When Do You Get to Fish?

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As a fishing guide, one of the most frequently asked questions I encounter is, “when do you get to fish?”  The short answer is not that often.  I guided trips for 28 days in a row my first year.  You’ve got to make hay when the sun shines in this business so if that involves working through prime time fishing or making time for all the other things that involve being an adult, you do what you have to do.  When the weather turns cold and work is a little more flexible, though, is when I get to to fish.  Every winter is also when I get to fish a lot with my best buddy Dustin Wichterman.  Every year without fail, we fish during a Winter Weather Advisory and kick some ass on some terribly technical no-name West Virginia spring creeks.  Here is our trip from the weekend.

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Knot Tying 101: The Orvis Knot

Knowing how to tie knots is a pretty important aspect of being a good woodsman.  I love things that are multitaskers and the following knot is useful for in a lot of situations.  Commonly referred to as the Orvis knot, I originally learned this one to tie my fly to the leader.  It is useful in far more situations than that.

20151107_110511_zpspfw9d4kjStart out with the tag on top and the opening of the U facing right. [Read more…]

Fly Fishing Underground

It’s summer, so there’s nothing to hunt.  The weather has been windy and rainy for almost a week so shooting anything is out of the question.  The fishing, however, has never been better.  We’ve got plenty of water, the bugs are doing their thing, and most importantly, the trout are cooperating.  Big smiles from happy clients are the norm right now.  Times are good.

ramkitty3 [Read more…]

Post Turkey Season Happenings

My turkey season finished on a pretty low note here in Pennsylvania.  Try as I might, I couldn’t get on the right bird and I wound up eating my tags in both Pennyslvania and West Virginia.  Oh well.

Pennsylvania WoodsThis is how I left the Pennsylvania Turkey woods.  No turkeys were harmed.

Nemacolin Fly FishingLuckily, I’ve been staying really busy guiding fly fishing clients here in the Laurel Highlands.  Here’s a happy first time fly fisherman with his first trout.  A lot of our business involves teaching new anglers on the fly (no pun intended) and it is really rewarding to see someone go from never even holding a fly rod to being able to make a drift and catch a fish.

Lots of mayflies like this Light Cahill keep the trout active.  It’s been really fun getting to fish dry flies.

Yough River

Youghiogheny River Trout

I even get to fish too sometimes.  I caught this rainbow in the river one evening during a pretty significant sulphur hatch.  Catching fish on top is fun.  Catching big fish on top is more fun.

Brown troutTwo evenings later, our client Jesse hooked up on a big river brown.  It drug him around for a while before we could finally get him in the net.  This fish reminded me there is more to netting a fish in current than stabbing at it with the basket.  Being patient and waiting for the prime opportunity to scoop it is key to not losing the fish and Mike Steiner (right) displayed some masterful technique.

brown troutThe look on Mike’s face says it all.  Fish like this don’t happen every day and to get one landed for a client is a really good feeling.  It’s nice to get reminded once in a while why we do this.

brown troutOne more of the hog brown’s release on my GoPro.  Such an great fish.  The sad part of this is I walked past this fish two days in a row and didn’t even know it.  Maybe next time I’ll be a little more thorough.

I’ve been a little busy and it’s been a little tough to adjust with the long days on the water with no days off so my posting has dropped off considerably.  I’ve got some new stuff in the works and will be doing some more cool stuff with the Benjamin Marauder.  200 yard pellet gun shots?  It’s looking that way.

New Fly Tying Video

My good friend Jared Plisko over at brooksbrownsandbows.com just uploaded his ice minnow tying video. Jared is a very talented fly tier and his videos never disappoint.  Bang up job, J-Rod.

Winter Weather Advisory Trout Part 2

wv brown troutI haven’t gotten to do too much lately because of the weather.  All of our streams in SW Pennsylvania are frozen in and the snow is way too deep to try and pheasant hunt.  Back in my home state of West Virginia, however, there is some really good fishing to be had.   [Read more…]

I Fish WV

fish wvHere’s your chance to show your West Virginia pride.  I FISH WV Tees.

 

Winter Storm Warning Trout Fishing

Not knowing a winter storm warning was in effect, my good friend Dustin Wichterman and I hit some high country West Virginia trout streams.  We fished two separate drainages and did pretty well considering the air temperature hovered in the mid twenties.  We mainly fished near spring seeps where the water was a little warmer and aside from some sketchy road conditions, we had a successful day.

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West Virginia brown trout

rt219While I’m on the water almost every day, my own fishing time is pretty limited.  When I do get a day off, most of the time is spent running errands or cutting the grass, leaving little time to go fish.  Yesterday evening I got a chance to head down to West Virginia and fish with a dear friend who really re-ignitied my love of fly fishing many years ago.

He lives in a wild trout paradise and we fished a stream not terribly far from his house.  While we saw several different mayflies hatching, nothing hatched consistently and we were mainly confined to nymph fishing.  I picked up several fish during the hike including a stud 22 inch brown right at dark.

It felt really good to be out in the big country again and fish some different water than what I’m on ever day.  The next time it rains and the creeks swell, I know exactly where I’m headed.

The first decent fish of the day.

The first decent fish of the day.

What a perfect fish to end an evening on.

What a perfect fish to end an evening on.