Sunday, December 15, 2013

Hershey....fishing not that sweet....

I'm at Hershey Park for the weekend with the family. I snuck off yesterday in the snowstorm to hit up a small trib with the Risen ITB I'm testing. It was very cold and the only fish I really saw did take a caddis pattern but got sawed off on the shelf ice at my feet. Awesome. Well, back to eating chocolate and watching the kids sit on Santa's lap again and again. Enjoy your Sunday.





Thursday, December 12, 2013

Back to the streamer box (and a new day 1 contest winner!)

Ed, the dude that won the day 1 one contest, I'm sorry man. You never got in touch and I can't find a valid email for you. I tried the various social networking sites with posts and you never came forward. That means Swamp Yankee is our new winner. Check out his blog, even if the name is a little um..interesting.

So yeah, send me your address man.

Moving on, I've been meaning to sit down and fill the streamer box this fall. Picked up some of these new fish masks to try out. I've loved fish skulls, but I find that throwing them on anything smaller than a 5/6 weight is scary. These give you the small, arguably nicer, look, without all the extra pounds. I could chuck one of these articulated beasts on easily on a 4/5 with an intermediate sink tip.

I only tied one articulated meaty monster so far, but I really like the way these things look.

Have you used them yet? any tips, tricks, suggestions?

Monday, December 9, 2013

I'm a film critic, a winner announcer, a drunk, and a fisherman.

So, I kind of ran out of steam with this whole contest thing. Admittedly, I got pretty drunk on Saturday night (more on that later) and I slacked on announcing the winner. I'm pleased to announce that my good buddy Dean over at Gin Clear won the Eat My Fly Outfitters shirt and hat giveaway.

As for contest Day 7....to be honest..I had something to give away. And now I can't find it. I think my kids stole it. But anyway, as soon as I find it, I'll post it. Or I'll just tie up a shit ton of flies to give away. Either way, Day 7 will happen. Just not today. You should all go enter Cameron's contest. He's got some pretty amazing stuff.

So yeah, back to Saturday. We had a friend's son's Bar Mitzvah at Citizens Bank Park on Saturday night. Shit got crazy. Like real crazy. We wound up hitting a few bars afterwards. I don't remember much, but the Philly Phanatic was raving out. It's always a scene when they turn a baseball stadium into a night club.

I did manage to get a little pickerel fishing in before we left. Only had a follow, but the peace and quiet was much needed to level myself before a night of insanity.


As I spent yesterday and today recovering (yes, hangovers last two days now that the late 30s is upon me) I watched a few fly fishing flicks.

First up, "The River Why". I want the two hours of my life back that I wasted on watching this shit movie. I read that someone said this film was going to rejuvenate fly fishing like "A River Runs Through It". Well, Buster did not want to fish. He wanted to watch 2 hours of no plot, HORRIBLE acting, and  a bunch of steelhead getting bonked on the head. I'm not even going to post a video clip of this film because it was so damn bad and I'm angry because I heard the book is great but this movie ruined it for me. I can't bring myself to read it now. The only reason to watch this movie is Amber Heard's beauty, but you can just google her instead. WTF was up with the  guy from The Walking Dead and his chair rocking dog? And the random nonsensical words that Gus mutters? Or the clay wrapped around the worm? I feel like you had to read the book to understand half the stuff that happens.

Next, Low and Clear. I wasn't expecting much from this film and I wouldn't exactly call it a fly fishing film. I'd called it "An Anti-Bromance that takes place on a BC Steelhead trip". If you want to watch the intricacies of a 25 year old relationship between two guys unfold in front of you while one gets skunked and the other slams fish all day, go for it.

In all honesty though, it wasn't bad. There are some beautiful fish caught, the scenery and music are both excellent, but I felt it does move a little slow. If you're expecting nonstop fish porn, go somewhere else. If you want some thinking man's fly fishing art house film, this is for you.



So yeah, keep an eye out for contest 7, and if you're the dude who won day 1, You have until tomorrow to claim it or I'm picking a new winner.


Seacrest out.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Day 6 giveaway - Eat My Fly Outfitters (and Day 5 winner)

Congrats to my homie Matt Koloch for winning yesterday's drawing from Strip'n Flywear!
Up today we have a long sleeve Catch and Release tee (Size L), along with a New Era Flex Fit cap from someone newer to the game called Eat My Fly Outfitters. This guy is out of NJ, and has some quality gear already available.  I was contacted by them to review their new Flex Fit caps and they graciously agreed to throw in a shirt for the giveaway.

These caps are solid. I have a gigantic sized skull (Wear a size 8 fitted hat) and the L/XL flex fit cap fit me just fine. They have the look of a decent trucker hat that most of you fly fishing types love so much, yet the flex fit mesh protects your head from wind, sun, etc. WIN-WIN in my book. The stitching is top quality on the front and the brim has a slight curve to it. You'll look like a sexy beast on the water! It is the season of giving, so I'm going to give away the hat along with the tee! (reel in picture not even included so don't even go there!)

By now...you know the drill..


Rules:
1.you will get one entry in the drawing for commenting on each giveaway post. For every FB share, tweet, or Instagram post about it, you'll get another entry. My Facebook account link is at the top of this page for easy access to sharing.. You can find me on twitter via @dubthethorax and Instagram via @mike_phazeone. I originally didn't say anything about G+ but what the hell, tis' the season, right?

 2.You can only comment once here so make sure you include where you shared this in your comment.

 3. The maximum amount of entries is four per comment. (Comment examples-"Hi this is John Fisherman, I shared on twitter via @jfish, shared your FB post, and tagged you in my instagram photo" - He just earned himself 4 entries)

4.Please only post ONCE and list everywhere you shared this. If you have problems posting, please email me or post on the DTT facebook wall so I can count your post.

 5.This contest will run until 12am EST. I will assign everyone entry numbers and use a random number generator to choose the winner tomorrow.

 6.if you're outside the continental US, shipping costs may apply.

7.Bonus entries for today - Make a blog post on your blog about this and get an additional entry, which means you can max out at 5 entries.



Friday, December 6, 2013

Day 5 Giveaway - Strip'n Flywear Shirt (and Day 4 winner!)

First off, congrats to Garrett over at Fumbling The Fly for winning the Tailwaters book. Send me your address!

For today, the crew from Strip'n Flywear are back again this year with a free T-shirt. This one is the Streamer junkie, for all you guys who love to toss big chunks of chicken at monster browns. You can pick the size of your shirt. You should all head over and check out their designs. They aren't for the tweed wearing crew. I have the Obey Spey and the Beasties shirt and I love them. They are heavyweight Hanes cotton tees with minimal shrinkage so they will last a long time.



Rules:
1.you will get one entry in the drawing for commenting on each giveaway post. For every FB share, tweet, or Instagram post about it, you'll get another entry. My Facebook account link is at the top of this page for easy access to sharing.. You can find me on twitter via @dubthethorax and Instagram via @mike_phazeone. I originally didn't say anything about G+ but what the hell, tis' the season, right?

 2.You can only comment once here so make sure you include where you shared this in your comment.

 3. The maximum amount of entries is four per comment. (Comment examples-"Hi this is John Fisherman, I shared on twitter via @jfish, shared your FB post, and tagged you in my instagram photo" - He just earned himself 4 entries)

4.Please only post ONCE and list everywhere you shared this. If you have problems posting, please email me or post on the DTT facebook wall so I can count your post.

 5.This contest will run until 12am EST. I will assign everyone entry numbers and use a random number generator to choose the winner tomorrow.

 6.if you're outside the continental US, shipping costs may apply.

7.Bonus entries for today - Make a blog post on your blog about this and get an additional entry, which means you can max out at 5 entries.





Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Day 4 Giveaway - 50 Best Tailwaters Book by Stonefly Press (and Day 3 winner!)

Up first, the winner for our Day 3 contest....You guys and gals were WAY OFF!!! There was a total of 404 bottle caps in the fish! (and believe me, it was not fun to count it twice.) This means our winner is DonFishin! (This also means I drink a lot) Congrats Don.

So for day 4, we have The 50 Best Tailwaters to Fly Fish by Terry and Wendy Gunn from Stonefly Press.


This book was provided to me to review and I thought it would make a nice giveaway. Then I started to really read it and I immediately regret my decision to give it away. I think I'm honestly going to buy another one.

Unfortunately where I live ,there are not many opportunities for tailwater fishing, but I have experienced it a few times on some small streams on the Pocono Mountains. There's nothing like wet wading in water that's only 55 degrees with prolific insect activity in 90 degree heat. This book celebrates that, and shows you the best places in the country to do it. This isn't a typical fly fishing how-to book that covers the basics. They cover the details on every single tailwater, including great stretches, flies to use, hatches, access points, and even lodging. I think my favorite part is the section that tells you where to get a stiff drink near each of these waters.

This is a nice sized coffee table book, and yet extremely informative. The photography is amazing, and you'll probably recognize a few familiar faces in it. I especially liked the section on the Upper Delaware, which I plan to fish this spring.



50 Best Tailwaters to Fly Fish from Kitchen Sink Studios ®, INC. on Vimeo.

If you don't win this contest, do yourself a favor and pick up this book.


Rules:
1.you will get one entry in the drawing for commenting on each giveaway post. For every FB share, tweet, or Instagram post about it, you'll get another entry. My Facebook account link is at the top of this page for easy access to sharing.. You can find me on twitter via @dubthethorax and Instagram via @mike_phazeone. I originally didn't say anything about G+ but what the hell, tis' the season, right?

 2.You can only comment once here so make sure you include where you shared this in your comment.

 3. The maximum amount of entries is four per comment. (Comment examples-"Hi this is John Fisherman, I shared on twitter via @jfish, shared your FB post, and tagged you in my instagram photo" - He just earned himself 4 entries)

4.Please only post ONCE and list everywhere you shared this. If you have problems posting, please email me or post on the DTT facebook wall so I can count your post.

 5.This contest will run until 12am EST. I will assign everyone entry numbers and use a random number generator to choose the winner tomorrow.

 6.if you're outside the continental US, shipping costs may apply.

7.Bonus entries for today - Make a blog post on your blog about this and get an additional entry, which means you can max out at 5 entries.

Day 3 Contest- Flies, Tying Material, and those Sticker things (And Day 2 winner announced!)

First off, congrats to Jordan Viveiros! You won the Infantry Co. watch from yesterday's drawing!
Thanks to everyone who's commented, shared, etc. Social media must be angry with me by now!

On to day 3. Today, we have an assortment of flies, materials, and stickers.

I sat down at the vise last night and whipped up half a dozen flies. There are 3 AZ Mini Hoppers, and 3 Beetle terrestrials, all made with my racing stripe foam. 

I've also include 15 (3 of each color) stacked Chernobyl bodies. These were handmade by me and helped me slaughter everything from trout to bass to bluefish this summer. Tie whatever you want with them, and be sure to send me some pics. I'd love to see what you come up with.

I've also included some sticker love from Uprising, Alaska Fly Shop, High on the Fly, Hardy, Risen Fly, and yours truly. 

As for the contest, let's do something a little different today. I have a giant glass fish sitting at my bar in the basement. Over the last year or so, my friends and I (well, who am I kidding..mostly me) have been feeding the fish with beer caps. For today's contest, the person who guesses the the closest number of bottle caps in the fish WITHOUT GOING OVER wins the package above.

Ground Rules:
1.This contest will end at exactly 12am EST. Any entries past that point will not count.
2.You get one guess just for commenting. Social media sharing is  also still in effect. For each social media share you have, you get an extra guess. You can get a total of 5 guesses. (Acceptable sharing includes Facebook, Instagram, G+, Twitter, and a post on your blog.) 
3.Make sure you tag me in your social media share. You can find the FB page on the link up top, twitter at @dubthethorax, and Instagram at @mike_phazeone. For your blog post, leave a link to your blog in your comment.
4.You may only comment once. Please include everywhere you shared, and your blog URL in the comment. Then include your guesses.
5.In the case of a tie, I have something up my sleeve.
6.Remember that if you go over the correct amount, you lose.

Good luck and let the games begin.  Now I'm going to have some pancakes and go fishing, although I wish it were these type of pancakes.



Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Day 1 Winner Announced and Contest #2 - Infantry Co. Watch n' stickers - Sign up and win!


First up, the winner of yesterday's contest. The random number generator at random.org came up with 14! That means. our winner is...

ED VANOVER!! 



Ed, please use the email link on the side to send me your address.

Now for today's giveaway - Us outdoor types do like the color green for some reason. I have a green military reissue watch from Infantry Co.  It's got GID arms, stainless steel back, and the band is canvas on the outside, and comfy leather on the inside so it feels nice to wear. I have one of these as well and I've been testing it for the past few weeks. I dig it so far. It will also impress the ladies. (well...depending on the type of ladies you're after..) I'll also throw in some sticker swag from me, and various other fishy friends.hihinng friends.


Rules:
1.you will get one entry in the drawing for commenting on each giveaway post. For every FB share, tweet, or Instagram post about it, you'll get another entry. My Facebook account link is at the top of this page for easy access to sharing.. You can find me on twitter via @dubthethorax and Instagram via @mike_phazeone. I originally didn't say anything about G+ but what the hell, tis' the season, right? 

2.You can only comment once here so make sure you include where you shared this in your comment.  

3. The maximum amount of entries is four per comment. (Comment examples-"Hi this is John Fisherman, I shared on twitter via @jfish, shared your FB post, and tagged you in my instagram photo" - He just earned himself 4 entries)

4.Please only post ONCE and list everywhere you shared this.  If you have problems posting, please email me or post on the DTT facebook wall so I can count your post.

5.This contest will run until 12am EST. I will assign everyone entry numbers and use a random number generator to choose the winner tomorrow. 

6.if you're outside the continental US, shipping costs may apply.

7.Bonus entries for today - Make a blog post on your blog about this and get an additional entry, which means you can max out at 5 entries.

Revisiting the worm

If you don't remember or you're new here, last winter I came up with a meal worm imitation that drove the fish bonkers.

I must have tied about 300 of them for orders for people. Well, I'm starting to get orders again, and get asked about how they are made. I just thought repost this, especially for our new readers. Here is a video tutorial I made on tying them. All you need is some lead, some thick mono, a rubber glove, and a few markers. Sally Hansens can be substituted for the Clear Cure Goo. Enjoy.



Monday, December 2, 2013

3 Year Giveaway Day 1 - Risen Fly

Here we go. Day 1! Ryan over at RisenFly has kindly donated the blue digital camo buff seemless  breathable headwear and one of his slim flyboxes. I'm kind of jealous. I really like this flybox. Stickers will be thrown in as well.

If you haven't checked out Risen yet, you really should. I'm currently testing out their new ITB fly rods and I love my 5 weight so far! Also, I've been fishing their Ichthus reel for almost a year now and I'ts held up like a champion.


Rules:
1.you will get one entry in the drawing for commenting on each giveaway post. For every FB share, tweet, or Instagram post about it, you'll get another entry. My Facebook account link is at the top of this page for easy access to sharing.. You can find me on twitter via @dubthethorax and Instagram via @mike_phazeone 

2.You can only comment once here so make sure you include where you shared this in your comment.  

3. The maximum amount of entries is four per comment. (Comment examples-"Hi this is John Fisherman, I shared on twitter via @jfish, shared your FB post, and tagged you in my instagram photo" - He just earned himself 4 entries)

4.There seems to have been some confusion for the bonus entry yesterday. There was a lot of sharing going in. That being said, I'll still count it all towards today's contest!

5.This contest will run until 12am EST. I will assign everyone entry numbers and use a random number generator to choose the winner tomorrow. 

6.if you're outside the continental US, shipping costs may apply. 


You must comment here to have any of your shares, tweets, etc counted and I must be tagged in them.Ready...set...go!


Sunday, December 1, 2013

Well, that was fun.

It was a good day.

3 year giveaway - Rules and prizes announced!

It's Sunday morning and I'm about to go fishing for the day, so I'll make this quick. We have 7 days of worth of giveaways, starting tomorrow 12/2. Here are the rules.



Rules:
1.you will get one entry in the drawing for commenting on each giveaway post. For every FB share, tweet, or Instagram post about it, you'll get another entry. My Facebook account link is at the top of this page for easy access to sharing.. You can find me on twitter via @dubthethorax and Instagram via @mike_phazeone 

2.You can only comment once here so make sure you include where you shared this in your comment.  

3. The maximum amount of entries is four per comment. (Comment examples-"Hi this is John Fisherman, I shared on twitter via @jfish, shared your FB post, and tagged you in my instagram photo" - He just earned himself 4 entries)

4.Those who share this post get an extra entry for tomorrow's giveaway. Comment away.

5.This contest will run until 12am EST. I will assign everyone entry numbers and use a random number generator to choose the winner tomorrow. 

6.if you're outside the continental US, shipping costs may apply. 

That's about it. Now for the good stuff! Here is a list of the giveaways.

Monday 12/2 - Ryan over at RisenFly has kindly donated the blue digital camo buff seemless  breathable headwear and one of his slim flyboxes. I'm kind of jealous. I really like this flybox. Stickers will be thrown in as well.



Tuesday 12/3 - Us outdoor types do like the color green for some reason. I have a green military reissue watch from Infantry Co.  It's got GID arms, stainless steel back, and the band is canvas on the outside, and comfy leather on the inside so it feels nice to wear. I have one of these as well and I've been testing it for the past few weeks. I dig it so far. It will also impress the ladies. (well...depending on the type of ladies you're after..) I'll also throw in some sticker swag.

Wednesday 12/4- I'm going to leave this one a mystery. It may or may not include flies, tying material, and a stack of various stickers. 


Thursday 12/5- The crew over at Strip'n Flywear are back again this year and are donating one of their newest designs, the Thingamabeer short sleeve Tee.
Friday 12/6 - Stonefly Press sent me a copy of "The 50 Best Tailwaters to Fish" to review. I'm about 75% through it and it's one of the most informative FF books I've come across. Look for a full review later this week. I hate to part with it, but since I appreciate all my readers, I'm going to let it go.


Saturday 12/7 - Eat My Fly Outfitters have graciously donated their New Era Flex Fit Cap and a Catch and Release LS Tee (Size Large).

Sunday 12/8 - Mystery Prize part 2 - I'm not telling...just yet.
                          


Start sharing and drumming up entries. As I mentioned earlier, every entry I receive will mean .25 donated to Rescue.org for the Phillipines Typhoon support.


Friday, November 29, 2013

Well, I've made it 3 years. I celebrate by fishing (and doing a giveaway!)

3 years ago today, I started this blog. I can't believe I still have it going. I've slacked off here and there with posting during the warmer months, but I always somehow manage to find my way back to it once the chill sets in. I'd like to thank everyone who has read, commented, and shared my posts. I greatly appreciate the support and the kind words over the years.

I'm keeping up with the birthday giveaway tradition again this year. (If you weren't around last year, here is the original post). It won't be as good as Cameron's, but we have some nice stuff lined up from:

Risen Fly Co.
Stonefly Press
Strip'n Flywear
Eat My Fly
and more, including some sweet flies, stickers, etc.

Check back this weekend for full contest information. I'll also be donating a quarter for each contest entry I receive towards aid for the Philippines. The more people who sign up, the more I donate.

Anyway, I've been warming up the vise again recently and whipped up a few dozen various old and new midge patterns.


I celebrated the 3 year anniversary by hitting the LL in the cold with only about 90 minutes of light left in the day. All I'm going to say is........WOOOHOOOO.



Also, just to jump on my soapbox really quick, dirty jeans are a small price to pay for not wading through the water and damaging the habitat. Don't wade if you don't have to. :)


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

The internet vs. fly fishing

So, I was at a local fly shop today and wound up having an almost hour-long conversation with the owner. This guy has been around. He knows all the fly fishing legends, and has a bamboo collection that would make your jaw drop. He's from the old school, before people were instantly posting their massive catches on Instagram and Facebook. (guilty, I know..) Over the past few years, I've been stopping by there, spending money on materials, and shooting the shit, and I got to know him rather well.

So anyway, we got to talking about the current state of fly fishing. He knows I have a blog and whatnot and he said "No offense, but I think all this bullshit on the internet killed fly fishing." I think a lot of other bloggers, and people who frequent forums and comment on the Orvis Fly Fishing Film Friday posts would be butt-hurt, but honestly, I get it. He said he sees younger people coming in, bragging about this and that, and asking to test cast some rods. He watches them go outside and they can barely do a standard cast, yet their iPhone is full of Steelhead pictures from Pulaski. He also mentioned he'll see someone who is well versed in the sport comment on an ignorant post (as in... uninformed)  from some newbie on a message board, and get flamed to death for it.  I've kind of noticed the same thing.

I'm not someone who has been involved in the sport for two decades, and the only real reason I started this blog was to chronicle my fishing trips and look at my progress with fly tying. All of a sudden, people started to read it. That's cool and I appreciate the following, but sometimes I think all of us need to take a step back and remember that it's just about getting out of the house and maybe catching some fish.

It's not all about tying the hottest pattern with all the new synthetic czech materials and posting it online. It's not about catching a 25 inch brown and keeping it out of the water for 4 minutes to get that "perfect photo". It's not about the hero shot with the 20 lb steelhead you caught on the swing, and definitely not about 40 retweets on your amazing tweet about some fishing story.

It's about the zen you get from a cold beer, a hook in the vise, and some good music playing as you first pick up the bobbin after a long day. It's about the first signs of spring, and average sized wild browns rising to olives under a hanging tree that's just starting to bud. It's about sharing fishing stories over a few lukewarm beers in the parking lot after a day of slow fishing. It's about that perfect solitude in the dead of winter and catching half a dozen rising fish on dry midges yet no one else will venture outside because it's 20 degrees and snowing, and also about getting a bad farmer's tan while getting eaten alive by Mosquitos on a hot summer afternooon but not leaving because the Bass keep smashing poppers.

Posting massive hero shots and Go Pro videos, or taking over a fly fishing message board, might make you f*cking awesome on the internet, and if that's what you wanna do, go for it. But maybe this generation (including myself) need to occasionally step back and remember what fly fishing is about. It's not about 100 likes on Instagram. It's not about 2000 followers on Twitter. It's about fooling a fish. Remember that, and I guarantee you'll enjoy it much more.

I've definitely slacked off on my blogging over the last year, as have a few of my fellow bloggers. This can't be controlled. Kids and work happen and sometimes there's just not enough time to fish or post. I had a conversation with another fellow blogger who slowed down his posting as well at the Somerset Fly Tying show on the weekend and we both noticed that it doesn't matter if we stop posting because there will be 10 other new fly fishing blogs to take our place. I think it's great that people want to share their fishing experiences but I just want to say.......Take heed of what I said above and you will have a much better time, and a much more enjoyable blog to read.

Sorry for the ramble. I may or may not have had a few too many beers this afternoon. Enjoy the gluttony tomorrow.


Friday, November 22, 2013

November Late Night Triple Play

I got home from work and had a nice package waiting for me. The crew over at Risen Fly sent me a prototype of their new ITB fly rods to test out. These aren't even on the market yet so I was excited to give it a go.


I've been out about 10 out of the last 15 nights in search of big carp at night and I've quite  a few hookups but nothing landed. That changed last night.

I tied up a big tandem egg fly pattern and hit the stream around 9pm. It was still 50 degrees so I knew they'd be more active than earlier in the week when the temps were freezing. It didn't take long until I was giving this new rod a solid workout. I had this thing bent almost in half and had 3 runs into backing and it held up like a champion. This 9-10 lber was my reward for the 10 minute fight.



Usually when I land a big fish at night, the rest are so spooked that the run under the street lights turns into a ghost town. I was surprised when I saw a pod of suckers moving up quickly after releasing the carp.
 I saw one shape that seemed a little darker and was moving a little different. Could it be a trout? The closest stocking point to here was about a mile downstream, or half a mile upstream, which was separated by a big dam so I didn't think so, but I gave it a swing anyway. 10 seconds later, BAM...a fat stocked rainbow is on the end of my line.


The pod of fish still wasn't spooked so I figured I'd swing my egg pattern through the pod again. I wound up hitting two suckers in a row and decided to call it a night.

I know the quality of the pictures is not the greatest. Hard to get a good shot in the pitch black when you're sliding around on wet leaves. It was a hell of a fun night and I look forward to testing out this rod some more this weekend. Look for a full review coming soon.

Also, in case you're interested, DTT stickers are back in stock! They are available in the fly shop section. As an added bonus, All orders of 3 or more stickers will get a free fly hand tied by yours truly. Can't beat that! I'll also have some on hand tomorrow at the Fly Tying Symposium in Somerset NJ if you're interested. They are free if you buy me a beer :)
Click here to get some.