JUL
21
0

Ireland Recap

Ireland Recap

Ireland was amazing - as everyone said it would be. The country is stunningly beautiful — green and lush. The trout were bigger than we expected going in, we thought the average would be 12-14" with few above, but we found lots of fish in the 16-20" range thanks to Andrew Ryan and his Clonanav guides. We fished dry flies on small to medium size rivers, stayed at the lovely Hotel Minella, and enjoyed the countryside each day. The second part of our trip took us to Ballynahinch Castle and the Owenmore River which flows through the property. Unfortunately, the river was high due to recent rains and the salmon fishing was off. We saw fish roll and jump and hooked a couple that got off, but it was enough to make us want to return for another try. The guides, who themselves were most delightful and entertaining, did everything they could to get us into fish but it was not to be.The castle stay was an extravagance in accommodation, and all the staff were warm and hospitable people, and we'd go back in a minute. There's nothing like meeting in an Irish pub after fishing to talk about the day. We will return.


We're including a few photos from the trip here in our blog, but if you'd like to see more, feel free to check out the Group's Gallery here

Ireland collage

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2824 Hits
OCT
28
0

How was Spain?

That was the question we started to get as soon as we arrived home from fishing the Eastern Pyrenees a couple days ago. This was our second trip to Spain and the first one with a full group. We have to say that we couldn't have had nicer weather. Every day started with a cool, fresh, fall morning in a down vest or jacket, but by afternoon some of us were fishing in shirt sleeves. This part of Spain has had a cool, wet, season until recently and we found some of our favorite streams were chalky instead of clear and some of the tailwater streams were too high to fish, so we were limited in where we could fish. That said, there were several 7 - 9 lb. trout caught and lots of 5 lb. and better fish. Some of these were caught on dry flies and some on nymph droppers trailed behind dries. On the clear streams we could sight fish, which was everyone's preference, of course. Everyone commented on the medieval ruins scattered throughout the country, the old stone villages, cathedrals, watch towers. Some of us took time away from fishing for sightseeing. Hotel Domenec and the Domenec Restaurant were great and we loved the little village of Aren, our home for the week. Chef Juan Antonio spoiled us with amazing multi course meals and good wine and the Salvelinus guides were outstanding. We loved it all and look forward to a return trip. Here are some of our favorite photos from the trip.

spain

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4288 Hits
AUG
12
0

Mouse Season in New Zealand

2079 Spring brown troutCould this season be the one we've been waiting for? Quite possibly according to reports coming out of New Zealand predicting a bumper crop of mice due to expected heavy beech forest seed fall which will lead to an explosion in rats, mice and stoats. Check out the link and video below for details. If you've been thinking about New Zealand, this could be a very exciting time to be with us at Owen River Lodge on the South Island. February 1-20. 8 days fishing. Details about the trip on our website here.

http://www.frontierstravel.com/public/information/6/news/826-Mouse_Season_in_New_Zealand

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OyRPa0nA9nM

 

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JUL
10
0

Trout & Tarpon Lines

Often when we pick up a rod to cast and we don't like it, it could be the line that's on the rriood and not the rod itself. It's important to put the right line on a rod but knowing what that "right line" is can be very difficult. Many anglers, ourselves included, prefer to put a line like the RIO Grand on fast action rods and a line like the RIO Gold for slower action rods. With dry fly season here, both east and west, and the need for light, delicate presentations, it's a good time to hear about the new InTouch RIO Gold trout line. Click here to see RIO's new family of Trout Lines.   

 

On the other hand, with memories of our recent tarpon trip to Isla Holbox, Mexico, still fresh in our minds, we'd like to share this excellent clip from Zack Dalton at RIO on choosing the right tarpon line. It makes us want to go back to Mexico for more fun with those fish!  Click here to see the clip

 

It's great to have a company constantly researching new technology, new coatings, new tapers. RIO is the cutting edge because they never sleep. They firmly believe that the very best line ever can still be improved.

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AUG
30
0

Time is Running Out for Spain

b2ap3_thumbnail_Blog_000_Lunch-time_20130831-035848_1.jpg   We still have a few spots left in our departure for the Pyrenees, Spain. Join us at Salvelinus La Ribagorza Lodge in Lleida, 1-1/2 hours from Barcelona as we explore the extensive trout fishing opportunities for brown, rainbow and brook trout. October 12-20, 2013. 7 nights/7 days, $4,950 pp. (A great buy in international travel). For complete details, itinerary, and photos look here. Call us soon. Time is running out.

 

  Also don't forget our photo contest.  We've gotten some great entries already but we'd love to hear from you!  Details here

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JUN
25
0

New Trip Announced for October 2013

  Are you looking for an adventure this fall?  Do you need a break from the chaos of everyday life?  Would you like to go somewhere even Barry & Cathy haven't been yet?  If so, than our upcoming exploratory trip to Spain is for you.  The Becks will be traveling to the Pyrenees, in northeastern Spain in search of big trout.  We just firmed up our dates which will be October 12-20th and still have space available.  You can check out our website for more information and details but please feel free to call us at the office (877-278-5638) if you have any questions.  We hope you'll join Barry & Cathy on this unique opportunity. 

spain

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8947 Hits
MAY
29
0

New Zealand 2014

   If New Zealand is on your dream list, come with us February 9-18 to Owen River Lodge on the South Island.  ORL, New Zealand's premier fly fishing destination, is highly recommended and awarded, and is strategically located to take advantage of some of the best fishing on the South Island.  Owner & manager Felix Borenstein is an angler himself and also a wonderfully accomodating host.  We have visited here many times and always look forward to returning.  I'm including a few photos from our last trip but don't take our word for it, come  and see for yourself!  Details on our website.

 

3918 BROWN TROUT    2013 NEW ZEALAND 1048 2013 NEW ZEALAND 2395    2013 NEW ZEALAND 1464   2013 NEW ZEALAND 2527

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6631 Hits
MAY
29
0

Guiding on our Home Waters

As you can see from the photos, our guides and clients have had some great days on Fishing Creek so far this spring. We still have a few openings in June. Give us a call and come & see for yourself! Details on our website.

guiding collage

 

 




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5911 Hits
APR
25
0

Trout Tips & Tricks

With trout season here, I thought a clip on when to change flies and how to choose the right pattern might be helpful. Cathy's video clip from her "From First Cast to Double Haul" video is very appropriate. We hope you enjoy it.
Brooke

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4376 Hits
APR
13
0

Early Season Streamer Tactics

b2ap3_thumbnail_blog_0001_Brown-trout-streamer-0676.jpg  Last Thursday we were at the Philadelphia Angler's Club where Barry gave a presentation on Streamer Tactics for Big Fish. Our trout season opened here in northeastern Pennsylvania on Saturday and after several weeks of below average water levels, we got much needed rain and for the opener the stream was a tad high and off color. Perfect water for fishing streamers.

  With Barry's talk fresh in my mind, I thought it would be a good time to talk a little about fishing streamers. Streamers represent things that swim through the water that a trout would like to eat - skulpins, minnows, crayfish, leeches and so on. Things that make a meal. Streamers can be fished unweighted or weighted using lead eyes, cone heads, lead can be wrapped on the hook before tying the fly, split shot can be added to the leader, etc. Unless the water is very shallow, we prefer a streamer with weighted eyes most of the time so we can get an effective jig-like motion when retrieving.

  Most of the time we think the secret in in the retrieve and the depth at which the fly is being fished. If the water is cold and deep the fly has to be deep. If the fish are dormant on the bottom, a slower retrieve may be needed because the fish are not going to move far or move quickly. The fly has to be

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DEC
14
0

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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JUL
28
0

Rods Available - September, Alaska

 

We seldom have rods available this late in the summer for our September Alaska trip. As the photos show, the rainbows are fattened up from a summer of feasting and are in great shape getting ready for winter. The tundra landscape is beautiful, fresh cool mornings, often with fresh snow on the mountains.

Rainbows & Sockeyes



 

Fall is a gorgeous season anywhere, but especially so in Alaska. Grab one of these spots and come along for a week of exceptional fishing and scenery. Details. Contact us or Stew Armstrong at Frontiers today!
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5614 Hits
FEB
13
0

Turning over long leaders

As I write this we have been in New Zealand for about 2 weeks. Our trip is about two-thirds over already. New Zealand is known for it's difficult technical fishing. Here on the South Island there aren't a lot of fish, at least not a lot compared to the well-stocked trout streams of Pennsylvania, our home state. That said, there are no stocked trout on these rivers. Each one is a wild fish and each one has survived floods of astronomical proportions, some each year. They are the strongest, smartest survivors. All the others are long gone.

On an average day of fishing, we probably walk 5-6 miles. Some days are shorter hikes, most are longer. Some days if we're lucky we may see a big fish about every mile. Once in a while we might see a couple fish within a short distance of each other but more often than not they are spread out with a lot of water and rocks in between. As if getting to these fish weren't difficult enough, once we find them it can really get technical. Someone once told me that a poor cast doesn't catch any fish and it's more true here than anywhere else.

Our go-to rods this trip are both Sage Rods, a 9' TCX and a 9-1/2' Z-Axis, both 5 weights loaded with Rio Grand willow floating fly lines. We usually keep one rod rigged for dries with a Chocklett cicada, parachute Adams, or Chernobyl beetle. The second rod almost always has two nymphs and often one or both will be a tungsten bead head. Most of the time our leaders are about 18 feet long. Add a pretty stiff breeze, sometimes gusts, and most of the time it seems that the wind is coming straight at us making the cast difficult to turn over and put in the right place.

There have been a dozen times (perhaps my guide would say more) when we finally find a fish, he's moving around feeding, and therefore "catchable". I get into position, get the line out, false cast out to the side of the fish carefully measuring my line only then to drop it either too close or too far upstream, too far right, or too far left. On occasion when I do drop it exactly where I want it, the current grabs it and it either pulls it out of his feeding lane or it drags. If everything is perfect (and I do mean everything), then the fish will usually eat the fly. If I continue to be lucky I will strike at the right nano-second and hook the fish. Then it's a contest to see who is the fittest - him as he races upstream and down or me as I try to dance across the rocks both wet and dry trying to stay connected. Once in a while I win, once in a while he wins.

One of the problems is that first cast that didn't quite work out the way I wanted it to. Probably with trout everywhere, but especially here, if he doesn't eat the first cast he is put on alert and then becomes much harder to fool. It's not to say he can't be caught, but you've just stacked the odds more in his favor and less in yours. Making a good first cast is so very important. It's bad news if it lands wrong or if the leader doesn't turn over and turning over a 18' leader with tungsten bead head nymphs is not for the faint of heart, however there are a couple things that can help us get the job done.

The first thing is to be sure of the amount of line you're casting. This much I've learned the hard way. Thankfully there is usually a white wool indicator on the leader. By casting out to the side of the fish you should most of the time be able to judge how much line you're casting and know when you've got the right amount. Then move the cast back to where the fish is and present it. If you false cast over the fish you will run the risk of him seeing the cast, the indicator, or the shadow of the line.

The second thing that helps me is to not watch the fish but concentrate on the spot up in front of him where you want your fly to land. Your cast will have the tendency to go where you are looking. If you're concentrating on the fish you may hit him on the head with the flies and trust me, they don't like that.

If you're not comfortable casting such a long leader and most of us aren't, get 3 or 4 feet of fly line out beyond your rod tip before starting to cast. When walking from one spot to another, hook the bottom nymph in a snake guide pretty far up the rod and then bring the leader back around the reel seat and reel in the slack. When you're get ready to cast again, pull a couple inches of line off the reel and drop the line from around the reel and while still holding the leader, tap the rod blank and the fly will drop out of the guide. Before letting go of the leader pull some extra fly line out beyond the rod tip with your free hand. Then toss the leader into the water, do a quick roll cast to get it out in front so you can then pick it up and start to cast. This is also a good trick for fishing streamers or nymphs back home with split shot or a sink-tip.

It's important that you remember to lengthen your casting stroke as the amount of line increases that your casting. In other words, as you shoot line thus increasing the amount of line that your casting, lengthen the stroke. Take the rod further back in the back and in the front. Many times, just a couple inches in each direction will smooth out the cast and make it more manageable. Remember the quick stop with the rod tip at each end of the casting stroke so you don't sacrifice line speed.

Another thing that will help a lot is a good sharp single haul at the end of the forward cast to help increase line speed and turn over the long leader and heavy flies. Whenever you need more line speed, it will be easier to get it from a good haul (in the right place) then to try casting the rod harder which can result in a tailing loop. In this example, it's important to put the haul at the front end of the forward cast. Don't spread it out over the entire casting stroke because you'll waste most of it. Wait until the rod gets in front of your shoulder before starting the haul.

The last thing is to make sure you're far enough behind the fish to make a cast using some fly line. It's easy to sneak up behind the fish and sometimes we can get so close that we don't have much line to cast. This is especially true in rough water or when the fish is deep. By getting back a bit further we put more distance between us and the fish, therefore using more fly line to reach the fish which makes the cast easier to execute. It is much harder to cast just the leader when you're close then it is to cast a few yards of fly line and leader. Simply backing up may make the cast easier in the long run.

Places like New Zealand make us become better anglers. So much of the time, it's little things that we can do that make us better fishermen. That said, I think my guide is waiting for me. We'll see what today brings! Cathy.





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6538 Hits
JUN
16
0

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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7174 Hits
APR
19
0

Let's Go Fishing



We have a few openings on upcoming trips that we want to tell you about. We have a couple spots at Abaco Bonefish Lodge (May 14-21), one opening in Holbox, Mexico (June 13-19), and a couple on the Bighorn (August 14-21 or 21-28). We have space available for 4 night/3 day and-or 7 night/6 day packages. Click the links for prices and details on our Hosted Trips page.

Abaco Bonefish Lodge, Bahamas. Come along with us as we search the hard white sand flats so typical of the Bahamas for bonefish at this strategically located new lodge during prime time.

For a short time each year the big migratory tarpon are found at Holbox Island. The baby tarpon are always in the rivers and lagoons. Join us for an exciting trip fishing for both the big boys and the acrobatic babies.

If you saw the Wall Street Journal recently, you may have read about the expected grasshopper infestation in the west this summer. It's predicted that there may be 7 times the usual number of grasshoppers - the most in 150 years! The Bighorn is an amazing river during normal years, if this event happens, believe us - you don't want to miss it! Join us at Kingfisher Lodge in August.


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7172 Hits
MAR
18
0

Argentina

Hey Everyone!

Barry & Cathy are off on another adventure, this time to beautiful Argentina! They'll be bringing back plenty of new images and stories from south of the equator, but for now here's a few images of Argentina trip's past to set the mood...

Happy Casting Everyone!





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