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Category Archive:   Events


IMG_0013 photo courtesy of www.uncommonangler.com

If you even dabble in tying flies, especially for bass, you’ve doubtlessly read or heard of Pat Cohen. In a world of talented but low key fly tiers he stands out like a rock star sporting his sleeve tattoos, wooly beard, shaved head and ear piercings. While he may not look like your casual fly tier, one glance at his output immediately lets you know that you’re watching an expert at work. Pat’s deer hair divers are such works of art that they frequently sell as exactly that, commanding top dollar for some of his “Display Flies” well the workhorses in his stable catch big bass after big bass (check out his work at www.rusuperfly.com).

Fortunately for those of us here in central Texas, Sportsman’s Finest is bringing Pat in to town for a presentation of his fly tying technique this Saturday.

Come and join us to see the talented and extremely creative professional fly tyer, Pat Cohen, who will demonstrate some of his patterns and share his tips and skills with you. Pats specialty is deer hair bass bugs but he ties everything from streamers to nymphs. The artistic freedom that fly tying offers, is what drew him to it. All of his flies are meant to be fished with the exception of the display offerings. Every piece of each bug – be it the hair, feathers, or weed guards – has a purpose. The final product is a fish catching fly and a miniature sculpture all in one. To his way of thinking, there is nothing like watching a five pound bucketmouth or an 18 inch smallie erupting from the water to crush one of his bugs as it’s drawn across the surface.  Pat is a member of some the following pro teams, Clear Cure Goo, EP Flies, Dr. Slick, Jackson Kayak, Werner Paddles, Peak Vices, Loon Outdoors, Partridge Hooks and Carp Pro Magazine. He regularly demonstrates fly tying at various events and fly shops on the east coast and we are excited get him down to Texas!!   – www.sportsmanfinest.com

This Saturday, May 2nd at 11AM at Sportsman’s Finest, free admission. Hope to see you there!

DSC_0002photo courtesy of www.rusuperfly.com

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It’s that time again, the Fly Fishing Film Tour is making it’s annual appearance here in Austin! If you’ve been before you already know that it’s a hell of a lot of fun. If for some reason you’ve never been, all you need to know is that it’s the second best thing to actually fishing. The night is basically comprised of vendors and free food, with drinks for purchase as well as raffle tickets for some amazing prizes followed by a diverse and stellar line up of fly fishing films that will most assuredly make you want to call in sick on Friday.

If you need more to get stoked or hold you over until the FFFT click here to check out the previews for the night.

P.S. I’m super excited to mention that longtime die Fische fan and supporter R.C. Cone’s film “Yow: Icelandic for Yes” will be showing and it’s definitely one you don’t want to miss!

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I’ve been trying to catch a white bass fly fishing presentation for years in hopes of getting a clue as to what i’ve been doing wrong/right when fishing for these incredibly fun game fish. Luckily i’ll be able to find out tomorrow at Living Waters. I have to work in the evening but i’m looking forward to catching Keith Barnes presentation (and downing some donuts).

February 28, Saturday – WHITE BASS DAY 

9:00 A.M. – Doors Open / Round Rock Donuts

10:00 A.M. – Fly Fishing for White Bass (Hill Country Region) – Presenter: Keith Barnes
Plan on fly fishing the Texas Hill Country for white bass? Keith Barnes will show you how! He has been guiding the Highland Lakes for years and knows what’s up for springtime sandies!
1:00 P.M. –Fly Fishing for White Bass (North Central Texas/Waco Region)– Presenter: Pat Vanek
Waco may not be on every white bass angler’s to-fish list, but it should be! Pat LOVES chasing white bass on the fly, and he will show you a few lesser known locations that just might turn out to be your new favorite destination!
3:00 P.M. – Tying for White Bass– Presenters: Matt Bennett and Pat Vanek
The beauty of fly tying for white bass: The flies are simple and effective! Matt and Pat will show you how to fill your box with more than enough go-to patterns to get the job done! www.livingwatersflyfishing.com

P.S. I’ll be bringing some stickers, so hit me up it you want some. Hope to see you all there!

 

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The weekend had been looming in the distance for months. I’d always planned on taking part o the event and writing about it as an observer, something i’d done numerous times before, but with one conversation all of that would change. After talking with Jacob at Gruene Outfitters about a loose plan of action, i found myself designing posters, t-shirts, doing social promotions and ultimately standing behind a table selling my wares and explaining to person after person just exactly what “die Fische” meant.

Troutfest, an annual event put on by the local chapter of Trout Unlimited (GRTU), has always been a special time to catch up on old acquaintances and make new ones, but in the past there has always been an odd lull from 5PM (when the structured events end) to 7PM (when the Fly Fishing Film Tour starts). In an effort to bring out some of the younger fly fishers that might be new to the sport, and unfamiliar with Sattler, Troutfest, the GRTU and even the Fly Fishing Film Tour, Gruene Outfitters decided to host a “Happy Hour” to fill the void and was kind enough to ask me to co-host, and help with the graphics.

Stuffing all my custom hats, mugs, stickers, etc. into a few carefully packed boxes, i drove the hour south, half in a daze, worried (un-realisticly) that nobody would show for the happy hour, or worse, they might glance at my lame attempts at coolness before grabbing the boxes and dumping all my wares into the Guadalupe, in hopes of chumming the waters for trophy trout. (Yes, confidence is an issue for me.)

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Stopping by Gruene Outfitters to check in with Jacob, i made my way to the back of the shop where all the fly fishing gear is. Within moments i was in conversation with two gentleman from Lubbock that were new to fishing the area, and quickly i slipped into my retail self and helped them with information and product knowledge before turning over the helm to Captain Jacob. It was an immensely fun detour, getting to use my customer service knowledge, but applying it to something i seldom get to talk about at great length.

An hour later, stuffed on kolaches, i was on the water and wading down to a new favorite spot on the Guadalupe before 11AM. In the span of the next few hours, three or four handsome trout were landed while nymphing with the 10′ Grey’s Streamflex rod that i’m just now getting used to after owning it for two or three years (As i learned from Egan Jones, the secret is to use a heavier reel lined with the same weight line as the rod to help balance the whole outfit.)

Later, after the fourth trout, i glanced around to spot the sun, an activity that usually found me catching it right before it disappeared behind a rock cliff or a thick set of trees, such is my habit of getting on the water far to late in the day. This day however i was shocked to see that not only was there actually time left, there were HOURS of it remaining before any sort of artificial light would have to be implemented. It was shortly after this realization that i hooked into the 19″ trout (below) that not only put up a good fight, it also had some of the most amazing colors i’ve come across yet on a Guadalupe trout this season.

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After releasing the trout i noticed a few nicks in the tippet and reconfigured the dropper situation before wading a few feet and noticing that (again) my hemostats were not where they should be on my waders. With mud swirling around my feet and endless limestone crooks and crannies lying between me and the bank three feet away, i thrust my hand into the murkiness at my feet and pulled up what looked like nothing but twigs, decaying detritus and other random debris. Immediately on shaking what felt like a thick stack of sticks i saw the glistening gold of my hemostats and could surprisingly muster nothing more poetic than “Are you f-ing kidding me?”

I’m guessing that the same rules that apply to cat’s lives also apply to hemostats, which means i can lose/find them only three more times before i have to throw down a sawbuck and change for a new pair with the unwritten “9 Lives” insurance plan.

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As good as the day was, it only got better when i happened to cross the path of Greg and Casey from Sportsmans Finest who invited me to hang out on their temporary patio at the Hideout that overlooked all the waters i’d fished that day, while regaling each other with fishing stories and also talking shop. Before settling in though, they informed me they had to go pick up beer but invited me to hang out on the patio, assuring me they’d be back momentarily.

After a few selfies (you have to understand, there was a kick ass wooden chair involved) i heard a skirmish around the corner and headed over, hoping to help Greg and Casey with their treasure. Instead what i found was a slightly older, handsome, long blond hair gentleman that looked a suspicious amount like Stacy Peralta, digging around beneath a welcome mat. Along with him was a local guide that quickly asked me if i knew the gentleman in question, Kelly Gallup.

To my credit, i managed to make small talk quickly while they hurried back to the car and on to the next floor mat that hopefully held his keys.

Me: “I was in Bass Pro Shop and saw that they changed the name of the “Sex Dungeon” to just “Dungeon”?

KG: “Well Cabela’s has changed the name of all my flies, so…”

Me: “Man, that sucks!”

KG: “Yeah, until the royalties come in!” At which point he slammed the car door and took off into the sunset as i stood spellbound, feeling as though a fly tying Jedi had had just burst the synapses of my brain with some nuevo-zen logic.

After that, all i could think was that there was no way this day could get any more awesome, so i kicked back and sipped some wine from the flask. Minutes later Greg and Casey returned, beers in tow, whereupon i quickly related the story of the quick brush with fame. Immediately upon hearing it Casey asked if Kelly or i had noticed that i was currently sporting a brown Sex Dungeon fly on my fedora. I don’t know if Kelly did, (i surely didn’t) but i can only assume you’re going to notice when YOUR fly is staring you back in the face from a straw fedora a few feet away.

Shortly after that cosmic happenstance i made my way back to my campsite, slipped into the sleeping bag and shut my lids well before 9PM. It’s not that i was tired per se, it’s just that sometimes you don’t want to push lady luck and ruin a good thing.

Plus, there was so much more to come…

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