It’s been a while since I did any serious fly tying. That has everything to do with the fact that over the past couple years, I haven’t done nearly as much fly fishing as I used to – and that has a lot to do with having two Newfoundland dogs who love to roam in the woods. At the same time, I started learning about foraging for wild mushrooms and I’ve been taking the dogs out mushroom hunting with me regularly. So far this season, I haven’t been on stream at all.
I expect I’ll get in a couple days on a trout stream after the oyster mushrooms are finished, and then later in June, I’m planning a trip to the Upper Delaware River for several days. The Upper Delaware is a tailwater that straddles New York and Pennsylvania. It holds trout because of two bottom release dams that keep the water temperature cool all year and it has the reputation of being one of the best trout streams in Eastern North America. Why go there when there is pretty good trout fishing in local streams? I suppose because it’s a chance to get away for a few days, visit a place I’m not familar with, learn a little about a new river, and just travel around a bit.
Over the years I’ve tried to take a few days each season to go fishing or camping on my own. Last year, it was a trip with the dogs. I took Memphis and Ellie Mae up to Muskoka for a few days of hiking and mushroom hunting. On a few occasions in past years I’ve taken the long drive to the Upper Michigan Peninsula to camp and fish some streams I know there. I like that UP country quite a bit. And of course I’ve even taken solo road trips across the country too, something I haven’t done in a few years now and I have to admit I miss the long road trip.
So last evening I hunkered down in the studio and started tying up some trout flies. I tied two patterns, both imitating a little yellow mayfly we call a sulphur. One is a soft-hackle pattern and the other is my favourite all-around trout fly, known as The Usual. I tied six flies and was pretty happy with my effort.