Filed under: Angling | Tags: Christian Horgen, fiberglass, fly fishing, fly rod, Sweedish
I recently came across these fine creations on a daily read of mine and they were just to beautiful not to repost here at WildWood. Christian Horgen, a Sweedish architect and father, builds custom fiberglass fly rods. Each one is a unique creation inspired by classic American fly rod designs. There many more examples of his work on his website and blog, here are just a few tasty examples. Oh what I wouldn’t do for one of these rods!
Filed under: Angling, Fly Fishing | Tags: autumn, brook trout, brookies, fall, fly fishing, Rapidan River, virginia
Got out this past weekend to do a little early autumn brook trout fishing. Nice weather however not yet cool enough that one doesn’t work up a sweat trekking around in waders. But that’s OK I just moved a little bit slower up through the stream and over the rocks. There wasn’t much of any hatch on the water or a whole lot of activity in general, most of the brookies were more concerned with getting their gravel beds ready for spawning. A few fish were willing to bite and entertain me, and I want to thank them for their kindness because otherwise I would have been standing in that stream waving a stick simply for the pleasing view.
Filed under: Angling, Fly Fishing | Tags: fly fishing, Raymond Carver, The Current
These fish have no eyes
these silver fish that come to me in dreams,
scattering their roe and milt
in the pockets of my brain.
But there’s one that comes–
heavy, scarred, silent like the rest,
that simply holds against the current,
closing its dark mouth against
the current, closing and opening
as it holds to the current.
There are still some days of summer light left… make sure you get out and fish.
Filed under: Angling, Fly Fishing | Tags: brook trout, fly fishing, Rapidan River, red bud, Shenandoah National Park, Spring, virginia
In search of some much needed respite and escape I headed to the hills this past week to a favorite blue line of mine for some Spring brook trout. The redbuds, which came out early this year along with every other blossom, still occupied the understory with their fuchsia blossoms and the hyper-green of the leaves had just started poking out. Classic early springtime in the Shenandoah.
There hasn’t yet been enough rain but there was still plenty of water holding hungry trout. The day started off slow with grey skies and a light rain essentially killing any dry fly action. I switch to a dry and dropper rig. By afternoon the grey gave way to pockets of sun, the temperature rose enough, and the parachute blue winged olive was back at the end of my number 7 tippet.
Not sure what it was about the day, but not long after the sun shined through the clouds I hooked into several of the largest brook trout I have caught on this stream. They don’t get very big in the small waters of Virginia, anything at or over 12″ is considered large for a native…these we monsters…the tip of my 4wt. full flex rod bent like a willow’s branch under the fight of these beautiful fish. I can only hope to have another day like this one again this Spring. After a few hours of great fishing I quit while I was ahead, I smoked my cheap cigar, drank a little bourbon, and headed for home.
Filed under: Angling, The Great Outdoors | Tags: Abercrombie and Fitch, fishing, fly fishing, outfitter
I picked up this great old catalog from Abercrombie and Fitch at a used book store a little while ago. Originally published in 1968, back when Abercrombie was an actual outdoors outfitter and did more then sell teenagers questionable clothing. The catalog contains not just fly and spin fishing gear but everything the fisherman would need for a multi-day expedition into the wild.
If this catalog was published today I might have to buy “E” in the picture below, the electric wading boot dryer.
If you are interested in the rest of what I have scanned, you can check them out here.
Filed under: Angling, Books, Fly Fishing, Outdoors | Tags: Curt Gowdy, fly fishing, hunting, Joe Brooks, outdoors, The American Sportsman Treasury, vintage
The American Sportsman was a television show that aired from 1965 to 1986. The show, which was probably one of the first to depict outdoor adventures, showed hunting and fishing trips by the show’s host along with celebrities such as Bing Crosby and Andy Griffith. The tv show got it start as 20 min segment on the Wide World of Sports which followed Curt Gowdy (who went on to host the show) along with the legendary Joe Brooks on a fly fishing expedition in the Andes Mountains. The eventually went on to become The New American Sportsman which covered all types of sports, and in doing so lost the appeal of the original which focused on outdoor adventures.
I recently found the book,The American Sportsman Treasury, which is basically the hardbound version of the original tv show. The book contains more stories and excellent photos from various fishing and hunting trips of the past by experienced outdoorsman. More of the images can be found here.
Filed under: Angling, Fly Fishing | Tags: brown trout, fall, fly fishing, South River, Special Regulations
Mountains in the clouds
Saturday I woke to a dusting of wet snow that was over by noon. Not willing to let a little powder deter me from my plans to fish, I headed out just as the sun broke. Driving, the sky really opened up and sun poured down. However as I slowly made my way over the mountain the clouds quickly returned and instead of driving in sun I found myself in a dense fog and snow.
For a moment I wondered if I had made the right decision and considered heading back, but as I descended to the other side the clouds once again parted and the sun was back.
A fine specimen
I made my way to the South River to fish a specially regulated area where a new brown trout fishery is trying to be established. Apparently there are some fish that have held over, however I mostly found smaller guys who had probably been stocked recently. Either way it was a glorious autumn day and the fishing not to bad either.
Trees on fire
Filed under: Angling, Wilderness Heroes | Tags: Angling, fly fishing, Hugh Falkus, Slamo the Leaper
Hugh Falkus was a WWII airplane pilot, writer,naturalist, film maker, and most importantly angler. An inspiration to generations of anglers he published several books on fishing including Salmon Fishing and Sea Trout Fishing which established him as “the father of modern sea trout fishing,” and had a huge impact on modern spey casting.
While working for the BBC Films Natural History Unit, Falkus also produced and wrote many films. One of which I have come across, Salmo the Leaper posted here in its entirety for your viewing pleasure, covers the natural history of the Atlantic salmon along with some great insight and footage of catching one on the fly while properly wearing a waxed canvas jacket.
*All of the parts to this film are great, but if you want what is probably the best moment go to 11:30 on Part 2 of the film.
Filed under: Angling, Fly Fishing | Tags: digest, fisherman's, fly fishing, trout
While fall means the start of alot of things we love around here, one of the things we love the most is fall time brook trout fishing. And we figured what better way to get ready and inspired then some vintage fly imagery. This set of images comes courtesy of the classic publication, Trout Fisherman’s Digest by David Richey originally published in 1976.
If you want to see more, the rest of the collection is located here.
Filed under: Angling | Tags: brook trout, fly fishing, Moormans river, virginia
While most anglers in the area still have their attention turned to wide rivers and smallmouth action, this weekend I had brook trout on the mind, and so I headed to a small stream in the mountains to stalk them. However this time of year catching brook trout can prove difficult. With water levels at their lowest, mountain streams are reduced to trickles, and brook trout become easily spooked and pretty skeptical of the fly no matter how well presented to them.
With water this low at times these fish find themselves stuck in small pools of water waiting for the next heavy rain to fill the steam beds and allow them to be freed. Approaching these pools as quietly as possible, slightly hunched over, one barely casts their line rather you gently place your fly in the current hoping you are lucky enough to convince one or two of them to get out of their cool holes for a meal.
Yeah, the fish might be small, but its always a good excuse to get out into the mountains for a bit.