Lucky, the Catch and Release Superstar: Part Three
April 15, 2014
We did not make it back to Lucky before the river froze over, but I have already visited that area twice this year in search of Lucky, and I know I will have to bring my A game if I want to see him up close again.
One way to ensure the survival of each fish is proper catch and release techniques. If done properly, mortality rate can be less than one percent, but success not only requires putting the fish back in the water at the end but also proper treatment during the landing and handling of the fish.
I recommend a rubber net in order to not compromise the valuable slime layer that keep fish healthy. We fish Brodin and Gold Metal Nets, both of which possess high quality and long lasting craftsmanship. In addition, getting the fish into your net as quickly as your tippet will allow will prevent the fish from wearing itself out completely in the fight and leave it with some strength when it is returned to the water. Keeping the fish out of water for too long, letting multiple people hold the fish, or putting it on land to get a picture with your rod will severely limit the survival rate of your catch and release fishing. And of course, barbless hooks will greatly reduce the damage caused to the fish and allow you to release fish almost without touching them at all.
Through our catch and release practices, we had a fish that was getting smarter every day, and I’m fairly certain he is not getting any smaller either. Smart fish make smart fisherman. Thanks, Lucky.
Below is a great video with some additional information on catch and release practices.
Dragonfly Anglers Product Review: The Patagonia R1
February 5, 2014
The R1 was most definitely designed with the active person in mind and has all the features that such a person requires. Its sleek design and athletic fit make this a great jacket with other layers, or on its own as an outer shell. Kept close to skin, the unique grid pattern on the inside pulls moisture from your body and leaves you warm and dry. This makes it great for skiing, whether you are hiking in the backcountry, riding the resort, or touring on the skinny skis. The R1 is also a great choice for winter fishing when you need to pack on as many layers as you can fit. You can also grab it on your way out the door to Kochevars for a “Nowak” or two after a big day outdoors. Lightweight, versatile, and great for everyday life in Crested Butte, Colorado, the R1 will not disappoint.
Dragonfly Anglers carries the R1 in several colors and sizes or we can special order one from our Patagonia dealer inventory. Shop our online store, stop by our shop in Crested Butte, or call us at 970.349.1228 for your custom order.
*All products are tested and used by Dragonfly Anglers Pro Staff and Guides
Summer time is right around the corner. It should really be here by now, but since it isn't you still have time to head into Dragonfly and pick up a pair of Simms Pursuit Wading Shoes. If, like me, you love to wet wade in the summer time and don't feel like trucking around in your heavy, marginally comfortable wading boots then the Pursuit Wading Shoe is for you. With Vibram soles the Pursuit is just as effective in the river as out on the boat or hiking the trail. Check out this video of George Cook breaking it down.
Mike shows how to tie a Woolly Bugger. The Woolly Bugger is possibly the best streamer for the Gunnison Valley. Early season when the river is still just a bit off color a double bugger is just deadly. My favorite colors are brown, olive and black. When throwing a double bugger the white black combo shouldn't be overlooked.Ingredients:
Hook size: 4-10 Tail: maribou (any color you feel like) and flashibou Rib: copper wire Body: Chenille (any color you want) typically medium or large Saddle Hackle Thread: match to the fly color 6/0-3/0
Ross Reels has added a new reel to their already impressive line up. This year they have added the F1. The F1 is their new top of the line reel, and it comes in sizes 1 through 4 and will match well with 2 weight to 9 weight rods. The drag is made from carbon fiber and stainless steel and will perform in all conditions. The reels are fully machined, one piece for the frame and one piece for the spool and they look awesome. I mean really awesome, to the stylish machining they added a carbon fiber button that is used to remove the spool, and the carbon fiber weave adds that little bit of bling that makes it look extra sweet.
Check out this video of Brad Befus breaking down the F1.
San Juan worms are a great early season fly. They are great in off color water and during heavy rains. It is one of the most basic flies out there. It is also one of my x-factor flies. When nothing else is working I like to throw one on and see what happens. A lot of times you will get strikes while stripping them in or swinging them. One of my favorite San Juan Worm techniques is to find a super deep drop-off that is normally hard to fish, throw on lots of weight, extend my leader, and see if there is anything waiting down deep just below the drop-off.
Ingredients you need: micro chenille: red, pink(bubble gum), orange, and brown Hook: anything size 10-16 Thread: 6/0 red and A Lighter to burn the ends of the chenille to make sure it doesn’t fray
Ever wonder how to use the Whip Finish tool. While here is your chance to find out. Chris demonstrates this important technique that is used to finish tying your thread off on a fly. Stay tuned in Our Weekly Ties and How To pages for more updates on flies to tie, tips, and helpful techniques. If there is something that you would like to see email Mike@Tasty-Takes.com and we will get a video up.
Ingredients Tail: Three pheasant tail filaments Abdomen: Undressed Peacock Herl (Peacock Herl with all feathery parts removed, the best method to use is with an eraser) Wing Casing: Black Swiss Straw Flash: Original Pearl Flashabou Thorax: Mercer's Micro Mayfly Dubbing Thread: 80 Denier or 8/0 Olive Thread Hook: Size 16-20 nymph hook
I look forward to watching your instructional videos each week. For a novice tier, I presume the bead just slips on to the hook. What size bead? Thanks for the help!
How to Tie a Midge for the Gunnison Valley
March 3, 2011
In the video below Mike will show you how to tie a midge for the Gunnison Valley. One of the best flies to have during the cold winter and spring months is a midge. They are also one of the easiest flies to tie. Tie this one up and bring it to the Catch and Release on the Taylor or maybe the Hatchery Ponds.
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