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BEAR-LY Aware

Guest Blogger: Jim Murphy, Neenah WI, long-time J Stockard customer and avid fly tyer

I believe it was in the spring of 1965 and one of my first attempts at fly fishing (kinda). It occurred on a small tributary of the famous Boise Brule River in northwestern Wisconsin. I say kinda because I was fishing a handcrafted Ed Norton fly rod (borrowed of course) and a Pirelli automatic reel that was spooled with 10 pound + Stren mono also borrowed. And, I was snaking a beat up Pass Lake wet fly under overhanging alders which thrusted their tangled branches toward mid-stream. As I look back I could have fished this same water with a cane pole (not to be confused with a split bamboo rod). But, I was using a fly rod, a fly reel and a fly so in my mind I was fly fishing. And, with 2 Brook trout on the stringer I was convinced I was a full-fledged fly fisher.

But I have regressed because the real story would unfold as I continued to fish.  Somewhere between the 3rd and 5th fish, I became aware of the crunching of brush as someone was working their way toward me. The occasional blue word was a dead give away that his adventure was more than a bit challenging. more…

Simple Flies – CDL BB

Guest Blogger: Mike Cline, Bozeman, Montana

Adaptation of new materials to old ideas can sometimes foster simplicity in tying but also produce effective flies. The CDL BB is such a fly. Part Clouser, part bottom bouncer, the CDL BB takes advantage of a new hook, the 523 Firehole Stick heavy jig hook from Firehole Outdoors and the ever increasing variety of Coq de Leon rooster and hen saddles coming out of the Whiting Farms. The pattern is desperately simple: more…

Mopping Up With the Mop Fly

Guest Blogger: Mary S. Kuss, Life-long avid angler, licensed PA fishing guide, founder of the Delaware Valley Women’s Fly Fishing Association

While I can’t say I’ve exactly “mopped up” with the Mop Fly, I have used it with some success. Like a lot of ugly flies that don’t fit our theories of imitation, but sometimes work very well nevertheless, the Mop Fly has its detractors. If you wouldn’t be caught dead with a Mop Fly on the end of your leader, of course you are under no obligation to use one. On the other hand those of us who are more open-minded are under no obligation not to. All of the wise cracks about the fine line between being open-minded and having a hole in one’s head notwithstanding. more…