Thursday, July 26, 2012

Davy Knot Wars

Of all the search results that get people to my blog, the Davy Knot is constantly number one.  The level of interest in the knot is very high and I have been a proponent for a long time.
When I first did this experiment I used a size 14 hook and 6X tippet.  The Davy Knot was the weakest and then it dawned on me.  The tippet was too small for the hook.  This is why I went for the 5X and the size 14 hook.  The end result of both attempts were exactly the same.  The Double Davy Knot was the clear winner even with the smaller diameter tippet.
I will not be looking any farther into this situation as I am fully convinced of the result.
Watch the Knot Wars video and comment if you have anything to add.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Fly Tying Tip #129

Jungle Cock Capes come in all qualities possible.  I have seen some that are so bad that I don't understand how it happens.  I have purchased some that are so fine that they stand out as the perfect finishing touch to my work. $150 to $200 is common when you want the better quality.

When you are making a purchase, you want to look at the individual feathers themselves.  Notice the splits and the shape.  Also the luster should be bright with vibrant colors.  You might feel good with a purchase if the look of the feathers could be improved.

If you have some nails that are not up to your standards watch this video and you might be able to save a lot of money.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Hot, Low And Crowded

I fish on rivers that have the same problem each year.  All over New England we have control dams for  holding lake levels that provide constant summer fun and safety yet prove the same result time and time again.  The summer moves forward and the rivers lose their water.  They get Hot, Low And Crowded.

Yesterday, on Independence Day, I went to such a river for the five hours before dark.  I was told the July 4th caddis hatch late in the day was a must experience.  The flow was the lowest so far this year and the water temperature was seventy nine degrees.  Being a resort area, there was little pressure on the river except for a few first timers.  I wasn't surprised what I found.

I started in a run where I had taken a twenty two inch fish a few days before when the flow was twice that of today.  I worked a number of flies and all proved unacceptable.  Some looks but no takers.  Then down to the next rapid and again the same thing.  Splashes and rises but no takers.  Dropping down a tippet size and using a Double Davy knot for assured strength also did not work.  It just had to be that the water was Hot, Low and the fish were packed into small areas that seemed Crowded.

The predicted light show started and the sky opened with substantial down pours.  I fled for the car as the wind picked up and the thunder cracked overhead.  The sound of the early summer leaves being thrashed about is one of those unique sounds of danger that can make the hairs on my arms stand at attention.

As the front passed, I made my way back where I left off.  The rain was substantial enough to color the water a bit yet only decreased the temperature by one degree.  My hope was for that caddis hatch.that had not happened yet.  A few here and there but not what I would call prolific.

First cast with an olive Gary LaFantaine Sparkel Emergent Pupa Dry Fly produced a strong rise but no take.  The second drift put a solid fish on the line and after a sluggish  fight my measure net said eighteen inches.  The warm water was obviously taking a toll on these beautiful fish. A short while later I had another fish of the same size and the evening came to a close.  The hatch never happened.

Most years, this location would be finished for the year weeks ago.  We are always wondering where the fish go.  After coming down from the lake I always thought that when the water started to warm the fish traveled down river.  They vacated to bigger water where cool springs saved their lives.  You know that thing about Rainbows and Salmon being travelers.  Now I am sad to think that they just plain die.

I think that there is a line that I should stop crossing.  This, my thirty sixth day on the fiver since January first should be the last for a while.  That is unless we get some rain soon.

That line is the one that gets to Hot, Low And Crowded just before it gets Hot, Low And Void.