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Stream Reconnaissance; Bamboo Fly Rods Built For Go (Not Show); And Where You're Fly Fishing This Weekend

Posted by Tom Chandler 8/20/2010

It's Friday, which means I'm on Little M duty - and that a quick fly fishing trip may be in the cards.

Then again, it's August, and a lot of our small streams are hunkered down under the double whammy of summer heat and low summer flows, so a Fishability Reconnaissance Trip - cleverly disguised as a Little M nature outing - is probably the smartest course.

That means hiking books instead of wading boots, and a stream thermometer in place of a fly rod.

Frankly, I'm congratulating myself even as I write this; maintaining the pretense of effective fatherhood while indulging your fly fishing affliction requires both creativity and an ability to seize the moment.

Carpe Kidum...

The Rod Builder Cometh
Also included in today's Big Day Out may be a visit to bamboo rod builder Chris Raine's shop. Raine called yesterday to say he'd worked out the kinks on a new taper, and wanted me to cast it.

My motivation here is clear; Chris gave me the prototype of this taper years ago, and the thing has never really clicked for either of us.

If he has solved the riddle, then a new tip could bring my Raine Frankenrod (it's a builder's shop rod - a prototype built from disparate sections and using mismatched components) up to speed.

Only a fool wouldn't make that visit, and the Underground's no fool.

That I'd be fishing a hollowbuilt bamboo fly rod that clearly wasn't meant for public consumption only makes the whole thing more attractive (and probably to a sizable portion of my readership).

After all, good bamboo rod builders create little works of art pretty much all day long; fishing a rod that ignores cosmetic conventions in favor of proving a concept turns me all warm and tingly inside.

It's not normal, but then, normalcy isn't really the default state for a group of people who go to great lengths to catch fish only to safely return them to the water.

And The Undergrounders Are Headed [insert fly fishing destination] This Weekend?
It's mid-August and Friday is here; where are the Undergrounders fishing this weekend?

As always, the floor is yours. Discuss...

See you with Little M in tow, Tom Chandler.

AuthorPicture

Tom Chandler

As the author of the decade leading fly fishing blog Trout Underground, Tom believes that fishing is not about measuring the experience but instead of about having fun. As a staunch environmentalist, he brings to the Yobi Community thought leadership on environmental and access issues facing us today.

18 comments
Desert Fishing For me- no bamboo, though... All tackle except my WWGrigg 5Wt. ( Ironically painted to LOOK Like Bamboo!...WTF?...) and an Okuma reel was stolen out of my truck a few weeks ago- we're doing a family trip to one of the Southern Utah National Parks and I have a few little red rock canyon streams I like (http://unfortunatedesertaccident.blogspot.com/2010/07/blog-post.html) down there...
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I just looked through the Maestro's website. Drool, drool. Maybe, I'll have to start saving my change for a trip to Dunsmuir.
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Uhhh, “one last time” sounds a little final. Here's hoping I'm not understanding correctly… (Quote) check with Dave Roerts ...he can fill in the blanks. take care and the best to Little M and Walley...oh and the Mrs. too.
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It is an 8'6" #5 HB. A Christmas gift from my wife in 2007. Jim has restored an 8/9 EC Powell steelhead rod and a 5wt Jay Harvey. Jim does beautifol work.
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Which Reams rod?
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Uhhh, "one last time" sounds a little final. Here's hoping I'm not understanding correctly...
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little fellas...any species, with a 3wt 7.5' Orvis bamboo on some small stream tributaries of the Stanislaus, high in the cool country...just me and Kate my four footed fish finder. Quiet time...one last time.
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Just returned from Watauga tailwater with my Jim Reams hollowbuilt 5wt. Rainbows and a few browns helped iniate the rod into the world of trout. From my Florida digs it has only seen largemouts and bluegills. That is not what it was built for. Love the rod. Fish all my bamboo rods every chance I get. I have an old Powell steelhead rod that I've used for sea trout. It is just tough on guides.
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I think Raine's building one of those right now (maybe a salmon rod). Saw the sticks on his bench yesterday. Definitely a heavy hitter.
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Yep and a few others ....... I recently helped an elderly aquataince sell a few of her late husbands rods.... not a rich man but he had bought Payne and Leonard rods back when they were top quality but not out of reach .... you find old catalogs and see some amazing things .....at 1949 priced I'll take 2 dozen of every model please.....when one of your minions, lackeys, or toadeys invents a time machine ... more I'd like in on the tackle buying safari!!!!
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Dodging stingrays in the surf - and hopefully nothing more dangerous than that -
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Pretty clearly the Golden Age of Bamboo, though I still wouldn't mind zooming back to 1949 and buying a fistful of new Phillipsons...
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Dang, that sounds like heaven.
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I will seem like I have it all to myself as long as I'm looking straight down at my feet the whole time. A skillfull self-deception indeed.
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High Country. Golden Trout Wilderness and John Muir Wilderness for 4 days, catching (hopefully) about a bazillion of the worlds most beautiful trout, all likely under 12". Grab your backpack, it might be 105 degrees in the Southland, but its only 65 at 11,000 feet.
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It's tailwater time of year so it's an drive north for Connecticut's only fishable stream at this point. I will seem like I have it all to myself as long as I'm looking straight down at my feet the whole time.
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As usual, I will be looking for the river inside the ocean. Whether it will be on the North Shore, the South Shore, or the Flats is the question. And, all the while, I'll be dreaming of an 8/9 weight bamboo rod with which to (hopefully) catch a Striper or Bluefish. Sigh. Duh...
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I'm a small stream junkie like you but one of the benefits of the local tailwater is 55-59 degree water most of the summer (during off hours temp creeps up but it gets a daily shot of cold water and oxegen) pellet heads aren't my favorite but its an hour from Nashville and full of big brownie holdovers that will often take a dry or midge..........when possible I fish the weekdays till frost to avoid ... more the idiot hatch......... I'd love to see a pic of the frankenrod!!!!! Pretty sure this is the golden age of bamboo.... while there is as there has always been a lot of schlock made the number of guys turning out amazing rods is astounding........ one of the joys of being divorced is that nobody but my insurance man needs to know how many I have or how much I spend........
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