Friday, June 29, 2012


That's "Pete". And your seeing right, there's nothing wrong with your eyes. He's fishing the Farmington River with two fly rods.

I had another opportunity to fish with this gentleman. We met yesterday at the "Farmy" to fish late afternoon/evening. We met one another a few years ago on the river and have fished together a few times including what might become a tradition on New Years Day two consecutive years. Pete is guy who knows the Farmy like the front of his his fly vest. It's knowledge that he's willing to share with most. And even in stream side conversation not really pertaining to fishing, you'll say to yourself I just learned something about a certain fly.

Pete is a fly angler, and a damm good one. He knows what to fish and how to fish it. He should be an ambassador for the sport. He is honest and genuine. He is what I call a fly fisher, not a fly fisher elitist. For that I thank him.
Pete fishing a section of the Farmy that I consider my favorite. Again with the two rods. Pete is also the Master of the Bead Head Soft Hackle Pheasant Tail. When he fishes that fly the trout don't stand a chance.

Pete about to bring a feisty brown to net.

It was a great outing on the river last night. May you fish your river in health for many years friend.


Photos or text may not be used without permission.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Late June, And A Small Stream

Yesterday was a autumn like day. The air was crisp with a slight breeze and sunshine. We had received some showers the day before and some areas ample amounts were recorded. This was my time to pay a visit to a stream, a wild brookie stream. The last time I was here the water was low, and I decided not to fish. But today it looked OK. I was armed with my 6ft 2wt and a few dry flies. As I approached the stream I could see the dense green canopy. It almost blocked the sun from reaching the ground. There's a special feeling one gets as he walks such places. It's hard to put it into words the sounds and sights of water and forest.

One of the things I do when fishing these streams in summer is to check the water temps. I do this upon reaching the first run, and continue to do it at various intervals along the stream. The stream temp was a constant 60 degrees.

Well it didn't take long to get a response to my offering. As I drifted the fly along a brushy bank a wild brook trout intercepted it and soon was at hand.

I love this type of fishing. A light pack containing water, a Cliff Bar, camera, a fly box and a few accessories is all that's needed. Also wet wading can be refreshing. LL Bean wading shoes.

As continued to fish I was given the chance to bring a few brookies close. The Ausable Wulff did what was needed to bring the fish to the top. As I approached this very likely pool, I said to myself there's got to be a trout in there. Letting the Wulff go I watched as it drifted to the sweet spot, and suddenly a crash took place on the surface and the fly gone. I could feel the trout and the battle that was about to begin, a battle only a wild brook trout give you in such places.

A few moments later and this wonderful work of natural art was at hand.

I love days like this.


All photos and text cannot be used without permission.

Monday, June 25, 2012

The "Farmy" And Another Lesson Learned

The opportunity to fish the Farmington River was out there and I usually don't have to be asked twice if I want to go. This would be my first time fishing it early morning. I met up with Kirk "Trout Quest Redux" and we were on the river about 6. This was his first time fishing the river in years, and he made a good showing of it. Soon after entering the river, and within a few casts he was into his first fish. The beautiful brown had taken a wet fly.

We then moved to another spot. I was trying to show him some of the better areas of the river. Well the whole TMA is good for that matter, but these areas I'm familiar with. Not before to long he was into a second trout also a brown. Two areas 2 browns.

Around 9:30 we stopped at a little country store for a muffin and a coffee. The coffee was Green Mountain but it was "Our Blend", not my favorite "Nantucket". A tasty break and it was on to a third area of the "Farmy". Soon Kirk was into another fish, this brown had taken a dry fly. Do you see a pattern here. Kirk 3, Alan, zip.

You can view Kirks wonderful browns at his blog..."Trout Quest Redux"

For those who have fished this river know that its full of fish. And although you'll be casting over many fish sometimes they don't hit. Such was the case for me yesterday. Although watching a trout rise and miss can be rewarding.
Such was the case in this pool. I cast my fly a Ausable Wulff into the slack spot between the boulders. A streak somewhat long shot up inhaled the fly and was soon into the heavy current. Pearched on the ledge I tried to get control of the heavy fish. Thinking more about where I was going to land him, instead of the task at hand of subduing him first. Well a few good head shakes and rolls in that current and he was gone. In the clear water I had seen the spotted streak. "I know where you live"..."I'll be back".

An "Ausable Wulff" an easy target for trout who live in rough water.

We were home around 1. Later we were doing some burgers on the grill, but a appetizer was called for. Seasoned spinach, fresh tomatoes, mozzarella on Italian bread.


Friday, June 22, 2012

"Cool" Stuff

Connecticut is in its first heat wave of the year, three consecutive days in the 90's. While some may like it I for one can do with out it. But being unable to do much about it here's some cool stuff that helps to make it bearable. While talking of, those that fish the Farmington River should be on the lookout for bears. It's not panic time but they are about and many more sightings have taken place.

The other evening while fishing, with the air temp of about 85 and the water at the mid 50's a spooky mist hung over the stream.

That same evening I saw this struggling fly trying to shed its shuck. I wonder if trout key in on such happenings.

Now this is cool. My grand daughter Morgan about to rip one into the outfield.

The picture says it better than I can.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A Sign and Some "Usual" Stuff

In my travels over the last week or so I have visited a few very interesting places. They are located in what many believe to be the birth place of fly fishing in America, and where the first dry fly was cast upon flowing waters. This is a sign showing the major hatches of a river system. It not only tells of the hatches, what times, etc. but has actual tied flies of each insect. I'm sorry the photo was not as good as it should have been. I'll tell more about this wonderful place in a future post.

Now on to some "Usual" stuff.
The Usual is one of Fran Betters classics. It's a fly that can be fished dry or as an emerger. It is tied with a few simple materials and is not difficult to tie. But the main selling point of this fly is that it's deadly.

The main ingredient of this fly is the snowshoe rabbit foot, Fran tied the entire fly just using this one
item. But a fly tyer named Matt Grobert over at "Caddis Chronicles" showed how he ties this fly using a couple different materials which produce an easier to tie fly and one thats just as deadly.

Matt uses a snowshoe rabbits foot for the wing, a few wood duck fibers for the tail, and a cream dubbing for the body. He chooses a tan thread, while I like orange.
This is my version of Matt Groberts version of Fran Betters "Usual".

These are some flies tied by Fran Betters. The "Usuals" are in the top right.

Monday, June 18, 2012

The "Farmington"

Fathers Day, I hope everyone's was the best. Well mine was a gem. I was taken out for breakfast, with no diet restrictions, and enjoyed it beyond words. Then I was told go fish until you get your fill.

I had already selected the Farmington River as my choice of places to fish. This had been my first time fishing this river this year, in fact is was my first time since last August. I was amazed by the changes in the river since tropical storm Irene went through, as well as the freak snows of October.

The Farmington is a tail water and is Connecticuts prime fishing waters. It also draws anglers from all over New England and beyond. It has prolific insect hatches of many types. It has all three trout, and supports a wild population of two of them and possibly all three.

I arrived at the river about 3pm. The sun was out but the waters were cool. There were several anglers in some of my sweet spots so further exploration was needed. The fishing was slow. There were few fish rising and the only fish taken were salmon parr. As the clock ticked towards 6pm, all hell broke loose. The trout began rising. There was a buffet of insects coming off the waster, and the fish were taking them emerging, also on the surface. I was taking them on Adams Parachutes, Usuals, and Bombers.

Before I walked out of the water at 8:15, I had taken an abundance of trout. Most were browns, healthy and robust. I also was able to hit for the cycle. A brookie, a brown, and a rainbow, who leaped several times. And to complete the cycle I did all this without falling in.

A wonderful resource, and as this photo shows, you can find small stream beauty in a big river.

A what better way to top of Fathers Day.


Friday, June 15, 2012

Seek and Find

In a post I did earlier this week where I told of revisiting a few streams I had not fished in a long time. I mentioned hooking a sizable brook trout on a dry fly. The fish was holding in a difficult place to present a fly. After numerous casts I managed to place the fly in the sweet spot. The trout took the fly. And as I brought him in he gave the fly back to me.

Well I went back to that stream today. By the way the weather was super today. I had picked my Sage 7ft 3wt to do the work today. Tied on a fly and let it go. I picked up a few wonderful brookies in various stream hideouts. But that big guy was in the back of my mind. When I reached the place where he was hooked I had good feelings. I worked that fly into the same place where he had been before. There was no response though. I continued to work the stream. And in a beautiful deep run the fly was sucked under. As I pulled back on the Sage I could feel his weight. A good battle was waged but victory was mine this time.

A photo of this beautiful male, and off he went. I may have to start hanging a net on my pack.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

This and That

I'd like to speak a bit about this feather. The Jungle Cock. This bird is protected in its wild form, they can no longer be harvested for their feathers. There are some game breeders who are raising them for the feathers.

The nail, that's the bright yellow feather is seen on a great many salmon fly, and streamer fly patterns. And a wonderful dry fly The Jassid, that was created by Mr Vince Marinaro of Pennsylvania. I also believe this feather is a must to finish featherwing streamers.

These are a few streamers I'm sending to Darren for his "Streamers 365" project. For those who have not checked it out, please do so. Some of the best streamer tyers in the world have streamers represented. A link can be found below.

A gentleman gave me a few bags of these hooks. They are for tying trolling streamers. I have no idea of the manufacturer. I'm going to tie a few trolling streamers and see how they turn out. Any ideas on the hooks manufacturer?

An Orvis rod I purchased a few years ago. It never came with a hook holder. All this time I assumed that it was made without one on this model. A email to Orvis questioning it being missing, and I was told send it back. They put on a hook keeper and shipped it back, with a container of ferrule lube no charge. A great company.

A few words about this book. If you live in Connecticut and enjoy the outdoors pick one up. Its maps are as detailed as can be, and the highlights of each hike a wonderful.

Detailed maps and highlights.


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Streams, Rediscovered

I had the pleasure of fishing several small streams yesterday. These streams are located pretty close to each other, being within 15 miles. I guess by today's standards that's close. The weather was a light overcast, with some breaks of sun. The air temp a comfortable 70 or so. What I noticed is how great these streams are in. They had wonderful flows and the water temps were 60 or so. A few of these waters I have not fished in years, don't ask me why because I couldn't give you an answer.

Well armed with a box of dries and wets, my small stream selection, and the 2wt I started to rediscover these waters. It was not long before the first little guy went for the Pin. He did not hookup, but a good sign. As the hours went by these small waters gave me the pleasure of their beauty as well as the jewels they hold.

Streamside beauty comes in many forms.

This pool was a challenge. After many attempts to put my fly in that sweet spot, its where the foam lies against the boulder and the log. I managed to drift the Bomber into position and the trout hit. I managed to bring a fine brookie to my hand. He appeared to be a fish of 12 inches. As I lay my hand under his body he twisted and was back into his refuge. His photo is in my mind and perhaps at another meeting a hard photo will be offered.

These streams gave me a wonderful day.

Taken this day on only two flies. I can never get enough of these wild streams and what they have to offer.