Saturday, January 21, 2017

No Dice On The Low Tides

When Phil Croff and I started talking about his southern swing, he mentioned that he really wanted to do two things; eat oysters and cast a fly at a redfish.  Phil had a presentation planned for one of the evenings at Lowcountry Fly Shop which gave us two days with crazy low winter tides to look for redfish and Leon's Oyster Shop hit the mark for a few shucked local fresh oysters.

We spent the first afternoon with Captain Scotty Davis of Lowcountry Fly Shop and the second afternoon with Captain Jason Shepard of Fly Times Fishing Charters.  When I say we fished the low tide, we fished the lowest of low tides.  Creeks that typically hold water at low tide were down to a trickle.  Flats that usually have water on them were pluff mud simmering in the sun.

Hardy had a great time both days hanging out in the skiffs.  The second day she just couldn't help herself and jumped onto a mud flat only to jump back into the boat and shake herself off all over the three of us.  Imagine a thousand watercolor brushes dipped in brown gray paint going everywhere.  We (and the skiff) were covered. 

We moved a few redfish around on the first day with Captain Davis and Phil had a few more shots on the second day with Captain Shepard taking far back into some out of the way flats.  He had a momentary hook up at the end of the last day just to create a spark that he needed to come back for another shot.  Redfish can be fussy bastards on the low tide and he'll get another shot when they're tailing in the grass.

Planning a trip to Charleston?  Booking a day with Lowcountry Fly Shop or Fly Times Fishing Charters are a sure bet to get on some redfish.


The other night I sat down and watched the media copy of the Fly Fishing Film Tour and fortunately it included Felt Soul Media's latest shortie film, 120 Days: Tarpon Season which highlights the obsession and focus of David Magnum of Shallow Water Expeditions on tarpon. 

As typical of Ben and Travis's work, this film is beautiful as it is well done.  

Get your tickets to the Fly Fishing Film Tour now as many locations will sell out before the show.  This film is worth the price of admission.

Friday, January 20, 2017

LOON OUTDOORS - Fly Tying 101: Episode 3

The Loon Outdoors Fly Tying 101 sessions continue tonight with Episode 3 which will cover five patterns which include Darian's Kool Kat Soft Hackle, Yellow & Partridge Soft Hackle, Pheasant Tail Nymph, Bucktail Streamer and TP's Little Nymph Thing.

Missed the first two Fly Tying 101 episodes?  Watch them HERE and HERE.

Or jump in at 6:00 p.m. PST tonight for this menu of flies...

Visit the Loon Outdoors website for more information.

A TIGHT LOOP - Winter 2017

Here's your quarterly dose of Midwest goodness with the fall issue of A Tight Loop.  Enjoy.


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

"Strange Brew" On The Saluda River

One of the reasons that Phil Croft of Croft Craft Custom Driftboats & Guide Service wanted to jump down to South Carolina for a week was to get on the water and Jake Howard of Saluda Valley Guides was able to work us in for a day long float on the Saluda River tailwater.

Jake rows a raft and wanted to see what "Strange Brew" was all about.  It was a beautiful day to be out on the water and we each took turns on the sticks, Jake showed Phil a little of what he does with Euro nymphing, and we all picked off a few trout.  Phil broke off a large holdover trout early in the day and Jake lost a twenty inch rainbow at the net in some fast water.

Oh yeah, and Hardy had a great time checking out all the new smells, nosing around the gear bags, and picking off and tossing a hundred steamers from my wallet all over the beach while the three of us were wading nearby.  Silly pup. 

Jake Howard continues to grow the number of days he's on the water with Saluda Valley Guides.  Want to get on the Saluda River for trout or striper?  Get your dates now as prime spring dates are already filling up.


I've been following Lyn Smith of Art of the Trout Fly through Instagram for some time now and she passed along her latest video which chronicled her creating 'The Dunkeld".  Such good clean work.

Visit the Art of the Trout Fly website to see more of Lyn's work and considering following along on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram too.

Monday, January 16, 2017

How To Clean A Fly Reel

Though you and I might not have a 1950's Hardy Perfect fly reel, this video by Kevin Hospodar is a good primer on how to properly clean a vintage fly reel.  I published a T.F.M. post early last year with many of the same steps through photographs on cleaning a J.W. Young made Milward Flymaster Junior but it's great to see the process in this sixteen minute film.

As someone that has way too many vintage fly reels in my own collection, this cleaning method works and it's really amazing how you can bring fly reel back to life in function and aesthetics through this process.  

Kevin Hospodar has some other great videos on his YouTube channel which includes fly tying and gear reviews.  Click subscribe to follow along.