say that I am honored to be a part of the Partridge Team, I mean this sincerely, as the list of people that comprise that team is impressive.    Keep your eyes peeled, I will have some rather informative posts in the months to come about these wonderful irons, and heck maybe even a few new tying videos at some point as well.   

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