Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Adventures Of Gabriella (Part Eight)

Hey there! I just made it back to where I was hoping to be yesterday, so I only lost a day. It took a long time, but I just arrived and found a place to sleep. There are definitely other flies here, but I think I'm just going to camp out for tonight. I'll find a fly in the morning who can point me in the right direction. For now, it's time to rest. I'm hoping I can find a similar fly, like a Bitch Creek, who will be able to know where the Girdle Bug Town Is. We'll talk tomorrow!

Just A Random Fly Picture... Or is it?

Runoff Blues!

Runoff blues, runoff blues. Go bass fishing! Take a boat, fish from shore. Topwater, sub-surface. The possibilities are endless. The flies are big, the takes are cool, and the fish fight hard. What more could you ask for? Ya I know, a small flowing stream. But no dice, not for another couple weeks. So go out and fish the bass. My best luck has been at Sawhill Ponds and Pella Crossing, but mostly Pella. Get out there early with some topwater poppers, hitting the shores with them from a belly boat if you can. Once the heat starts building and the fish stop hitting, take out a nice big fly (my favorite is the Meat Whistle), tie it on, and catch some more! Take away those runoff blues!

MY NEW BOAT!!!! Thanks Troutrageous

Thanks Troutrageous. Like I didn't have enough to do already. No, really. Thanks! I had nothing to do, and with runoff this high the fishing looks bleak. When I saw your post about building a duct tape kayak, my first thought was, "No one would ever do this". Then it went to, "How does this work?" And then finally to, "Mom, I need to go to the hardware store". Yes, I'm actually building the duct tape kayak. As JGR might say, I'm being "That guy". So I have no idea if this will work. Do I have a drill? I do now. Do I have a bone saw? I do now. Do I have a welding torch? My parents were crazy enough to get me one. And now, I have the top of my kayak complete. The first piece of welding PVC took a little effort, but the electrician taught me well. I added an extra T-Bar piece for support, And Made some oar posts to stick on at the last minute. I have to wait until my next order of PVC comes in before I can start working more. The only thing I didn't like about the project is the materials list. It doesn't include a welding torch in the list, and says you need 50 feet of PVC instead of 70. I just made lots of mistakes that needed an extra 20 feet of fixing. So again, thanks for the great idea. For anyone who trusts my welding and building skills enough (65 final in Wood Working), feel free to come and test it out when I'm finished. I'll keep you updated on my progress.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Adventures Of Gabriella, Part Seven

Oh no! When I went to bed last night, I paid no attention to which way I fell asleep! What a HUGE mistake that was. This morning, there was a thick cloud of fog covering the whole area, and I couldn't see where I was! Since I wasn't sure which direction the town I saw was, I just started walking. Another big mistake. I did eventually find something, but it took me hours of walking in circles. Even worse, the place I reached wasn't where I had hoped. I somehow ended up at the bead shelf, nowhere near the other flies or anything else. The fog is just now starting to clear, and I'm beginning to make out some places in the distance. I can't see what they are, but if the fog keeps clearing I should be able to soon. I hope I haven't gotten too far off course! For now, I need to rest. See you tomorrow!

How'd I Get Here?

Hot Shots

Where did Gabriella go off to? Did she get eaten by a giant fish? Lost forever? Taken once again by the giant? No, she'll be back tobnight. I was just out gathering some pictures last night and didn't get the chance to tell about her day. In the mean time, here's this weeks Hot Shots.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

New And Improved

That's A Lotta Worms And Girdle Bugs
You can't even walk around the shop anymore without bumping into some amazing new item! RMA is completely set with new gear, a whole new shipment of tying materials, and NEW flies! Yesterday was all the materials, and there were tons. New wire, thread, marabou, chenille, tools, hooks, beads, and everything else fly tying came in a giant box. Luckily one of my little home-dogs, Alan, came into to help us out. Alan has a knack for perfection and organization that is completely beyond me. I can't do anywhere near what he does. Not to mention he is a very good fisherman to boot. So Alan set up all the wire and thread, and then worked on other materials with me. So today I came back to the shop, ready to get shit done. Randy was already working on setting up flies. I jumped in and helped, and we managed to get all the flies set up. So now, you can't even walk through the shop without walking into something awesome!

Tie Whatever Color You Want!

Beads, Beads, The Magical Pain In The Ass

Cruel, cruel world! How could you? All my work was ruined in mere seconds! I just finished fixing it! How could this of happened? What stars aligned in a way to make my life hell at that moment? All my beads fell. Every single one of them. Silver, gold, black, red, white, orange, green, and all the rest. The all fell into my carpet. I managed to collect most of them, but I'm sure there are at least a dozen that will forever live in the depths of the carpet. I just finished organizing all my fly tying stuff, and the desk is en-route. Now I have to go through and sort the silver from the gold. The 2.0 mm beads from the 2.4 ones, and the glass from the brass to the tungsten. WONDERFUL. How can I tie my next batch of 200 worms next weekend when I have to spend hours picking the right bead for each hook? Oh that's right, worms don't have beads! Well, it's still going to be tough. There's only one thing that can get me out of the tense state I'm now in. Trout! But oh no, the streams are blown out! Well, I guess I'm heading back to Lily lake. Hopefully I don't get blown out of there.... literally.


Monday, June 27, 2011

The Adventures Of Gabriella (Part Six)

Hmm. I'm completely lost. What I thought would be the beggining of the fly shelf that I call home is actually the fly lines! How did I get here? There are definitely some fly shelves near by, but not mine. This is a smaller shelf, and is open instead of having boxes, like mine. My next move is definitely to those flies, to see if anyone can point me in the right direction, but for now I gotta rest. I got really sidetracked looking at all the hooks this morning, so I didn't leave until 4:00! Luckily it was a short hike, so I got here with time to spare. This place near me looks familiar, but I'm not sure why. Well, hopefully there will at least be a nice place to stay, because these lines do not work for sleeping. Oh well, I guess tonight I'll just be sleeping opossum style.

44 Wind Knots And Tangled Lines

Whitecaps On Lily

44. 44 Wind Knots and Tangled Lines . No, not 44 Howard's from Wind Knots And Tangled Lines. That would be the end of the world. This wasn't quite so bad, but it was close. 44 wind knots. That's how many I had to untangle. I got to Lily lake at around 1 in the afternoon, and there were over 100 people there. There was a wedding at one end of the lake which accounted for about 80 people, but the other twenty were all fishermen. 15 were spin fishermen, all catching nothing. The other five were fly fishermen, all around the lake casting dry droppers. Well, I wouldn't call it casting. The 40 mile per hour winds were preventing that, so it was more like waving a stick. That 7 weight carp rod I left at home seemed really nice right about then. But I was there, I had taken the drive, and I was ready to fish. I stood down near some rocky structure and false casted for a minute before the wind calmed down. I laid in my cast with Erin's Lily Bugger, started stripping, and repeated. I managed to sneak a few casts in, with no luck. Then the wind kicked up once again. What kept running through my head was, "You can't catch fish here unless you see cruisers." Dang. That thought kept running through my mind as I snuck casts in through the wind. It went through my head right as a red flash went off behind my fly. Wait, what? Another flash. Wow. Then a second later, whack! Fish on! I fought the big pretty fish for a minute, brought him to the net, quickly took a picture, and let him go.

Little did I know this was the only fish I would catch all day Little did I know this was the only fish anyone caught all day. Of course, until I went around and asked. Nope, no one else had caught a fish. So a couple hours later, once I had enough of fighting the wind, we headed home. As we drove by, a line of cars appeared on the road. From staying a week in Wyoming, I knew what that meant. But I had never seen one in Colorado before! Bear! Yes, that's right, bear! And not a usual Black Bear, either. It was a BIG Brown Bear. I went on down the road, leaving my parents and all their worrying behind. Sadly, the zoom on my camera was jammed. Good thing I got close enough to take this shot :)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

The Adventures Of Gabriella (Part Five)

The Nursery

I finally know where I am! I have no idea where this place is in relation to home, but I've definitely seen this place before! It's the nursery! This is where all the flies are before they get turned into actual flies! Let me tell you, they are just SO adorable! Those little eyes, barbs just starting to grow, and hook shanks just starting to form. This isn't all good, though. We don't care for the young as carefully as you humans do, so there isn't anyone watching over the little guys. This means I won't have anyone to point me toward home! I'll just have to make my own decision. Luckily, I woke up early and ended up arriving early, so I had time to plan. It looks like there is structure out in the distance, so I'll work my way out there.'Till tomorrow!

Gabriella at The Nursery

Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Adventures Of Gabriella (Part Four)

After spending all day hiking yesterday, I slept late today. It was really crowded staying with all the mice, but I managed. I woke up at about noon, and planned out my move for the day. It looked like the only thing within a short hike of us was the sunglass case, so that was where I was headed. The walk only took about 1/2 and hour, and so that was no problem. When I arrived at my spot on the sunglass case and set up my sleeping place, I started planning. It looks like there's something within a usual hiking distance, so that's where I'm headed. I'm completely disoriented, but I'm hoping there's someone at this next place who can point me in the right direction. Until then, I'm resting up!

My sleeping spot at the sunglass case for tonight


More Gabriella tonight, see you then

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Adventures Of Gabriella (Part Three)

I. Am. So. Tired. I walked all day yesterday and today, with no break. It was all rewarded though, I made it inside! I left last night and arrived at the door this morning at 7:00 am. Yes, there really was a door! I tried to get a good view, but I couldn't see very much. With that said, I just kept walking. At around 5:00, I found myself climbing up one of the fly cases. I was so tired when I finally reached the top, I laid down and fell asleep. I'm sure I would've slept for hours, but instead I was quickly awoken. By a crash. I jumped up, and to my surprise there was a GIANT fly in front of me. "Who are you?" I asked. "I'm Mitsy. Mitsy Mouse," she responded. Mitsy proceeded to tell me about her, and asked if I needed a place to stay for the night. Amazed by her kindness, I thanked her and told her I did in fact need a place to stay. Now, I'm just hanging out and meeting all the other mice. I plan on sleeping VERY late tomorrow morning, then taking just a small hike to my next spot. Hopefully, I'm getting close to home!

Mitsy And Gabriella

Want to know the next move in the story? See you tomorrow!

Erin's Lily Bugger

Vacation! Over the 4th, my parents have to go back East to sort some things out about my Grandpa, and so I'll be staying with my (other) grandparents again. Since we ran out of things to do last time, we decided we would take a little vacation. We're going to head up to Estes Park, stay for a night, and go fishing. I'm definitely going to try and make it to Lily lake, and there is only on fly I'm taking. The Lily Bugger, designed by Erin! Last time I was at the lake, fish seemed really keyed in on streamers. The problem was, I didn't have any small enough to throw at them! With that in mind, I just threw a Hare's Ear and stripped it back like a streamer. A few weeks ago, I read about Erin's trip to Lily and the Lily Bugger. So I went back to the post yesterday night, looked at the picture of the fly, and tied a dozen. There's green, gray, double beaded, and the special dubbing I spun myself in the mix. So that's one day all set. But what can I do the other day? Which other lake should I fish? We'll do a vote of comments. So? Put 'em up!

Lily Buggers

Thursday, June 23, 2011

The Adventures Of Gabriella (Part Two)

Randy's Tomato Plants

I’ve moved! After talking to all of you last night, I planned out my next move. It was the longest day of the year, so I had lots of light to see what was going on. I saw Randy’s Tomato Plants sitting in the open area, and that looked about a good distance for a morning hike. Then I went to bed.This morning, I walked for a few hours (Girdle Bugs are slow), and finally reached the tomato plants. See all the plants? But what’s this? It’s me, Gabriella! After I reached the plants, I took a rest and started planning my next move. In the distance, I think I see a door. My plan is to make it past the door and get as far into the shop as I can. That is, if it really is a door. If not, all my efforts are for nothing. 

G,G,G,G,G, Gabriella!

Will Gabriella make it back into the shop? Or will she waste valuable time trying to get to a door that isn’t really there? Keep reading to continue. 

Dale's Tale

Ugh. No one can take me fishing. I left my fly tying stuff at home. I guess I'll just do a story.

I arrived at Sylvan Dale around 8:00, excited as could be to get on the water before. The last time I was there, I had netted a twenty incher on the third cast. Same flies, same conditions, why not the same fish? But no, it had been an hour and I still had nothing to show for it. I decided to move down to the next lake, Island, to see what was going on down there. I walked the whole lake, and finally hooked into a nice rainbow. Two head throws and a huge jump, he was gone. So I made my way back toward Mother Lake. On the way, I stopped and looked at the four big trout feeding two inches behind a huge log jam. Like Erin once said, "It shooshed us like a mother. Look but don't touch." But at that moment, I made a decision. I was going to touch. My first cast managed to land perfectly behind the logs right in the view of the fish. He ate it, and I set. Fish... what? Nothing. I missed the strike. I was so disappointed that I missed my fish, I almost left. But I put in another cast. Not good enough, and way behind the fish. But wait. The fish turned, swam down, and ate the Chronomid I tied the night before. Set, Fish on!  I battled, and then suddenly,

There was weight in the net.

Who's Ready For More?

Who's Ready for some more Gabriella tonight?! In the mean time, I'm going to go out and try and find something interesting and fishing related to do. In other news, I just tried spinning my own dubbing in a coffee grinder with beaver, badger, rabbit, and a little bit of flash to sexy it up. It made one of the coolest Hare's Ears I've ever seen. Give it a shot!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Adventures Of Gabriella (Part One)

Welcome to the great adventure of Gabriella the Girdle Bug. Can she make her way back to all the other Girdle Bugs?

Hey there, My name's Gabriella. I'm a size 8 Girdle Bug, which means I'm about 12 in human years. I live in Girdle Bug, USA, with my family and friends. Well, I used to. I was grabbed by a giant a few days ago and taken far from my home. Then, they just left me there! Now, I have to try and make my way home. It's going t be a long journey, but hopefully I can find my town again. Girdle Bug, USA is in Rocky Mountain Anglers fly shop. I know I'm still close, because of where I find my self right now, but I have no idea where. I've never left the town, so this is a whole new experience for me. I'm very scared, but I know that if I look hard enough, I can find my way home. Will you keep an eye on me as I go through my big journey?

To be continued each night....

This Is Where The Giant Left Me. The Brown Dot In The Fish's Mouth? That's Me

Happy Days

From now on, I think I'll be doing a post with just a few pictures once a week, just some nice shots to keep everyone up on the happenings. I mean, not all my pictures can fit into each post, right? So here's the first one.

The New Fly Holders At The Shop!

The World's Smallest Bass

Variations of Jay Z's Backstabber

The Result Of A Hard Day's Work

Starting A Lifetime (My Beginnings On Fishing)

Blogger isn't letting me add pictures! Anybody else having this problem? How can I prove my Tales now? Well, you'll just have to believe me until the stupid loader works again.
           This is the story of how I first got into fishing. I was 5 years old, and living in Los Angeles. I had never done much outdoor stuff, and no one in my family did much either. Still, my Grandma had decided every boy needed to go fishing once. Once. Once. Once. Echo...  We arrived at the little stocked trout pond, paid our entrance fee, and started fishing. The gear setup? A bamboo stick with some corn and line and a hook. After fishing for a few minutes, my grandparents decided to go sit in the car. I continued fishing, trying to find a movement that would entice a fish. As I was slowly walking my stick up and down the bank, my rod went heavy. "I got one, I got one!" I called. But my grandparents could not hear me. I yanked the fish in, Proud and excited as could be, and looked at my prize. A beautiful 14 inch rainbow. I managed to unhook the fish, and since this was a catch and keep pond, euthanized it. To an adult, that means leave it in a bucket. To a five year old boy, that means beat it senseless with a large rock. Once that was all done, I walked over and showed my grandparents the fish. I then put the fish in the bucket and went right back to fishing. I managed to catch seven fish that day, using corn and my walking the bank technique. I made sure to fight it, unhook it, and beat it to death each time. After a couple hours of fishing, my grandma took me home and cooked the fish for me to eat. So I had the whole experience. Now remember, once, once, once......   Fast forward

     I fish hundreds of days a year, have spent countless amounts of money and effort in fishing, and will never ever stop. Once? No such thing.
Hey, the Photo Uploader works again!!!!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

It's Organization Nation!

How I Kept My Gear Before, Giant Bags

It's been two years. Two years since my mom started telling me I needed to organize my fly tying stuff. Friends told me the same. And after these two years, I finally got my act together. Not completely together, but it's a vast improvement. I'll keep working on it until it's all organized, but that won't get finished until the new tying desk and shelves I ordered comes in the mail. For now, I have 6 storage facilities for my gear.

Box 1:   Chenille. I tie around two hundred San Juan Worms every Winter, getting ready for the Kid's Camp. Those guys go through flies fast, and once they figure out how easy it is to catch fish on the Worms, they all want one. They break it, and it becomes two. You see where this is going. Now, I have all my Chenille together for tying Worms and even some other things, like Girdle Bugs.

Box 2:   Beads, Hooks, and Flash. Not much I can really say about this one. We need hooks for every fly. Beads go on hooks. So these things go well together. I'm not really sure how the Flash got in there, but that's where it's gonna live from now on.

Box 3:   Pheasant, Peacock, and Hen. All of the pheasant pieces and bits I have gotten from friends hunting experiences! This one looks really cool, because if you take the pieces and set them up, you have an entire Pheasant. There's also Peacock hurl and feathers, and an Indian Hen Neck for small nymph tails.

Box 4:   Glue. It's got Hard As Hull, Zap A Gap, UV Knot Sense, And a UV Light. It's another thing I use for every fly, and having it's own box makes finding it easy. There's also a small Dubbing Box that sits next to it.

Mini Drawers:   This has eight little boxes that hold all my spare stuff, such as extra hooks, beads, fly boxes, dubbing, and the list goes on. When I run out of something, that's the first place I look.

Tool Container:   It holds all my tools.

So there it is, and you saw how I kept all my stuff before. Now, check out the after!

My New Organization System!

Monday, June 20, 2011

The Weeks Best Shots

Here are my best four pictures of last week, feel free to email me any of yours to add.

Recipe- Bonnet Midge

The Bonnet Midge is a creation of my own, and something I have worked on for awhile now. I almost always tie it in a size 20 to fish Boulder Creek in the Winter, but it can be tied bigger or smaller with the same results. It's easy, doesn't require much material, and catches tons of fish. First, you'll need the curve shank hook, the silver bead, silver wire, black thread, and some white antron. Then, just start tying!

Step 1:  Put on your bead, start a thread base, and tie in the silver wire. Wrap your silver wire all the way to the front of the hook.

Step 2:  Tie in the antron at the front of the hook so it puffs up. Hey, it's wearing a Bonnet! Hey, guess what else! Tie it off and your done!
Side View

Front View

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Big Ass Ugly Fish

Man, for Tiger Muskie, these fish sure are picky. As I had been throwing a small streamer for trout, something big swam up behind one of them. The fish swam away, scared for it's life. And that's when I started to see them. Big fish, Muskie, everywhere. I re-rigged my rod as fast as I could with heavy duty tippet and some big flies. I must have given these stupid fish 200 casts, with no result. Finally bored with picky fish, I threw a fly right next to one's belly and set the hook. My 5 weight started buzzing as the fish swam away. I battled for quite a while, only to come up with one big ass, ugly fish. They weren't picky Muskie, they were stupid Suckers! I quickly let the fish go and tied on the only thing I could think of, a Girdle Bug to a Leech to an Egg. A little split shot was added to get the flies down into the deep, slow run, and the first cast was made. After a few more casts, I saw a mouth open and close. Fish on! I battled the ugly beast for a minute, and finally brought it to my net. And now, my net smells like Suckerfish Poop. So do my hands. But I got the best photo, me trying to smile as I look down at the poop on my feet:

I managed to catch two more fish that day, and drove home a very stinky but still happy camper. For anyone hoping to catch a Sucker, I would be glad to take you on a.... well, just find someone else to do it. I have to go clean off my net and myself. Again, happy Father's Day!

Thanks, Everyone

Happy Father's Day!

Wow what a week. Carp got slayed, Bass got their eyes crossed, and lips of trout were ripped. But there is one person who needs to be greatly thanked, even though he has nothing to do with any of that. My dad. You see, my dad has really done a lot for me lately. He has never been a very outdoorsy type of person, but he is trying to learn how to fly-fish anyway. But it's not just taking an interest in fly fishing, it's taking an interest in the thing I love to do. And that means a ton to me. Thanks dad, we love you.
Mom and Justin

There are also some other people who need to be thanked by me this Father's Day, even though they're not my dad. They have still taught me a ton and play good (?) role models in a big part of my life.

Howard has taught me tons and tons about blogging, whether he knew it or Knot ;) Whenever I read his blog, I see great techniques and tips in his writing that I could possibly implicate in to my own writing at some point. The same happens with visual stuff, and any other parts of the blog. So thanks Howard.

Apart from helping me with my blog, Jay Z has taught me a lot in the shop. I don't think I've ever been in the shop where he wasn't constantly there, working away at something. I try to help, stocking stuff away and cleaning stuff and helping customers blah blah blah. More importantly though, I see how he works and take that into my own brain, stored away for when I'm older. It's a work ethic that will not only excel in a fly shop, but get through any part of life. So thanks Carp man, I'll try and learn up on some of those fish throughout the Summer.

So look above at the three pictures again. Do I have three great role models in my life? I think so.

These are not the only people who play an important part in my life, but that will be another story.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Quadruplets And A New CONTEST

Don't be a hater, don't discriminate. I went out these past two days and caught quadruplets, four different species of fish. I didn't leave any of the fish out, except anything that didn't live where I was fishing.

Let's start this one off at the beginning. I went out to find my first of the four babies, a trout. I fished a tight little stretch for about an hour, picking up lots of fish as I went. They were mostly small, but I did manage to pick up this good looking Brown on a PMX.

Now, it was time to find some big uglies, the Carp. I went out to a local hot spot that has really been producing for me the last week or so that night. Nothing. Well, not quite nothing. The carp weren't picking up on the flies at all, but I did find one cute little pond bass to add to my list. Not a big Bass, but a bass. Now all that was left was Carp And Bluegill. 

I woke up this morning around 8:30, and was on the water by 9:00. The Carp were hanging around, but they didn't seem very hungry. Finally after around an hour of casting, I tricked a Carp into sucking in my fly. I battled the fish for a few minutes, who gave one big run and then bulldogged his way back in. The fish was in the net, we were all set and three fourths of the way done, and the only fish left was a Bluegill. 

Wow, where can I start with the Bluegill? I've been tying a cool variation of the Backstabber, with a tail and some flash and things like that. Many bluegill were caught on this fly. Some very large Bluegill were caught on this fly. The one Bluegill worthy to make an appearance as the Bluegill though, was this guy. Why? Look at those beautiful orange markings. How could I resist such a pretty fish?

And so all this got me thinking. And this is how the contest comes into play. If you can catch four different types of fish in under 24 hours, you will win four flies. However, if you submit more than four, you will win more flies. The three people who catch the most fish will win a bigger, special, secret prize. Just email me photos of the four fish you catch. We will trust that they were all within the time period, so please be honest. Below are some rules for the contest.


1. All fish must be caught within the 24 hour time period

2. Bluegill are considered Sunfish, and Brook Trout considered Trout (not char). Crappie can be their own thing. Saltwater fish will be individually judged to decide if they are considered the same species or not. 

3. All submissions should include a first name and contact email

4. All fish should be released after the photo has been taken

5. Tippet should be no larger than 3x, unless fishing for Saltwater fish or fish over 10 pounds. 

Friday, June 17, 2011

A (Shorter) Round Two

Only thirty minutes. That's all I got. I gotta go hang with the Bro's after this. That's what was running through my head. But there always was that thirty minutes. I got to the lake around 9:00. From the car, I could start to see the dark shapes moving, looking for a meal. At the same time though, they were trying to elude impostor foods. The first carp I decided to take a shot at was around twenty feet out. The cast landed softly around five feet from his face. Strip, strip, rest. The fish turned, swam towards the fly, and started looking in the mud. When he got to my fly, I set. Fish on! I fought the fish for awhile, having to bring back tons of line as my drag was way loose when I set the hook. I brought the fish into the net, and posed for a picture (above). I managed to pull one more carp in that next twenty minutes, just a smaller one. He did pose for a very cool release picture though, and put up a pretty good fight. A sweet way to spend some extra time. Go rip some lips (or suckers, or teeth, whatever fish you want. Heck, I heard the squirrel bite down at your local park is good, why not go check that out?)