Fly tying: A Kinder, Gentler Mop fly

A crane fly larvae. Confession: I’ve never fished a “mop” fly, but I’ve seen Tim Flagler’s gawdy versions before and honestly couldn’t figure out a practical use for such horrific creations. Until now. As Tim demonstrates in this week’s video, the Kinder, Gentler Mop is a ringer for a crane fly larvae, a common bug … Read more

Fly tying: Get it Down Pat’s

About 15 years ago or so, I weaseled my way into the fly fishing competition when the ESPN Great Outdoor Games came to the Henry’s Fork. I managed to win the pre-competition casting accuracy event on the first day, but on a slow fishing day in April, I landed only a single trout—a 13-inch rainbow. … Read more

Fly tying: Ken’s Crystal Worm

I have the same discussion with a lot of different folks about this time every year. Are flies that imitate worms … ethical? My take? Absolutely. They mimic a naturally occuring prey base in rivers, lakes and streams all over America, and, with high flows approaching in some of our snow-locked rivers, worm patterns are … Read more

Fly tying: The Puff Daddy Blue-winged Olive

The warmer weather this February here in the West has a lot of us thinking about rising trout. What started as a brutal winter with record snowfall is kind of going out with a wimper—I can see the grass on the front lawn here in Idaho Falls for the first time since mid-December, and we’re … Read more

Fly tying: Koga’s Bonefish Shrimp

My first trip to chase bonefish several years back was a disaster. The Atlantic gales blew through the southern Bahamas, and bones were few and far between. I saw a few, got to cast to one or two and came home after a week without landing a single boneffish. It was horrible. But it steeled … Read more

Fly tying: The Navy Diver

I’ve always been a fan of tungsten in my fly tying. For some reason, I just tend to cast heavy nymphs and streamers better when the weight is at the fly, instead of pinched onto the line as split shot or paste. It’s a personal preference, I suspect, and it works for me. I especially … Read more

Fly tying: The Rusty Rat

When I first started tying my own flies, I became infatuated with Atlatic salmon flies, even though, in the heart of Colorado’s Arkansas Valley, there wasn’t an Atlantic salmon within 2,000 miles that wasn’t lyling flat on ice in a grocery store. There was just something about the art of it all. The colors. The … Read more

Fly tying: JC’s Skunk Pygmy Sculpin

I’m warming to streamer fishing for trout, but I’ll be the first to admit, I’m a late convert. My aversion to heaving heavy flies into deep water using sink-tips, shooting heads or full-on sinking lines could more aptly be described as an abhorance of the inconvenient. Throwing that much weight with heavy rods just seemed … Read more

Fly tying: Holy Grail Caddis Emerger

As I write this, I’m tucked into the lodge at Yelcho en la Patagonia in southern Chile, waiting out a torrential rainstorm and reflecting on a week of truly unique fly fishing. We’ve fished Lago Yelcho a number of times, and have floated the upper Rio Yelcho twice, enjoying some truly good fly fishing for … Read more