The idea for the new “Through the Guides” series from the folks at www.noblelab.com, is to feature the lives of fly fishing guides that excel at their game and have stories to tell.
It’s not surprising that their first featured guide is local All Water Guide, and all around bad ass Alvin Dedaux, the only guide i know that used to work the stage in a funk/rock band (Bad Mutha Goose). For those that don’t know him, he’s a fishing sensei, with rockstar looks, sporting dreads and a casual demeanor that can make even the crappiest day on the water feel like you got to hang out with the Coolest Cat on the planet.
What was surprising as hell though well watching this video was what i noticed on Alvins’ boat at :57 seconds in the video. Yep, that’s a die Fische “Texas Dry Fly Sticker” seen on the right side of the bench, and hell yeah, that’s how we roll.
I think it was after hour four (maybe five) that i stopped actually thinking about what i was doing, and the muscles stepped up to the helm and took command of the ship. At this point my brain had been fading for the last hour due to the monotony it was enduring: cast, mend, take up slack, mend once more, then repeat.
As it tentatively surrendered the five step program to the muscles, and suddenly was freed of the tedium, it shifted gears, focusing all of its remaining energy on a small, frosted and slightly translucent globe floating furtively on the waters surface. Moving slowly along the almost ripple free water the small and silent strike indicator (bobber if you will) appeared no bigger than the dots in the title photo (above).
As the sun made its way across the vast blue canopy my mind became more and more bewitched with the plastic sphere, sure that at any moment it would be pulled below by a leviathan, followed by a glorious battle, and ultimately a fish of epic proportions cradled in the net. As the hours ticked by the possible fish grew in magnitude in the imaginary scenario, the potential photo growing in greatness with every passing minute.
By hour seven, with nary a sign of fish, much less one brought to net, the light had disappeared enough that the thin plastic, pearled jewel could no longer be seen practicing the art of stillness on the river.
Surrendering myself to the fact that this day would bring no desired surprises, i spun on my heels to leave the river and stopped at once. There above the needle-less cypress branches was my milky orb, stiller than still, hanging in the sky. Magic.
With each confident foot step on the trail, thanks to the glow of my once utilitarian indicator, i made my way back to the car, with one phrase playing on loop in my head.
Cast. Mend. Take up Slack. Mend. Nothing…C’est la vie.
I know that new years resolutions are generally about losing weight (i need to), saving money (i need to), or leading a healthier lifestyle (you guessed it), but i usually do what i want to, much to the chagrin of my wallet and health. As noted in a previous post i entered the new year doubled over in pain and isolation, living in the studio in our back yard, all be it with some amazing creature comforts including a well stocked fly tying bar, a stereo with limitless aural stimulation (thank you Spotify), and a kick ass MFC fly box featuring Walter and a trout courtesy of artist Paul Pucket.
I’d spotted the box at Gruene Outfitters, the last of its kind, and was informed that it would be a good idea to buy it if i was considering it, as they might disappear quick due to “licensing concerns”. I quickly snatched it up and had it sitting on the table for a few weeks monopolizing my attention before January 1st reared its head and i stumbled out of shingles hell and into the studio where i suddenly had a purpose for the new year, to tie an entire box worth of my own trout flies.
While i’ve dabbled in fly tying, actually spending more time buying the materials than tying the flies, i’m focused on filling this box with vast amounts of nymphs that will doubtlessly get more complicated as i commit the time to LEARNING how to tie flies instead of just shadowing a self-help video off Vimeo. I’ve made it a point to tie the exact same fly at least six times and have been SHOCKED by the vast improvement in consistency you can acquire just by doing something more than two or three times before moving on (as i did in the past).
I’m publishing this not only to keep myself inspired, but also to allow you to keep me in check. If you don’t see updates on my progress soon, please badger me, i may actually need the constant pestering to achieve this goal, or any goal for that matter.
So this is my goal, what is yours for 2015?
I’m not sure how i’ve missed the output from Brothers on the Fly, since they’ve been putting out top notch videos for at least the last couple of years. All i know is that i will never miss another episode, and you shouldn’t either. Be sure to check out more of their artful video adventures at their Vimeo site. Enjoy!
Hey Die Fische!
Here’s my entry. It’s from November 7th, 2014. It’s a Colorado Cutthroat, my first ever, on the Dream Stream of the South Platte. Photo cred goes to Scott Thompson of Minturn Anglers!
Was the most incredible day of fishing, perfect weather and a blast. Easily the most rewarding fish to catch. 5 minutes of heart pounding presentations to get it to take my fly! – Taylor Bixby
Thank you for sharing this Taylor, the Dream Stream is a special place for sure, and that cutthroat is an absolutely gorgeous specimen. Nice job.
P.S. After some on the water discussions we’ve decided to get rid of the idea of #FOAL being some sort of monthly contest, it feels like it goes against the very nature of this blog. Instead, what we will do is send every published entry an envelope of random goodies from our schwag box, so please include your physical address in your submission, and we promise not to post or save it, and only use it to send you fun stuff! (If you’ve already submitted a photo and been published just shoot us your address.)
Well hell…up until now i thought the absolute most helter-skelter way to ring in the new was year was to be in Prague, bringing in the new year in the square that was once host to the Velvet Revolution, with fireworks, shattering glass bottles, and chaos reigning all around you (yes i was there.) Turns out that as weird as that Prague new year (a few years back) was, it had nothing on the new year that would be punctuated by me living a hermit life in the small studio in our back yard for days on end, with the pain of shingles coursing through my head and the fear of Chicken Pox causing my family to keep a safe distance.
Initially the time off from work and the solitary confinement was actually kind of fun. I got to play a lot of Settlers on my iPad, tie a bunch of flies, drink a ridiculous amount of coffee, and put my unique signature on the studio that probably a little to quickly become mine, an activity which mostly involved me hanging fedoras, jackets, two live plants, random artwork and “found” sticks on the walls. Somehow in the midst of all this alone time i managed to an unfortunate fall on rain soaked steps, spraining my ankle and casting hand.
It wasn’t until yesterday, almost two weeks after the start of the solitude episode, that i finally had enough energy to get out of the house and go check out the scene down on the Gaudalupe. Cradling a 10′ 3WT with a 5WT reel and a heavy spool of 6X tippet i made my way down to the water with less than an hour of daylight left, hoping that good fortune might be on my side trying something new. After witnessing Egan “The Svengali” and his Euro nymphing techniques, i was fully mesmerized and was prepared to do my damnedest to figure it out.
Within minutes of rigging up the nymphs (in the opposite fashion i was used to, light on top and heavy below), the indicator informed me that i’d somehow managed to come in contact with one of the few active trout on this stretch of water, despite the freezing cold weather. It was by no means huge, but the feeling of a wild animal on the end of my tippet sent a startling jolt of energy up my arm that i hadn’t felt in a long time. I’m desperately in need of the next fix, and i’m acutely aware of the hours left before the next possible chance to get away (124).
So yes, things have been slow on this end as far as fishing goes. Hopefully now, with the holidays quickly disappearing in the rear view mirror and a good chunk of my misfortune for 2015 out-of-the-way (knock on wood) we can get back to the regularly scheduled program of “Fishing and Adventure” live from the new-found “Cabin in the Woods”.
P.S. A thousand pardons to Ted and Greg at Sportsman’s Finest. In the middle of my solitude and delirium i realized i “needed” some material to finish some flies. Entering the shop my goal was to get in and out ASAP, but as soon as i saw them i fell into the normal routine of playing “Catch up” until many, many minutes later when i mentioned and remembered that i was there because i wasn’t at work…because i was sick. I hope to god you didn’t get sick, but if you did i’ll cover your shifts!
Who knows, maybe a family member got you another juicer from Wal-Mart, or possibly another crescent wrench set from Lowes? Everybody has that stuff, why not return it and spend your hard-earned gift money not only supporting the indie fly-fishing art scene but also scoring some sweet ass paraphernalia from die Fische?
We’ve finally gone all out on www.society6.com and have some new super high quality printed mugs (trust me, i have all of our mugs and drool over these much more than the mugs we had before.) from both die Fische and one of our off collaborative efforts “Gar Bros. Collective.” There also high quality prints available that i can attest are of this highest quality paper / printing out there, having bought a few as gifts this past holiday.
The best part is right now they’re running an “Artist Promo” where you can get free worldwide shipping with the following link: http://society6.com/diefische?promo=NKGNMVXPFX7K
This promo runs through the 11th, and we’ll be adding more artwork every day, so check back often and bask in the warm glow of knowing not only is your crib going to be exponentially more stylish, you’re also helping support your local indie fisher/blogger /dreamer/explorer!