Monday, December 12, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 12

Simms Fishing Products
I am just going to put this out there for all of us.  It doesn't matter what type of Simms products you buy us, just get us some Simms!!  Even the socks are top notch and something special.  On the upper end, a pair of waders is super nice and will last for several years.  In between, there is a ton of items that can be purchased and enjoyed by your favorite angler.  The shirts are cool, the nippers are cool, the packs and base layers are cool, the boots are cool and even the accessories are cool.  So really, it doesn't matter what you get us, we will like it and be thankful for it.  It's pretty easy. Thanks gift buyers!! 

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 11

Fly Boxes
Lets start with a few MFC fly boxes. Recently they have released a series of really cool plastic fly boxes that have some awesome artwork on the covers.  Every year they add to the selection and just this past year they added some state flags to the cover.  Of most interest to us here in Colorado is the Colorado box.  It's pretty cool and I have one sitting on my tying bench ready to get filled up.  These boxes also accept an insert leaf that can double your storage.  If you really need to stash a boatload of flies, you might want to get a boat box.  These things can carry enough flies to open a fly shop.  They are sold with different sized slits to hold appropriately sized flies.     This too can accept a swing leaf to double your storage.  
Tacky Fly Boxes are new to the scene but have made a huge impact.  Perhaps one of the favorites, I am guessing most people own one, if not, they want one.  With different sized options now, one or more will be appreciated.  They hold flies the best and with a clear cover case, it's easy to see what you need even if you carry multiple boxes.  I carry two or more of these with me on the river.  One other item they produce is the Tacky Tube.  I don't own one (HINT, HINT...) but I do want one.  These tubes are designed to hold your flies, either used or some you throw in for a small creek expedition.  The magnets are an added bonus to this cool little item.  
There are plenty more fly boxes out there, but these are just two that I am familiar with.  You can find these at most fly shops ready to be wrapped and placed under the tree.  As you can see, there is a big difference between the two boxes.  One with cool artwork and one with a clear, simple case.  Either way, these are great gifts for the angler.  

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 10

Whiting Brahma Hen
Every once in a while we stumble upon a tying material we knew was out there but never tried.  I knew about Bramha Hen for a while before I tried it and finally realized that I had been missing out for a while.  I generally use the hen saddle in various colors as well as the soft hackle with chickabou.  The chickabou can be used for small buggers or wings on an RS2.  If you tie a lot of flies with soft hacks tails, this is perfect.  Think Gunkel's Radiation Baetis and Two-Bit Hookers.  For legs on stoneflies, this again is perfect.  Think legs on Pennington's D-Rib Goldenstone, or legs on a 20 Incher.  At a price that is affordable, you're able to purchase multiple colors.  So get this info over to someone so you can get one or two or three under the tree.  Check with your local fly shop to see if they have them.  Check out the colors here: 

Friday, December 9, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 9

Lamson Waterworks Reels
Of all the options of reels out there, I choose to fish Lamson reels.  Why?  Because they work for me and many other people.  I am especially fond of the workhorse Lamson Lightspeed.   It's been a fine reel over the years and one I reach for as my personal reel.  This year you can find them on discount as they are in the transition of updating the reel to a new model, the Micra 5.  The higher priced reels are some of the lightest reels available and also some of the sweetest looking reels.  The lower priced reels are just as solid as their more expensive brothers but a little more affordable.  Either way, you will be getting a reel that is dependable, functional and durable.  Most fly shops carry Lamson reels and they are certainly available online.      

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 8

Deer Creek Diamond Fine and Diamond Fine Flex UV Resins
In the world of UV resins there can only be one.  Only one that can be tack free. That one is the Deer Creek Diamond Fine UV resin.  Sure there are several other options out there but I am only going to recommend this one.  I've been using it for several years now and it does everything I need it to do.  The hardest challenge it has passed is to drop it into my small tying trash basket next to my vise.  It usually contains bits of thread, z-lon, deer hair and other bits that would stick to any tacky surface given the opportunity.  The key to any UV resin though is to cure it completely.  If your light is not powerful enough or the battery is low, you will have some issues.  The best news for this resin is that it is now distributed by Hareline Dubbin, which means that it will probably be available in most fly shops from now on.  Do yourself a favor and ask for some or get a bottle for a tying buddy.  UV resins will change the way you tie flies and this UV resin is my personal favorite.  

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 7

Conterra Guide 1 First Aid Kit
How many of you have and carry a first aid kit?  How many of you know where to get one small enough to carry in your vest or pack?  I know that this suggestion is not very exciting.  You can't and really don't want to use it, but when it comes to a time when you have to use it, you will be glad you have one.  This kit covers you in case of a small emergency on the stream or in the field.  And since you probably won't buy this for yourself, pass this information along and maybe you will find it under the tree come Christmas morning.  Take a look at, to purchase this kit.  There is also a larger one available if needed for more coverage.  I've been carrying a small first aid kit and have had to get into it several times this year and not just for bandaids.  It's not a matter of if, but when you will need this kit.  Make sure you are prepared!  

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 6

Dr. Slick Razor Scissors
I am sure a lot of you already own a pair of these awesome scissors.  If not, you need to make sure that you let someone know that you need a pair for Christmas.  For around $25.00 and available at most fly shops, it's a pretty affordable gift to either give or receive.  
What make these scissors amazing is how sharp they are and how well they cut. If you are new to fly tying, increase your please with a pair of these.  You will never go back to a different pair again.  If you already own a pair, a new pair never hurts.  Eventually we drop them on hardwood floors, cut wire with them accidentally or our kids use them for their school projects without permission.  Whatever your status is, get a pair.  You will not be disappointed.  

Monday, December 5, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 5

On Day 2, I offered up an idea for a needle to pick out your knots.  Today, I am going to one up it and offer up an even better idea.  A nipper with a retractable needle to clean eyes and take out knots.  Who would have thunk it?  This is my favorite nipper and I haven't been without one for the last 4 years.  At one time, these were all on backorder and unavailable.  I thought I was going to freak out.  Since then, I have stocked up and have several in my own back-stock.   I think they are that important to have.  I carry these on a Fishpond zinger on my waders so I have a pair of nippers and access to the needle at all times.  If the nipper needle is too short and I need more length, I use the C&F Needle.  The nippers are great and do exactly what I need them to do and that is cut 6x flour carbon tippet.    Again, this is one item that I don't ever want to be without.  And again, you might have to ask for them at the shop.  Not every shop carries them.  I find mine at Sportsman's Warehouse in C.S., but save some for me.  I'll need some extras, just in case ya know.

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 4

Patagonia Tractor Boots.
If you or someone you know needs a little more traction in the river, you need to get a pair of these.
I don't own a pair of these yet, but I am going to get a pair.  I have been able to spend several days in them this summer though on the South Platte River and the Arkansas River.  If you fish the South Platte, these things are like putting football cleats on or maybe more like velcro.  You are much more stable and safer with them.  The only problem I had with them was in high water at Deckers.  I slipped and fell in at 500CFS, but I don't blame my footing, I blame the fish I was trying to land and was chasing around and got pushed by the water.  On the Arkansas River, these things really shine.  It makes for a much better day all around.  I was able to walk my clients through the rough water and give them a hand without worrying too much about slipping on the very slick boulders.  Overall, these things fit well, and are completely durable.  The bars will eventually wear out just like a pair of tires do, but I still think they are worth it.  The price is steep ($279.00), but again, I feel that its very worth it to stay dry and safe.  When you see me on the river next time, I am going to have a pair of these on.  I hope you have them on too!

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Holiday Gift Guide, Day 3

So when you look at all the fly lines on the wall at the fly shop it's pretty similar to looking at glasses frames at the eye doctor.  They all will work in one way or another, but you have to find the one that is right for you.  The one that fits you just right.  SA's Sharkwave Ultimate Trout is an awesome fly line that will work for most people and preform just the way you need it to.  Designed for today's modern fly rods, you don't want to put this line on a bamboo fly rod or something you found at a garage sale.  If you need a do-it-all line, start here.  Decide if you want a standard size line (not overweighted) and if you do, this is the line for you.  If you want a fly line that is a half size heavier, go with an SA MPX line.  I find that the standard size lines are smoother and most people who know how to cast do well with these lines.  If your fly rod is super stiff (Think Sage One) or you are somewhat of a beginner and your casting is not where you would like it to be, then the MPX will be a better choice overall.  This is not to say that experienced casters wouldn't love the MPX.  It's one one of the most popular lines out there (previously it was the GPX line).  The line is $99.00 and while it sounds super expensive, it will last you quite a while as long as you take care of it.  I've been fishing this line this summer and can say that it is definitely worth the price.  Just remember, if you have a high end fly rod, it's only as good as the line you put on it.  If you have a Corvette, would you put on low-end all-season radials on it?  So there you go.  Tell mama that this is the line you want for Christmas.  

Friday, December 2, 2016

Holiday Gift Ideas, Day 2

Of all the items I carry and have with me at all times while I am fishing or guiding, this is perhaps one of the most important things.  The C&F 3-in-1 Nail Knot Pipe is a super useful item because I can use the super sharp needle to help untangle knots in my leaders.  I don't know how many times I have used this this year and I can only guess how much time it's saved me, but it truly is a time and life saver.  Picture this:  A wind knot (because you could never make a knot like that on your own) during the middle of a BWO hatch has your tippet looking like you have an 8" dropper above your dry.  Stop and get out your needle and start picking.  I usually place the knot on my thumbnail so I can stab the point right in the middle of the knot and not stab myself.  Once you separate the knot, slide it up to the wider taper near the base of the needle so it opens up and from there, it's easy to get the knot out and separated with your fingers.  Trust me.  I've only done this about 600 times this year.  Remember, I am a guide!!!  There is also a cool little magnet you can use to hold flies as well as a nail knot feature.  If you own any small size C&F fly boxes, there is a place in there designed to hold this item.
This tool may need to be ordered online as most shops probably don't carry this, but ask them first to see if they can get it for you.  Do it now!!!  You can thank me later.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Holiday Gift Ideas, Day 1

If you are looking for ideas for your favorite fly-fisher, or maybe you want to forward this over to that gift buyer, here you go.  For the next 12 days, I am going to suggest some ideas of both fishing and fly-tying.   Some product that I use and believe in that are mostly affordable.  
Starting it off is the Magic Tool.

When I first bought the Magic Tool, it sat around for almost a year before I figured out how to use it.  Now, I would never tie flies without it.  I don't use it all the time, but I love it for flies that require CDC in them.  And while I have only scratched the surface of it's uses, I am recommending it right now.  The clips hold CDC to insert into split threads and you are able to tie small CDC duns down to size 26 with this tool.  You can also use it to tie larger bugs such as Wooly Buggers.  You will just have to try it out to see what you can do with it.   Check out the video below to see some action.  

CDC Spun Dun from Juan Ramirez-Hopper Juan on Vimeo.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

The Fly Fishing Rendezvous, Denver Colorado

Hello people!!  I am still around here, it's just been a bit busy this summer.  I've been on the water a lot and have lots of stories to tell on things I have learned.  Hopefully I will be able to get to them this winter!

For now though, I want to invite you to an event happening next weekend in Denver.   Scrap your plans on going fishing and stay in town to make a visit.  The fishing is in winter mode right now anyway!  I'll be there both days and would love to chat with you.  I'll be doing two fly tying seminars, one on Saturday and one on Sunday, covering the Slim Shady 5.0 and the Kryptonite Caddis.  This will probably be the only times I tie them and share my secrets with you so don't miss it.  I'll be there at a table tying all day as well.  I hope to see you there.  Check out the website for more information.

Saturday, August 6, 2016

Happy Anniversary!!

It's already been a year since I decided to walk away from my desk job to become a full time Fly-Fishing Guide.   The year has flown by as they all do, especially this summer.  Walking away from my full time job was scary, but it was the best thing I have ever done, other than ask my wife to marry me.  It's been super busy this summer with lots of time on the water and many fish to the net.  But, it's not all about the fish.  There have been friendships that have been created and existing friendships that have become even better.  There is lots of time behind the windshield, time to think about things that may or may not be important.  There are new fly pattern ideas that are born and new patterns to test.  There are new things that I learn everyday.   There are days when the catching is easy and there are days like today when the catching is almost nonexistent.  There are many big fish that haunt me.  Ones that never made it into the net, ones that we never saw, only felt the power of their tail.
Overall, it's been awesome and I still ask myself "I get paid to do this?"  If you would like me to stand next to you, pointing out fish and helping you become a better angler, let me know.  I am already packed and ready to go!!  Thanks for being along for the ride.