Thursday, February 17, 2011

The Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Podcast- Gear Maintenance in the Off-Season and Ten Tips for the Aging Angler

The Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Podcast- Gear Maintenance in the Off-Season and Ten Tips for the Aging Angler

Posted: 15 Feb 2011 09:28 AM PST

In this episode, Tom gives his advice for maintaining your angling gear in the off-season and answers our firsr voicemail request by giving ten tips for the aging angler.
Call our voice mail line at 802-362-8800 and leave us a suggestion for our next episode.
Click the play button below to listen to this episode. Go to to subscribe to future episodes
If you cannot see the podcast player, please click this link to listen.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Spring 2011 Issue Online Now


Spring Issue Announcement

Spring 2011 Issue Online Now

Submit Your Comments to the DRBC


The Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC), has issued drilling and fracking rules against the will of New York State, New York City, Philadelphia, the National Park Service, the Federal Fish and Wildlife Service, many elected officials, and thousands of citizens.

The Commission is rushing these rules under unrelenting pressure from the industry and from officials in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, who are pushing to fast track the rules and lift the current gas drilling moratorium in the Delaware River Basin Watershed, even though they do not fully understand the environmental ramifications of doing so.  We cannot let this happen!  Please submit comments today to the DRBC.

The most effective way to have your voice heard is to submit a separate comment for each "single issue" you wish to address. It is advised that - along with your personal views - you should quote science, experts and facts. We encourage you to use Riverkeeper's Fractured Communities as a source in formulating your comments.
In addition to pushing for insufficient rules, the DRBC is bypassing the crucial aspect of the public's voice in the process. As it currently stands, the public’s opportunity to have input into the rulemaking is inadequate and more hearings and a longer comment period is needed to provide adequate time to review & digest the proposed rules; the public needs to be involved!
You may submit as many single-issue comments as you feel is necessary. All comments must be received by March 16, 2011.
Suggested Highlights for Your Comments, Letters, or Testimony to DRBC:
•  The draft rules do not address the cumulative impacts of water withdrawal and well development; there is no method to control the environmental toll that natural gas drilling and water depletion will take on the land, streams, and River. There are no spacing requirements for the tens of thousands of wells expected that would limit how many wells can be drilled and how close they can be to each other, facilitating the conversion to an industrial landscape. How will the loss of clean, freshwater flows from the headwaters of the River and the destruction of the now 89% forested Upper Delaware affect water quality, clean drinking water, habitats and ecological needs downstream?
•  The draft rules do not place any restrictions on the chemicals that drillers can use to drill and hydraulically fracture gas wells.  Considering the hundreds of dangerous chemicals that are used, many of them carcinogenic and hazardous, and the fact that diesel fuel, a toxic substance, is being used in some areas to stimulate gas extraction, the DRBC's "hands off" approach to this central aspect which they could rightfully regulate is irresponsible. Why isn't the DRBC prohibiting the use of contaminants in gas extraction processes or at least waiting for the EPA to finish its study of hydraulic fracturing practices to protect drinking water?
•  The draft rules do not prescribe wastewater standards for all of the specific constituents of gas drilling wastewater that would require the removal of all toxic substances but rather require a treatability analysis that is poorly defined, does not address the contaminants used in hydraulic fracturing and most of the dangerous constituents in flowback produced by hydraulic fracturing and will lead to discharge of pollutants. How can the DRBC move ahead without controlling this toxic wastewater, described by the U.S. Department of Energy as 10 times more toxic than offshore oil well wastewater?
•  The draft rules rely on weak State regulations in many areas such as stormwater management (much gas well development is largely exempted), drilling and casing construction and safety (substandard State requirements in PA), air emission controls (PA exempts gas wells from air standards), and inadequate setbacks and floodplain protection (both NY and PA do not have large enough buffers nor adequately protective no-drill safety areas; homes, public buildings, public roads, public water supply wells and domestic water supply wells are all left out of DRBC oversight and relegated to inadequate state setbacks that have resulted in pollution incidents from gas drilling throughout Pennsylvania). This puts people and their health at risk, increases the likelihood of pollution incidents, will foul air, kill aquatic species, and degrade the exceptional water quality of the River and its tributaries.
•  While a 500 foot setback of gas well pads from water bodies, wetlands, surface water supply intakes and water supply reservoirs and no siting of well pads in the DRBC’s defined “flood hazard area” is proposed and is stricter than State requirements, stricter requirements are still needed. Setbacks should be based on a minimum 300 foot buffer beyond the floodplain/flood hazard area as defined by riparian soils to assure adequate protection for streams and to prevent flood damages. Water supply intakes and reservoirs need protection based on drainage patterns and the condition of the setback area in order to provide needed buffering; depending on conditions such as slope and vegetation, 500 feet may provide no protection. Water supplies, floodplain protection, and stream setbacks need to be set based on site specific analysis and require mandated management measures.
•  The rules would allow for fast track approvals (Approval by Rule) by the Executive Director without public input for much of the gas drilling and some water withdrawals. This loophole will lead to the "death of a thousand cuts". How can DRBC allow this when they’re supposed to maintain the River’s exceptional quality?
•  The public comment period  should be extended for another 120 days and at least one Hearing held in every state (3 in PA because of the length of the Watershed), and in New York City and Philadelphia, where major populations drink Delaware River water.
•  Verbal testimony is key to the input process, and three hearings will not be at all sufficient to allow input from the affected public.  In addition, public hearings should be held at geographically accessible and diverse locations. There should be at least one public hearing in each Basin state: Delaware, New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania, and at least one public hearing in each of the two largest population centers that rely on the Delaware River for water supplies, New York City and Philadelphia. Since Pennsylvania is such a large state, one hearing should be held in the Upper Delaware region, one in the central Watershed area, and one in the southeastern area.

Fly Fishing Video, Tying an Adams Fly - MidCurrent


Fly Tying: the Adams

produced by Tightline Productions


In this video, Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions demonstrates how to tie one of the best-known — and most fished — fly patterns in existence: the Adams. As Thomas McGuane once described it, the Adams is "gray and funky and a great salesman." And fly fishing historian Paul Schullery says "the great lesson that the Adams offers to any tier who wishes to create an immortal fly pattern is its generalism; not only has it proven to be all things to all anglers, but it seems to be all things to almost all trout, as well."

Tightline Productions specializes in unique views of fly fishing, whether it's underwater video of free-swimming trout or ultra close up POV shots of fly tying. 

Fly Fishing Video, Tying an Adams Fly – MidCurrent 

The above will take you to the Video on how to tie The Adams

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Explore New York's Marine Life on the Web!

  • On the DEC website you can explore a variety of New York's marine life without getting your feet wet! Find facts and information on New York's marine fish, crabs, lobsters, mussels, clams, sea turtles, whales, and more. Place a bookmark on the Marine Life ( webpage so you can come back and check for other sea creatures that will be added to our website periodically.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Anglers Facing Possible Ban on Felt-Soled Wading Boots | Flathead Beacon


Anglers Facing Possible Ban on Felt-Soled Wading Boots

Lido Vizzutti/Flathead Beacon

By Myers Reece , 01-31-11

On a fly fishing blog managed by Headhunters Fly Shop out of Craig, there’s a photograph of dirty felt soles on a pair of wading boots. Below the picture is a question.
“What nastiness lives in these soles?”
The answer, apparently, might be a lot, according to multiple studies, including a 2007 Montana State University report. The nastiness in question is the presence of harmful hitchhikers – aquatic nuisance species – that latch on to anglers and travel with them to new waters.
In an effort to crack down on these aquatic nuisance species (ANS), also known as invasive species, the state Legislature is considering a bill banning external felt soles on boots and waders. The bill was initially sponsored by Sen. Ron Erickson, D-Missoula, and is now being carried by Tom Facey, D-Missoula, in the Senate Fish and Game Committee.
The question posed on the Headhunters blog is followed by an analysis of the bill and a forum in which anglers discuss the potential repercussions of such a ban. Responses on the blog mostly favor the bill, though it’s clear some anglers across the state remain skeptical of ditching felt and have concerns about the rubber-soled alternatives.
Mark Raisler, co-owner of Headhunters Fly Shop, echoed the sentiments of many posts on his site’s blog: Bring on the ban, but will it really make that much of a difference? Felt-soled boots, Raisler points out, are only one of many contributors to the spread of invasive species.
“This isn’t going to cure it, but let’s get in the mindset and let’s discuss ANS,” Raisler said. “Are we going to stop ANS from spreading? No. But can we slow it? Yes.”
He added: “I think we need to do everything it takes to move forward.”
Aquatic invasive species have been on Montana’s radar for years. In 2009, the Montana Legislature passed the Aquatic Invasive Species Act and set aside more than $600,000 for the state Department of Agriculture and Fish, Wildlife and Parks. Since then, FWP has intensified a program encouraging anglers and boaters to: “Inspect. Clean. Dry.”
Invasive species, according to FWP, are defined as “organisms that are unintentionally brought into Montana from other places” and “include clams, fish, mussels, plants, weeds, and disease-causing pathogens.” Anglers in Montana are well aware of the devastating effects of one ANS, whirling disease.
A private group called the Clean Angling Coalition, based out of Livingston, has also gained recognition through its research and presentations about aquatic nuisance species across the state.
While these state and citizen efforts have focused primarily on outreach, education and monitoring, the current bill takes on a new approach by proposing to simply eliminate one of the suspected carrier culprits.
Felt-soled wading boots have long been the industry standard for anglers. They are also used by fisheries workers and other people who spend time in the water. But growing research shows that felt’s dense mat of woven fibers retains significant amounts of sediment and moisture, which carry and allow for the survival of invasive species.
Alaska and Vermont have banned felt soles, as has New Zealand. Maryland and Oregon are considering a ban.
Erickson said the bill first appeared in a University of Montana law school class teaching aspiring attorneys about legislation. A student named Nick Domitrovich crafted a proposal to prohibit felt soles.
“I was really caught by the great research by the young man,” Erickson said.
Not only would a ban affect anglers, it would also have an impact on retailers and manufacturers. To create as smooth of a transition as possible, Erickson said amendments have been proposed to push back and stagger the effective ban date as it applies to retailers and citizens. As written now, the ban would take effect Oct. 1, 2012.
The bill states that the “provisions do not apply to a state or federal employee or emergency personnel, including fire, law enforcement, and emergency medical technicians, using external felt-soled boots or external felt-soled waders when acting within the scope of duty.”
Simms, a respected Bozeman-based fishing gear manufacturer, announced in 2009 that it is no longer making felt-soled boots, instead switching to the Vibram rubber brand. Mark Aagenes, state conservation director for Montana Trout Unlimited, said Simms’ decision is a positive sign of the times.
“It’s where the industry is going,” Aagenes said. “Simms, one of the preeminent companies in the world, has already moved away from this.”
He added: “There’s no question that ANS is a hugely important issue.”
Aagenes, while pointing out that there are “far bigger priorities” for Trout Unlimited this session such as a bill proposal to alter Montana’s stream access laws, said he favors a gradual ban so as not to “unduly burden” small businesses that sell boots, along with anglers.
“And we know felt-soled boots are not the primary way that ANS are spread,” he added.
Echoing a point made by Aagenes, Raisler said invasive species are particularly troublesome for agriculture.
“For fishermen, this is a small issue, but for the community at large it’s a huge issue,” Raisler said.
For his part, Raisler has worn rubber-soled boots for awhile, a huge leap from 20 years ago when he attached carpet to the bottom of his Converse All-Stars. His shop only sells rubber soles and he has found that most customers are fine with the transition, even if there are lingering concerns over traction on certain surfaces. Studs and cleats are also available.
Such a wholesale change to the tradition of fly fishing, Raisler said, will inevitably draw critics.
“Anytime there’s change, certainly in America, there’s outcry,” he said. “But change is inevitable. Instead of resisting and yelling and screaming, let’s embrace it.”

Anglers Facing Possible Ban on Felt-Soled Wading Boots | Flathead Beacon

“Spring"/Winter Recipe: Sausage, Barley and Potato Soup | Kate Whittle | Food & Agriculture | NewWest.Net


“Spring"/Winter Recipe: Sausage, Barley and Potato Soup

The name pretty much says it all, except how it downplays the star that is barley. Our second installment of an occasional recipe feature featuring local, seasonal ingredients.

By Kate Whittle, 2-02-11

So we’re nearing springtime in Montana. By “spring,” I of course mean another three months of ice and snow. It’s miserably cold out. It’s time to make something that will stick to your ribs.
This recipe is based on three ingredients that can be found locally in most of the West: sausage, barley and potatoes. They also make for a hearty and tasty stew. Barley is one of my all-time favorite grains since it makes beer and you can eat it. Barley: Is there anything it can’t do?

Sausage, Barley and Potato Soup

1 lb german sausage, casing removed
1 cup pearled barley, rinsed
1 onion, diced
2 medium stalks of celery, diced
3-4 small red potatoes, cubed
3 cups of chicken broth
About 3 cups of water
Cooking oil
1 teaspoon each oregano, basil, rosemary
Bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste

In a large cooking pot, heat a few tablespoons of cooking oil on medium high. Add onion and celery and saute until softened. Add spices and stir for one minute. Pour in chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add pearled barley, cover, and let simmer until tender—this should take about 40 to 50 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking and add more water as needed. When barley is tender, add potatoes and sausage. Simmer about another 10 minutes until sausage and potatoes are cooked through. Add salt and pepper as desired. Serve immediately and preferably with one of your favorite barley-based beverages.


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

A Vertical Eye Hook

Gama Hooks 18

I have never seen a hook like this before, I wonder if it works very well??