In any case, lets get to it.. I have been tying recently, but just haven't taken pictures yet. We had over 7 days above 90, and in most cases close to 100. I retreated to my cold basement with my fly tying materials and sheltered myself from the oven outside. Don't get me wrong, I am a big fan of summer (ie my fishing season), but so many days above 90 with extreme humidity makes just about everything uncomfortable. So what am I tying? I am on a popper kick lately. Planning on some smallmouth trips towards the end of the month and into August. I have been crafting my own out of cork and also purchasing some pre-shaped hard foam bodies. Its kind of nice doing the painting and crafting because I am able to spend more time on each fly rather then cranking them out. I will try and post some pictures of them soon, so you can get an idea of what I am working on.
Fortunately, I was able to get away for a few days over my birthday (June 28). I ended up going up north, stopping at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Park and then onto Traverse City. On my birthday I scheduled a guided trip doing something that I rarely do and have little experience with...dry fly fishing. Back in March I met Brian Pitser (owner, Northern Angler) at the Midwest Fly Fishing expo. He helped me with some stuff at the show and I wanted to give back so I booked a trip with him. We ended up doing the Upper Manistee. We pushed off about 6:30 PM and returned around 1 AM. The stretch of river we were on was probably the most beautiful and "secluded" river I have been on in Michigan. We probably saw 3 fishermen the whole time and the noises of the night were spectacular. When we got the boat in Brian taught me the "quick and dirty" techniques of how to dry fly fish and we were off and running. We were hoping for a Hex hatch (isn't everybody)..but it never came. We caught some fish and I missed 5 times more then that. Trying to get myself to stop "strip-striking" was quite the task. We also had some big browns go for the flys but I wasn't able to connect. Regardless of not catching a trophy, it was a night to remember. I will, without hesitation, fish with Brian and the Northern Angler again. Stand up guy, enjoyable to fish with, and has a great shop. Check him out if you are in the neighborhood, you will NOT be disappointed. http://www.thenorthernangler.com/store/pc/home.asp
Until next time.. keep your lines tight and know when (an how) to set the hook!
I was too busy fishing to snap a photo, but here is a picture of the Upper Manistee from the Internet. Just beautiful.