Tuesday, August 30, 2011

12037 on the 15th

I just checked and my hit counter is at 12037...I must re-read my own stuff a lot more than I thought.
Tonight I decided to take the steelhead tying full circle.  If these chromers are so hot to eat a caddis, perhaps they will take the best all around caddis emerger known to this author...a hare's ear soft hackle.  1/2 doz added on #7 Alec Jackson hooks.  In case they really want the adult, I added another 1/2 doz steelhead caddis of my own design on the same #7's.  My tying desk looks like Noah's Ark exploded.

Sunday, August 28, 2011


If last night's dozen doesn't raise them, perhaps tonight's dozen steelhead caddis will...

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Saturday the 13th

I tied a few articulated leeches today...50 lbs gel spun to connect the sections and then enough marabou to make my finger tips black.  I kept thinking about the water ski muddler I tied back on the eleventh night  and decide to add a few more.  By this time next month I will be back from the "D" and we will know which of the 9 dozen turned the trick (if any).

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Twelfth Nite

Messed around with Q-tips...er ...I mean tubes.  Finishing nail in the vice and away we go.  I've got a long, long way to go before I feel comfortable tying on something other than a hook.
Special thanks to Shocks McSteel for sending the black bear hide.  Magical stuff.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

the eleventh...

I screwed around at the vice today and tied a fly using pheasant, tinsel, marabou, and rubber legs.  I just needed to breakout...if it catches fish it will be called the "midwest farmer's daughter" if it doesn't catch fish it will require no such name.

 I was trying to figure out how a fly might really skate on a long down and across swing and decided that I'd tie a muddler that didn't so much skate as ski...i.e. single ski  (see pic below).  It may work or it may be a total flop but the end result was pretty much what I had in mind.

I also wrapped some more purple deer hair (more or less) in the shape of a muddler.  These should be a pretty safe fall back if Ol' One Ski doesn't pan out.

The boxes are starting to fill up...

My eldest daughter decided that she wanted to wrap today and given the bright and wild colors of many steelhead flies (and the material I had on the table) it seemed obvious that she'd be drawn to the process.
I stepped in and showed her how to get things started, but then undid all of my work so she could start over and do it all herself.  I think she did an excellent job.
She picked the colors and materials...

A close up of my daughter's handiwork...


Night 10...Tying for the "D"

The latest in the box filling saga...
I decided to try the "Green Butt Skunk" with a chartreuse ostrich hurl butt...it looked pretty cool so I continued.
1/2 doz in the box.  I moved on to the "Redwing Blackbird", the tying instructions weren't clear in all of my googling so I followed the sample pic that was sent by NK and embellished with some red dyed pheasant tail for the collar and tail.  Again, I liked, so I wrapped a half dozen.  Next I built a orange bodied muddler with tan and orange kip tail and the bottom cut flush (flat) I'm hoping this will wake across some steelhead's nose and cause it to erupt...I switched to a straight eye hook for the larger version and used a down eyed Mustad 3906 sz 6 on the smaller versions.  We'll just have to see....

Saturday, August 20, 2011

...Night 9

I flew back from the bright lights of Los Angeles this evening and pulled up a chair at the dining room table (instead of my desk in the basement), clamped on my vice and caught up with my wife while I wrapped up 1/2 doz Max Canyons and 1/2 doz Purple Angels (Edge Brite Variant).  Good to be home.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Tying for the "D" Night 7 and 8

I flew to California on a business trip on Monday morning (alarm set at 3:30 am).  I set up the desk and went through the rigors of a day at work followed by dinner etc...I sat down to tie but couldn't decide what to wrap.  I thought hard for 30 minutes and then went to bed.

Tonight I decided it was to be the size 6 Prism...(see below) It's 2:30 am Central time and I've had enough....the road is tough.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Tying for the "D" - Night 5

Cheers, Mr. Pearson...

Spring Creek Fix

After the chores were done (or at least to the point where my sense of responsibility tapered off) I grabbed the 4 and a box of ants, beetles etc and made my way creekside.  A 2.5 hour wade through gin clear spring creek from 2:30 pm to 5pm...the light was just right and I could see them fully illuminated...tilting and sipping.  A size 18 black ant on 6x and they rarely refused.  No giants these, but the view was incredible.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Tying for the "D" - Night 4

Night 4...this half dozen flies were supposed to be "Green Ants" but changed into something close but not exact.  I was short some critical ingredients and also found some fur that I was really interested in trying as a wing in place of squirrel.  The cool thing about this fur is that the diameter of the fiber gets thinner the closer you get to the skin of the pelt.  The downside to tying with most fur and hair is that you (I) inevitably end up with a bulky head.  This stuff worked like a champ...I hope the steelhead agree.

TP shot me a note on the last post and mentioned that I needed to add some purple muddlers.  I'm glad he did.I meant to tie a 1/2 doz and include them with this post  but I found that I am tragically out of good purple deer hair for muddlers.  I have a sweet purple bucktail for Clousers and Deceivers, but it's the long fine hair that doesn't spin or flare very well. I attempted one and included it as a "thanks for the note" fly.  I guess I'll be shopping for some more material in the morning. 


In other news, a permanent cradle for the newly acquired Mad River has been added to the garage wall...this canoe will likely NOT be sold anytime soon.

Deschutes Tying - Day3 (Now Night 3)

1/2 doz Undertakers and 1/2 Doz Spades...If you start early enough and add 6 - 12 a day...the box starts to fill up.  I wonder what these steelhead have against chartreuse and white Deceivers?  Tying low water flies is to unlearn everything I've learned over 20 years of fly tying.  The proportions are all wrong and I find myself wrapping way too far back, selecting hackle that is waaaay to long and stuffing dubbing back in the bag...I feel like a neophyte.... (please forgive the stream of consciousness writing....it's late.)

Friday, August 12, 2011

Deschutes Tying - Day 3

I decided that some Silver Hilton's (or at least my version of the fly) should be part of the box...

And then I wrapped some Muddlers...I love the Muddler.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Deschutes Tying Night 2

I got a little feedback from the 2 guys "in the know" and they said less cowbell...i.e. tie them low water style...back to the vice for another 1/2 doz Purple Perils...I have a hunch these are still too thick.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Deschutes Tying- Night 1

With a multi-day float on the Deschutes a little over a month away, I decided to start tying.  Night one was nice and easy with 1/2 doz size 6 Purple Perils.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

August Harvest Minnesota Style

 A few images of the last week's harvest in MN

Lake Superior Herring coming to the cooler.
Another herring in my Father-in-law's nets
Said cooler...

Herring gull awaiting scraps of its namesake.
Lake Superior Agate Harvest

As the newly appointed Head of Marketing for the Halsnoy Fish Company (a volunteer position),  I came up with this clever campaign.

We worked hard for a quart of these!

My 7 year old with her first Lake Superior - Lake Trout.  Her Great, Great Grandfather's fish house in the background
Raspberries, Lobster Mushrooms, Herring, Lake Trout and Blueberries...a full on Minnesota harvest.