Monthly Archives: April 2016

Tying Flies – The Only Books You Will Ever Need

Guest Blogger: Clay Cunningham, Cody, WY, retired National Park Superintendent

the fly tier's Benchside referenceI started learning how to tie flies when I was twelve years old in 1948. Obviously, my early production of wet flies, Quill Gordon’s, Hendrickson’s, Mickey Finn streamers, and crude nymph imitations were pretty ugly. Some might say my flies are still ugly. My fly tying speed is slow and my skill is average. I tie flies slowly and methodically. Tying flies for me is a pleasurable hobby rather than a rush to produce quantity.  During my early years I collected most of my fly tying materials from animals that I and others hunted or trapped. My first fly tying vise in 1948 was $3.95 from Herter’s catalog where I also bought a lot of fly tying materials, a bow, arrow making supplies, trapping supplies, reloading equipment and even their U9 rifle in .30-06 caliber during their prime business years from 1948-1968.  I used the Herter’s fly tying vise from 1948 to 1994, when I bought one of the popular rotary vises and gave my fully functional Herter’s vise to a young beginning fly tier. But, this is about the only books you will ever need to become a good fly tier. more…

Twenty Years of Women Fly Fishing

Guest Bloggbookcover076 20 YEARSer: Mary S. Kuss

I started fishing at age 6 and fly fishing at age 15. That was a long time ago, longer than I care to think about sometimes. My fly fishing mentors were men. So were virtually all of my fishing friends over the years. As much as I’d always enjoyed trips and outings with my male fishing buddies, it gradually occurred to me that it might be nice to have some women fishing pals. I decided to try to make that happen.
I called around to all the fly shops and Trout Unlimited chapters within a reasonable drive of my home outside Philadelphia, and asked if they had any customers, family members or friends who might be interested in a women’s fly fishing club. In January of 1996 we had our organizational meeting in Media, PA. Nine women attended, and we were off and running. more…

Why Fly Fish

Long Beach Vancouver Island by Phil Rispin

Long Beach Vancouver Island by Phil Rispin. See NOTE 5 below for how to purchase this photo.

Guest Blogger: Phil Rispin, Fly Fisher & Photographer

This past summer I was interviewed about Fly Fishing by a newspaper reporter from the Red Deer Advocate in Alberta. One of the questions the young man asked me was “Why do I Fly Fish?” I really didn’t have a well thought out answer. In fact, most fishing writers I have read have a real problem coming up with an answer that could be easily verbalized or written down. In his many books John Geirach, one of my favorite irreverent old fly fishing hippies, often makes an observation about whether catching fish is actually the point of the activity. So since this past summer I’ve been navel gazing and wondering how I should answer that question and my mind has wandered down many interesting paths. more…