Friday, December 31, 2021

A year end review a bit differently.....

Nana and Morgan
This is the last day of the year. Normally I would review the year in a way that highlights my fishing related days. This year was different in many ways and so the last post of the year shall be different. On Christmas day while enjoying the company of my family who had gathered at my daughters home I was asked something that really stuck with me in a special way. The question came from a conversation with our grand daughter Morgan. In that talk I found out that she liked red roasted peppers. I suggested she make her own at home. Most of you know that fresh home made is most times far superior to store bought. So I thought I would share my way of making red roasted peppers.


Start out with peppers that are firm. super markets have these on special through out the year. Our local Price Rite has them this week for a 1.49 a pound. When you compare that to maybe 3.50 a jar for peppers which contain maybe 1 to 1 and a half peppers you can see the value.

The peppers are then roasted on the grill until they are well charred. This can take about 10 minutes or so. Just keep monitoring them turning them to get an even charred pepper.

Remove from grill and allow to cool. When they are cool enough to handle you can remove the blistered skins and seeds.

The peppers are then placed in a bowl and seasoned with olive oil, oregano, and  garlic. Salt and pepper to taste. The smell of these delights is hard to describe....

This is one of the ways I enjoy them...fresh crusty Italian bread, some cheese and then stand back. Served this way will also help you to a good start of the day when eaten at breakfast.

For lunch how about fried eggplant with roasted red peppers and provolone on a nice grinder roll?

Morgan I hope you like "papa's" recipe for roasted red peppers....

Happy New Year all


Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Simplicity, revisited

From day one of this blog my concept was to bring to you the beauty and simplicity of life in all forms. In fact it has been the sub title of Small Stream Reflections. I live a simple life, not that I don't splurge a bit but I prefer simple and uncluttered. Most of the gear I own and fish with is generally within practical norms, not expensive by any means. The flies I tie and fish with are for the most part simple. While some have numerous materials they can be tied by most fly tyers, all that is required is your ability to keep trying. I'd like to add something here, never throw out a fly you have tied because it looks funny. Fish it man. Let the fish decide what's funny, you'll be surprised.


A Rangeley streamer fly. Is it complicated, no...after tying a few you'll be be doing just fine.

A North Country spider...two materials, that's simplicity.

What I'm saying is use the best materials you have, the finest bamboo rod. A classic Catskill fly from a vintage Wheatley fly box. But if you use a Cabelas fiberglass rod, a ragged Haystack from a plastic pin container it will work .

 Simple food...flour,water onions and butter, salt and pepper.


Tuesday, December 28, 2021

The winners are.

The winners are.

Steve from down under...the Streamer Fly

Hollen M Groff....The book River Flowers

John V....The Fly Box

Art Urban....The Fly Box


Please email me your addresses

Thank you all


Sunday, December 26, 2021

We all could use some....

The power of pure clean water is something we all need. The strength of such waters are especially important to me at this time....the weather this morning is a cold 33 degrees with a wind. As I look at the leaves being swept up off the ground I catch the beautiful sun breaking over the land. I need the sun to help move me to fish. I have to get out today and even if I don't catch a fish the effort and the attempt will do wonders for me.


The beautiful colors of the wild brookie are a god sent. To hold one is to be revitalized beyond words.


The "Stayner Ducktail"....perhaps this streamer will entice one today......



Friday, December 24, 2021

Christmas 2021


Wishing  all of you a very Merry Christmas. Enjoy family, friends and love.

Thursday, December 23, 2021

That time of year....some Christmas cheer to sare with you....

It's that time of year when I like to show my appreciation and thanks to all of the readers of Small Stream Reflections... you are what makes this blog work. So with that I would like to offer a little Christmas gift to you. I know it may be a little late but this past week has been a life altering experience. More on that later....for the first is a Rangeley streamer that is named "Soft Shoulder" I tied this pattern about a year ago and would like to share it with you.


The second gift is "River Flowers" by Robert Romano...this is his latest and deals with some of the finer things involving fly fishing. I have not read it and knowing Bob it is going to be on the top shelf as are many of his books.

The third gift is " a fly box"...hand crafted of  wood. The lid slides back and forth and allows for easy access to the flies inside. I have one and use it for those special flies, special stream etc. I will be giving away two of these along with a few of my personal favorite flies.

All that's needed is that you comment on this post. You will be entered in the drawing that will take place on December 28th.

So good luck and Merry Christmas


Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Fish Sausage..

Fish sausage...this is something I have been wanting to try for a long time. Sausage is consumed in most every country in the world, and fish is right along side. So why not combine the two. Recently on Nat Geo. they featured Gordon Ramsay in the upper Pininsula  of Michigan where he made contact with a quaint fellow who made fish sausage. The "Yooper" as they are referred to showed how he made it and that's all it took.

This recipe that I used is pretty simple. I used cod, salmon and some shrimp. Seasoning was salt, red pepper chopped fresh parsley and shallots. The well chilled ingredients were placed in a food processor and pulsed until a nice mixture was achieved. The mixture is put into the fridge for a half hour and cooled. Then the mixture is placed in some plastic wrap, rolled and the ends twisted. Then some foil is placed on the sausage and rolled the same way. The sausage is put into simmering water and allowed to simmer for about 15 minutes. Remove the sausage and allow it to cool before removing the foil and plastic wrap.

In a fry pan melt some butter and place the sausage in and brown it. When the sausage is browned remove it and add some parsley and shallots along with some more butter and some lemon.


Served with mashed potatoes, or rice.

It is a delicate flavored and nicely textured sausage.


Sunday, December 12, 2021

Tis the season for...

 A boulder strewn freestone stream. Ice is now forming along it's edges and it looks like winter is grabbing hold. Yes there will be those days when the temperatures will reach a level of comfort but they will be getting fewer each and every week. Winter with it's cold is a blessing in that it allows us to dial back and really focus on the little things that get kicked to the curb during the other three seasons. We all have those little things and I won't list them but I'm certain many of them are the same as yours.


Winter they brighten up a rather gray winter landscape.

To dream of the fish that will take our creations come spring. Expectations are high as they should be.

There will be many a night sitting at the desk. This night will be dedicated to tying Ausable Bombers...

With each fly tied a memory of last years "Bombers" success will spring forth.


Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Alway's learning and more readers photos....

The Henthorne Purple....a North Country spider. I was made aware of this fly by a reader/commenter of SSR's..It has been around for some time but I have never come across it. And while looking for information about it online I did not find much to go on. The fly was created by Harold Howarth who hails from the UK. It's a simple fly that has the materials that will attract trout.

Below are a few more photos from readers. Enjoy


Streamers for salt water. These were tied by Geof Klaine from Massachusetts.

 An old Wheatley fly box. Rod from the blog Dry Fly Expert provided the photo. I love the tweezers.

Mike J. sent this photo of his "old" last time, and success.

Bill Shuck's tying desk...Ray Tucker photo.

 Kirk and Mark on one of our New Year's Day fishing days.


Sunday, December 5, 2021

Historical, well maybe not. But it's close...

The masters of the North Country spiders were absolute wonders. Many of these gentlemen were able to craft flies that are still taking trout some one hundred and fifty years later. What has always intrigued me was how they researched the materials the chose to use. They obviously had staples such as grouse, woodcock, snipe and many other birds both game and domestic. In our time many of the feathers the masters used are no longer available or are so expensive that they can't be used by us average fly tyers.

Many times we seek alternatives to the historical feathers and many of these alternatives are pretty close to the originals and can just as effective. Below is an example of the North Country spider known as the "Snipe and Purple" a simple pattern of purple silk and a snipe feather.


 The Snipe and Purple...the only thing is the feather is actually woodcock. Is there a difference well maybe, will a brook trout be able to notice. I believe they can't.

 A underused North Country spider the "Black Magic"...again simplicity that's both elegant and deadly. When those little black stone flies are about come winter this is the fly to drift.

Thursday, December 2, 2021

A few thoughts from an old fly fisher.....

I have been fishing for most of my life. As a young boy it was all new and I would run and fish as much water as I could fit in the time that I was out. As time progressed there came the time for more gear, endless magazines on the subject of fly fishing and that desire to fish fast and cover all the water possible. Then I discovered the small stream and it was here that I learned to see and how to fish.

The small stream caused me to slow down, to check it all out but at a pace where it showed me what I had missed in those early years and the never ending vigor of youth. I was not a speed demon when I would walk along a blue line, sometimes taking far to much time fishing a run or plunge pool. I enjoyed this slow pace.

It has been a year or so where that slow pace has changed to an even slower one. The issues of boulders and high banks have gotten bigger and higher. This has made me a better angler for now every fish is a absolute stunning trophy. It's a statement that is hard to make for a person who has lived a beautiful life along the streams...but it is so true.


Perhaps I would have missed this in my fast youthful days. Now I stop and gaze upon it and wonder what the person who put it there was thinking.

Boulder laden stream. I'll find a flat spot and have at it. Three flies, a half hour, and several types of presentations....

and then the reward. A wild brown. Born in the stream to fend for himself. There are no feeding times here, only times when food presents itself.  How about two thumbs up for this guy.

A featherwing streamer tied to represent a brown trout in his first year of life.