Thursday, December 13, 2018


I mentioned it in the "12 Days for the Holidays" heads up post from a few days ago that Scott Hunter at Vedavoo was working on something special to literally unroll sometime during the twelve days and I'm just going to say it, he saved the best for last.

Feast your eyes on the new Vedavoo X T.F.M. Glass Quiver and for the next two days it's 20% off.

The Glass Quiver has been designed to hold four three-piece fiberglass (don't you dare put a graphite fly rod in there...) fly rods measuring 7'6" to 8'6" in length.  Shorter fly rods can be stored in this quiver as well.  Once full of your favorite fly rods, the Glass Quiver can be folded flat or rolled and then snapped closed to carry.  The Glass Quiver will only be made in Woodland Camo Cordura with your choice of Retro Fly or Comrade patch.

Press PLAY to see how it all works. I know, you want one.

Visit the Vedavoo website to see more about the Vedavoo X T.F.M. Glass Quiver and check out the other eleven days promotions as the sale prices are good through December 15, 2018.

Bears, Grayling and Dry Flies

Big Arctic Grayling on glass fly rods?  Sounds like a good time to me.  The boys from Blue Halo mixed it up somewhere north for a few days and this shortie film highlights their trip.

P.S.  Blue Halo is in the giving mood for Christmas and they are giving away a fly rod.  Take a minute to visit their Facebook page for the details.

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

C. BARCLAY FLY ROD CO. - The Lookbook

Sometimes when two people love each other very very much...wait...wrong talk. Let's try this again...

Sometimes when a famed small shop fiberglass fly rod builder meets up with a tech savvy photog with some serious skills, magical things happen.  Enter, the C. Barclay Fly Rod Co. Lookbook.

I think every small shop rod builder (gear and reel makers, etc.) should befriend a photographer/videographer to help tell their story.  There is just so much great content to capture and it can be beneficial for their websites, social media and beyond.  Storytelling is easier when you can see it all.

For years now, Chris Barclay of C. Barclay Fly Rod Co. has been designing and refining his tapers along with building some of the nicest (though somewhat nichey) fiberglass fly rods around.  He's boiled all his current offerings into the Synthesis Series, which is a collection of fly rods from the 6'6" 2 weight for those tiny blue lines to the 8'6" 8/9 weight for the flats.

With Chris's move to Winston-Salem, North Carolina, he soon after met up with Dave Fason of NanoBox, who's pretty handy behind the lens (you've seen his work HERE, HERE, HERE and HERE with more on the way) and he recently helped Chris put this fancy lookbook together.  It's worth a look.

Take a few minutes to check out the C. Barclay Fly Rod Co. website and listen to an recent interview with Chris on the Remote. No Pressure fly fishing podcast.


The fellows from Gray's Sporting Journal went to Andros Island in the Bahamas and brought back a bunch of goodness that they packaged up on a microsite to enjoy.  I'm not aware of GSJ doing many of these type of articles but hope that they continue as I like the mix of words, photographs and video.


Tuesday, December 11, 2018

T.F.M. Q&A: Joe Godspeed on Making the T&T Lotic Fly Rods

About the time I got really serious about fiberglass fly rods (give or take a dozen years ago now) the Heirloom series fly rods had recently been introduced.  Thomas & Thomas was one of just a couple established fly rod companies still producing fiberglass fly rods and the Heirloom series fly rods were wonderful casting fly rods with distinctively good looks.  A few years went by and because of writing this website, I had the opportunity to spend a weekend while at the Fly Fishing Show in New Jersey with founder Tom Dorsey where we talked fiberglass fly rods, how he started T&T decades ago, his love of jazz and a lot more.  It was an honor and quite astounding on so many levels. 

Fast forward a few years and Thomas & Thomas had gone through the hands of several different owners until Neville Orsmond took the helm as CEO in 2014 where he has done an incredible job of guiding this longstanding company back to the forefront of the industry with award winning fly rod designs.  His presence has also been felt in bringing a lot of excitement and confidence in what is going on at the shop in Greenfield, Massachusetts.

At some point in all of this, Joe Godspeed walked through the doors and has been instrumental in the design work on many of the next generation Thomas & Thomas fly rods, including the Lotic series. 

As a side note, during the prototype process, I had the opportunity to take the Lotic 7'10" five weight to Wyoming and was immediately impressed and continue to be so now having had the final version in my hands for awhile now. 

Joe and I have been recently trading emails and I asked if he'd mind answering a few questions for this interview to give some more background on how the Lotic series fly rods went from idea to a fly rod you can find at your local T&T dealer.

TFM - Before we get too deep into the interview, let's make sure everyone knows who's talking to them.  What is your background in the fly fishing industry and what do you do at Thomas & Thomas?  What type of angling do you do in your time on water? 

JG - My background in the fly fishing industry is that for nearly ten years I have been involved in the design, production, marketing, and sales of fly fishing products.  Prior to coming to T&T, my focus was fly lines and some rods for Cortland Line Company.  

My work covers a broad range of topics but rod design and material development are the primary objectives.  My personal fishing time is typically spent chasing things that are challenging – Muskies, marginal water stream trout and Goldfish. 

TFM - Let's start with talking about the use of fiberglass as a rod making material and the history of the Heirloom series of fly rods.  What started the conversation at Thomas & Thomas that it was time for a fiberglass series refresh? 

JG - The green colored Heirloom rods, built from E-Glass fiberglass, were being designed by Tom Dorsey during 2005 and the first production models were built at the T&T factory in January of 2006.  T&T manufactured and sold a range of Heirloom models until 2017, when we retired the series.  Higher performance raw fiberglass that became available during that period created an opportunity to improve and replace the Heirloom series with an S-Glass concept that eventually became the Lotic series. 

TFM - How do the Lotic fly rods differ from the Heirloom fly rods in taper and technology?

JG - The Heirloom rods and the Lotic rods are vastly different!  Heirloom rods were designed from E-Glass to reflect the deep flex profile of casting bamboo.  Lotic rods have been designed from the latest technology in strong and light S-Glass to achieve a faster recovery rate and higher line speeds. The concept for the Lotic rods was simple – to create rods that emphasize the deep flexing attributes that anglers love about casting and fishing with fiberglass, while addressing and improving the common performance shortcomings of fiberglass rods (particularly weight, casting distance, backbone for hook-sets).  These target performance attributes helped us determine the unique rod length chosen for each Lotic rod model. 

TFM - Creating a new fly rod series undoubtedly takes time to be done right.  Can you walk readers through the process of how the Lotic series fly rods were designed?

JG - One of the initial critical steps in rod design is having an intimate understanding of the material. Since the Lotic was T&T’s first S-Glass product, it took several years to develop that familiarity.  The evolution of a taper scheme and design is a mystical synergy of wiggling, casting, and deflection charts that determine potential adjustments to the taper, pattern shapes, and wall thickness of the rod parts.  The most difficult part of rod design is defining the target action and feel of the final product. Casting strokes are like snowflakes, so it’s important to watch a variety of casters handle a rod to really understand how it performs and what can be improved before making changes to a design.

TFM - What is the future of fiberglass in the Thomas & Thomas shop? I know we've discussed the possibility of other ideas but are they worth perusing and are any of these ideas in design now? 

JG - At the moment, our fiberglass offering is limited to the three Lotic models (6’10” 3wt, 7’4” 4wt, 7’10” 5wt). We have played with designing larger size rods in the same family but don’t have plans to release any larger models in the next season.  If we expand that lineup, I expect saltwater size rods in the neighborhood of 8-10 weight would be the next glass project. 

TFM - Thomas & Thomas creates several different fly rod series that are made of fiberglass, bamboo and graphite and it would be natural to assign each to a specific use.  Where in your mind do the Lotic series fly rods shine and which fly rod of the series is your favorite? 

JG - The Lotic fly rods are a higher performance glass rod concept that have the ability to perform nearly any cast and presentation as rods in the same line weight built from graphite.  The fast recovery deep flexing action allows an angler to easily push the rod for more distance and line speed, with unlimited strength to apply pressure to fish.  Personally I have used the 7’10” 5wt Lotic rod the most, whenever I have the chance to catch striped bass under about 15 pounds.  In calm conditions I can deliver a 3” streamer about 75’ with an intermediate line and many stripers up to 30” have put a smart bend to my 7’10” 5wt Lotic! 

Thanks Joe for taking some time to answer these questions.  Learn more about the Thomas & Thomas Lotic on their website.

CHASING NATIVES - Vlog 001 - California

I kinda figured that Cameron Cushman was sitting on a shit-ton of footage that didn't make the cut for Chasing Natives.  I like the format and looseness of the vlog and hope that these videos continue.

Click subscribe on the YouTube page and it might be a good idea to follow along on the freshly made Chasing Natives Facebook page as it sounds like this won't be their last adventure.

Saturday, December 8, 2018

SWIFT FLY FISHING - A Fly Rod Kit for Christmas Giveaway

If your email inbox is anything like mine, you've been weeding through offers, giveaways and a mess of promotions since before Thanksgiving.  One you might have missed is that Swift Fly Fishing is giving away one of their Epic Ready to Wrap Fly Rod Kits and all you have to do is give your name, email and which kit you'd most like "Epic Santa" to send your way. 

It's easy to play but make sure your submission is in before Wednesday, December 12th as the winner will be announced in their newsletter.

Check out the line up of Epic Ready to Wrap Fly Rod Kits and enter the giveaway HERE.