APR
20
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Ug Nymph & Salt Season

Barry's thoughts on the Ug Nymph

ugA few years back we were floating the Limay River in Patagonia and not having much luck. The water was a perfect level with good clarity and temperature, but for three hours we had not put a fish in the boat. Our guide, Nico, opened up his fly box and pulled out a fly he called the Ug. We knew the fly by another name although we had never fished it. One look at the fly and you realize how simple it is, a lot of rubber legs, a chenille body and weighted. Well, it saved our day then and it has many times since that day on the Limay. The Ug has produced some extraordinary fish here on Fishing Creek as well as other trout waters throughout the world.  0389 LIMAY RIVER 2017

It works best fished deep with a dead drift technique. It certainly looks like a giant stone fly nymph or, in a darker color, a helgramite. That said, it also works on Susquehanna small mouth. If you like fishing nymphs and looking for big fish, this is a must have fly pattern in your fly box.

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Salt Season

While we're knee deep in trout season here at home, we can't help but daydream about our Belize trip coming up quickly in early May. Sage has recently released a new Saltwater Campaign and we're happy to bring you the first segment.1191 GRAND SLAM 2015

If you've chased permit across the flats, you will love to read Tom Bie's perspective on permit, bones, and snook. It's easy reading. Enjoy.

https://www.sageflyfish.com/salt-season    

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APR
19
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The view in Mexico

Last week we had some techinical difficulties here and were not able to send out our blog.  Cathy had emailed us from Mexico with some great photos and I hated to waste them.  The Becks are home now, Opening Day here was a success, and we're busy scheduling guiding and casting.  I still wanted to get this blog out so I hope you won't mind that it's a few days late....  Enjoy!

 

We're sitting on the porch at Grand Slam Lodge in Mexico talking about thefishing we've had so far this week. Saltwater fishing is so different from trout fishing in so many ways. We can all remember some nasty wind on trout rivers,but nothing like nasty wind in saltwater. Another thing, the fish are always moving so your cast has to be quick and accurate, real quick. There is often no time for false casts...pick it up and get it back in there, especially for baby
tarpon and snook. Being able to see the fish is so important, otherwise you're guessing and the fly will almost always land in the wrong place. This past week we've had just about everything Mother Nature can throw at us, but that said, there have been some memorable fish caught and great stories to tell. Walt got his first and second permit and his first Grand Slam, Sara landed her first tarpon of the year (and fell off the boat, but that's another story). It's been fun to get out of the cold northeast weather for a few days and immerse ourselves in warm weather, sunshine, saltwater, tarpon, bonefish, snook and permit. Now we go home to the start of trout fishing in Pennsylvania.

 

Mexico collage

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2862 Hits
MAY
06
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Experience Holbox with the Becks

 

 

 

1269 HOLBOX 2012Thinking about baby tarpon, snook, jacks, maybe big tarpon? Holbox has it all, with an interesting fishing program to match. Start at sun up each day and fish until mid-afternoon. Come back to the lodge, relax, rest, enjoy hors d'oeuvres, and walk into town for dinner. 1791 HOLBOX 2012

 

We get the best part of the fishing day before it gets too breezy or hot. Fish lagoons, rivers, creeks and maybe go out for big tarpon if you want - and if weather permits. It's a great place and a great agenda. 7 nights/6 days. $3,295 dbl. occup/shared guide. Easy in/out. Check out the details and come with us!  

2013 HOLBOX MEX 0297

 

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FEB
11
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Need Saltwater Flies?

0217 SILI SKINNY BONEFISH FLY

 

We've just added a couple new additions to our saltwater flies in our website store. For skinny water we have the Sili Skinny bonefish fly and a Super Gotcha for the bigger bones on the west side of Andros. Take a Look.

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DEC
14
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2012 Hosted Trips

We've got a busy year ahead of us. Here is our schedule of Hosted Trips for 2012:

  • Jan 15-21 -- Delphi Club, Abaco Bahamas (bonefish)

  • Feb 1-18 -- South Island, New Zealand (trout)

  • Mar 18-Apr.1 -- Patagonia, Argentina (trout)

  • May 19-26 -- Belize River Lodge, Belize (tarpon, etc.)

  • June 3-10 -- Boca Paila, Mexico (tarpon, bones, permit)

  • June 10-17 -- Isla Holbox, Mexico (tarpon)

  • June 23-30 -- Ponoi River, Russia (Atlantic Salmon)

  • July 14-21 -- Kulik Lodge, Alaska (trout/salmon)

  • Aug 18-25 & 25-Sept. 1 -- Bighorn River, MT (trout)

  • Sept. 12-20 & 16-24 -- Tsimane Lodge, Bolivia (dorado)

  • Oct. 27-Nov. 3 -- Agua Boa, Brazil (peacock bass)

  • Nov. 26-Dec. 3 -- Tres Valles, Argentina (trout)


Detailed information and prices are available on our web site for most of these trips. If you're interested in a destination that is not yet posted, please contact us. We hope to see you in 2012.
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JUN
13
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Gloves & Stripping Fingers

As I write this we are in Cancun waiting to fly home. We've just spent a week at Isla Holbox, Mexico, for tarpon of all sizes. Isla Holbox is a lovely island, great lodge, great fishing. One of the most appealing aspects of Holbox is the fishing for baby tarpon (ranging from about 7 to 30 pounds) in the lagoons and rivers the crisscross the island. And during the migratory tarpon season there are big tarpon on the flats outside the island.

We use Sage Xi3 rods, 9 weights for the baby tarpon and 12 weights for the big tarpon. Any good size tarpon from about 15 pounds up is going to put up an impressive fight, and will jump with all his might again and again. It's explosive, fast moving action and you have to be ready to let him run while still keeping tension, get the line off the deck and out through the guides without any snafus. Having good gloves, stripping fingers, and/or tape will save your hands from line cuts. The line comes off the deck with such speed and friction that it's impossible to hang onto it without some protection on your fingers. And, if there is any sand on the line it will cut your hands as well.

We would sit at breakfast sharing stripping fingers and tape. Most of us prefer the stripping fingers as the tape sometimes loosens and it often starts to lift and then you've got an edge that the line can hang up on. When I do use tape, I find the best is the tape used in equine barns to wrap the hoofs of show horses. It comes in about 5" rolls and often costs less than $5 a roll. I cut it into about inch-wide strips and wrap my fingers. The tape is sticky and holds pretty well, but the stripping fingers are still best. My favorite gloves are Dr. Shade gloves with Polyurethane palms. The PU on the palms helps me get a better grip on the rod with wet hands and it wears better than nylon palms. They also help when working with fish. I find these gloves combined with stripping fingers are the ideal solution.

I use gloves and stripping fingers (finger guards) for peacock bass and chum salmon as well. When I'm wading and fishing for bonefish I use them because of the sand and shell grit that comes up with the line when the fish runs. The gloves also offer protection from sunburn. I get my stripping fingers from Sea Level Fly fishing, contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

When that fish takes off, you want to be ready to get things under control immediately. You can't do that if the line is burning cuts into your hands. Protect them from line cuts and you'll enjoy your fishing even more.

 
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APR
25
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1 Room Left At Holbox, Mexico

Holbox, Mexico



Come along for a fun week. Holbox Island Fly Fishing Lodge is a spacious, modern, comfortable lodge on the water. Boats leave from the beach in front. Walk into town for dinner each night at Italian, Mexican, Argentine restaurants.  June 5-12, 2011.  Timed for the migratory tarpon but lots of baby tarpon too. Lots of fun fishing and relaxation. Check out details on our web site under Hosted Trips. Hope you can join us.
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JUN
16
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Photographing Fish


We handle fish almost daily as either instructor, trip host, or fishing photographer. In all of these situations we want to capture the image and at the same time be sure that we are releasing a healthy fish that is not stressed or exhausted. Insuring the survival of the fish always takes priority over the photograph and there have been many times when we quickly released the fish without the photograph.

Sometimes we have to consider our own safety. Toothy fish like barracuda and sharks come to mind and even a small Jack Crevalle can give a nasty wound if handled improperly. Heck, we can get a sore hand by getting poked with the dorsal fin of a harmless panfish! These potentially hazardous situations can result from getting our hands too close to a mouthful of teeth (as in barracuda), or coming in contact with a sharp spine or gill plate (jack or snook), or an actual intended bite (shark). Cathy once grabbed a decaying sockeye salmon for a photo in Alaska and got her fingers inside its mouth of teeth. It took a month of antibiotics to get rid of the infection caused by bacteria in the rotting process. Be careful where you put your hands. Consider using a boca grip on a big fish to safely handle it for a photograph.

This is the system we use when we photograph fish. The longer a fish is out of the water the better the odds are of it not surviving. If the fish is in good shape one of us will compose the photo while the other is holding the fish safely underwater either gently cradling it or using a net. The person in charge of the fish can be getting it into the correct position for the photograph before lifting it when the photographer gives the word. If the head of the fish is gently cradled in one hand while gripping just ahead of the tail with the other hand, you’ll see plenty of the fish in the photograph and have a comfortable hold on it. For big or especially slippery fish a fishing glove or even a sun glove will help grip the tail. Make sure the glove is wet to protect the fish.

Our first photo will be a test shot of the angler holding the fish in the water. Then we'll check the photo for proper composition, lighting, etc. We may need to do this a couple times. When everything looks good, we'll let the angler know we're ready and on a count of three, the fish is lifted out of the water, the angler smiles, and the photographer fires three quick shots and the fish goes back underwater. We may repeat this process a couple times but with each “lift” the fish is only out of the water for about 5 seconds.

We cringe when we see an angler with a fish out of the water flopping around on the side of the river
while he gets his camera out of his pocket, turns it on, checks the program, and finally gets around to trying to hold the fish with one hand and photograph with the other. The only thing worse might be having the fish fall our of your hands in the boat or it landing in the dirt and stones alongside the water from an angler in a standing position. We always try to keep the net close by and the fish close to the water. If he slips away from us unharmed, so be it.

If the images look good in the preview, it’s time to release the fish. We’re still holding the fish with a firm grip just ahead of the tail keeping it in an upright position in the water. If it’s not anxious to go we slowly move it in a figure-eight or circular motion facing into the current making the gills work. Make sure the fish is in clean water where turtle grass, moss, sand, or mud won't foul the gills. If it's a trout, the water should be cold as well as clean. In saltwater, if the fish is exhausted or bleeding there may be predator fish in the area waiting for a chance to get at him. If it starts to turn sideways or goes upside down it’s in trouble, rescue it and repeat the revival process.

Remember, making sure the fish is healthy and not in any danger is the most important factor.
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