2107 Stan Walters Memorial Fly Tyer of the Year

Last week I was honored to receive the 2017 Stan Walters Memorial Fly Tyer of the Year at the NW Fly Tying & Fly Fishing Expo in Albany, OR. The annual award is presented by the Oregon Council of the International Federation of Fly Fishers “in recognition of your skills, teaching and innovation in the art of fly tying.”

2017 Stan Walter Memorial Fly Tyer of the Year | www.johnkreft.com

I was shocked when my name was called, but humbled to forever be part of this elite group of fly tyers as the 28th person to receive the award. The complete list of recipients is listed at the end of my post.  Continue reading

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Poxyback Baetis

This week’s Throw Back Thursday Fly is the Poxyback Baetis.

Poxyback Baetis | www.johnkreft.com

This is an older fly pattern I found in Randall Kaufmann’s book Tying Nymphs (1994). Kaufmann’s book, along with his Tying Dry Flies, was one of the first color fly tying books I purchased.

Tying Nymphs taught me new techniques, materials, and flies to tie.

The Poxyback fly series were designed by Mike Mercer from Redding, CA and included PMDs, Callibaetis, Green Drakes. A drop of epoxy was used on top of the thorax to simulate one of the “trigger features” that make fish respond to take a natural. Just before hatching, the real bugs develop a shiny, distended wingcase. Mercer determined a drop of epoxy would replicate the wingcase.

This fly was tied on a Tiemco 200 #18 hook. I used UV resin instead of epoxy. It’s much simpler than mixing and waiting for the epoxy to set.

Enjoy…go fish!

 

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Die Hard Winter Fly Fisher

I’ve been out on the river only a couple of times since the first of the year. It’s that time of year when you decide if you’re a die hard winter fly fisher because many days the temperatures hover around 32 degrees or colder. March is the month of transition. Spring weather is right around the corner…I hope!

Here is a Baetis I found along the river a couple of weeks ago. It was in the shadows on snow crystals. It reminds me of pictures from Mt. Everest and the ice flows climbers must navigate. This little guy was doing the same.

Baetis on Snow Crystals | www.johnkreft.com

And speaking of snow, there is still a little snow on the river. But it’s certainly fishable. Here I am playing and landing a fish using a $3 Dip. Continue reading

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Medallion Biot Wet Fly

This week’s Throw Back Thursday Fly is the Medallion Biot Wet Fly.

Medallion Biot Wet Fly | www.johnkreft.com

I selected this fly to continue the theme of biot flies I presented in the Goose and Turkey Biot Flies post this week.

The Medallion Biot Wet Fly is another fly by Shane Stalcup and can be tied in different sizes and colors to imitate a variety of mayflies. Shane’s fly pattern can be tied in sizes 8 – 16 in olive, tan, and gray. He suggests fishing this fly in the upper part of the rough waters to imitate a drowned adult mayfly.

This is one of the first flies I saw using Medallion sheeting for wings. If you like the look of this fly, be sure to check out additional fly patterns in Stalcup’s book Mayflies “Top to Bottom” (2002).

For more about Shane, see the Stalcup CDC Loop Wing Emerger Throw Back Thursday Fly post.

Enjoy…go fish!

 

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Goose and Turkey Biot Flies

There is something about goose and turkey biot flies that look so realistic. I was reminded of this as I completed a recent fly order with a few BWO – CDC & Biot flies.

As you can see in the picture, goose and turkey biots come in a variety of dyed colors.

Goose & Turkey Biots | www.johnkreft.com

Here is a couple of pictures to reinforce my point. The first picture is of a Rusty Spinner floating by me in the water and the second picture is the Rusty Spinner Biot Body fly I tie to imitate the real insect. Continue reading

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Stalcup CDC Loop Wing Emerger

This week’s Throw Back Thursday Fly is the Stalcup CDC Loop Wing Emerger.

Stalcup CDC Loop Wing Emerger | www.johnkreft.com

This fly was the creation of Shane Stalcup, a talented and innovative fly tyer. The fly pattern sheet can be found HERE.

I first learned of Stalcup’s flies in his book Mayflies “Top to Bottom” (2002). I thought it was interesting looking at the materials he used to create close imitations to the real insects. It was the first time I had heard of Medallion sheeting. It wasn’t long before I had that material in several colors. Many of the flies in his book used biots for bodies. This fly is no exception.

Stalcup created some wonderful fly tying videos and those videos can now be seen on my friend John Sherry’s Youtube NetKnots Fly Tying channel. I encourage you to take a look. Be sure to check out his video of the Stalcup CDC Loop Wing Emerger.

Unfortunately, Shane passed away prematurely in 2011 at the age of 48.

Many of his flies can still be purchased in your local fly shop. You might give them a try. Watch a video or two of Shane tying his flies. You’ll see how “fishy” they really are.

Enjoy…go fish!

 

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2017 NW Fly Tying & Fly Fishing Expo

I’m looking forward to the 2017 NW Fly Tying & Fly Fishing Expo at the Linn County Expo Center in Albany, OR on March 10 & 11, 2017. It’s only 2 weeks away!

The main attraction for me is the 200 demonstration tyers that rotate every 2 ½ hours on Friday and Saturday.  There are 80 tyers tying at individual tables with chairs provided to sit and watch.  All of the fly genres are covered including nymphs, dry, steelhead, classic salmon, streamers, and realistic flies.  If you are not sure who to watch, the best thing to do is to walk around the tyer tables and find an open seat.  A lot can be learned by sitting down and watching a tyer demonstrate different techniques.  Tyers will have tips on material selection, tying technique, and sometimes fishing the patterns.  They are also able to answer questions during their demonstration.  It is one of the best ways to learn and improve tying skills. Continue reading

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Old Fly Fishing and Fly Tying Books

Have you ever wondered about the history of fly fishing? It’s an interesting topic to me, which explains why I’ve been reading old fly fishing and fly tying books lately. Why? First, they are a source for my Throw Back Thursday Flies. Secondly, I wonder how previous generations fished and what some of their streamside conversations were.

Favorite Flies and Their Histories | www.johnkreft.com

I always enjoyed reading the Pioneers & Legends stories in NW Fly Fishing Magazine. John Shewey, the magazine’s editor, writes some of these articles. It’s one of the reasons I purchased his books Classic Steelhead Flies and Spey Flies & Dee Flies, Their History & Construction to read more about our fly fishing history. Continue reading

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