Posted by & filed under Fishing Stories.

The ANGLER magazinePublished in the January 2017 issue of Western North Carolina Edition of The ANGLER magazine

It’s January, Happy New Year! I hope the holidays were good to you. The beginning of the year gives most of us a chance to organize the fly box, add some new equipment to the arsenal, and get excited for the new year to come. All this preparation is great, but one of the most important things you need to do when either dry fly fishing or nymphing, is to be sure you have a good mend and are drag free. What is the MEND: “The act of moving your fly line during the drift, to create a specific presentation on the fly.”

While there are many different types of mending, I would like to discuss implementing a good drift, to my first time fly fishing clients.

Most of the people I talk to that have never fly fished before, always say to me, “Isn’t that hard to do? I think I would wrap the line around my body while trying to cast the line.” While they are telling me how hard they think it is, they always bring their arm back and forth in a motion that looks like 3-4 false casts. When I explain that there is an application for that type of casting, however, what we would do is a more simple approach. For all my first time fly fishing clients, I like to introduce them to nymph fishing.

I begin by explaining what we are trying to achieve, when casting the line a little up stream, letting the current take the line and indicator down stream. Once the line is in front of them, I explain that the flies we are using are just about to reach the bottom, and we don’t want to disturb the indicator or flies. This is where we need to mend the line up stream and get a good drift. Without it, chances of catching a fish are minimal. At first, they cast and try mending, most time to soon, or they move the flies and indicator. After a few failed attempts, they always say, “Here, show me.” So I proceed to explain what I am doing while I go through the motions. About 75% of the time, I catch a fish. Now they are believers. Because they are new to the sport, they never follow a routine. Here is what I have been successful doing:

I tell them to just keep it simple and repeat a drag free drift. CAST, follow your line, throw a MEND, another mend, Kick out some line, and a final MEND. Somewhere in that routine, we end up hooking into a fish (providing I have the right fly, correct depth, and the perfect weight) Once they repeat and have success, their confidence grows. I mean, step back and let them go, especially on the set. Oh my goodness, in the beginning they usually just pull the line up stream. After we have been together for an hour, they are setting down stream like a pro. It’s so much fun when it all comes together. (By the way ~ the women are easier to teach because they listen. The guys, well, are guys.)

This is just one of many different types of mending. Here are a few others:

  • Cross Stream Mending * Quarter Downstream Mending * Downstream Mending
  • Reach Cast * Slack Line Cast * Parachute Cast * High Sticking

I believe 2017 will be another great year for fishing in Western North Carolina. I hope to see you on the river. I know you will be catching more fish, MEND away.

Posted by & filed under Fishing Stories.

(sung to the melody of “My Way” by Frank Sinatra)

And now, the end is near;
And so I face, my final Food Show
My Friend, I’ll say it clear,
Sold my last case, of which I’m certain

I lived, a Broker’s life,
I’ve traveled each and every highway;
No More, No More of this

Power Points, I’ve done a few
But then again, too few to mention,
I did what I had to do
Presented them, without apprehension

I planned each vendor’s course
Each careful step along with KeHE
No More, No More of this

Yes there were times, I said Oooh Son
When I bit off more than I should have done
But through it all, when there was doubt
I found a way to work it out
I faced it all and I stood tall

I’ve loved, laughed and cried
I’ve had my share of Broker meetings
And now, as years subside
I find that they were all amusing

To think, I loved them all
And may I say, in a big way
Oh ya, it was for me, but

For what is a Broker, what has he got,
If not his lines, then he has not
To say the things, he truly feels
To the buyer’s face – you know how I feel
The record shows, I took some blows

Posted by & filed under Fishing Stories.

I plan on writing a series of Fishing stories for The ANGLER. The first one I am submitting is The Carbonaro Effect.

The story starts out after I had an extremely good day of fishing the Tuckaseigee River in Dillsboro, NC. Heading home late that evening, I saw a car parked in one of the pull-offs next to the “Tuck”. I stopped to introduce myself and ask how the fishing was for them. Quincy Thayer introduced herself and her two sons, Jake (17) and Bryce (12). She said, “We’ve been here for over 2 hours and we haven’t gotten a bite.” I said that I could show them what I would do if I were fishing here.

I went to my car and took out my fly rod and we all proceeded to the river bank. I explained that I was going to throw my line up stream and let it drift down the river’s current. On my first cast I caught a 12” Rainbow Trout. HOW DID YOU DO THAT! THAT’S CRAZY! IT WAS LIKE MAGIC! HOW DID YOU DO THAT! I said, “Did you ever hear of the Carbonaro Effect. I’m a magician. I have a TV show called The Carbonaro Effect. Look across the river. Do you see the camera?” NO… (LOL)

Well, it wasn’t magic, and we are not on TV. I was just lucky to have the right flies and the perfect drift, I explained. Quincy said they only have one day left before they go back to Florida, and wanted to know if I could show Jake how to fly fish.

So she hired me for the next day. I decided to bring the family to the upper section of the Tuck, where Jake and I proceed to enter the river. After a few practice casts, Jake was ready to fly fish for the first time. I picked a nice section of the river and the fish were ready to play. One after another, Jake kept pulling them in. I asked Quincy if she would like to try her luck. It didn’t take long for her to start catching fish. In fact, she hooked and landed a 20” Rainbow! A trophy fish. Next, I hear Jake yelling, “I got a big one!” He was right. An 18” Rainbow. How could this get any better? Let’s not forget Bryce, who was sitting in the car watching all of this happen.

I left the river and told him I brought an extra set of waders and boots that should fit him perfectly. Long story short, he also caught a 18″ Rainbow. All three have made The Blue Chip Fly Fishing Wall of Fame.

I’m glad I stopped to meet the Thayer family. I believe that our time together helped to make their trip here to Jackson, County, a memorable one. The Thayers tell me they are still talking about this trip. I’m sure they will be back to visit us!

The Carbonaro Effect is a TV show, staring Michael Carbonaro. He is an actor, comedian and magician. I wish he was there, at that moment, when Quincy said, HOW DID YOU DO THAT! I felt like a magician, too!