Tuesday, April 19, 2011

It clicked.

I spent some time last night (in between periods of the Bruins v. Canadians game) and this morning tying the double surgeon's knot and I am over the hump.

Thanks to everyone for the encouragement and tips especially Mike C for pushing me away from being cheap with the line. I also practiced the Duncan Loop Knot that I find practical and easy enough to use in the field. I also bought a Nail Knotter at LL Bean the other day (it feels like cheating but it may come in handy some day).

Reading Hatch Guide for New England Streams by Thomas Ames. It will help build upon all the information that people have been giving me.

Rain in the forecast so I may not get to put the knots to good use for a couple of days. Maybe I will do some scouting along the banks to see what type of bugs are around for the trout to eat. I think I will explore more of the river also (it is several miles long and empties into the Merrimack River that empties into The Atlantic Ocean).


  1. Thanks Howard.

    The problem was distinguishing the leader end from the tippet end. Once I colored one different from other, then I was able to "see" it and then it was easy. I think I am so anxious to be where everyone else is that I forget that I am just starting out and still have a lot learning to do.

  2. Just got a care package of flies, leader/tippet and "The Little Red Book of Fishing Knots" from my dad today! Hopefully they correspond to the flies you see, if you go scouting! I didn't have any luck on the shawsheen, but I went to a pond in Dover to get the skunk off and landed a small pike on a spinning rod after my fly rod cracked... I'm sending it back to the company this week to get it replaced, hopefully quickly.

  3. Yehhhhh. Another step ahead in your fly fishing world.


  4. Good to hear Ed....how are the crowds on that river? Maybe I will try sometime after work.

  5. Hey Greer I am glad to hear you caught a fish but not so much about your rod. Orivs will take care of you. The website I told you about for knots is located here: http://www.animatedknots.com. Did you go to the pond in Harold Parker after the Fishing Derby?

    Mark......one thing down and a million to go. Thanks.

    Mike, Opening Day there were maybe a half dozen folks at one time but everybody was spread out nicely. I went last Sunday and Greer and I were the only people there so it seems like the rush may be over. I never really ever saw crowds there before though. Let me know if you decide to go and I will swing by also (I'll bring the Dunkin Donuts coffee).

  6. Greer...there is a book that Mike C and brktrt told me about that I am reading that you may want to get. I know that you have a heavy load for school but this should not be a problem for you. It is titled Hatch Guide for New England Streams by Thomas Ames, Jr. It will help explain the life cycle of the insects and where they are in the water, etc. I am sure that your dad got you the right stuff.

  7. I'll look for it! I went to the pond after the fishing derby and it looked like there were still quite a few fish in there as some kids fishing with live minnows (cheaters) were catching 18 inch rainbows and 3-4 pound largemouth bass... Look forward to seeing you this coming weekend on the river.

  8. Hey I just found this bit of advice for getting flies un-stuck, which seems to be a mutual problem for us.

    If you've been fly fishing long you know that getting flies stuck in trees, grass, on rocks, on sticks and even in yourself, is just part of the deal. Here are a few tips on getting unstuck so you can get back to fishing:

    1. Don't tighten the line. When your cast ends up in the brush or trees don't pull, that just ties a knot or tightens the wraps of leader making it tougher to ever free your flies. Many times you can simply stay calm, don't pull, and let the line fall in the water. The current will sometimes slowly pull the flies free from willows or other brush close to the water. When that doesn't work, proceed to the next suggestion.

    2. When your flies are loosely wrapped or the hook point is lightly embedded try to gently shake the flies free. With a loose line and a fair amount of slack quickly wiggle the rod tip up and down or side to side. If the flies don't come free try this with more and more force. Remember to always leave enough slack to put big waves in the line as you shake the rod tip. The quick changes in angle from up to down that you can create by sending these waves is often enough to free the flies.

    3. When you hook a rock under water you can often pull the flies free by pulling straight upstream. Bounce the rod gently at first and then give it more and more force. Don't risk breaking your rod though. Check your hook point for dulling after the fly comes free.

    4. If you hook a stick under water try pointing straight at the snag and pull steadily. If you can't move the stick from the bottom try several different angles. Many times if you find the correct angle you can pull sticks out of the mud or rocks on the bottom and then remove your flies.

    5. Sometimes you just won't win and your flies will need to be broken off. Do this by pointing the rod directly at the snag and steadily tighten the line until the tippet breaks. By pulling only on the line and leader and not the rod you should at least get you leader back and you won't risk breaking a fly rod worth hundreds of dollars to save a $1 fly.

    6. Make sure you fish barbless flies, not only for the fish, but also so you can get yourself unstuck when that eventuality occurs.

    Don't get too frustrated when you get stuck. Remember that if you aren't getting stuck occasionally you probably aren't casting close enough to the banks or getting your flies deep enough to catch fish.

  9. That is good advice Greer. Thanks.

    You better be "hitting the books" too besides fishing.

  10. Don't worry, Im getting rolling on the nights work right after I type this comment :)