Using a Throat Pump Effectively

Using a throat pump to acquire a sample of what a fish has recently been feeding on is not an irresponsible or inhumane act.  A proper throat pump has a beveled end that tapers down slightly to avoid any harm done on fish, and the fish itself does not have to leave the water for more than three seconds to grab a throat sample.  A throat pump is not meant to be jammed into the stomach of the fish, only pull a sample of what has recently been ingested.

To throat pump a fish, cradle it upside down in your net with the pump in your opposite hand.  Fill the bulb with water, then allow most of it to be squeezed out while the tube remains wet.  Depress the bulb, insert it directly into the fish’s throat and quickly release the bulb.  Immediately set the fish back in the water and set your throat pump aside.  Release the fish before examining the contents. read more

Fly Tying: The G.B.D Micro Leech

Whether it is in a morning/evening session or after a big chironomid feed takes place, micro leeches are a staple food source that can save even the toughest of days.  This fly works great in the shallows under a strike indicator, fished on an intermediate sinking line, or in deeper water on a full sink.

This is an incredibly simple marabou micro-leech with a collar of Arizona Simi-Seal in “Black/Purple”.  To me, that is the most important part of the fly itself.  The iridescent and translucent qualities of this dubbing allow you to keep the fly sparse while still maintaining a teardrop profile. read more

The Stillwater Fly Fishing App

Not only are they both great guys, but Brian Chan & Phil Rowley both know a thing or two in the stillwater fly fishing world.  They have pioneered many of the techniques that we use today, without people like them this tight-knit community wouldn’t be the same.

The Stillwater Fly Fishing App has made it easier than ever to carry a plethora of information with you in your pocket anywhere you go.  I have used this app since the day it came out and it is a lifetime of valuable information packed into one smartphone app. read more

Is a Rotary Fly Tying Vice Worth The Money?

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Selling tying vices in the shop, people would lose their breath at the price tag of an entry-level rotary fly tying vice.  I would explain the list of benefits but often they would opt for a cheaper version to start.  That, of course, is all good but I did notice a pattern of those people coming back to purchase a rotary model within 6 months of tying.

Long story short? Yes, they are worth every penny.  Having the ability to use the rotary function to spin hackle, wire and body material saves an infinite amount of time at the bench.  You will also find yourself putting out more consistently proportioned flies. read more

How to Tie a Flashback Marabou Damselfly Nymph

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June is my favourite month in the interior to target the damselfly migration.  When fish get keyed in on damsels, it becomes a feeding frenzy and the takes are often savage.  Fish will cruise ledges and dropoffs intercepting damselfly nymphs as they clumsily make their way towards shore to shed their exoskeleton and take flight. read more

3 Tips to Maintaining a Clean Fly Tying Station

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This is as late in the evening as I have ever made a blog entry.  It would be easy to just skip a day, but luckily for this business, my OCD does not let that happen.  Writing early in the morning after exercising not only seems to be a more creative time of day but allows me to take my time and proof every little detail.

Today was not a day where I had a chance to write in the morning, and after spending the whole day moving we are just getting settled in around 10 pm.  Sometimes it seems like the more I want to come up with an article topic, the harder it becomes.  A form of writer’s block you could say. read more

Fly Tying: The Cranberry Larva

Though it was -9C when I got in the truck this morning, I know that we are almost halfway through March and ice-off is not all too far away.  Laying eyes on an ice-free interior lake you’ve been dreaming of since December is one of the best feelings in the world for an obsessed angler.

This tutorial covers one of my favourite ice-off patterns.  This fly has proven effective for over five seasons now in the early windows of spring stillwater as well as late fall and even mid-summer lake fishing.  The cranberry holographic Flashabou is (in my opinion) what makes this pattern.  It is dulled a little bit by the red scud backing but I believe that is a good thing.  A subtle amount of sparkle from the holo flash mixed with the true hemoglobin colour that the red scud backing brings is a deadly combination. read more

Michael & Young Chironomid Fishing Courses – Saturday, March 24th

Find chironomid fishing frustrating, boring or downright futile sometimes?  Have you had some success but still want to further your knowledge?

Calling all of those on the Lower Mainland of BC, don’t forget about the two upcoming “Intro to Chironomid Fishing” courses at Michael & Young Fly Shop on Saturday, March 24th.

This course runs three hours in length and includes the following:

Proper boat setup

How to approach trophy stillwater fisheries

Locating and effectively covering a chironomid emergence read more

Fly Tying: How to Tie a UV Pregnant Shrimp

Freshwater shrimp, or scuds, are a staple item in a trout’s diet.  From the day the ice comes off until the day it goes back on, shrimp are never a bad option to tie on during periods of slow fishing or early/late in the day.

This particular fly is one of the only shrimp patterns I fish.  I gained a huge appreciation for it during a day of ice-off stillwater fishing in April of 2011.  Fishing was incredibly slow, I had only hooked two fish all day and went into a shallow flat that wasn’t more than 3 feet deep for last light. read more

Fly Tying: Chironomid Underbody Colours

One of the things that makes a body material great for imitating chironomid pupa is translucency, being able to change the underbody material to give off different effects opens up a world of options.  Anti-static bags used to package computer parts have long been one of the most popular materials for imitating the dull silver sheen that the natural pupa themselves take on as they ascend the water column, but what you put underneath this material can change the whole fly itself. read more

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