Sunday, April 13, 2014

To Spey or to Switch?

I would like to point out some obvious things that I have learned in my short time using both types of fly rods.  The size, depth, and the fish you are after are going to govern your choice of weapon.

Many techniques are utilized by both fly rods.  A two-handed rod will not make you a better caster off the bat.  If you are getting a two-handed fly rod because the rod is 12 feet long and your a below average caster you are in for a rude awakening.  A lot of folks out there have this idea if my fly rod was longer I could cast farther.   This would be true if you have above average casting mechanics.

I am far from a professional, but this is just some of the things I have figured out on my own.

Ask yourself the following questions:

1. What casting style will I use primarily with this rod?
A Skagit
B Scandinavian
2. How much of an upfront investment do I need, want, or have make?
A. It is from my experience you get what you pay for, but with that being said you can get a great rod for around 350 - 500 dollars.  You are buying the warranty remember that
3. What is going to me my primary rivers or creek I will use this rod on?
4. What is going to be the target species with this rod?
5. What are the depths I want to fish at?
6. What size patterns do I want to throw?
7. There are plenty of reasons to and not to spend a bunch of money on a set up
A How often will I use it

B If you want to be commited to the 2 hander  better equipment would be a good choice.

C If your significant other does not own anything close to the price tag of some of your gear.

D The rivers or creeks you fish are not wide enough to cover the water with a two handed rod.

E You see this as a fad and you simply think it will go away.
8 Lets talk reels wow this will confuse most people.   You need a reel that has a huge line capacity rating.  You need to go look at some Skagit and Scandinavian lines.   These heads are huge and can be 20 to 40 feet long and have a diameter of 3/16 to almost 3/8 of an inch.  These are tapered but they still take up a lot of room.   Make sure it's high capacity and you can load all you want on it.   I have accidentally balanced my 13'-9" Spey rod with a Galvan T-12 and 675 grain head with a shooting line accompanied by 200 yards of backing. When I put a 15' section of T-17 it's loaded and balances with my rod go figure.   This is the exception and not the norm.

You will i can almost guarantee you will catch less fish and appreciate it when you do catch a fish.   There are so many variables to consider when using a two handed rod that you need to consider when using a single hander.  For instance you want to find where the holding lies are for fish.  The little fish are going to be not where the apex preditors are, but where they can find shelter.   Not to say they can't be picky, but the fish I am after are the grandma and grandpa fishes! If I use a 12" bunny leech that is going to take some serious grain weight to even cast it like 750 grains to 1000 grains depending on the rod.  If I want to skate dries I can use a line for that could be much lighter 600 grains to 800 grains.   So there is a slippery slope here of information.   In lining a switch rod you must pay close attention to the grain weight window and not the rod weight rating on the rod.   A weight forward line on a 7 weight switch rod will need to be a 9 or a 10 weight line.  This has all to do with the grain weight window and not the weight rating of line.   Well folks if you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.

Be well,


Saturday, March 1, 2014

Hang in there folks!

I apologize to all my followers of this blog its been so long since I casted a fly rod I may not remember how, but restashured spring is coming!

Hang in there folks,


Sunday, November 10, 2013

Tought Provoking!

I have to chuckle! If you have fished for pelletheads for any length of time you have no doubt fished in Pennsylvania at least once.  They stock over a million smolts in a piece of state that you can cross it traveling at 65 mile per hour in 50 minutes.  These fish are easy to catch, and they are there to kill.  Unlike the majority of the other surrounding states these fish have several miles of river to run.  Most of Pennsylvania’s Lake Erie tributaries are short with the exception of Conneaut Creek, Elk Creek, and 20 Mile Creek.  These creeks have several miles of river they can swim up into.
Yes like in all states on the Great Lakes you see some horrible angling ethics.  People kick fish, touch gill rakers, and snag fish.  With Pennsylvania stocking over a million smolts a year “I can’t seem to find the true stocking numbers for Pennsylvania, but I know it’s over a million”.   I did fish Pennsylvania a lot for trout, pelletheads, Pike, and Smallmouth Bass.  I learned how to read water and to find fish.  I did learn about entomology, and what separates good water from bad.  I did make some good friends over there, but of course this was back in the mid-nineties.  People where just figuring out how to use the internet.  We never saw what was coming the dawn of the “spoonfed era”.  People would just be able to point and click to get answers or troll the net look at pictures to find fishing spots.  This would turn the fishing world on its ear.  More folks would call themselves guides and charge an insane amount of money to go pellethead fishing.  
I learned how to fish with a bobber and lead on my fly rod, and later learn much later how to double hand cast.  There is a progression of growth for some in fishing.

Do you remember fishing with a cane pole?  Do you remember your first Zebco Reel? Do you remember soaking the lawn down with water to catch night crawlers to go fishing for the next day?  Do you remember bringing home a stringer of fish and waiting for your mom or dad to show you how to clean them.  Heck the first fish I ever caught was an enormous Bluegill and my Mom said we have to clean it.  It was sitting in the sink with water in it so I grabbed the bar of soap and gave it a bath! LOL Wow back in the day!

I would not pick up a fly rod until 1993.  I would continue to hone my fly fishing craft from Maine to Michigan.  In all this time I never thought I was better than anyone else so I ask some of you “why do you have an air about yourself that tends to make other people believe you are better than others?”. 
It should not matter to anyone the technique you fish by, or the gear you fish with.  As long as its legal it should not matter should it?  Why would it matter the clothes you wear while fishing?  I started out using rubber waders and sweating my ass off.  I also wore several holes in my waders. 
I have several points for writing this entry.  Why do we not rise above it all and not see that most of us are not the same, but we enjoy the same activity?  Why can’t we as a group make the sport better?


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Washington, D.C. Trip 2013 - The Great Shutdown

17th of October my partner, and her kids headed to Washington, D.C. for 4 days.  I was to take charge of the little people for four days.  I hope I could survive!  With everything that was closed to figure out where to go was a little tough.

We went to the National Building Museum I was more excited about this than the kids.  We have built some really cool things here in the good ole United States of America.  I thought I was going to be overwhelmed by all the exhibits and static displays.  I’m estimating but out of the 600 rooms 20 of them are occupied.  I was so beside myself when I saw this.  There was no shred of evidence we constructed and bridges, highways, or other buildings than the model of the Chrysler building  “they had a scaled model there. 

They did have some nice exhibits, but nowhere did it come close to the advancements in building advancements in this great nation.  I know it’s not a big draw like the Smithsonian or the National Zoo.  It rained on us for  2.5 days straight I thought I was going to have to build an arc! Our hotel was close to the Pentagon. 

We ate really well, and stayed in Alexandria, Virginia.  While there we ate at a place called Kabob Palace this place rocks! Great Food and you probably will not finish whats all on your plate.    I took the little people to luch at a very dear place in my heart call The Hamburger Hamlet they have several locations this was in Crystal City .  I did not take them to my all-time favorite location which is in Georgetown. The days with the little people gave me a whole different perspective on single parents! 

We did also go to the National Geographic Museum.  I was quickly reminded how bad traffic gets and how annoying parking is if you’re not a local!  There are plenty of one way streets and they take you way out of your way! Lol The little people enjoyed the photographs! They had an exhibit that was about the female professional photographers from all over the world.

Later the rain stopped and we walked around the Lincoln Memorial Reflecting Pool.  Needless to say they were worn out after that!  I was to whom I’m I kidding.  Well enjoy the photos.  I hope to be on the water soon!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Relax breath and be mindful!

Hello yes I’m still alive! Sorry but being back at work has kept me busy, and so busy in fact I have not really thought about fishing.  In working with my childhood issues that I have brought to my adult life is seeing a lot of eye opening challenges. 

The nights are getting colder, and the leaves are starting to show their true colors.  The Great Lakes are starting to cool down.  With the Great Federal Shutdown it has put the stop to a lot of the great websites out there that I use for gathering data on Lake Temperatures and other information.
This year I have decided to challenge myself.  I will not put one egg pattern on my bug rods this year when fishing Ohio.  Sure I will hook less fish with streamers, and tube flies.  I am purposefully doing this.  I’m going to slow down my catching to slow down my fishing.  In the beginning years I was all about the numbers sounding like a bait chucking Neanderthal.  Not all bait chucker’s are like this.  The ones I’m talking about I don’t need to point them out we all know who they are.   So back to my point we are missing so much of the experience of fly fishing or fishing in general. 

When was the last time you sat on the bank of the river or creek and just took it all in?  When was the last time you did not care about the fish you did not catch?  When was the last time you traveled hundreds of miles in a day and waded miles of rivers and creeks without a care you did not hook a fish?  When was the last time you did not throw a bead or an egg pattern on your tippet?  Anyone can fish with a bobber and an egg pattern!  Yes the technique is as deadly as Sarin Gas, but as challenging as watching paint dry! 

So more over we see very little of life even know we are supposed to live consciously.  Like so many things we witness in life we take for granted.   We take our everyday freedoms for granted.  We assume so many times that we can do what we like without any consequences.
How many times do we see trash left on the river side?  How many times do we see people who handle fish they have caught like irresponsible children?  It’s a resource people this means it’s depletable asset of the Great Lakes.  For every fish that is mishandled, fingers stuck in the gill rakers, slime removed from its body, and played until it’s almost dead.  You the angler increase the mortality rate of the fishery. 

I know it’s a catch and kill fishery, but why do we continue to treat it as such?  The following link will take you to the creel survey by Kevin A. Kayle of Fairport Harbor Fisheries Research Station Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife 2008-2009.
The catch and release numbers are very impressive in the report.  The report is just part of the picture that it paints.  What the report cannot show is the blatant disregard for the law.  I’m talking about the snagger’s and the people who willfully trespass these folks are the people that are part of the dichotomy. 

The more we the angler educate ourselves and become conscious of our fishery the better it will become.  Well folks be well, and take care.

See you on the water,


Sunday, July 28, 2013

Hocking Hills Survey Department Outing 2013

This past weekend was a departmental outing.  The names of the people will remain anonymous to protect the innocent “lol”, but I will use the name B-Nasty!  I picked up some DaVita’s handmade hot Italian sausage.  I have not had their food in years.  I purchased about 10 pounds of it and cut it up into 6”-8” long pieces. I also caramelized onions, green, red, and yellow peppers.  None of the food I prepared came back home with me.   I traveled down I-77 south and headed for Athens, Ohio.  I took the scenic route because I wanted to unwind and relax on the road.

Have you ever been driving somewhere and realize wow this is actually enjoyable.  Unlike when we were kids you could not wait to just get there.  Just like Bart Simpson “are we there yet, are we there yet”.   I found myself in such a relaxed mode.  I turned a 3 hour trip into a 4 hour trip and did not bat an eye.  I had never been between Athens, Ohio and Logan, Ohio before.   These rolling winding roads are great for bicyclists and motorcycles.   The site distance can be bad in a lot of these rural routes.  This ride would be awesome in the fall. 

I arrived at the chateau courtesy of Mr. M, and had to turn around three times because the address and the coordinates where wrong!  After they flagged me down I finally found the correct driveway.   I arrived met some of my fellow co-workers for the first time and some I have met before.  They were already taking part in beverages, and I continued to unload my truck.  I noticed a small minivan something you would see a “creeper” drive.  The minivan turned out to be B-Nasty’s.  We made some jokes about it and actually he was the source of entertainment.  He was a great person about it, and turned out to be a decent euchre player. 

Friday night we feasted on what can be only described as a labor of love for food.  Mr. M slow cooked some awesome pulled pork barbeque, and pulled chicken barbeque.   He also had some barbeque beans that where out of this world.  So after we ate until we rolled ourselves down to the fire to laugh some more and tell stories. 

First off let me preface no one was hurt down at the fire! Only one person fell and that was more due to the 45 degree slope we were on.  The ground could have been a lot more level that’s for sure.  If our other office person would of showed up to sleep in a tent I think he would have been better off sleeping on the floor of the chateau.  We told story after story, and drank beverage after beverage.  We would spend about 2 hours playing euchre and doing pretty well along with feeling no pain “lol”.   So we retired for the night and we turned off all the lights to the chateau.  There was zero ambient light from the moon in the chateau.  At about 0400 I heard the world crash.  We had someone decide “well I’m tired of sleeping in the bed let me fall out of it”.  Wham crash and heard no other movement.  I quickly got my flash light and asked him hey you alright?  He said yes and then low crawled back in to the rack and proceeded to go back to sleep. 
We awoke Saturday and the young lad never remembered bouncing his brain bucket off the hard pine floors that morning. 

Breakfast was served in fine fashion we ate like kings.  It’s great to see people pull together because of a common interest and bring their resources.  I have not eaten so much bacon in my entire life.  It was great tasting, and the eggs hit the spot.

We would continue our journey and take a very short hike to Old Man’s Cave.  We would be joined by 2,000 complete strangers.  I have never been there and would like to return in the fall just for photo opportunities.   The rock formations are beautiful.   We would come back the chateau and begin to prepare the feast for lunch.  I cooked 20 of the DaVita’s sausages for lunch.  Along with another gentleman whom we will call Son of Grass-Man would had some potatoes that he prepared that would leave you begging for more.  He also helped me out with my lack of experience with a charcoal fire!  I had some clue what to do, but still when someone knows more that you let the experience win out!  We feasted like kings for lunch, and truth be told I really wasn’t hungry until like 8 pm that night. 

We had more laughter at the fire, and again we enjoyed the stories of others.  We pull together like a team to do this.  We mirror what we do in life and work.  This department has done great things in my eyes, and will continue greatness.  We will get through adversity as a team, and we will learn from it.

Sunday we policed up the chateau and said our farewell’s, and headed home.   I would take the short route home hee hee!

Enjoy the pictures, and be well,


Never leave your hardhat unattended with jokesters around, but I would pass blame on my daughter "if I had one".

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Getting Healthier!

With the 1 year anniversary of my divorce coming up I would like to talk about some health things.  I shredded 30 pounds during the process “priceless”!  I have managed to keep myself about 195 pounds.  That being said I’m upping the game because I just purchased a mountain bike and I’m riding it every other day for at least 10-15 miles at a time.  This has helped me so much regain my focus on me, and my therapy that diagnosed me with anxiety.   So I’m taking care of me, and that’s so important.  My girlfriend is also a huge part of my life now, and all is well.  I will get out on the water some day.  I just had to shift my priorities and not be so dam selfish!

Saturday, July 6, 2013

To much rain to fish locally!

Hang in there folks someday I will get out there.  Therapy is going well made some new revelations, and some revelations that hurt deep.  I hope all is well with the readers of my blog.


Saturday, May 25, 2013

Sorry folks I know its been some time since my last post

I'm working on myself spiritually and on my living consciously, and being mindful!   Its a tall order since my last 45 years I have been one selfish person.  So hang in there.



Sunday, April 7, 2013

My fave Ohio Tributary

Well it’s been a long time and it feels like it.  I fished solo in the morning, and down at the first riffle on this Lake Erie tributary.  I had my 8wt switch rod by TFO lined up with at 375 grain head.  The tip I used at first was 11’ of T-17.  This would prove to be ok, but the fly’s has to be lighter.   I was snagging bottom with my leeches and large deceiver/scandi patterns.  I was the only down there on the river.  I got on the river at about 0530 and waited for the sun to rise.  I lit a cigar and sat on the bank and watched the great heat tab in the sky rise. 

As I crossed the deep challenging riffle littered with basketball size smooth boulders I saw something.  What in going to describe to you was Mother Nature at her finest.  On this tributary she has a large natural walleye population.  I had my headlamp on illuminating my way down the path.  I arrived at the river’s edge and I could hear her crash against the rocks.   I looked into the water with my head lamp and stepped into her inky green water.  I scanned the riffle for any debris that could give me fits.  I saw nothing smooth sailing to cross.  I peered into the water with my head lamp and I saw tiny little mirrors shinning back at me.  I thought what in the hell is that.  I looked harder and what I was witnessing was spawning mature walleyes.    The females ranged from 22” to about 26-ish inches!  The males that were getting their grove on were like 16”-18” long.  I could of scoped them up by hand.  They just minded their own business.   I watch them for a bit and moved on.  I could hear splashing water and that meant steelhead getting their groove on.  I was going to fish the pools behind the active spawning pelletheads. 
I got across the river without incident and began to rig my rod.  By this time it was about 0530.  I fished a olive tube fly about 4” long and sparsely ties on a ½” copper tube.  This would be the fly that would not get snagged.  All the other heavier leeches got hung up to often.  Using the California step down casting method of covering water methodically I did this over the .125 mile stretch. 

I was about to give up and head up stream when it happened.  A silver bullet about 70 feet away from me jumped.  I had him hooked right in the kisser.  My fly line went tight and it was on.  He was not happy.  He would take a little more line out and I put the screws to him.  I applied side pressure to keep him off balance.  To me there is nothing worse than keeping your rod tip up and letting the fish control you.  About 2 minutes passes by and I could grab my leader and try and try and tail him solo.  He relaxed a second and the moment I touched his wrist he snapped off and the way he went back into the inky green darkness. 

I love days like that,


P.s Andrew thanks for the great company ole friend.  I know their has to be fish in there! lol

First outing since being back home entry coming tonight!

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

I'm moving back to Northeast Ohio

Dear readers,

I ask you to stand by please.  The next following months I will be relocating back home!   I will be back into the Great Lakes Region.  I start a new job and I will be fishing again like I used to.  Stay tuned its going to be fun.


Monday, February 4, 2013

RT's Brown Trout

              I have been inspired lately by and These cats are really up to good stuff!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Cincinnati Fly Fishing Show 2013

                     Today was the Cincinnati fly fishing show. This show is put on by Buckeye United Fly Fishers insert found at  they moved it to a new venue.  I spoke to a lot of people today. We talked about things like fly patterns to two handed rods. In speaking with people I have realized yet again the industry has us confused.  The rod weight means nothing all two handed rods should of been rated by grain weight only! The lines also should have followed suit.

                     I tied up some Scandinavian style flies today.  I'm still tweaking this pattern. I started with the concept of Greg Sanyo’s AI pattern that can be found at  Fly patterns sometimes start from what others have tied as far as concepts go.  Greg has lead the way like so many other as far as concepts go.  I don't use a huge amount of flash like we have seen in several new fly patterns lately.
                       I met some really nice folks today.  I also gave away about a dozen flies.   I sat next to today Mr. Mike Schmidt from   He was going through deer hair hides like they were free today!  He educated the masses and instructed classes.  I finally met Mr.  Chris Helms today from .  He’s a really nice gentleman.  The other nice gentleman I met was Glenn Weisner of  He also gave instruction how to tie certain flies and sold his wares at the show.   Below you will see what I created today.  Thank for the wonderful day, and it was a pleasure to be in great company.


The start of the general configuration