Winter and nothing to do but write and tie flies.
The lack of content on this blog of late has been a result of a total lack of fishing, tricky to get motivated or to have something to rant about when you haven’t been on the water. More so when half the world is in the middle of their fishing season and the only result of reading magazines is envy. Not an honorable subject for a blog. If you have seen the latest edition of Fly Life you will understand the envy issue, those fish are so big as to upset the most level headed.
Still I have been trying to follow some of the competition scene; South Africa did well in the World Championships, getting their best placing ever I think, and finishing fifth. Sounds as though they were touch and go for a bronze medal up to the end but if you have ever fished a competition like this you know that it isn’t over until the fat lady sings.
The Commonwealth Championships also saw the SA men’s team take a fifth place and the Aussies get a gold. This is something of an achievement because to my mind in many ways the “out of towners” that is the New Zealanders, the South Africans and the Aussies have more of a disadvantage at the Commonwealths much of the time. They are fishing against teams who virtually regard the venues as home waters and they do a good deal more boat fishing than the Oceana crews do. So a great result for the Aussies. Well done.
Alas the ladies teams of both South Africa and Scotland were lying at the bottom of the log, it seems a great pity but I know that they don’t get a heap of help from the men most of the time and they don’t have quite the experience levels that many of the male teams do. I was particularly interested in the SA ladies team as I had some vested interest and had tried to offer some assistance prior to their departure. The South Africans got the Friendship trophy again, nice but I think that it is about time that we thrashed a few teams and annoyed a few people; the consensus is obviously that we can afford to be friendly because we aren’t a threat. 🙂
Still from my past experience the Commonwealths is really a friendly if at the same time highly competitive championship, and to my mind shows that one can have both without the loss of either. After all fishing is supposed to be fun at least most of the time, wet waders, cold hands and hooks in the ear are enough you don’t need to be unfriendly as well.
New E book published.
I have for a long time enjoyed playing with fishing flies and in particular as a fishing guide trying to both maximize their efficacy whist at the same time minimizing their complexity. As a result of experimentation and lots of thrashing over a hot vice there are some ideas which seem to have stuck and perhaps the most useful is the modernization of the way I tie parachute fly patterns. So recently I added another short e book to my collection at Smashwords on tying parachutes that are more durable, quicker to manufacture and quite possibly more imitative at the same time.
There are still many anglers who don’t particularly like parachute patterns and don’t necessarily understand their advantages. They probably do however understand their disadvantages, they tend to fall to bits the commercial ones are almost always overdressed and some methods of manufacture require specialized tools and different techniques. In my most recently published booklet, which is available to download for free I cover some of these problems and demonstrate an easy and durable means of whipping these flies out by the dozen in short order.
“Who Packed Your Parachute” is a short booklet that can be downloaded in a variety of formats from pdf file to Kindle editions and provides both text and illustrations on how I tie parachutes and hopefully provides some useful information for those who would like to do the same with more efficiency and durability built in.
You can download your own copy from Smashwords by clicking here.
In case you haven’t seen it there is another free e book (well it is really more of a fact sheet than a book but still) on the same site on building your own fly fishing lanyard and you are of course most welcome to download that as well you can get hold of it by clicking the front page image below.
I am supposedly going to get on the water next week at a commercial lodge, the fishing isn’t likely to be the best, I far prefer rivers to dams but the rivers are all closed and the dam fishing there is bank based on a relatively small bit of water. Still any port in a storm and it will be a pleasure to unleash a fly line again, no matter the water.
For now the sun is still shining, the river season is getting closer and there is still enough time to tie up some flies for the fishing and guiding season without having to rush things too much. The winter solstice is passed and we should be on the home run to the river season. In reality probably not, the worst of the winter storms generally come in after this point in the calendar and just because the club says that we will be able to fish in September doesn’t mean that the meteorologists will agree, either way it is something to which to look forward.