Calling All Fly Tiers

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Think you’re a great fly designer? Want the opportunity to see your flies sold in fly shops all over the country?
Spirit River (in conjunction with Fly Rod & Reel) is putting out a casting call to ambitious tiers. This is your chance to become the next Spirit River Contract Tier.

Black Bile from the North

  • By: Ted Williams
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Click image for slideshow.

Foreign interests want to gouge the world’s dirtiest oil from under Canada’s vast boreal forest and pipe it through some of North America’s most important fish and wildlife habitat.

Carl Hiaasen 2012 Angler of the Year

  • By: Kirk Deeter
  • Photography by: Brian Smith
Carl Hiaasen

Miami Herald columnist and novelist Carl Hiaasen casts all hues of the writing spectrum as well as, if not better than, any American author. From “beach-read” novels and stinging political commentary to wildly popular books for young readers, Hiaasen shows an innate ability to command attention from, inform and entertain the broadest audiences.

IFTD Trade Show

  • By: Greg Thomas
2011 IFTD Show

Fly Rod & Reel Offers Live Coverage from IFTD New Orleans

It’s the end of Summer and that means one thing to the fly-fishing industry and the people who make and sell all the gear we love—it’s time for the International Fly Tackle Dealer Show in New Orleans.

This trade-only show should perk the interest of every fly-fisher on the planet because this is where all the new gear for the upcoming season is first revealed… months before you’ll see it in a local fly shop. At IFTD, writers and photographers also get their first look at that product and have an opportunity to separate the great from the good and the good from the bad.

To Buy Discount Or Not?

Angling Trade

A few months ago, a number of Sage Z-Axis fly rods, as well as Simms G4 waders, mysteriously appeared on the sales racks at 16 Costco locations throughout the country. And, true to form, the super-big-box retailer had drastically slashed prices, knocking hundreds of dollars off the MSRP.

But, alas, it was a short-lived phenomenon. When those companies heard about their products being sold through Costco (apparently, they were sourced to Costco by different agents and accounts), both Simms and Sage snuffed out sales by actually repurchasing their own products, at retail price.

Sylvester Nemes 1922-2011

  • By: David Hughes
Sylvester Nemes

Sylvester Nemes passed away at home, in Bozeman, Montana on February 3, 2011. Best known for his classic 1975 book The Soft-Hackled Fly, he also wrote seven other fly-fishing titles.

He was born on April 2, 1922 in Erie, Pennsylvania. He grew up in the Cleveland, Ohio area, and fished Pennsylvania trout streams. His fly-tying mentor was his barber. When he spotted several simple partridge-hackled dressings in bamboo rod-maker Paul Young’s fly shop, he was forever hooked.

Dick Talleur 1932-2011

  • By: David Klausmeyer
  • Photography by: Tim Savard
Dick Talleur

There are a lot of good fly tiers in the world, but there are very few great ones.

A good tier makes flies that catch fish, but a great tier is an ambassador for the craft. He is a patient teacher and is eager to help novices learn how to tie flies. He willingly shares hard-earned knowledge and expertise with more advanced tiers so they can learn the finer points and create better patterns. A good tier develops new flies that are named for him; a great tier shows a beginner how to make a simple Hare’s Ear Nymph in one sitting so he can enjoy the thrill of catching a fish with a fly that he made.

So long, Billy

  • By: Rick Ruoff
  • Photography by: Val Atkinson
Billy Pate

I am sitting on Buchanan Bank waiting for Billy Pate, who died in April (sources disagreed on whether he was 80 or 81). About 75 yards to the east is a white cross sticking out of the water, the final resting spot for some of the most famous tarpon guides in the history of the sport: Jimmie Albright, Cecil Keith, Jack Brothers—all were Florida Keys legends. This place is called “the Pocket,” a dip in the bank that tarpon are forced into by falling tides, giving a lucky fly fisherman the perfect angle to cast at those grand fish. It is the most hallowed spot in tarpon angling. Billy spent hundreds of days at the Pocket and, although not a guide, will soon be the most famous angler resting here. The memorial procession of family, friends, fellow anglers and guides is on the way. I can see dozens of boats on the horizon, all heading here.

Angler of the Year 2011

  • By: Greg Thomas
  • Photography by: Joe Healy
Angler of the Year 2011 Tom Rosenbauer

If you ask Western anglers to paint the face of The Orvis Company, you might end up with an illustration of some stuffy Classics professor in tweed casting a bamboo rod on a manicured streambank, trying to lure some minuscule brook trout from the brush with 7X tippet and a standard Adams dry fly. Somewhere along the fly-fishing timeline, that’s the vision my hard-core Western friends and I developed. Fortunately, that stereotype got quashed a few years ago when I attended a trade show and met Tom Rosenbauer.

2011 Robert Traver Fly-Fishing Writing Award

  • By: Fly Rod and Reel
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The 2010 Award-winning stories were published in our Autumn 2010 issue and on-line. For consideration in 2011, send your original work of fly-fishing fiction or non-fiction to compete for the most important writing award in all of fly-fishing. Our judges are looking for "A distinguished original work of short fiction or non-fiction that embodies an implicit love of fly-fishing...."