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An All Fly-Box Episode
Published: 07-19-2021
Description: This week I have no guest interview but a ton of questions waiting in the podcast mailbox so I did an all-Fly Box podcast to catch up on questions. By popular demand, I've started to recommend some books on the podcast. This week I recommend my three favorite books on trout biology and natural history.
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Description: My guest this week is Cheech from Fly Fish Food [@36:00], a highly regarded tier and teacher whose videos are popular with serious fly tiers. He's an engaging character who knows fly materials inside and out. We talk fly material substitutions, particularly hook styles, and ramble on all sorts of things related to fly tying. I hope you find it as fun to listen to as I did to record it.
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Description: This week I have a chat with Jonny King [41:00], one of the most creative and innovative fly tiers I know. Patterns like the Kinky Muddler and Splitsville dry flies come from his creative mind. I am always interested in where the idea for new patterns come from, how they are developed, and how they get evaluated. Join me as we ramble and discuss his creative process.
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Description: This week I have an interview [starts at 39:52] that was recorded pre-Covid with Peter Bring, long-time Montana guide for Blackfoot River outfitters in Missoula. I always learn new things form every guide I fish with, but I thought Peter had some especially helpful tips on fishing with indicators and dry droppers. Being on the water every day and expected to produce fish in any condition, guides develop efficient, fun, and easy ways to catch fish and have polished their techniques through thousands of hours of helping other anglers become successful.
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Description: We’ve done a bit with trout Spey on the podcast, but never one specifically on flies for trout Spey. Luckily, Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions, who produces the best fly tying videos, has become a trout Spey addict and in the podcast he talks about tactics and tying special patterns for Trout Spey.
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Description: I get regular and frequent questions on the differences between nylon and fluorocarbon tippet—when and where to use them, appropriate knots, special properties, and shelf life. I used to be involved in the development process of tippet and have visit many places where tippet is made. But that was years ago and a lot of progress has been made since my time in product development. So I invited Josh Jenkins, R&D manager at Scientific Anglers, to talk about recent innovations in tippet material. Josh is intimately involved in the development and testing of tippet for both Orvis and Scientific Anglers, and his knowledge is far greater that mine. I think you’ll learn some surprising tips on both tippet material construction and knots because I learned a lot in speaking with Josh.
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Description: Being a camera gear geek, I was delighted to interview Chris Niccolls (interview starts at 47:16) of DP Review TV (if you are a camera geek at all you probably read DP Review regularly). Chis is a photography teacher as well as a video star, has worked in camera shops on the floor, and currently works in a fly shop in Calgary. In the interview, we gives some fantastic tips on how to take better fish and fishing pictures in both the video and still formats. He also suggests some brands and models of phones, cameras, and drones that he feels are best suited for fishing photography. I know I learned a whole mess of new tricks for taking better fishing pictures and I am sure you will, too.
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Description: This week, back by popular demand is Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions, who is one of the best fly-tying teachers around and also produces the best tying videos on the Internet (like our One-Minute Fly Tying Tips, available on Orvisnews.com or in the Orvis Learning Center.) Tim and I talk about great new patterns and old patterns that should be resurrected, as well as taking old patterns and incorporating modern materials into them. We also discuss that state of fly-tying today, which is probably more exciting than at any other time in history because of the great interchange of ideas in places like Instagram and You Tube.
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Description: This week my guest is Davy Wotton, originally from Wales but who now lives and guides on the White River in Arkansas. I get frequent questions about swinging soft hackles and wet flies, and honestly I am not the best at this technique so I brought in who I consider the ultimate expert on this kind of fishing. Davy blends the British traditions with American conditions so he really has the best perspective on this kind of fishing, which can be both challenging and subtle—especially when fish are taking emergers. It’s a LONG podcast, but since I have never done one on this topic I make up for lost time. And Davy had many interesting points to make. The Fly Box is a bit shorter this week because the main podcast is so long. But we cover some interesting questions as usual: What can I do to keep my Stimulators floating? When do you fish a nymph and when do you fish a streamer? Can you use weed guards on trout flies? Why am I breaking off so many fish? Do some rod guides work better than others? More on pressure and its effects on fish What is the difference between a freshwater and saltwater rod? How can I see my fly in a fast riffle? How do I know if small streams hold trout? Why do trout bump my flies and why do they come off quickly?
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Description: This week’s podcast is not about using alternative methods to a bobber or strike indicator. It’s how to make your fishing more effective—and more fun—when you do use a bobber. And my special guest is Ben Sittig from Colorado, better known to those of you who follow You Tube and Instagram as The HUGE Fly Fisherman. His videos and posts are helpful but funny, and as he admits, a bit snarky. But in a good way and his advice is solid. Ben talks about how, by concentrating on the indicator itself we don’t realize what is going on beyond it, down where our flies are drifting, and offers some solid advice. And then we run out of bobber stuff to talk about so we both get up on our respective soap boxes and talk about the state of the world of fly fishing, particularly when it comes to social media. I hope you find our ramblings entertaining.
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Description: To continue our celebration of flies with the Giant Fly Sale, this week I have a long talk with Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions, maker of the finest tying videos on the web. This is always one of the most eagerly awaited podcasts of the year, and it’s also one I look forward to because I enjoy talking to Tim about fly tying and always learn so much from him. I get a lot of questions about material substitutions, so what Tim and I decided to do was to take six popular flies, dissect them material by material, and recommend our favorite substitutes for each step. Here are the flies we include: Parachute Adams Clouser Minnow Prince Nymph Woolly Bugger Tunghead Zebra Midge Drunk & Disorderly Deceiver (we had to put one complicated pattern in there) In The Fly Box this week, we have the following questions: How do I keep split shot from sliding on my small diameter tippet Why do I keep losing fish? How do I get a tiny Baetis nymph deep? When is an indicator better than a Euro nymphing rig? What is a Cuda Tube? How do feeder streams affect fishing in a lake? What rod would be best for smaller streams in the East? Why could I not catch trout on a Zebra midge when there were midges all over the water later in the day? A terrific suggestion from a listener on how to turn a landing net into an insect seine by using panty hose How should I fish scuds in a spring creek? What is meant by “big streamers” as opposed to “small or medium streamers” and what line sizes work best with them.
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Description: Editor’s Note: To celebrate the kickoff of the 2019 Giant Fly Sale, here’s a great backcast epiaode about choosing the right fly for a given situation. This week, I interview aquatic biologist and fly fisher Peter Stitcher, who not only has a great way of organizing fly boxes (a question I have always neglected to answer properly), but he also has some great guidance on how to figure out what is in the river and how to pick a fly from your box that will do the best job of imitating that insect—without any detailed knowledge of entomology. If you learn his acronyms PAUSE and MATCH, I am convinced you will have all the knowledge you need to be more successful. Listen to the podcast to learn what these acronyms mean.
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Description: I frequently get requests for a podcast about drift boats, and although I enjoy rowing one most people don’t let me row their boat unless they are really desperate. So I called on an expert, Montana guide Hilary Hutcheson, to get her advice on getting a boat, rowing a boat, and most importantly all the responsibilities that go with getting down the river safely and with courtesy. Even if you never row a boat yourself, you’ll gain a new appreciation for the skill set your guide employs every day. In the Fly Box this week, we get these questions and tips: · How can a color-blind fly fisher identify the flies in his box? · Why am I only getting fish on my lower egg pattern in a two-fly rig? · A great suggestion on dealing with tippet rings · What kind of crab patterns do I need for striped bass? · What flies should I use for small stocked rainbows? · What are your thoughts on leader degreasers? · A suggestion on training as a whitewater guide prior to becoming a fishing guide · Why do black bucktails and marabou stain my hands? · What are some tips on purposely dumping your back cast? · What is the difference between a clear and a solid blue intermediate fly line? · Can I make a dubbing loop with monofilament tying thread?
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Description: This week I interview Damon Newpher of Adventure Bound on the Fly, a guide service that specializes in fly fishing from all sorts of craft, including stand-up paddleboards. Damon uses his SUP to chase steelhead, bass, and even muskies in his western New York location, but has ranged as far away as Belize and the Yucatan with inflatable boards, and has even floated remote rivers and lakes in Chile from them. He advises us on why you would want one, what to look for, how to accessorize one, and how to navigate moving water. These craft offer great advantages because they can get into places no other craft can go, with more stealth than any other method. Plus you are up above the water so you can spot fish and subsurface structures easier. And of course an added benefit is that you’ll stay in great shape while you fish!
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Description: This week’s podcast is my annual bull session with Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions. Instead of us picking a topic, we decided to ask listeners for questions. We both field questions on making a dubbing noodle out of short-fibered dubbing (along with a bunch of other tips on dubbing), choice of articulations for jointed flies, mono weed guards on bonefish flies, black vs. gold beads on nymphs, consistently reproducing patterns, proportions in cutting hair and fur, mixing dubbing to imitate specific insects, the differences between various types of natural dubbings, and discussions on what makes a “good” hackle feather. And of course we ramble a bit. But that’s what fly tiers do when they have an hour to kill. We went on so long that there’s no fly box this week. Just one long fly box, and all about tying.
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