Wednesday, December 7, 2022

Out of My Comfort Zone

In the last month, I have ran into an old high school friend more times than I have seen him in decades.  His name is Casey and he's a pretty darn cool dude.  We weren't really close in high school but now that we have grown up (a little) and developed similar passions for the outdoors, we have something in common and have a better friendship than we ever have.

While hanging out one evening at a fine establishment in our hometown of Kearney, Missouri, Casey asked me if I could tie him up some streamers for silver salmon.  He goes up to Alaska on a regular basis and would like to take some of my flies with him on his next trip.  Two things came to mind on this request.  1. I was incredibly flattered!  The fact that he trusts me to tie him up some flies on a trip that special makes me feel like he trusts me quite a bit.  2. I have no idea what I am doing here.  I know next to nothing about tying flies for salmon.  However, we only grow by putting ourselves in unfamiliar positions and learning through experiences.  I'm going to start my research today and I'll keep you posted on what I come up with.  If you have any patterns, websites, videos, etc. that you can share to help me on this journey, feel free to leave them in the comments section below!  Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Tuesday, December 6, 2022

Lefty’s Deceiver- My Second Attempt...



...because you sure as heck aren't going to see my first attempt!  That sucker was UGLY and good gracious did I learn a lesson last night.  I had forgotten how hard it was to learn a new fly pattern.  Admittedly, I have been tying the same patterns for almost the last year because those things work for me.  However, I wanted to push myself to get out of my comfort zone and work with some new materials and techniques.  Specifically, I wanted a fly with a schlappen tail, buck tail, and the type that was meant to fished on a sinking line.  I didn't want a heavy fly but I didn't want to fish it topwater either.  This fly is light but on my new sink tip line, it will get down.

I am really excited to see how this thing behaves in the water.  While I didn't make any substitutions with my fly, I did change the color scheme.  In his video, Ryan went with a white and pink combo.  I have a lot of white and chartreuse buck tail and that's what the original color scheme was for the original Lefty's Deceiver...at least I think so.  I also went with a 3D printed fish skull that a former student of mine made for me a few years ago.  While it is not a name-brand component, it will work for my learning curve that I am going through and will save me some money.  Anyway, I'm pretty happy with my second fly and I could tell how much better and faster I got on my second fly.  I was also reminded that it is important to push yourself and try new things.  It might be frustrating at times but most things that are rewarding come from struggle.  


I moved the feathers around a little bit just to show the combination that I used.



Monday, December 5, 2022

Lefty’s Deceiver- A New Fly Tying Video from Ozarks Smallmouth Alliance


Last week I posted about the new Ozarks Smallmouth Alliance (OSA) website.  In the post, I referred to some videos that can be found on the site and over the weekend, OSA released a new video on their YouTube channel.  It just so happens that I have been in the hunt for a new streamer to tie and use.  

I wanted something that was a little out of my comfort zone, something that I would fish on sinking line, and something that was a tried and proven pattern.  It doesn't get much more tried and proven than Lefty's Deceiver.  If you are familiar with this fly pattern, you will probably notice that Ryan adds a little of his own twist (pun intended) on this pattern.  I dig the fish mask and the UV Polar Flash as well.  My plan is to give this pattern a shot and share my results in tomorrow's post.  I hope you give it a shot as well if you have the means and desire to do so!

Link to Lefty's Deceiver Video: https://youtu.be/oGgRK8aMgC0

Link to Ozarks Smallmouth Alliance YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/@OzarksSmallmouthAlliance

Sunday, December 4, 2022

Song of the Week- Can't You See by Waylon Jennings- Week 9

If you follow the website Moldy Chum, you will recognize where the idea comes from.  If you don't follow the site, they have a post every Sunday called "Sunday Toona".  Essentially, the post contains a song of the week.  I liked that idea so much that I decided to start a similar tradition.  I plan on posting a YouTube video every Sunday and this post is the first of many more to follow.

I wouldn't blame you if you wonder how music connects to a fly fishing blog.  Well, the bottom line is that it really doesn't, at least on the surface.  However, if you fish, then you probably listen to music.  Maybe you listen to some tunes in your boat.  Maybe you slip in some earbuds and listen to jams while you fish.  Most of us probably listen to music on the way to go fishing.  So there is a connection between fishing and music, albeit a small connection.

The other reason that I want to start this routine is that I really enjoy music.  I have ZERO musical talent and that might be the reasoning that I appreciate the talents that other musicians have.  I don't like all music though.  I like music that has heart.  I like music that tells a story.  Most of all, I like music that I can relate to on some level.  For those reasons, the music that I share might not be to your liking...and that's ok!  I listen to a lot of music that you won't find on radio stations and that's why I want to share it with others.  

I started this blog cause I wanted to share my experiences with others in the hopes that others might learn and benefit from what I do.  Sharing music that touches my heart, or makes me laugh, or brings a tear to my eye falls in line with the aforementioned ideal.  I hope you dig what I share and I hope you find something that you can connect with.  For the first Song of the Week post, I present to you "Can't You See" by Waylon Jennings.




Link to Waylon Jennings YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGkocGhidU4byaZvwkYxAGw

Friday, December 2, 2022

One LAST Fly Assortment for the Online Store



If you are tired of seeing different fly assortments being advertised on this blog, I get it and I apologize.  This will probably be the last one for awhile because I don't want people thinking that this blog is just an advertisement for my online fly shop.  That is not its purpose at all, please know that.  

With that being said, this is one of my favorite assortments.  It has every color combination of Braves and Lunch Moneys that I tie and fish.  It has three of each color and I can attest that these things are effective!  The Lunch Moneys come in baitfish, bluegill, shad, and black color combinations.  The Braves come in baitfish, bluegill, and shad color combos.  I like to throw the Braves on a six weight and the Lunch Moneys on an eight weight but that's just my preference.  They are heavy enough that you can fish them with floating fly line but if you really want to get deep, they will really sink if paired with sinking or sink tip line.

I fish all of these flies for largemouth, smallmouth, white bass, hybrid striped bass, and even pick up catfish on them sometimes.  They have great profiles in the water and have outstanding action as well.  The Brave rides point down and the Lunch Money rides point up.  I wouldn't be selling these flies if I didn't use them, catch fish with them, and have 100% confidence in them.  I know the price is a little steep but these should keep you busy for A LONG time.  The box is discounted and is solid.  It has a gasket to keep things dry and is very durable.  If you have any questions about this assortment, please feel free to message me on Instagram or Messenger or email me at showmeflyguy@gmail.com.  












Thursday, December 1, 2022

New Ozarks Smallmouth Alliance Website



My buddy Ryan Walker of Ozarks Smallmouth Allliance has created a new website and it is really well done!  You can book trips, buy merch, and watch some really well-made videos.  Ryan is a great dude and heck of a guide that I have gone out with on two occasions and will continue to fish with in the future.  If you're looking for an adventure that includes chasing smallmouth bass in southern Missouri, Ryan is your guy.  Whether you want to book a trip or are just curious about the experience, click on the link and learn a little bit!

Tuesday, November 29, 2022

As God as My Witness, This Happened!

No, this story doesn't have anything to do with fishing or fly fishing.  However, it is too good to keep to myself!  I can't make this up.  Nobody would believe it if I did.  To make a long story short, I bit off more than I could chew.  

I told a sweet, retired, former teacher, that I could get rid of a big, dead branch that was...concerning.  It was hanging over an area that was between the tree itself and a vinyl fence.  It appeared that if it fell straight down, it would miss the fence.  However, I knew that the branch could bounce and potentially damage the fence.  It was about 20 feet up, about 6 inches in diameter, and oak which means it was dense which means it was heavy.  It needed to come down.

Mason and I tried to take it down a few weeks ago.  I used a step latter and a pole saw to try and take it out.  I ran out of steam.  I knew that I couldn't abandon this thing and potentially have it drop on its own and damage something or hurt someone.  I went back on Saturday with renewed purpose and an ace in the hole.  I enlisted my buddy Corey because, well, Corey can do anything.  Plumbing, electrical, drywall, etc., it doesn't matter.  This guy is is sharp.  

I felt bad that I had to inconvenience Corey by taking some of his Saturday afternoon away.  On the other hand, I knew that he would help me get out of the silly predicament that I had put myself into.  When Corey arrived at the job site, and I use that term jokingly, we mulled over our options.  We discussed using a pole saw again, a ladder and a hand saw, and a ladder and a chainsaw.  Corey wanted the ladder and chainsaw option.  That scared me.  I wanted the pole saw again, but that seemed like a second lesson in futility.  It also seemed safer...and more time consuming.

I started to saw.  It was slow.  Oak is dense and my saw wasn't surgical by any means.  After 20 minutes, Corey said that he was going to get his chainsaw.  I quit sawing before he showed up.  Prior to getting dangerous, Corey said that we should get a rope around the limb to get it to drop where we wanted.

It took a little coaxing, but we got a rope around the end of the branch.  It didn't take long to realize that this limb wanted to fall.  I had cut further through it than I thought and coupled with its weight, it was weak.  We got the thing bobbing up and down and Corey said, "On 3, pull hard."  While I was unprepared, I took his lead because he's Corey and he's pretty much always right.  On three, we pulled and with a crack that sounded like a gunshot, that sucker started to fall.

I actually had enough time to say, out loud, "Not the fence!"  It all happened in slow motion but hit the ground with the subtleness of a broken shoelace.  It was a nosedive.  Straight down. 

That sucker stuck in the ground, nose first, like an arrow that was shot in the air or like a lawn dart that I used to play with when I was a kid.  If you don't know what a lawn dart is, your childhood was safer and less fun than mine.  If you know what a lawn dart is, you know the visual and audio that those things used to hit with.  

It couldn't have gone better.  It didn't hit us.  It didn't hit the fence.  It just stuck in the ground like some sort of monolithic symbol of divine intervention.  I wish I could go back and relive the laughter and high fives between Corey and I as we celebrated our luck, fortune, and skill.  Alright, skill is a stretch, but we were happy that we didn't break anything and that we experienced an unexpected outcome.

Life is funny.  You never know what is going to happen in the next 10 minutes of your life.  It's unpredictable.  The more exciting moments seem to come with friends and in the setting of the outdoors.  This story is one of many that we could all tell, but good gracious, each one is fascinating and memorable.  I never expected this nonsense but Corey and I have a story that we will never forget and one that will be told over soda pops and campfires for many years to come.  

Monday, November 28, 2022

Cyber Monday Deal- You Asked For It!





When asked about what type of fly assortment anglers wanted most, the overwhelming response was for stocked trout flies.  In assortment #1, you receive a thread jig, an olive jig, a chamois worm, and an egg/flesh fly.  In assortment #2, you receive a mop fly, a mega worm, a chamois worm, and a white jig.  Here in Missouri, we have trout parks where streams are full of trout that have been raised in hatcheries.  We also have lakes that are stocked with trout during winter months.  These flies should catch them!  If you fish for stocked trout in other regions, these flies should still work.  All of flies that have jig hooks are size 10 and weigh 1/80 of an ounce.  The chamois worms have .02 lead wire wrapped around it's core to make it sink as well.  All of these flies are meant to be fished under a strike indicator and work on moving of still water.  These fish can be fished with success on either a spinning rod or with a fly rod.

All flies sold by me are tied by me!  No flies are ever outsourced or purchased from another source.  











Sunday, November 27, 2022

Song of the Week- Blue Eyes Cryin in the Rain by Willie Nelson- Week 8

If you follow the website Moldy Chum, you will recognize where the idea comes from.  If you don't follow the site, they have a post every Sunday called "Sunday Toona".  Essentially, the post contains a song of the week.  I liked that idea so much that I decided to start a similar tradition.  I plan on posting a YouTube video every Sunday and this post is the first of many more to follow.

I wouldn't blame you if you wonder how music connects to a fly fishing blog.  Well, the bottom line is that it really doesn't, at least on the surface.  However, if you fish, then you probably listen to music.  Maybe you listen to some tunes in your boat.  Maybe you slip in some earbuds and listen to jams while you fish.  Most of us probably listen to music on the way to go fishing.  So there is a connection between fishing and music, albeit a small connection.

The other reason that I want to start this routine is that I really enjoy music.  I have ZERO musical talent and that might be the reasoning that I appreciate the talents that other musicians have.  I don't like all music though.  I like music that has heart.  I like music that tells a story.  Most of all, I like music that I can relate to on some level.  For those reasons, the music that I share might not be to your liking...and that's ok!  I listen to a lot of music that you won't find on radio stations and that's why I want to share it with others.  

I started this blog cause I wanted to share my experiences with others in the hopes that others might learn and benefit from what I do.  Sharing music that touches my heart, or makes me laugh, or brings a tear to my eye falls in line with the aforementioned ideal.  I hope you dig what I share and I hope you find something that you can connect with.  For the first Song of the Week post, I present to you "Blue Eyes Cryin' in the Rain" by Willie Nelson.



Link to Willie Nelson YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdBD6uy0ZuX7sLK4__Ll6LQ

Thursday, November 24, 2022

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hopefully you are able to have a wonderful day with friends, family, and/or doing what you love.  I just got done hanging some Christmas lights and cranked out a few flies.  I think I might head down to a local, stocked trout pond here in a minute to enjoy some peace and quiet before our house is filled with a dozen family members and half of a dozen dogs.  I also wanted to take a moment to express how thankful I am for all of the viewers of this site.  You really have no idea how much your views mean to me.  I am always thankful that there are people that enjoy the content that I put out and like what I write.  Writing is a passion of mine and it fills my heart with joy to know that there are folks out there that enjoy it.  If it weren't for people like you, doing what you are doing at this very instant, this site/blog would cease to exist.  So thank you for stopping by, thank you for reading, and thank you for supporting my passion.

Here's a list of other things that I am thankful for and in no particular order.
  1. My friends and family
  2. Farm ponds
  3. Online fly shop sales
  4. Topwater blowups by largemouth bass
  5. Insect sipping trout
  6. Watching a strike indicator go down
  7. Seeing a smallmouth dart out of cover to inhale a streamer
  8. Donuts
  9. Lunch money streamers
  10. 8 weights
  11. Double hauling and shooting line
  12. Senyo's laser dub
  13. Gamakatsu B10S stinger hooks
  14. Rodeos
  15. My teaching job and my students
  16. Fishing guides
  17. The great state of Missouri
  18. Stocked trout thanks to the Missouri Department of Conservation
  19. 8 point bucks
  20. Brown trout, even the small ones
  21. Catfish that you didn't expect to catch
  22. Gar, even though I just can't seem to catch one
  23. Carp because they are pretty in an odd way
  24. Public water
  25. Trout parks
  26. Lake Taneycomo
  27. The boat that I don't have yet, but I'm saving for
  28. Drift boats
  29. My truck and fly rod transportation system
  30. My small boats that I do currently own
  31. Trolling motors
  32. Waylon
  33. Almost being done with my graduate degree
  34. The ability to put food on the table, keep the lights on, and clothing on backs
  35. Bluegill, redear, and green sunfish on a slow day