Category Archives: Our Regular Contributors

A Coupla Good Things to Know About Electric Fences

Guest Blogger: Joe Dellaria, Woodbury MN

800px-Yellow-insulator-electric-fenceOver the years, I have encountered numerous electric fences. I would like to share two experiences that others may find helpful in successfully getting over these potential hazards. Failure to properly traverse these obstacles can give you a good jolt at best, and at worse can cause some serious damage.

My first losing encounter with an electric fence came early one fall morning. My good friend, Harold (we’ll call him that to protect the innocent), had flown in to fish the weekend with me. The sun was just starting to glow at the horizon as we were getting an involuntary shower from the dew covered corn stalks as we made our way towards the river. Finally, we reached the end of the cornfield and quickened our pace as we walked through the last twenty yards of chest high grass. more…

Featherheads

Guest Blogger: Mike Cline, Bozeman, Montana

If you search on-line for “Featherhead” you are likely to get hits on many of the “hair extension” websites like finefeatherheads.com. Definitionally, Featherhead is often said to be: “A frivolous or feather-brained person.” For as many flies that I tie that never see the water, that definition might well apply to me. But it has another meaning more in tune with what we fly tiers are interested in. It’s a fly pattern (more like a style) name that has apparently been rather short-lived and remains a bit obscure these days. I have subscribed to Fly Tyer magazine for at least 20 years and still have most, if not all editions back into the 1990s. Occasionally, I’ll leave my fly tying desk, sit down near one of my bookshelves and begin pursing through old issues of Fly Tyer for inspiration. They are stacked in no particular order, so I just start at the top of the pile and look at the pictures to see if something strikes my fancy. Every once and a while I stumble on some tying technique that helps me improve my tying or directions around some common pattern that make for better flies. More importantly, I’ll see some new pattern or style that looks intriguing and decide to give it a go. Such was the case with “Featherheads”.

Scheck more…

Burning Bright

Guest Blogger: Michael Vorhis, author of ARCHANGEL suspense thriller, OPEN DISTANCE adventure thriller & more to come

There’s a new “big cat” loose in cold-water fisheries of the hemisphere, the healthy spawn of demons and angels. Just as rainbows and browns are known to cross-breed with salmon, even in the wild, the DNA of cagey and savage browns can also intermingle with char–in specific, the angelic “jewel of the headwater” char we call brook trout–to produce a fast-growing, aggressive and eminently hardy intergeneric hybrid cross-breed known as the Tiger.

And technically it’s not new, given that it occurs outside of labs. Browns don’t usually breed with other trout species in the wild–their life strategies, one critical aspect of which is the time of year they spawn, allow them to share habitat and still preserve the many advantages of their unique and diverse DNA. Salmo trutta, the species from which the many sub-species of brown trout and sea trout spring, can thus remain separate from western hemisphere “Oncorhynchus,” the genus of rainbows, cutthroat and the various goldens. (If brown genetics and other trout genetics do accidentally mix, the offspring will be sterile, which again safeguards DNA dilution.) However, on rare occasions, browns tango with brookies, who also spawn in autumn. The hybrid “tiger trout” (Salmo trutta × Salvelinus fontinalis) is the result when they do. more…