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About bmac

  • Rank
    Senior Member
  • Birthday November 10


  • What I do for a living:
    Retired Marine

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  • Location
    Swansboro, NC
  1. Bass Pro Shops in Carey. Ask for Dan Estrem in their fly fishing department. He fishes the coast a lot and will be a great source of information. Cape Lookout Fly Fishers is also a good group of folks, most members in the Morehead City area. Cape Lookout Fly Shop in Morehead City, Capt Joe Shute, is another good source of info. Pretty small shop, but Joe can get you pointed in the right direction. Fly fishing the surf for red drum can be amazingly productive, but it is generally seasonal with the fall being the best time of year, and it's also very site specific. i.e. NC has a very long coastline and the redfish schools tend to concentrate on a few locations. Fishing our surf with a fly rod can be pretty challenging as most of our beaches have strong nearshore currents and relentless wave intervals along with an almost constant wind. Backwater fishing in this area can be fantastic, but you're quite limited without a boat or kayak. We've got a lot of mud bottoms around here that are just plain unwadable. The fall bite for false albacore is amazing, but likewise, you really have to fish it from a boat, and given the sea conditions typical for around here, it should be capable of handling rough conditions. Brian H and Sarah G mentioned above are two of the most recognized and respected guides in the state, and they specialize in fly fishing northern and southern OBX.
  2. I won't argue that C&R mortality is not a significant factor or that better education among sport anglers, encouraging or mandating changes to gear (barbless, circle hooks, even single hooks, etc.) aren't good ideas. I will argue that C&R mortality is far less of a factor compared to commercial, charter and sport caught fish that go on ice. Way too many fish of spawning age/size being pulled out of the population. Make stripers a game fish with no commercial take. Set a season for keeping one and make it a slot size limit. Take it a step further and set a seasonal limit for individual anglers with tags or stamps like they do for salmon and steelhead in some places out west. Don't mess with C&R fishing as it's not the main problem. Most of the Barneys who mishandle stripers and kill them won't fish for them nearly as much if they can't throw one in the box.
  3. I love mine, but agree with Sudsy that they will rust quickly. I use mine as bench pliers, not boat pliers for that reason.
  4. My wife had a nice little tabby who had a patch on her back that was an exact match for light hare's ear. When kitty died, my wife wouldn't let me skin her, which I thought was both unreasonable and wasteful.
  5. I'd say that's pretty much true. In my neck of the woods the redfish school up in the salt marshes in the winter months. Very shallow water, usually crystal clear. Throwing a heavy lure anywhere near the school will scatter them. We normally use small soft plastic baits like Z-Man grubs with 1/8 oz jig heads or a weightless hook. (Don't tell anyone, but the Ned Rig works pretty great in those conditions as do many other LMB finesse techniques). So yes, that does limit your practical casting distance, though I'd extend that out to 75' if conditions are right and you've got gear suitable to that purpose. Even with those light weights you have to cast well in front of the school and hope they continue in that direction. That's why a fly rod can be very advantageous. Small fly with a soft entry can really work in your favor but you've got to able to get it out a ways. These fish are very boat shy.
  6. OP read like my biography. I've been fly fishing since I was a kid but I've pretty much stalled at 60 - 70 feet before I start encountering some real big problems with my casts. Even at those distances I can be pretty shaky with tailing loops and piles of line instead of a nice clean turnover. I think there's some tremendously good advice above that I intend to incorporate as part of my rehab, especially Numbskull's points on picking the right line / head for the rod and what you're trying to do with it. I'm kind of lost in the corn maze right now in that regard, but 90% of my issues are with my casting stroke, timing and trying to overpower at the beginning of my forward cast. I agree completely that there's no equal to the value of hands on instruction from someone who not only knows how to cast but also how to teach. The Lefty Kreh / Ed Jaworowski video from TFO, "The Complete Cast," is a great resource as well. A little pricey, but there is great wisdom in that DVD from two of the best fly casters ever. I've been working pretty hard this year to get better, but I've noticed that I've reached a plateau similar to what you might experience in weight training. I'm just reinforcing some bad habits now. Fortunately I've got a casting instructor friend who has offered to help me out. I won't throw the clubs in the pond just yet.
  7. Lighter, cheaper.
  8. For conventional rods, used to be pretty common in SOCAL for live bait rods and jig sticks without reel seats to have a cork tape base, then a layer of electrical tape, then a reel clamp that used to be standard equipment with the old Jigmasters, Daiwa and Shimano reels that were popular in the 70's and 80s. You have to be careful with the reel clamp not to tighten too much or you can crack the blank. I've still got a couple of those old setups. They work fine for med duty stuff. For light FW use or spinners, electrical tape or the good variations mentioned above.
  9. Omega is owned by the huge Canadian conglomerate Cooke Seafood. They pour money into state legislatures on the quiet, usually through local intermediaries. That's one of the reasons why state governments sit on their haunches on fisheries issues and why organizations like ASMFC (with a membership bias towards commercial fishing) whistle Dixie and say all is well.
  10. Many years back I read a very detailed book on the introduction of striped bass to California published by the California Dept of Fish and Game. Unfortunately I just tossed it about a month ago while cleaning out the house. I made a summary of that report which I posted on a now long defunct website. I'll try to dig it up. California stripers did indeed come from the Navesink River in NJ via rail car in 1879. American Shad followed a few years later. Both were planted with the hope that they would establish a viable commercial fishery in the seemingly barren waters feeding San Francisco Bay (Sacramento, San Joaquin and their tributaries). Folks didn't understand at the time that those rivers were anything but barren and that the native salmon and steelhead had adapted over thousands of years to the seasonal fluctuations of flood and drought that characterize so many of our western rivers. But I digress. Both stripers and shad thrived, and over time commercial fishing was prohibited. The American River and Feather River irrigation projects dating back to the 50's and 60's included construction of canals to meet the water needs of a growing and parched southern California. Stripers quickly spread via those canals into reservoirs throughout the central valley and SOCAL where they are now firmly established, sometimes to the detriment of other fisheries, particularly to some of the trophy largemouth bass lakes in SOCAL like Castaic. Stripers from that San Francisco Bay stock were introduced into the lower Colorado River in the late 1950s with the concurrence of Nevada and Arizona. They have thrived there too, though the heyday was probably back in the 70's and early 80's when a lot of big fish were caught below Lake Mojave. Just a note on a question above--anchovies and sardines can't survive in the fresh water of the Colorado, but they are widely used in SOCAL and on the Colorado as frozen cut bait. The main forage in the Colorado are threadfin shad and gizzard shad, both introduced. Some recent studies suggest that the stripers in the river and lakes (Mead, Mohave and Havasu) have hammered down the baitfish populations considerably resulting in a lot of stunted growth. The clear water in these lakes doesn't support much of a food chain for the forage fish. Way up river, Lake Powell has stripers, but I have no idea how they got there or when.
  11. Been a long, long time since I fished the Colorado. Big Bend SP or the Rotary Park on the Arizona side (Bullhead City) for starters. I'd check with Riviera Marina in Bullhead City. I don't know whether licenses are reciprocal, but they used to be. Colorado River is subject to some great variances in flow, and it's big water so be very careful. Most of the stripers caught in that section are pretty small, but occasionally some big cows will show up, especially in areas where they stock rainbow trout. I don't know if anyone flyrods for them in that section. Standard tactics used to be soaking cut anchovies or tossing big swim baits / pencil poppers. Give us a report when you get back. Maybe you'll put Laughlin on the map.
  12. Bill Couch's set up is right on the money. If you don't want to spring for a premium outfit like that, I'd look at Musky and heavier bass Swimbait rods. I would highly recommend a level wind for fishing artificials. Shimano Curado & Daiwa Lexa are high on my list of reels. Line capacity shouldn't be too much of an issue with braid, but if that's a concern, there are a lot of good round reels on the market.
  13. There is no right or wrong, but 99% + fly tiers wrap away from the direction they are facing the vise. That is, until you learn techniques like reversing your thread wraps for tying a wing post or cinching down lead eyes etc., but let's not get too complicated on things like that just yet. The best thing you can possibly do is find a local fly club or shop that sponsors fly tying classes. Learn the fundamentals up front and your learning curve will flatten immensely. There are some incredible instructional videos on YouTube these days, and there are some great books, but there is no substitute for hands on instruction over several weeks to learn the basics.
  14. Steve: I recall a recent thread here on SOL where someone related an exchange they had with Whiting. They were told that it was just unprofitable for them to raise roosters for that market. Can't remember the specifics. My RLS stash is by far the most precious part of my tying collection along with the high quality bucktails I got from SWE and Bears Den when I lived up there. I wish I could do justice to them. Unfortunately, those materials in my hands are a little bit like handing a Stradivarius to a chimp. The RLS saddle bin was part of my ditch kit when Florence was bearing down with a bullseye on my county.along with a few chosen rods, reels and firearms. Hoot Mon!
  15. Show me a reduction fishery anywhere in the world where there was a happy ending?