bmac

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About bmac

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday November 10

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  • What I do for a living:
    Retired Marine

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  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Swansboro, NC
  1. Jettyskunk: Not sure if you've already seen it, but Cary Greene started a great thread on a very similar topic back in Sep. Lots of great info there. Sounds to me like you're fishing in my old stomping grounds. You fishing for calicos or are you further north?
  2. All great. Really like those shrimp.
  3. Some great stories. I've enjoyed them all. How many of you are old enough to remember when quill winged wet flies were staples in fly shops and catalogues? How many of you carried a Parmachene Belle in your fly box? How many of you ever caught a single fish on one? [For me, yes to #1, & #2 but no to #3.]
  4. Best wishes for a full and speedy recovery.
  5. Always a great pleasure reading your posts with magazine cover quality photos. Take your time coming home. Windy, rainy, cold with an extended forecast for more of the same.
  6. My thoughts exactly clambellies. If I didn't have this addiction, I wouldn't have needed a career. In 1971, when I was about 12 yrs old, my older brother became friends with somewhat of a prodigy of a young fly fisherman named Blaise Cznerokowski. My brother and he were a couple of years older. To this day, Blaise remains as one of the most gifted, natural fishermen that I have ever known. Blaise had been mentored in the art of fly fishing by a high school principal, the mythical "Mr. Baker," a man whom I never met, but whose teachings, indirectly, are with me even today. At that young age, I decided that come hell or high water, I would become a fly fisherman. With only tacit approval, I raided my mother's stash of S&H Green Stamps and semi-legally acquired a 9' buggy whip of a fiberglass fly rod with an automatic reel and a level floating line. With a lot of coaching and endless patience on the part of Blaise and my brother, I learned the fundamentals of casting and fishing small creeks for trout. (By this time in my life, I was already an accomplished drowner of worms and soaker of salmon eggs and cheese balls.) Though it may sound as an unlikely venue, the suburban San Fernando Valley, just north of Los Angeles where I grew up, was surrounded by mountains with several year-round flowing streams that held native populations of rainbows and some brown trout. Hardly anyone fished those streams back then, and they were the perfect pre-school for a youngster, with a whole lot of desire and not much else, to learn small stream fly angling. My father, a great outdoorsman, but not really much of a fisherman, supported my brother's and my growing addictions to fly fishing in any way that he could. When we decided that we had to learn how to tie flies (to save money!) he bought us the fly tying gear and enrolled us in fly tying classes with the Sierra Pacific Fly Fishers, a local club semi-based out of The Fisherman's Spot in Van Nuys, CA, (still there today) the only place within driving distance of us that carried fly tackle and fly tying supplies. The SPFF were a bunch of experienced old school fly guys in their forties & fifties (old guys to us) who were extraordinarily generous in sharing their knowledge with younger kids like us who didn't even have driver's licenses yet. The tying classes and the on the water outings with that club remain as the most important formative influences in my entire 45 years with a fly rod in my hands. That along with regular treks to the eastern Sierra Nevada streams with my Old Man, brother Bill and Blaise. Any trout over the 6" legal limit that was unfortunate enough to take our flies usually died and went into a canvas creel. Any fish over 10" was a whopper. Anything over 12" a trophy. We ate every one of them, and though the 10 fish per day limit was strictly observed, that didn't include those that were eaten or the limits that accumulated over 3-4 days in the back country. We drank out of the streams and never got sick. We cooked over open campfires, and God forgive us, we buried our trash. And nobody, but nobody ever fished where we fished. We had a little section of paradise all to ourselves, never saw another angler, and we considered ourselves pretty solid conservationists because we didn't openly litter (we buried or burned our trash) and we sometimes let smaller fish go free. Times change, and with them so must our attitudes and practices. The California I knew then no longer exists, nor could it. I don't think I've killed a freshwater trout in over two decades, though I'm sure I would if it were a brookie and it was fat. A lot of water has flowed past the waders since those days. I've had the good fortune to cast flies to a lot of different species in a lot of different places, some exotic, some not. I got to be pretty good with a fly rod for a while, then I dropped it for years chasing different dreams in blue water, out of a kayak and chasing big striped bass with hardware. I'm fishing the fly rod more lately, getting a little more proficient again but still dealing with ingrained bad habits that were wall papered over years ago. But I have no fonder memories than those early days, learning the arcane mysteries and solemn rites of the fly fisherman, being coached along by some truly generous and talented older guys. And the greatest gift I ever received when my Old Man, who as a high school teacher never had any excess cash, but who freely spent what he did have on his kids, gave my brother and me brand new Browning Sila-Flex fly rods for Christmas in 1973. That was almost state of the art back then, and I felt as though I had truly arrived.
  7. I have just about every conceivable base covered, freshwater, saltwater, inshore, offshore, fly, spin, cast, except for one... This will be the year that I dive into two-handed fly rods and try to learn how to spey cast. I'm closing in on "old timer" status, I think that I'm pretty knowledgeable about most aspects of fishing, but I know nothing about this. I will be an absolute noob. Looking forward to that & learning something new. Now 2020 might be the year of the kite.
  8. Amazing form & he looks like a very powerful guy. One thing I couldn't quite see clearly, but is that a braided mono shock leader? If so, that's a new one on me. Perhaps an old trick with distance casters or is it just my old eyes paying tricks on me?
  9. I'd take a hard look at the Daiwa Ballistic in either 3000 or 4000 (probably the 3000 for the rod you described. Daiwa's 3000 reels are more comparable to Shimano's 4000's.) Scooby Doo had a thread on these reels a while back, and he was pretty impressed with them. I've fished mine pretty hard down here in NC for redfish, and while I wouldn't characterize them as "Kalashnikov tough" for hard core surf conditions, they are sealed. Jury's still out on how that Daiwa "Mag Seal" will hold up over time, but mine have held up very well over two years with silky smooth retrieves and superb drags. Super light weight. Comparable to the Shimano CI4+ which I think they were designed and priced to compete against. I prefer the Ballistic over the CI4+, but that could be just because I chose the Ballistic, and our own judgments are always correct, right?
  10. Mark ups on fly tying materials can be pretty insane for what you're getting. It's a shame they take advantage of addiction like that! Let us know if you find a good source. That would be nice for our local chapter of fly fishers where we could share the costs.
  11. Some great patterns guys, and Fisheye, great advice on the epoxy coating and weed guards. I'll definitely add that to my kit bag for next trip.
  12. Brian: I've purchased around 7 Edge spinning rods over the past 6 or so years. I absolutely love these rods. Light, powerful, sensitive and extremely well crafted. I can't say enough good things about them, but like all rods, they were designed with a purpose which may or may not match up with what you are trying to do. Initially, I purchased a couple of different models of the salmon and steelhead plugging rods, (8'2" & 8'6" as I recall), to fish NC beaches for red drum. They were both well suited to the task. They threw incredibly long casts, you could feel fish breathing on your lure, and when it came time to fight, you could almost hear the fish whimpering during the butt whippin' they were getting. But they were not perfect for that application. Taper just a little too light for larger lures, the butts were way too long for my liking, & rod lengths too long for boat fishing. But let's keep in mind that these rods were designed for a completely different purpose, and NW salmon and steelhead fishermen want that taper and that long butt for drift fishing. So I bought a few of their inshore models over the course of a couple years which got me into the "X" ring for what I wanted to do. (A couple were custom builds out of NFC blanks, so they were a little bit pricier.) To me, they are exquisite rods. They are all I use anymore,. But let's face it, it's a matter of personal preference or opinion in a lot of ways. There are some very impressive rods out there these days. I'd recommend that you call them and tell them what you are looking for. My point of contact there has been Steve Pitcock. Steve's always been very helpful to me in selecting the rod that I was looking for, though he is more of a fly guy. But they also have some real design pros and master rod builders on their staff. They may be able to help. Good luck.
  13. Jewjitzu: I can't answer your technical questions, just offer my personal side by side comparisons to Samurai and J braid, which are by no means scientific or conclusive. Light tackle spin fishing for redfish, small stripers and speckled trout down here in NC throwing topwaters, plugs and light lead heads with lighter lines, 20# - 10#, with a lot of fairly long distance casts. I mention that only because those factors tend to induce more line twist on a spinning reel. I had pretty much adopted Samurai as my preferred braid several years ago. It's fairly expensive and it's advertised breaking strength seems pretty close to what I've experienced on the water-- i.e. much less than comparable brands labeled 20# or 10#. I decided to try J-Braid a couple of years ago, mainly because it seemed to compare so favorably to Samurai at a much lower price. I loved it out of the box, but over time I found that it tended to soften up and start to give me a lot of problems with spool knots. I've been fishing braid a long time, and I think I'm fairly competent and astute on how to prevent that from happening, but the J-Braid started giving me fits in both 20# and 10# while the Samurai, which was several years older did not. Now those were on different model spinning reels, which could have been a factor, but I've pretty much ditched the J-Braid. I would think that for your application though, it might be a pretty good match. I don't think you'll experience much trouble with spool knots if you'll be using it primarily on party boats for togs, flukes or stripers, especially if you're fishing with a baitcaster or conventional reel. A lot of bass guys really love J-Braid. It just didn't work out well for me in my application.
  14. Observe and try to understand what's going on around you-- bait, current, water clarity, depth and color changes. Birds, wind direction, sunlight, moonlight, God knows what else. You don't have to make it real complicated, but just note what you see and eventually patterns reveal themselves. Don't just rush to the water's edge and start pounding the water, or as others have noted, wade into and spook a bunch of fish. Assess where you think that fish (or those fishes) will be and how you will get your bait, lure, fly to that spot.
  15. You killed my brother, you dirty rat!