Monthly Archives: December 2007

Email Fly Fishing Gift Certificates Arrive in Time for the Holidays

That’s right folks,  if you can’t bear to get on the beltway this Holiday season, we’d be happy to email a gift certificate to you. To select one, check out our offerings online and place  an order on our secure site by December 23, 2007. For the late shoppers out there, Backwater Angler will be open from 10 AM till 4 PM on the 22, 23 and 24. We are open on Wednesdays through December and the 26th is sure to be a fun one in the shop, especially if you have a fly fishing gift certificate in hand. Gift certificates are redeemable for gear and services like fly tying instruction, fly fishing classes, schools and fly fishing guide trips. If you’ve found the perfect item online and would rather call in the gift certificate,  feel free to give us a call at 410-329-6821 and we’ll get one, or more, right out to you.

Maryland Brook Trout Fly Fishing

Maryland has ample brook trout fishing opportunities in the western region of the state. The small mountain streams that contain these native trout may only be six to twelve feet wide and less than a foot deep in many areas. The brook trout can grow to twelve inches and many streams have good populations of eager trout. Exploring small streams can uncover larger pools and deep narrow bends where larger trout hold versus the pocket water and riffles.

Gear includes one to three weight rods with a length no longer than seven feet. I use a Scott Fiberglass 6 foot one weight to load quick for minimal false casting. Waders are not required for most small streams due to shallow water. Kneeling on the bank, stealth, and good casting equal success. Bring less gear so the long hikes are easier and usually well worth it for the better fishing. One box of flies with dries, a few streamers, and small nymphs will always work. Some brookie favorites are the Elk Hair Caddis, Foam Beetle, Fur Ant, Pheasant Tail Nymph, Royal Wulff, small Olive Wooly Bugger, and Snow Shoe Mayfly patterns. Brook trout will eat almost anything if you can approach and cast without spooking the fish or snagging a tree.

Airflo Ridge Tactical Trout Double Taper Fly Line Review

The following is a review of the Airflo Ridge Tactical Trout Double Taper Fly Line by Bill Felter. Thanks Bill!

What a great flyline! I picked up one of these Ridgelines this summer to use on a 7 1/2 ft. bamboo rod and I absolutely love it. It shoots like a champ, float high and the tip hasn’t sunk yet. One of the thing I love most about this line is its soft, supple coating which really complements a more fully-flexing bamboo rod. I also like the shooting ability of this line. It makes fishing in close quarters a breeze; you can shoot 20+ ft. of line with minimal effort. Its long head (7 ft) can turn over long leaders and heavy flies alike. If you fish bamboo rods and miss the old Scientific Anglers Ultra III lines, give this one a shot; you’ll like it!
Oh, yeah, one more thing; it comes in OLIVE which is really important when fishing low water.

Bill Felter

Tying Gunpowder River Midge Patterns

Please join us for an Intermediate Fly Tying Class on Saturday, January 26 from 11:00 AM till 2:00PM. It’s a fly tying class that focuses on midge patterns. Gunpowder river Guide Jason du Pont will be teaching this fun-filled intermediate class. Cost of the class is $45 per person, and includes the use of tools and materials. The class is limited to six and pre-registration is required. Please give us a call at 410-329-6821 or drop us a line at info@backwaterangler.com to pre-register.

Airflo Fly Lines in Baltimore, Maryland

Airflo fly lines are our most popular lines in the shop and many are spooled on guide service and guide’s reels. The Airflo Ridge lines uses a design featuring small ridges, which run lengthwise down the surface of the line. These ridges raise the surface area of the line, which decreases friction and increases distance. The Airflo Ridge Line Tactical Trout Weight Forward lines also feature Airflo’s low stretch Power Core. The Power Core means better casting, because the line has no memory. This line is great for loading faster rods at short distances.The Airflo Ridge Line Tactical Trout Double Taper Fly Line is ideal for bamboo and glass fly rods.

Airflo Ridge Line

The Airflo Ridge Distance Fly Line is great for casting bigger flies and heavy nymph rigs. The long belly and no stretch core is ideal for casting small to medium flies for extra distance.

Depth Finder Line

The Airflo Depth Finder Quick Max Fly Line has a shorter 22 ft head than the original Depth Finders. The shorter head is easier to deal with than full sinking lines and is ideal for Rockfish in the Chesapeake Bay and Susquehanna flats.

Fly Fishing Maryland? Low Water & Streamers on the Gunpowder River

The Gunpowder River is clear and flowing at 26 Cfs, and temps are hovering in the mid 40’s. Bead head stonefly patterns followed by a Red Butt have been effective in the stretch above Falls Rd. Riffles are now holding more fish post spawn and a streamer along the log jams is a good way to stay warm and cover a lot of water. Downstream of Little Falls,  the river is flowing at 76 Cfs. Larger rainbows are still being caught on #14-16  zug bugs and #12-14 princes in the 5 fish a day stretch from the gas line below Corbett Rd through Lower Glencoe. During low flows, less shot and smaller indicators help one detect subtle strikes. Stoneflies and black flies are  on the way, and with snow in the forecast, this weekend will be an interesting one along the river. Spiked shoes and a wading staff are Winter fishing essentials, so take your time out there and enjoy the scenery. A lite bright zonker  sized #4-6 worked slowly across the bottom should work wonders.

Bonefish Bound? Chota Flats Booties In Stock

Bonefishing requires heavy duty rods, tippets and hooks to catch these powerful fish. Heavy duty foot wear is essential where shallow water flats present dangers like stingrays, sea urchins and sharp coral to the wading angler. Open toe sandals, flip flops or hiking sandals leave exposed skin and may be in adequate, for anything but soft white sand flats.
Cove

The Chota Flats booties have an inseam zipper with sand guard and elastic upper to keep feet protected. The boots have a 5 mm neoprene ankle area and a 7 mm thick vulcanized rubber sole.This lightweight bootie is comfortable, and offers protection and traction on lava rock shores, reefs and grassy beds. Chota flats booties have allowed me to wade around coral and grass areas in Hawaii, Belize and the Bahamas safely and confidently. Check out these essential Chota booties on our secure site.

Bamboo Fly Fishing Rods built in Baltimore Maryland IV, Hon

I’m way overdue for an update on the rod so here goes…
Since my last post I’ve run the individual strips (18 in all) through the router-powered beveler, which cuts the initial 60 degree angle into each strip. Then I started working on the tip sections. The tip strips were further straightened and I scraped off the layer of enamel that covers the outside of the bamboo. Taking off the enamel is one of my favorite parts of rod building because it’s the first time I get to see the true color of the bamboo as it will look on the finished rod. It’s like opening a present!.
Bill Felter doing his thing...

Then I adjusted the screws on the planing form to the proper taper dimensions and started to hand plane each strip to within .030 in. (thirty thousandths of an inch) of the final taper. A little more very delicate straightening preceded final planing which was completed Monday night. Now the tips are ready to glue. Tonight I’ll re-set the planing form to the dimensions for the butt section and start planing the rough taper. I’ll plane the butt section to final dimensions and I’ll be gluing up the blank Saturday morning. By Sunday night I’ll have the rod sections cut to proper length and the ferrules installed. Then I’ll adjust the fit of the ferrules, assemble the rod sections and give it the wiggle test for the first time. If I’m feeling like a really huge nerd I’ll tape on the guides, tip top, reel seat and grip and go outside and cast it for the first time and the neighbors will look at me funny.
Tip Strips and a Big Dime

Being that I’m smack in the middle of final planing I thought your readers might like to learn a little about the tools I’m using to do it.
The planing form and Stanley #9 1/2 low-angle plane that are the meat and potatoes of bamboo rod making.
The planing form is an adjustable “jig” that is made of 2 bars of cold rolled steel. The bars each measure 3/4″ x 3/4″ x 6′ and are held together with a number of smooth, steel pins, each spaced 5″ on center. At each pin are two adjustment screws, one on either side, which may be adjusted to either enlarge or reduce the space between the two bars. One set pulls the bars together the other pushes them apart. A finely milled 60 deg. groove runs the length of the bars along the inside edges where the two bars meet. To create the groove the edges of each bar are chamfered at a 30 deg. angle which combine to create a 60 deg. groove. The groove is also tapered so that it is deeper on the “near” side and shallower on the “far” side. The planing form has two of these carefully milled grooves, on on the top (butt side) and one on the bottom (tip side). The groove on the tip side is much smaller than the one on the butt side. By opening or closing the gap between the two bars you can change the taper along the length of the form. I use a dial indicator micrometer with a 60 deg. contact point to measure the depth of the groove at each 5″ “station” where very precise adjustments to the taper can be made. By following a taper “recipe” I can adjust my planing form to reproduce nearly any bamboo rod taper (fly rods, spinning rods or casting rods).

Next time-the joys of urea-formaldehyde epoxy resin!
Bill

Tying Gunpowder River Stonefly Patterns

Please join us for an Intermediate Fly Tying Class on Saturday, January 19 from 11:00 AM till 2:00PM. It’s a fly tying class that focuses on Stoneflly patterns. Gunpowder river Guide Jason du Pont will be teaching this fun-filled intermediate class. Cost of the class is $45 per person, and includes the use of tools and materials. The class is limited to six and pre-registration is required. Please give us a call at 410-329-6821 or drop us a line at info@backwaterangler.com to pre-register.

Gunpowder River Fly Patterns for Beginners

Please join us for a Beginners Fly Tying Class on Saturday, January 12,  2008 from 11:00 AM till 2:00PM. It’s an introductory fly tying class that focuses on Gunpowder river patterns. Gunpowder River Guide Jason du Pont will be teaching this fun-filled beginners class. Cost of the class is $45 per person, and includes the use of tools and materials. The class is limited to six and pre-registration is required. Please give us a call at 410-329-6821 or drop us a line at info@backwaterangler.com to pre-register.