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These will be the first steelhead fly patterns that I have tied since 1975, when I traveled up to Vancouver Island to fly fish for these sought after seagoing Trout.I will begin by tying four of each pattern – maybe more if I decide to vary sizes . A lot has changed since then and the runs have been drastically reduced and these fish along with many of the great Salmon runs are in peril. The causes are many and will not be documented here…The box is finished and recipes, additional photos , links and additional information will be posted in a few days… ( 10.30.2018 )

Completed box of traditional Steelhead Fly Patterns…

Home base… while Ally goes here to get her degree in Veterinary Medicine…

Traveling down to Lewiston, Idaho and the Clearwater River…

Coming down the grade ( Lewiston Hill )…

Traveling East along the Clearwater River towards Orofino, ID…

A right turn towards Peck, ID…

…and The Red Shed Fly Shop…I have never seen so much great stuff squished into such a small space…

So I was advised to purchase this book about the wonderful rivers in the area – The Clearwater, Grande Ronde, Salmon and Snake rivers and their tributaries. Inside one finds history, the names and bios of folks who pioneered steelhead fishing in these locations, their stories and tips, fly patterns that they used and the evolution of rods and equipment. This book is just a great read !!! Many of the first patterns I am tying will come from it, with a few variants of my own…

A pull-off, along the road, next to the Clearwater River…

GREEN SKUNK BUTT VARIANT –  Daiichi 2441 #6…

Materials – GREEN SKUNK BUTT VARIANT…

GREEN SKUNK BUTTs…

The Clearwater River at a boat ramp…

GREEN ANT (Two Variants) Black Hackle / Grizzly Hackle – Alec Jackson Steelhead Irons #7 … 

Materials – GREEN ANT…* The Chartreuse Ice Dub isn’t supposed to be there…:doh:

GREEN ANTs…

The Clearwater River towards Lewiston, ID from Peck, ID…

SEAL-X ICE (Nightmare Red) & CDL – Alec Jackson Steelhead Irons #7…

Materials SEAL-X ICE (Nightmare Red) & CDL…

SEAL-X ICE (Nightmare Red) & CDLs…

Closer to Lewiston…

MELLOW YELLOW – Daiichi 2441, #6…

Materials MELLOW YELLOW…

MELLOW YELLOWs…

Long shot of the Clearwater River…

The North 40 Store in Lewiston in which a Fly Shop is located…about 1/6th. the size of Bob Marriott’s in L.A. …

A box in progress…

ORANGE & BLACK, Alec Jackson Steelhead Irons, #7…

Materials ORANGE & BLACK…

ORANGE & BLACKs…

UV2 SEAL-X PURPLE PERIL – Daiichi 2421, #6…

Materials UV2 SEAL-X PURPLE PERIL…

UV2 SEAL-X PURPLE PERILs…

“BEATS ME” – Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #5…A Bill Alspach pattern…

Materials “BEATS ME”…

“BEATS MEs”…

ALLY’S MOSCOW MULE – Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #7…

Materials ALLY’S MOSCOW MULE…

ALLY’S MOSCOW MULEs…

HARBINGER – Daiichi 2050, #7…

Materials HARBINGER…

HARBINGERs…

UV2 PURPLE AND BLUE COPPER DOC – Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #5…

Materials UV2 PURPLE AND BLUE COPPER DOC…

UV2 PURPLE AND BLUE COPPER DOCs…

BOX – DOUBLED UP…

BRIGHT UNNAMED FLY – Rick Miller/Variant – Daiichi 2050, #5…

Materials BRIGHT UNNAMED FLY…

BRIGHT UNNAMED FLYs…

PRINCETON TIGER VARIANT – Daiichi 2421, #2…

Materials PRINCETON TIGER VARIANT…

PRINCETON TIGER VARIANTs…

FALL FAVORITE  – Silvius/Variant – Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #3…

Materials FALL FAVORITE…

FALL FAVORITEs…

COPPER COLONEL / Variant – Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #5…

Materials COPPER COLONEL / Variant..

COPPER COLONEL / Variants

SILVER,GOLD N’ SQUIRREL – Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #3…

Materials SILVER,GOLD N’ SQUIRREL…

SILVER,GOLD N’ SQUIRRELs…

UV2 PINK BUTT AND PURPLE – Daiichi 2441, 1/0…

Materials UV2 PINK BUTT AND PURPLE…

UV2 PINK BUTT AND PURPLEs…

CHARTREUSE D- PURPLE – Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #5…

Materials CHARTREUSE D- PURPLE…

CHARTREUSE D- PURPLEs…

COPPER KING – Daiichi 2051, # 5…

Materials COPPER KING…

COPPER KINGs…

GREEN LANTERN – Daiichi 2051 or Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #5…

Materials GREEN LANTERN

GREEN LANTERNs…

Almost completed box…

LEPRECHAUN – Alec Jackson Steelhead Iron, #5…

Materials LEPRECHAUN…

LEPRECHAUNs…

 

 

 

 

PT/TB

 

 

 

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Michael and his wife Aimee traveled to Montana in late July to attend a wedding for Aimee’s BFF at a cabin over by Henry’s Lake in Idaho. What follows are some photos that he sent to me highlighting their trip… 🙂

Arriving at West Fork Cabin Camp

Getting ready…

Walking the bridge…

Maybe down here first…

Heading up to $3.00 Bridge the next morning…

A nice AM Rainbow…

Standing on my rocks…

Another Rainbow to hand…

Aimee, working the drift late in the day…

Michael, just doing what he does…

Then Aimee blows him away…

A different kind of Rainbow…

MOO’S Sunset Rainbow…

Sunset 1, Madison River above $3.00 Bridge…

Some flies that worked for Michael & Aimee…

Sunset 2, Madison River, MT…

Sunset 3, same place… 😜

A visit between the lakes before heading to the Park…

Working a streamer…

In Yellowstone National Park…

Those guys again…

That’s close enough…

Long shot…

The Yellowstone River looking upstream…

Another perspective…

A Westslope Cutthroat…

…on one of ALLO’S POLAR EXPRESS HS CH BUGGERS…

Further downstream on the Yellowstone River…

 

Boulders in the Yellowstone…

Hot pool…for some reason, Michael takes a photo of everyone of these that he has ever encountered…

 

NEXT: Hangin’ at Palouse Falls, Ally & Hero exploring local waters then…Patterns for Chrome…not necessarily in that order…

 

 

PT/TB  

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So Ally and Nick traveled to the Philippines to visit his cousins in Manila. What follows are photos Ally gave me of their trip there, in going and coming back from The People’s Republic of China. I am filling in some Blog gaps here because I am in the process of having long overdue cataract surgery on both of my eyes and will not be tying or fishing again until the procedure is finished and after having completed a move to Pullman, WA.

Manilla then on to Punta Fuego for some water activities…

Arriving at Punta Fuego

Some water for a jet ski…

Nick & Ally at 60mph.   

A view with smoke in the background…On their return trip from China, Ally and Nick went to Coron Island and Kayangan Lake to do some exploring  and snorkeling.. .I will let the photos speak…

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Next: Ally & Nick in the People’s Republic of China

 

 

PT/TB

 

 

 

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Michael and Aimee came in from NYC for XMAS so we decided to take a trek up to the Owens Valley to do what we do. This year, Michael, Ally, Ally’s friend, Liz and Hero participated…

Ridgecrest, CA at 5:30 AM on Hwy. 14…

PT, Ally and Hero…at sunrise in the Alabama Hills below Mt. Whitney…

Liz soaking up some sunlight…

The Alabama Hills with Mt. Whitney in the background…

Ally and Hero ready for a hike…

Ally, Liz and Hero in panorama…

Looking South along the crest of the Sierras…

Doughnut Rock…

Looking East toward the White Mountains…

An expanded view of the Alabama Hill and the Sierra Nevada Mountains…

Hero, Michael and Ally…let’s go guys !!!

Destination ,,,Goose Lake…

Looks familiar…

Ally, PT & Hero…

Middle of nowhere…looking Southeast…

Looking Southwest…

Across Goose Lake towards the Sierras…

Northeast, towards the White Mountains…

On towards Tinemaha Reservoir…when wet, that alkali dust will sink a vehicle over the wheels…

What’s this ???

This guy ain’t sayin’…

A view of the White Mountains across the Owens River…

I used to see these two guys hanging around here in the mid – 90’s…

A lot more water in the Owens River this year…

But a lot of dry and dead vegetation along the banks…

Heading back South, Michael and Liz wanted to check out the CO-OP in Independence, CA

Cool wall art and good coffee…

Some book shopping at the EASTERN SIERRA INTERPRETIVE ASSOCIATION…Visitor’s Center in Lone Pine, CA…

 A further selection…

I bought this book at the smaller center( now abandoned next door), back in the 90’s, when Michael and Ally were little. Michael is now reading it…

Back out to trudging the sand and dry lake beds…Ally & Hero…

A view towards the Southern end of the White Mountains…

I have been walking around out here since 1950…

Back up to the Sierras…

Looking East and down toward the Mt. Whitney Portal Road…

The Ice Fall at the Portal…this is the first year in a number of years that the road has been open this late in the season…

The Portal Pond that is stocked with Rainbows…one year, there were a number of them frozen solid in here…

The guys posing..Michael, Liz Ally and Hero…

Heading back down the Portal Road to Lone Pine, CA…

Liz… almost hanging off a cliff…

Owens Lake at sunset…

Michael, Ally & Liz…

One last sunset shot…

Ally, Michael & PT…

Dinner at Seasons in Lone Pine…

 

NEXT: Last Day in Montana…

 

 

PT/TB

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Another day of stop and go traffic in Yellowstone National Park again. And yes, it snowed again…

My turn to move the overnight accumulation…

Driving in the Park before Madison Junction…

The Madison in an open valley…

The Firehole River before the Falls…

More Firehole…

It was moving rather swiftly…

Back at Biscuit Basin on the Firehole to try out some more soft hackle patterns and midges…It was very cold…

Staying in the car and having second thoughts…

A few more quick photos…

The wooden bridge at Biscuit Basin…

Trekking down the Firehole as the sun momentarily appears…

I think I will start here…

Michael down stream on the Firehole…

Looking upstream from my position…

Michael working around a deadfall…

PT swinging a soft hackle…

A view of PT from Michael’s perspective…

 

Michael brings me a bug and asks for identification. This is a Nectopsyche ( White Miller Caddis) that was drifting, spent in the meniscusBelow, are two patterns that imitate this caddis. Not enough were in the drift to warrant their use…

FIREHOLE FLOSS NECTOPSYCHE # 16…

NECTOPSYCHE SHUCK EMERGER #16…

PT plugging away…

A small reward…

Michael says, “What???”….

Even though a lot of the snow had melted, I was freezing. So, I went back to the car to warm my hands and watch Michael fish a midge up stream…

Closer…

…and almost done…time for a late lunch !

….back to the Old Faithful Lodge

a brat in a bun…

Moo shot, in waders on the front steps…

After lunch, Buffalo time on the Firehole…

No Michael, I won’t pet him…

So we decided to stop at a bunch of places along the Firehole and Madison before heading back to West Yellowstone for dinner…the opportunities are endless…

more on the Firehole…

Driving in Yellowstone National Park includes a traffic jam anytime there is an animal walking along the road…

Micheal tries another spot on the Firehole…

Working the riffles…

A small Rainbow on a Midge…

A large valley where the Madison River runs…further to the left…near Harleqin Lake…

Elk in the meadow…

YES !!!

A nice stretch of the Madison in the Park…

Michael working it again…

A small Brown reward…

A very pretty place…

One last look…

Then on to West Yellowstone…I told Michael I wanted Chinese food and he said, “Follow the Chinese Tour Buses !!!”…So, we did…

Park One, West Yellowstone, MT… 

Three tour buses parked outside…

Looking good…

 I like the one’s with all the chili peppers to the side…

Hot and Sour Soup with Chili Oil…

Good stuff…after a cold day of fishing…

 

NEXT: Between the lakes again and something larger at $3.00 Bridge

 

 

PT/TB

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After a day of pushing myself to the limit and getting sick, Michael and I decided to take the day off (Thursday, September 28th, 2017) and cruise down the Gallatin River on our way to Bozeman, Montana, to do some exploring…

Good idea since we woke up to more snow…at West Fork…

Heading South along the Madison River… just past the Slide Inn…

This map indicates the route over to the Gallatin River from the Madison River Valley…287 to 191 North…

Lots of snow along the upper section of Hwy. 191…

Upper Gallatin River looking South, back towards Yellowstone National Park..

Upper Gallatin River looking North towards Bozeman, MT…This is a great overview of the Gallatin River

A big open meadow where the Gallatin is more like a spring creek than a big river which it becomes down in the canyon…this is looking down river…

…and a view up river…

Michael and I stopped here to digest some informative signage and take photos…

Read… 🙂

…and this as well…

Yes it was cold. Michael and I saw only 3 or four anglers on the entire stretch of the river. Most of them were closer to Bozeman…

…moving right along…

We made a stop here and wished there wasn’t so much white stuff swirling around in the cold wind…The path appeared trodden but no one was working the water…

The opposite direction, down stream…

…a closer look… .1

and .2

Just a short distance off the highway…

Gallatin River Guides Fly Shop in Big Sky, Montana…We always check out fly shops I have been here a number of times on my last few trips up to Montana…

This place…

Michael liked the drift boat…

Some of the locals that fish in Montana…(This photo was on the wall in the shop. It was taken near Lolo, MT in the 1890’s)…* note the guys with the 45-70’s for bears…

I have no idea what this stuff is used for…

So I picked up another one of these – FOLSTAF to use. I will give my other one to Michael (R) since his Simms wading staff has been recalled …again…

Something in almost Mini Moo size for my Grandson perhaps ?

I always try and buy local rather than order something I have not been able to put my hands on…

Back on the road along the Gallatin River…

Closer to Bozeman…

Last view before the river wander off into flatlands near Bozeman…

The Family Fly Shop in Bozeman, MT

I had contacted Joe Mathias of Firehole Outdoors about picking up some of his hooks while I was in Bozeman. He told me to visit this shop and that he would be dropping off some new hooks for me to take a look at… I picked up a few…

Matt Rosenthal owns the shop and he has a lot of other interesting things that one can find there…

More…

Michael and I made our way down Main Street in Bozeman to explore some places and we found this place…VARGO’S JAZZ CITY and BOOKS. 

This place has just about everything. It reminds me of a bookstore I used to into in Beverly Hills, CA when I was a kid. If you are looking for out of print fly fishing books, this is the place…Michel had his mind blown by the architectural book he found therein (above)…

…and I found this book with the plastic, spiral binding intact …

…and the first few yellow pages inside which were lost from my copy…We could have stayed there all day…

But onward to my all-time favorite vintage ( not big box) outdoor storeSchnee’s / Powderhorn

This is another store I could get lost in, for a very long time…Michael started looking at the backcountry cooking books…

…and a hat for his wife, Aimee…then he tried on a bunch of Filson jackets. I had to pull him out of the store…

..The down the street to The Last Wind-Up to look at some vintage watches…

On to HEAD WEST to look at more hats and maybe a hatband for ALLY…

Nope no hatbands for Ally…

Now he wants a Taco and I tell him to wait for dinner…TACO DEL SOL

Michael calls his skateboarding buddy he hasn’t seen in a few years… so we head over to Redbrain Medis,, next to the Bozeman Brewery so he can visit…I have a Coke…

The buds…

Michael wants to spend some time at the Food Co-Op in Bozeman to see what they offer compared to where he lives…

Interesting…

Grain goodies…

This is not like my market…

Have to get some of this…

If I was still drinking (there still would not be enough)…

Healthy stuff…

Yummys…

We got a few items and checked out. The place was filled with young Montana State students…

So I get Michael on the web, by IPhone, to find a good place to EAT…THE OPEN RANGEScore !!!

Menu…which changes each week…

We entered though the back door past this…

Into the lower dining/bar area…

To the elevated dining area…

Michael ponders…

Orders something I have never heard of that will put one under the table…

The “Wall of Dogs” stare down on us…

I order a Caesar Salad for us to split…

Then a 10oz, Culotte for the main course, while Michael has the Cast Iron Chicken…Mmmmmmm

No room for any of these…

One last look at where these wonderful dishes are made…

Back on the road to West Fork, from Bozeman, as the sun sinks in the West…

Almost in Ennis, Montana as it gets dark…

 

NEXT: An intermission with Ally, Nick and HERO…up to Bishop,CA for a November weekend...then more MONTANA

 

 

PT/TB

 

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So I am watching a little college football this Saturday afternoon and I get a text with photos from my son Michael who is out fishing on the Upper Delaware River today…

He catches these two Rainbow Trout…

 

On the pheasant tail version of Rowan Nyman’s SHOP VAC fly pattern that we used so successfully on the Madison River, in Montana, in September…

This fly…

That I tie in a thread version (L) and a PT Version (R)…

Looks like I need to tie some more up. Ally wants me to go up tp Bishop, to fish the Lower Owens River, this coming weekend... 🙂

 

NEXT: More MONTANA travels…

 

 

PT/TB

 

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