Many fly tiers won’t skimp when it comes to purchasing fly tying materials such as hackles or dubbing for fly tying but never pay any thought to the thread they’ll be using.  Other than the hook, fly tying thread is the most important item used in flies because it is what holds all the materials in place. Next time you’re shopping for fly tying thread, take a moment to consider thread type, size and whether single-strand or multi-strand is best. Single-Strand Threads Versus Multi-Strand Threads Both of these types of threads have advantages when it comes to tying, but overall,…
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Wading is, by far, the best way to approach spooky flats species such as redfish, bonefish, permit, and sometimes snook and trout. When the fish are in water that's barely ankle deep, stealth is critical, and that gives wade-fishers a big advantage. Your profile is low and small, you can move very slowly, and you have complete control of those breathless moments when you need to stand stock-still as a fish comes by within a rod-length. But there are a few things to know about being part of the wet-pants brigade. Here are some tips, gleaned over decades of tromping…
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Among autumn’s challenges is finding the time to squeeze in the many outdoor opportunities that exist at this time of year. One adventure I promised myself this fall was a trip to central Pennsylvania, one aimed at fly fishing for the wild brown trout that prosper in the region’s many limestone spring creeks. While I visit these streams during the spring and summer, come fall, I get wrapped up in other forms of hunting and fishing.  Not this year! If you need a bigger angling challenge, try fly fishing for brown trout this fall at a central Pennsylvania river. The…
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Over my years in fly tying, I have been lucky enough to test nearly all fly tying bobbins. There are so many different varieties and styles of bobbins on the market today, it amazes me that fly tiers can actually find what they need. From cheap to expensive, automatic to manual tensioning; bobbins have come a long way. What do you actually need in a bobbin to tie flies? Below are the basics that you should look for when purchasing a bobbin. When shopping for fly tying bobbins, one of the first considerations is buying a tool that fits standard-sized…
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The southern shore of Lake Erie that stretches across portions of Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York, known by many anglers as Steelhead Alley, provides an exceptional opportunity to fish for quality-sized steelhead. When the water is low, anglers can find success using smaller flies and lighter fluorocarbon tippet. The best condition for taking these fish are good flows with a hint of color.  Sadly, this is often the exception rather than the rule.  The watersheds are fairly short, often shale bottomed, and drain off quickly following periods of rain and snow melt. Since these conditions exist so often throughout the…
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Just as the broadhead is the most important item in the bowhunter’s tool kit, the hook is what gets it done for anglers. Like all tools, you need the right fly fishing hook for the job. That’s because a fly is most effective when tied on the proper frame. Most times, we’re lucky. The pattern we choose to tie, if published, will suggest the proper hook(s) that can be used. Choose your hook for the task at hand. For instance, this Tiemco 400T Swimming nymph fishing hook is ideal if you want to add animation to your nymph pattern. But…
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Having had the chance to test St. Croix’s Legend X fly rod in a variety of venues during the past several months, I can say it’s one sleek fly rod.  If it had four wheels it would be a muscle car, yet one quite comfortable running down to the corner market to pick up the fixings for the day’s streamside fishing lunch. The Legend X is designed for targeting larger predatory fish – bass, muskies, northerns – big fish that often require the use of beefier, wind-resistant flies.  It’s a nine-footer that’s offered in four models, ones meant to throw…
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This autumn, your favorite trout fishing river may be faster and higher due to heavy rains. While fly fishing and wading may be difficult, you can always try swinging streamers. Swinging a fly streamer is one of the easiest, most intuitive and effective ways of catching trout I know. Essentially, you cast slightly upstream, mend the line as required, and let the flow take the streamer until it swings in the current below you. At the end or during the swing, you can add life to the streamer by twitching a rod tip or raising and lowering it here and…
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While aquatic insects such as mayflies get most of the attention in trout fishing literature, today terrestrial insects (those living on land) are becoming more important in the diet of trout. They jump, fall, get blown in by wind or washed in by rain and are greedily gobbled up by waiting brook, brown and rainbow trout. Tip: Catch a few of the terrestrial insects along the stream or river’s edge and pick a pattern from your fly boxes that most closely duplicates the naturals. In a past blog we looked at ants as a staple for trout fishing . Now let’s…
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I don’t know what your weather has been, but in much of the northeast part of the country the soon-to-be-departed summer was exceptionally wet and relatively cool.  Which is good news for trout anglers.  These conditions are easy on wild trout and also provide extra sport for stocked trout. Cool, wet summer weather in the northeast has given trout anglers great opportunities to catch wild and stocked trout this fall. Concerning the later, it was with this in mind when I visited the special regulations section of a stream a few minutes from my west-central Pennsylvania home.  The creek is…
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