TexasKayakFisherman.com est. 2000

Kayak fishing the Lone Star State...


By bones72
#2288026
I posted somewhat of an introduction in the New to Kayaking section but this area is where I could most likely contribute most to the forum. I have been flyfishing since I was about ten and been tying for the past twenty or so years. I’d like to think the fuzz balls I make are fairly decent they have at least caught fish anyway.
I have a mess of flies that need trying out. Was wondering is some of you that fish the coast would like some. I have a slew of shrimp patterns a hole ton of clousers and few that might even be for BTB type stuff. I have yet to fish saltwater here in Texas and a trial run of my bugs would be great if someone was up to it. I’d ship ‘em to you or you pick them up in Killeen if you’re around the area. The big stuff I tied for pike in Colorado on 3/0 and 5/0 hooks. I imagine some of them would be good below Canyon Lake for stripers that I have heard lurk there and feed on wayward trout. I wish I was tech savvy so I could post pictures but would be more than willing to email or text photos.
Almost forgot to ask where in the devil do you get tying supplies around here or is it mainly a mail order thing or do you make a periodical trip to the fly shop in Round Rock?
Have a good ‘urn,
Eirik
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By imaoldmanyoungsalt
#2288037
bones72 wrote:I posted somewhat of an introduction in the New to Kayaking section but this area is where I could most likely contribute most to the forum. I have been flyfishing since I was about ten and been tying for the past twenty or so years. I’d like to think the fuzz balls I make are fairly decent they have at least caught fish anyway.
I have a mess of flies that need trying out. Was wondering is some of you that fish the coast would like some. I have a slew of shrimp patterns a hole ton of clousers and few that might even be for BTB type stuff. I have yet to fish saltwater here in Texas and a trial run of my bugs would be great if someone was up to it. I’d ship ‘em to you or you pick them up in Killeen if you’re around the area. The big stuff I tied for pike in Colorado on 3/0 and 5/0 hooks. I imagine some of them would be good below Canyon Lake for stripers that I have heard lurk there and feed on wayward trout. I wish I was tech savvy so I could post pictures but would be more than willing to email or text photos.
Almost forgot to ask where in the devil do you get tying supplies around here or is it mainly a mail order thing or do you make a periodical trip to the fly shop in Round Rock?
Have a good ‘urn,
Eirik


Too bad your not into making hard baits like topwaters or crankbaits.....darn my luck!! :D :D :D
By bones72
#2288038
I have a over 10 dozen clousers (sizes #2-#4) that would probably through on light gear. Probably not the bead chain stuff but the ones with dumb bell eyes probably would. I tied all kinds of color combinations on them from white on white to tri-color combos to represent shad. Even if they don't do the salt (though they are tied on saltwater hooks) the crappie and sand bass should love them. The shrimp patterns would in all likelihood double as crawfish and be good for bass and carp flies. I'm gonna try some on the bass, I don't mess with the bugle mouthed trout though.
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By Big Kahuna
#2288045
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Been getting into fly fishing around the Houston area. Fished a lot around Canyon lake growing up for trout in the winter. As for supplies you might see where the trout unlimited folks get there stuff in New Braunfels. If you got a couple flies you are willing to part with I would gladly take a few.

Mahalo


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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By karstopo
#2288057
Tapatalk makes putting photos on this site pretty easy. It’s a free app. There is a pay version too.

Supplies, I tend to get most of mine from online sources. Hook and hackle, J. Stockard. and others. Craft stores like Hobby Lobby can have some things such as beads and yarn. Bass pro shop is my closest store with any fly tying/fishing section with supplies at 40 miles away, but I hardly ever get there. There’s lots of hunters around and that’s a potential source. I’ve gotten some duck and turkey feathers for hunters.

I’ve done fly swaps and there’s been a few on here. I’m pretty bad about ever getting around to using flies, often great looking flies, tied by other local fly tying folks. I generally use only 3 or 4 patterns out in the saltwater and tend to cycle through my stash of those. Seldom to I get away from my favorites. Clousers haven’t been normally in my rotation for some time now, but they do often work great here like probably every other place so I bet several people will want to try yours.
By bones72
#2288076
karstopo what are the three patterns you use or are they secret squirrel kind of items? I tied clousers because of reading up on fishing the salt. I assumed dependent on profile/color/weight that clouser style flies could represent baitfish or shrimp. In addition to clousers I have tied several simple shrimp patterns from really simple stuff with estasz and craft fur to UV glue type grass/ghost shrimp. I put weed guards on some of them as that seems to be a thing for the Texas coast. Perhaps it is just a selling point for the fly shops? I want to do the redfish crack fly as everywhere on the internet it is raved about, heck on you tube there are about a dozen or so tutorial videos. I’m just waiting to get the right E.P. brush nobody in Colorado carried it.
I am pretty familiar with mail order/internet fly materials. I used Feathercraft extensively while I was stationed at Ft. Knox. The closest actual fly shop there was Cumberland Transit in Nashville. Then there was Bass Pro across the River from Louiseville in Indiana. The distances made internet shopping a go to kinda thing. I like fly shops though, because I can actually look at the material I’m getting. Say a dyed bucktail package is $8.50 in some packages there are two tails in some only one, sometimes the usable hair on the tail will yield a dozen flies sometimes two or three. Even in packages where there are two tail pieces I’ve only gotten a dozen flies churned out, it all depended on how it was packaged. Selecting my own stuff was really important at least to me when it came to hackle necks and saddles for dry flies. Off the internet or out of a catalogue sometimes I’d get sent necks and saddles hardly fit for a Wooly Bugger other times I’d get the good stuff and could tie respectable flies from #12 down to a #28 (#28 was as small as I could handle) I had a barred ginger neck that I got from J. Stockard that probably would have tied into the #30ies. Going into a fly shop you also get to B.S. a bunch too. Most in Colorado were pretty snooty (they just couldn’t believe or understand that my purpose in fishing about 60% of the time was to eat the fish I caught; sorry but walleye, pike and brook trout got released in the grease) but there were a few where an old redneck like me fit in just fine.
Then there is my thing with supporting local businesses. When I was here, stationed at Ft. Hood from 94-04. I was big into bow hunting instead of hitting the big box places I went to Peacock Archery up in Belton (not sure if it is still there) stuff was a good bit more expensive but I got what worked, it was set up right, and I made friends and got local tips and advice. I think of places like Bass Pro like I think of Lowes or Home Depot. If you know specifically what you need or want they’re fine but if you need any kind of help the labor, they hire often times (almost all the time) hasn’t got a clue. Essentially the money you save often times winds up costing you more in the long by reducing the trial and error expenditures. I think I’m gonna check out that Fly Shop in Round Rock and see what the vibe is there.
As far as materials from hunters; I am one of those hunters. The white buck tail in my clousers came from my Colorado whitetail from last fall. Hunting is another great thing about coming back to Texas. I am a big time bird hunter. Not many pheasant here (publicly accessible) and the quail have gone by the wayside but this is one of the best times in history to be a duck hunter and Texas has so many ducks it’s not funny at least that’s how I remember it. Can’t wait to get a yak to reach some interesting places in the sloughs off the lakes around here I used to frequent. As a side note I have a butt load of pheasant tail (metric not standard Butt load). I also have prairie chicken wings; the small feathers at the top are fairly squared off and with the mottling on them make awesome legs on small nymphs #14-#20. If anyone wants that kind of stuff I’ll send off for free.

Kahuna I’ll get them flies in the mail by Friday. Also if that trout came under lights at night boy have I got some patterns I think will do awesome for that type of fishing.
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By Ron Mc
#2288083
viewtopic.php?f=20&t=249516

viewtopic.php?p=1627038#p1627038

what you find with time is you fish fewer and fewer patterns with greater and greater success.
everything below was caught on cats whisker
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except this one, size 22 thread midge
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dock fishing, size 6 standard salt hook
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Guadalupe tailwater flies
viewtopic.php?p=2286548#p2286548

no matter how complex people try to make it, it's easy as fishing
Last edited by Ron Mc on Tue Jun 25, 2019 8:28 am, edited 3 times in total.
By bones72
#2288113
I couldn’t agree more with regards to patterns and the fact that folks over complicate fly fishing. It’s simple a technique to accomplish the same means as so many others. It is perhaps one of the most archaic of styles used to present a bait to a fish.
As for fly patterns I only carried about five or six in Colorado for trout. I think that how boils down is four factors (at least as far as trout. 1. Presentation can you deliver a fly to a place a fish is willing to feed without spooking him and have said fly stay in the strike zone either by factors created by the material or by manipulating the line ( this is the most complicated aspect). 2. Is the fly the size of the target prey? 3. Does the fly create the profile? 4. Lastly and least important in 99% of instances is the fly the correct color.
Color seems to be more important for warm water species I have seen crappie and sandies snub the same lures in different colors. In the Lampasas for sandies anything other than a pearl white sassy shad would have 50% less chance of being hit but my experience there also told me size and presentation were far more important than color as the lure had to be on a 1/8 jig head (keeping it at the right depth aka presentation) and that it had to be a 2 and a ½ inch bait not three inches and not two inches just 2 and 1/2. If the last two items were not met no fish would hit at all. (If anyone is interested a #2 pink of white clouser worked as well). There was a pond full of crappie on Hood that remember fishing in the 90ies. Those crappie only wanted a tube jig ( size didn’t matter as long it was generally smallish) with a black body and a hot pink tail. Fish can be quirky.
Like I said I only consistently carried a few patterns in Colorado. Parachute Adams in #14- #24, Rubber Legged Yellow Stimulator #12 & #14, Tan Elk Hair Caddis, #12-#18, Prince Nymph #10-#16, Barr’s caddis emerger tan and green #14 and #16, and black zebra midge in #18-#26. These flies consistently caught fish day in and day out from the easiest to fish mountain riffles where the fish don’t even pass up a cigarette butt to the most “technical” of rivers.
Of course, there were some exceptions. On the Dream Stream portion of the South Platte if runoff was excessive pushing the water 300 CFS or above a Slump Buster was the ticket it was about the only thing that would produce. In Eleven Mile Canyon in the late winter/early spring a tan KF emerger in #22 was the fly of choice.
I also like flies that can in general represent more than one prey item. The stimulator and the slumpbusters are two flies like that. The Stimulator could be a hopper, or it could be a stonefly The slumpbuster could be a baitfish or it could be a crawfish. They really don’t look like anything just a generalized profile that triggers a response. I do enjoy tying though and perhaps I might find one of those flies that works so well.
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By karstopo
#2288116
No secret sauce flies. I just got into using ones I like. One is the well known Borski Slider. ImageImage. For whatever reason, I like tying and fishing them. They do work on most of the fish that swim inshore in Texas. ImageImageImage

Redfish crack is another favorite. ImageImage
I like tying them too and that’s a big part of why I fish a particular pattern. I never really liked tying clousers so I didn’t then fish them once I burned through the ones I did tie.

One fly I used to fish a lot was a shrimp fly, but I don’t like tying them so much either so I don’t fish them as much anymore. ImageImageImageImageImage

There’s other patterns I use from time to time. Avalon permit fly, some Steve Farrar Blend Baitfish.

Lots of things work. Finding the fish is the main thing.
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By karstopo
#2288150
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Nothing wrong with clousers, though, they definitely work. This was my first slot red that was right at the top of the slot at 28”. This one fish got me hooked on fly fishing out in the salt. I used an all Chartreuse clouser I bought off STP. Soft Stainless hooks, I think it was a size 4.

I was in Salt Lake in the BNWR. I had paddled the mile or so across the lake from the launch to the leeward shoreline. Just as I arrived, here comes a pod of dozen reds or so moving pretty fast tight to the bank and pushing little shrimp. They might have been 75 yards away at that point. The water was November clear and I could see individual fish as they closed the distance. The wind wasn’t much at all and I was not anchored or staked out and had just a tiny amount of momentum carrying me to the fish that were also moving my direction.

I was amped up on adrenaline and telling myself not to blow this golden opportunity. I had lost another sight cast slot red a few weeks earlier when it busted what was probably 4 or 5x tippet on a extruded leader that came with a fly rod combo. I caught a sub slot or two on another trip, broke the combo rod on a strip set on some oyster shell, and this was my first good shot at quality sighted reds since the busted tippet fish.

The shoreline curved towards me and the reds kept their pace tight to the bank. The shoreline there was a mini bluff, so there was over a foot of water right at the shoreline. I decided to cast out in front of the moving pod 6 feet of so, the cast was 25-30 feet, a red surge forward, I brought up the clouser off the bottom and got the eat, and I strip set the fish.

The red reacted like reds do sometimes which meant it worked its jaw like something wasn’t quite right about the shrimp it just ate and eased my way. Back then being so very extra green, I didn’t have the fly line pinned to the rod with my rod hand. I basically panicked at this point trying to gain line on the fish, which is very hard to do with just the off hand working solo. I must have figured it out because I did gain line on the fish and applied pressure to it and it took off on a blistering run that I thought would never stop. It did stop after getting about 30-40 feet into the backing. There was some sharp oyster shell where it went and that was freaking me out.

The whole battle was a nail biter for me and felt like it took forever to get that fish in. The hook wasn’t even in past the barb. Miracles do happen. Anyhow, it was just so much fun I wanted to have some more so I kept at it. It took I think 4 years before I brought to hand a bigger fish than that first one.
By bones72
#2288152
That's an awesome story. Now I really want to get down that way. I haven't really fished clousers except on sandies up this way in the Lampasas . I was just thinking dependent on color/material/how fished, they could go for either shrimp or baitfish. Just a good generalized pattern to get started with. I think the Redfish Crack also fits into this category.
Great fish pics too. The shots of the sheepshead had me rolling. All I could think about was that old Don Knots film the "Incredible Mr. Limpet", or something along those lines.
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By Ron Mc
#2288153
cats whisker - these are just the 2-y-o males - released everything else, and finished out my limit while I was letting friends fillet from my stringer
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in warmwater, it's been a joke for 3 decades to ask me what fly I'm fishing. Though I do fish 2 other warmwater flies, a smaller whistler, and Bull Creek crayfish.
When my buddy was living up your way, he was sold on my kicking nickel-sized crayfish pattern in the creek behind his house.
ImageI named this fly for a 10-lb bass I stalked and sight-fished in an urban creek.

KT was fishing Clousers when we filmed an episode on endemic bass.
He got a really good shot of a bottom-bounce take here
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White bass are the perfect freshwater meat fish.
They normally live 3 years (I've caught five 4-y-o males, 19-21" in my life)
I bought my first fly rod at 16 to fish for white bass, and didn't know how good I had it catching endemic bass at Pancranz crossing.
White bass are fecund, impossible to eradicate where they've tried, the females lay up to 500,000 eggs, and they deplete the forage base for other gamefish.
They also fillet beautifully.
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I have a pdf of a power point I've given on white bass fishing a few times. If it interests you, pm your e-mail.
Last edited by Ron Mc on Tue Jun 25, 2019 12:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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By Ron Mc
#2288155
here's the kind of water where our endemic bass live - they occupy the same niche in the hill country that trout would in coldwater - the fall bite is a good time to catch them on down-and-across swings in riffle water.
We call them Texas brook trout.
You can also catch them on trico and damsel dries at tailouts
(I've also caught schooling white bass in trico hatches, when they wouldn't touch anything else)
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an endemic bass A-strain lives here - there are only two A-strains remaining because of genetic dilution by introduced smallmouth
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this is a lunker endemic bass
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I'm afraid this one is a smallie-hybrid, with the copper sheen instead of their native blue sheen
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this girl would have been the state record, except it was before catch-and-release records, and I wasn't going to kill her for a needed liver biopsy to prove her genetics
She lived at a bat-cave vent, and got this big eating the baby bats that fell in.
Endemic Guadalupe bass are the only bass species that will retreat into the aquifer during drought.
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she's on the North Fork whistler - this fly does a better sculpin/blenny, while the cats whisker is a better cyprinid
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here, the Little Olive whistler, which I tie the same way, but on a smaller 200R for short striking fish
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In monsoon years like this year, endemic bass and smallmouth stack up in the still drops and eddies beneath chutes.
My dad was wading with me this day and counted 200 river bass I released, fishing only the chutes on a Teeny sinking line (and of course cats whisker).
This is about a half-mile down from the mouth of Turtle Creek on the upper Guadalupe, running about 350 cfs.
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same spot as above but in a low-flow year (40 cfs) and from the opposite bank, my buddy Mikey
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The very sheltered fish that live under cypress overhangs, the only way to present to them is an under-hand cast with a short glass rod, but since they don't get presented to very often, they're suckers for a good cast
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High-stick/swinging a cats whisker on the Teeny line in a dolomite rut
also had big carp take this on the drift
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By bones72
#2288162
I have caught tons of whites and absolutely love them. I agree they are the perfect panfish; filet well, eat good, and breed well enough it would be hard to fish them out. Those Guadalupe’s are gorgeous. I am wondering if that is one of the species in Nolan Creek around here. My oldest boy that moved down here last year sent me some pictures of some very well marked bass. They are definitely not largemouth though he and his buddy were catching some surprisingly largemouth there too . The lateral line is marked the same way as the fish you posted. They have a very a blotchy almost mottled type pattern above the lateral line but differ in that they do not have the vertical barring I see on your fish. Other than that, they are spot on. I am extremely familiar with smallmouth that was one of my target species growing up in Virginia. The Rappahannock and lower Rapidan were chock full of them. They were so fun in late summer when they would congregate in any water that was moving and over two feet deep. Then in late September and early October they really put the feed bag on. Would love to get into them in river down here.
It is sad though how native species (even getting down to subspecies and strains) get displaced or extirpated from an area by introduced species. Wherever I have fished, wherever I have lived, I have seen this. In the Blueridge there are two strains of Brook Trout; northern and southern. Southern strain tend to run smaller eat more voraciously and reproduce with a higher degree of fecundity, tend to be a little more colorful and are found south of the New River in Virginia. Because early conservationist didn’t understand the difference northern strains were introduced to places like Smokey Mountain National Park and it is rare to find water bodies with the native fish of the southern Appalachians. In Kentucky Wolf Creek dam on the Cumberland drove a native smallmouth population up into the tributaries of the river and reduced the number of sauger overall with the cold water associated with the tailwater and competition/ predation by non-native trout and stripers. Then there is the saga of the of the Greenback cutthroat in Colorado.
I wish some of the rain would subside a bit so I could get out.
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By Ron Mc
#2288164
TPWD of course has a stocking program, essentially flooding the Guadalupe with stocked endemic bass - they've also moved them west where were no native bass strains. The current record came from the Nueces.

The Nueces is good water to hit in these wet years. The crossings between Vance and Barksdale.
There are so few trees that make shade on the water.
We've found a few and fished up feeding frenzies, starts with the 8" bass, gradually work you way up to over 20", then back down to 8" - we've caught 50 bass at a single tree making shade on the water.
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By karstopo
#2288168
bones72 wrote:That's an awesome story. Now I really want to get down that way. I haven't really fished clousers except on sandies up this way in the Lampasas . I was just thinking dependent on color/material/how fished, they could go for either shrimp or baitfish. Just a good generalized pattern to get started with. I think the Redfish Crack also fits into this category.
Great fish pics too. The shots of the sheepshead had me rolling. All I could think about was that old Don Knots film the "Incredible Mr. Limpet", or something along those lines.


We’ve had a tough stretch of weather on this part of the coast. Tons of rain has filled all the local rivers, bayous, creeks and those have muddied up vast tracts of water. Lots of wind has been a persistent issue all spring going into the summer. I got out two Saturdays ago mostly out of desperation and my buddy and I found some redfish over flooded shell. I fished a walk the dog topwater lure for the almost the entire morning instead of flies. My buddy only fishes with lures and he too went with a topwater. I haven’t brought along a baitcasting rig in the kayak in a long time, but with small craft warnings up and the roughed up water it seemed like a futile and miserable exercise going with fly gear. I did get a small croaker on the fly and had a close encounter with a redfish, one of the very few I actually saw to fly cast to.

More massive rains here today. September, October, November are really prime time for sight fishing redfish here on the upper coast, not that it can’t be good at other times. Winter can work out at times, but it’s not as consistent as the fall. Some of the middle and lower coast people might have a different take. They fish a lot more submerged grass like shoal, widgeon, and turtle grass than what’s around up here. I’ve fished a little of the submerged grass in Christmas and West Matagorda bay, but most of the areas I fish are more mud and shell and not conducive for wading. Sometimes, with extra high tides, the cordgrass and other marsh vegetation gets flooded and that’s another thing. Some tracts of vegetation are so thick it’s very tough to get to the fish and then get anything to them. If you can find a spot with broken patches of grass, that can work out for sight fishing when the tides are running extra high.

I think it’s good to have a mix of flies with different sink rates from floating to more rapid sinking flies. When I tie redfish crack, I like some that are more lightly weighted and maybe a little bushier and some a little heavier and more sparsely tied. Flies that are more neutrally buoyant can be made to almost hover above trouble like thick grass or heavy shell. A unweighted seaducer might be great then too. I like a faster sinking fly for when the fish are on edges of drop offs. The fish might briefly pop up on the edge and then tend to motor down out of sight. I like the fly then to be able to hug the bottom contour, at least for a few feet.

Clousers tied with lead dumbbells tend to really will sink fast, but bead chain eyes help to slow down the sink. This is all pretty basic stuff. The fish will be in different places on different structure at various depths for their own reasons. It’s nice to have a variety of ways to get at them. I like sight fishing the best, but I also like to fly fish when fish are holding on or over a structure and reachable with floating line

I’m mostly a floating fly line lover and haven’t perhaps appreciated intermediate and other sinking type lines as much as some others. Of course, there’s all kinds of fish and ways to go at them.

There’s a number of folks here on TKF that have their own favorite places, flies and methods to get at the fish. You’ve heard a little of the wealth of experiences that Ron has had over the decades he’s been fly fishing. Maybe some of the others will chime in as well. Go Doe always had great reports from the general Port A area and those are fun and informative reads. There are others too, but I’m not even going to try to list them all.
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By Ron Mc
#2288171
it's about home water.
Mine is the hill country, yours is the upper coastal marsh.
I ran a fly fishing life group from my church for 7 years before the last drought - took 4 to 14 people somewhere in the hill country every other weekend (unless the rain chance was 40%).
Got great at using the USGS and weather links to plan those trips. I've been on the board of GRTU since the 90s, with a 2-year recent hiatus (I'm back on).
I've run Trout in the Classroom for Texas now for 10 years.
This flagstone pool down from Wagon Wheel crossing is the hill country version of a natural lake - flood waters lift up the flagstone strata, forming a deep hole and a natural dam. We fished one of these down from Center Point Y-crossing from its formation to maturity.
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I've made trips to Alaska, most weeks of summer and into September, the Rockies, the PA Grand Canyon, Smokies, and routine salt trips to the lower coast turtle grass flats from Goose Island and Cedar Bayou to South Padre jettys.

Most people know Billy Trimble as a salt guide. I've known him since 1980, and in the 90s he was a trout wizard, and wouldn't even talk about the salt. We had a great trip from San Juan to Costilla along the CO/NM border. Have made that run both as a boy's trip and also as a family trip.
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I made enough Alaska business trips to guide Kenai, which i've done for my friends.
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Take my friends on kayak excursions, especially to Estes and Arroyo City.
Been guiding my dad at San Jose shore to South padre since the 90s. I taught a couple of guide buddies at the coast to fly fish in the 90s.
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It's great when kayak buddies get together, because the knowledge we share is invaluable.
I don't even fish alone any more. To me, the times together, the places, the meals are the most important part, and fish is gravy.
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and me, no thanks to weighted flies - I'll switch lines instead - I have no patience for playing with hinge when I could have shot out 90' without the last two false casts.
Hi-tie - when it's wet, it casts like a thread.
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Last edited by Ron Mc on Tue Jun 25, 2019 6:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
By bones72
#2288176
Sounds like most of us are a lot alike. I still enjoy fishing/hunting alone sometimes. I get a bit on my mind once and a while from my experiences over seas go out fish or hunt decompress and feel decent again. Its not about the fish or birds its just about appreciating that I'm here to enjoy it.
I really like the rods you fish Ron we have a bunch in common there. Glass and boo are my favorites paired with an older click/pawl reel they're just magic. I like that high tie too. Looks graceful.
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By Ron Mc
#2288179
you might want to visit this form, if you haven't already - http://fiberglassflyrodders.com/forum/

and since it fits this discussion, 1960 Harnell 8' 7-wt, dock fishing with a little whistler and a fat Arroyo nursery trout.
The reel is an 80s Valentine planetary, loaded with a slime line
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The rod was the early work of Don Green, who then straightened out Fenwick and founded Sage.
Though a touch on the heavy side, which is less than noticeable on any salt fly rig, the rod has great control in close, the mid comes on progressively quick and it has a powerful butt.
The narrow guides won't accept a newer typical salt rocket taper floating line, but it sings with a slime line, which is the choice line for dock fishing.
If this example wasn't so pristine, would likely put newer larger snake guides on it.
It also has a cool patent reel seat, which is very strong, and the highest grade cork I've ever seen on any rod.
By bones72
#2288195
No I hadn’t seen that site before that’s awesome! I started flyfishing at about eight years old with an Eagle Claw glass rod that was my fathers. (Dad is lefty and the reason I fish left handed. He wouldn’t catch me getting into his gear if I didn’t switch the reels over for right handed use). Mowed grass for a summer and got my own at Nichols. Nichols was a really redneck version of Walmart back in the late 70ies early 80ies along the I 95 corridor between Richmond and Washington D.C.
I can see now I am going to have to learn about lines for the salt and probably get more than one. For a salt rig right now I have a Cortland Fairplay cheapy in 8/9 weight that I used for pike in Colorado. I paired it with an older Scientific Anglers reel made by Hardy Bros. The reel is older so I really don’t want to take it into the salt but just may seeing some of your gear Ron. I hate seeing stuff sit without being used. For glass rods right now I have a newer Hardy in 3wt. Then for ‘boo I have a, probably 30ies or late 20ies vintage 8’ 6” Horricks and Ibbetsons in 5wt that has been refinished and has a conversion handle. The conversion handle lets I also have new custom 7’ 6” ‘boo rod I had made for me by Greenback Allie rods while I was in Afghanistan in 4wt. Had a Hardy Bougle reel on that but someone appropriated that out of my car when I stopped for gas in Ft. Collins heading to the upper Poudre river last year. Might let the ‘boo rods go so I can get a yak. Have to hang on to my glass I made to many memories with that in the Smokies with an old army buddy of mine.
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By Ron Mc
#2288196
I first bought a Shakespeare WondeRod, but soon after upgraded to an Orvis Fullflex A Green Mountain 7-1/2' combo with an Orvis-marked Martin 67N.
Ended up handing the Fullflex combo down to my nephew, who put it to good use in CO.
Bought a few graphite rods in the 80s/90s, Powell Silver Creek 4-wt, Sage RPLX7 for the salt, and Fisher Sterling 5/6 combo.
September Russian River dolly - all alone, by 2-pm had caught 24 rainbows and dollies all this size - one every 3rd cast - and was fished out.
Had to kick salmon carcasses out of the way to step in, and the black slate bottom was pink with salmon eggs.
Image The Fisher made every Alaska trip. The combo has 2 handles, makes an 8'10" progressive 5-wt, and a 6'9" para 6-wt, which was my hill country warmwater rod.
I got jaded catching fish after fish on over-qualified rods with disc drags, wondering why I was harassing the fish and not enjoying it.
When I hooked up my first 20" rainbow in high flows on vintage cane and click pawl - and went oh, crap, what am I going to do now - I remembered why we do this in the first place.

You could also buy vintage blue-collar cane and excellent prewar click-pawl reels for half the cost of new graphite and disc drag.
For us using right-hand-wind, there was half a century of fantastic reels made just for us.
ImageI bought this 1917 St. George for $500, fished it 4 years, and sold it for $1050, the exact cost of my T160 kayak.
You may note on FFR, I have a reputation repairing vintage reels and, especially converting postwar JW Youngs to LHW.
I've had other reels burn a hole in my pocket.
My Bougle MkIV cost $230 on harrissportsmail closeout (s/n 043), sold it after years of fishing for $625.
Similar with a beautiful c. 2000 L/E 3" St. George.
Ted Godfrey Westminster $450 new, later sold it for $750 after three price increases by Mr. Godfrey.
Went through a whole Martin collection - fly shops were selling out their OS inventory when ebay was young.
But my bread-and-butter reels were JW Young, both pre- and post-war.
By bones72
#2288211
I have a few graphite rods too. My favorite is a 6wt sage Launch. I like the slower action of the entry level rods. I use it for warm water, heavy nymphing, and light streamer work. I also have a Cabela's one 1wt and a few homemade 2wt rods I got on ebay. I would have bought more vintage gear but my other hobby, bird hunting kind of took over. Nothing like roaming the prairie behind my Shorthaired pointer Heidi. She is a Rockstar on just about any type of bird except doves. She hates them with a passion. Here favorite is Prairies Chicken, she'll ignore everything to get on them. I swear she could smell just one in a field full of pheasants.
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By Ron Mc
#2288215
One remarkable rod that I loan to graphite friends for hill country is a 7-1/2' Lami Perigree. It's a blend of graphite and S-glass, and a weightless 5-wt pocket rocket.
I've also bought and sold a lot of Phillipsons, which are the very best short rods (6-7') for roll-casting, still have my favorites, and the most exotic glass I have is a Cummings Water Witch.
The 7-1/2' Water Witch is rated 6/7, and that's what it takes to load it into the butt. But the super-progressive e-glass makes a perfect dry-fly 3-wt, and becomes a different rod with every line weight in between.
I know where there's a matching Russ Peak built on the same St.Croix-made blank if you have an interest in a $500 glass rod from the early 70s.

On FFR, we also kind of pioneered buying in Japan using google and Japan brokers, before Rakuten, and before they figured out they could sell on ebay here. Both the language barrier and Japanese banking laws made Japan brokers necessary.
I have a rolled-from-scratch-on-order inshore rod, Izch 6/7 para S-glass. It's a rocketship that will do most everything my RPLX7 will do except shock your joints when you shoot line.
Japan was also a really good market for me, where they pay top dollar for collectible prewar American tackle.

Also buying and selling, have ended up with a couple of golden age cane masterpieces, marked 1918 FE Thomas light-ferrule Special 4/5, here matched with a prewar Young pattern 15a, which was also imported and sold as the Thomas Special reel
Image
and a c. 1915 Leonard Fairy Catskill original 3-wt,
a 2-1/2-oz 8' cane rod.
Image
Last edited by Ron Mc on Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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