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Anglers Choose Pink

Published by Dave Kile [davekile] on 04/25/2009 (1244 reads)
Results from a Fish & Boat Commission (PFBC) stocked trout cost study (appendices) show that the agency spends approximately $2.17 to produce an average adult trout, an amount less than that charged by commercial trout hatcheries. Overall, the Commission spends approximately $12.4 million per year to provide more than 6 million of the popular game fish, including fingerlings and adults. ...more
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Published by David on 04/23/2009 (6037 reads)
Product Review: Chota STL Plus Wading Boots
With the family in tow, I was already behind on my schedule to get to the grannom hatch on the Little J. When I finally arrived, there were bugs everywhere…every fly fisherman’s dream scenario. The girls were hanging out the sunroof trying to catch as many grannoms as they could. As I got in my waders and went to grab my wading boots, I realized that my felts were no longer attached to my boots and nowhere to be found!!! Even with bugs flying all around, I was not about to wade the wide, strong “J” with a smooth hard plastic sole. So off we went to Spruce Creek Outfitters for a new pair of boots.

With the mental image of all the rising trout I should already be casting to, I made a quick decision to go with the Chota's STL Plus boots. They were expensive, but time was wasting. Back to the stream, on with the boots, and up the trail…

The first thing I realized was that these were very comfortable boots. There was a little WOW! factor when I first put them on. They were very cushy hiking up the path at Barree, but still gave very good support.

The second thing I realized was that these felts seemed to grip better than felts I’ve had in the past. Having arrived at the stream so late, I mentally debated time vs. traction (cleats come unattached and must be screwed into the “Pivot Holes”). In lieu of the added safety, I decided to forgo the addition of the cleats to get on the water quicker – wouldn’t you? The polypropylene felts more than kept me upright…even in heavy water. My only precarious situations came from me tripping over rocks rather than sliding off them. Traction will only improve with the addition of the cleats.

As the rain began to move in and the day drew to an end, I got out of the river to start the hike back to the car. Even wet, the boots were lightweight and did not retain much water. That cushioning kept the long walk comfortable, even with a three year old on my shoulders going up a steep climb. It was a good day.
I had a pair of Chota’s (STL without the “Plus”) years prior that wore well, but tried other manufactures in recent years that were cheaper…none of them lasted as long as the first pair of Chota’s and none were as comfortable. These new Chota’s initially, are more comfortable and offer better traction in the water than the old Chota pair.

Pros:
Very Comfortable – “a cushy injected PU mid-sole” definitely makes these Chota’s easy to wear all day long.
Polypropylene felts –The ““Dark Grey” Polypropylene felt sole” really seemed to grab the slippery bottom of the Little J very well for me…even better than whatever regular felt is made from. What is regular felt made from, anyway?
Removable Cleats – Included with the boots. Easy to screw in – and remove (in case you are on Flybop’s driftboat) which makes them pretty versatile.
Lightweight – Light for the hike in but also did drain water quickly with the ““Micro-Screen” ports (that) allow for rapid and complete drainage while blocking out screen.”
Quicklace system – Easy to strap up, but also very easy to undo even when wet.

Cons:
Leather: While I like the look of the leather, it will eventually shrink and harden with repetitive soaking / drying cycles; thus making them difficult to put on whenever they have time to dry completely. Fortunately my foot size is 8 ½, so I have always had that little extra space in my boots since they don’t come in half sizes.
Cost: More than I would have liked to spend, but should last longer.
Quicklace System – Wears out a lot quicker than a regular pair of laces (at least on my original pair of Chota’s – and these look and feel the same).

Overall evaluation:
Very comfortable, sturdy, and provides great traction in the water…that is what I want from my wading boots, and these boots provided all 3!

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Published by Dave Kile [davekile] on 04/21/2009 (990 reads)
John Gooderham gives a short fly-fishing lesson on a section of LeTort Spring, one of the 13 Pennsylvania Designated Scenic Rivers.




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Published by Dave on 04/17/2009 (826 reads)
The Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission (PFBC) will hold its spring quarterly meeting on April 20-21 at the Seven Springs Mountain Resort in Champion, Pa.

Commission committees will meet beginning at 8 a.m. on Monday, April 20, and again at 8 a.m. on Tuesday, April 21. Formal consideration of the agenda by the full Commission will begin at approximately 1:15 p.m. on Tuesday, April 21. All committee meetings and the review of the agenda are open to the public and attendance is encouraged.
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Published by Dave Kile [davekile] on 04/14/2009 (1428 reads)
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Many of my first years fly fishing were spent following a few good friends around many of the notable streams in western and central Pennsylvania. Ron, Greg and a few others would take me along and were kind enough to teach me quite a bit along the way. Incursions to Spring Creek, First Fork, Yellow Creek and Oil Creek proved to be very productive. I soon became very fascinated with the sport and realized some of these guys actually knew what they were doing.

As my interest increased I would listen to them explain the importance and characteristics of hatches. Blue Winged Olives (BWO), Red Quills, Sulphurs and Green Drake were much the fan fare to a neophyte like myself. With some experience and a little book work over the winter my fly fishing prowess began to grow.

After a few years I really felt I had mastered this fly fishing thing and truly knew quite a bit about many aspects of fly fishing including hatches. That was so I thought.

One May evening I started to see a hatch take to the air on Penns Creek. With my now vast experience I confidently announced to all that a Sulphur hatch was beginning to take shape. A silence fell over the stream. That in itself was very unusual because peace was usually left back at the side of the road with quiet when I fished with this gang.

Ron then shouted over that this was not an Ephemerella dorothea hatch and wasn’t sure what was coming off the stream just yet. Now it was my turn to pause. Who da whaddity? Ron was a teacher, but it wasn’t science. Ron normally spoke in barley and hops not foreign tongues. Could it be I was I not paying attention to our secret assault plans for the evening when I was filling the cooler with ice?

Greg, the real science teacher, could see I looked a little confused and chided in that there are thousands of different types of mayflies, caddis and stoneflies in the streams and each species had there own individual Latin name.

So now my broad knowledge of twenty insect names turned out to be just a short list of common names. I knew then I would be reading some new books that upcoming winter.

Ron added that fly fisherman were lazy too. That I already knew as I glanced over at our friend Gary sitting on the side of the stream looking at the trout jumping in front of him. Some flies carried the same common name, but were not always related. The BWO’s I saw in March were not the same BWO’s that returned in May. This was some bad logic or just mean.

Ron reminded me not to think to hard about these overwhelming issues and more importantly had I put ice in the cooler before we left the camp? I confirmed the ice situation was well at hand and went back to the riffles in front of me. I noticed Gary still had not moved.

When the early spring blooms brighten things up I like to dust off a couple of my old favorite fly fishing entomology books. As I then review my Latin taxonomy of classes, orders and families I get encouraged that warmer weather will soon be here and the prepare for the spring assault on the Pennsylvania streams. Carpe Diem!

Books
Matching the Hatch: A Practical Guide to Imitation of Insects Found on Eastern and Western Trout Waters (Stoeger Sportsman's Library)
by Ernest George Schwiebert

An Angler's Guide to Aquatic Insects and Their Imitations for All North America
by Rick Hafele and Scott Roederer

The Orvis Streamside Guide to Trout Foods and Their Imitations
by Tom Rosenbauer

Online
Troutnut Website
Pa Hatch Chart

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Published by Dave Kile [davekile] on 04/10/2009 (1008 reads)
Where should I fish?
This certainly has been one of the more popular questions asked at PaFlyFish.com. Truthfully the answer is bigger than the question and one worth exploring. There are hundreds of fantastic streams for all types of anglers in Pennsylvania. A little homework will yield you your own personal hot spots.

PaFlyFish.com is chocked full of maps, tips, news, stories and conversations already at you fingertips. Pennsylvania is a sizable state so starting with the Pa Trout Streams section under the site menu is a good place to begin. There are six regions with hundreds of stocked and special regulation streams that are ideal for fly fishing. Take advantage of the maps to explore the areas you want to travel.

A little searching with some of those new stream names in the forums and stream reports can usually yield a string of information. A host of highly regarded authors can be found in the Fly Fishing Books section. Some good old fashion book reading is worth some time.

A quick trek to the PFBC website can offer an additional collection of streams and detailed regulations.

Finally, time with your local fly shop and Trout Unlimited Chapter are wonderful places to meet up with others. They can provide any number of classes, workshops, and conservation opportunities.

With the arm chair work complete go explore the state. Some of the best places you’ll find will likely be the ones you didn’t set out for when you got started. There may not be an easy button here, but the journey is part of the catch.
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Published by Dave Kile [dkile] on 04/09/2009 (809 reads)
Fish & Boat Commission Featured on PCN Call-In Tonight
Harrisburg, PA - Fish and Boat Commission Executive Director Doug Austen and Fisheries Management Chief Dave Miko will be the guests tonight on PCN’s live call-in program from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. The program allows PCN viewers to speak directly with government officials and newsmakers on current issues affecting the Commonwealth.

Please check your local TV listings for the PCN channel in your area. Viewers may ask questions by dialing PCN’s toll-free number at 1-877-726-5001.
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Published by Dave Kile [davekile] on 04/08/2009 (1000 reads)
American Rivers made its annual announcement of Americans most endangered rivers for 2009. Rivers in Alaska, California, Georgia, Idaho, Maryland, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Washington and Wisconsin are on the list this year.

Quote:
“Our nation is at a transformational moment when it comes to rivers and clean water,” said Rebecca Wodder, president of American Rivers. “Water is life, yet our nation’s water infrastructure is so outdated that our clean drinking water, flood protection and river health face unprecedented threats. Our country needs the smart, cost-effective solutions for clean drinking water, flood protection and river health outlined in America’s Most Endangered Rivers that will bring us into the 21st century.”


Most notably for Pennsylvania was number seven on the list Laurel Hill Creek. Sighting excessive water withdrawal as a major threat for this wonderful western Pennsylvania stream. The full press release can be found here.

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Published by Dave Kile [davekile] on 04/07/2009 (2512 reads)
Hardy Rods-The Story of Hardy Bros Tackle Makers
Author: John Mowatt
For over one hundred years the House of Hardy has been known as one of the worlds finest makers of fishing tackle. Their name is synonymous with quality and excellence. They are recognised worldwide as one of the greatest names in fishing tackle.

William Hardy and his brother John James formed the Hardy Bros partnership in 1873. Initially they dealt in high quality firearms but soon changed direction. They were both avid fishermen and this love became their business. Thus was started the famous line of Hardy rods and reels.
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Published by Dave Kile [davekile] on 04/01/2009 (1086 reads)
Five tips for your first day fly fishing
Mark your gear
Easy enough to do, but often overlooked is marking your gear with a phone number. There is nothing worse than losing a flybox or leaving your vest in the brush and then driving home. Simple solution is a putting you phone number on all you gear with a Sharpie.

Practice casting
Take some time and tie a small piece of red yarn at the end of your fly line and give it a go in the backyard before you head out. This works well if this is your first time out or you have not gone out since last June. Confidence is king.

Know your knots
Practice and know when and where to use some of the basic fly knots. An Improved Clinch and Blood knots get me through many situations. Check out Grog's fishing knot index for more help.

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