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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Contest Coming Soon to A Blog Near You

My blog, formerly known as Mr. P.'s Blog, is getting a name change.  I'm going with "Got Backing?"   To celebrate the name change I'm going to have a contest.  I'm still thinking about the rules but it is going to be a photo contest.  One of the prizes will be the new Orvis carp line.  Is that cool or what?!  Some lucky guy or gal will get to fish this state of the art fly line.  

Details will come out sometime next week.  

The new Orvis Carp Line

Saturday, July 13, 2013

New Orvis Carp Line

Awhile back Orvis sent me a prototype Carp fly line.  I have used it a bunch of  times on two very different bodies of water.  I am very pleased with it!  I have fished it on the Columbia River and on some still water.  I like it a lot in both venues.  Given the settings and the different conditions, I had a chance to fish the line at different distances and with very different amounts of wind.  

Most of the Carp I target are 25-40 feet away.  I make some 50-60 foot casts but that is not the norm.  I know many of us would like to think we are casting 70 to 80 feet to tailing Carp but I don't really think it happens that much; it certainly doesn't for me.   I feel that this line performs the best in that primary target zone.  It may not perform as well as my other lines on the longer casts but that hardly matters to me.  For the vast majority of the casts I was making the Orvis line performs better.  It seems to load the rod better.  If this line goes into production, yes, I would definitely fish it and feel very good about it.

I would add that some of the time I am fishing in calm weather.  There is usually some wind when I fish for Carp and sometimes there is a lot of wind.  I felt the line performed better in the wind that my other lines.  I had lots of opportunity to test that.   Since I am usually fishing in the wind this is a plus for me.  

The prototype line has a gray head and white running line.  I don't care for the color of the head.  I visually detect virtually all takes from Carp.  Most of the time that is from movement of the fish.  Sometimes, in deeper water that has that has the surface seriously disturbed by the wind, I detect the take in part from line movement.  I felt the gray line was a little harder to see than a sage or olive colored head.  If this line goes into production I would also suggest something that may be minor "heresy".  It certainly isn't the norm for a fly line and I recognize that all gear has to catch fisherman before it catches fish.  I'm thinking they might add a small section of red at the end of the head?  Just 12 inches.  When it is windy and the fish are more difficult to see, line movement would be easier to detect with a bit of red in the line as opposed to just the gray.  I look at the fish after I have cast, not the line.  I have taken a lot of video of takes and it is interesting to me to watch my video and see the line move slightly when the fish takes the fly even though I don't feel the take.  In watching the video it seems that  a very short red section would help detect takes when it is difficult to see the fish move.  

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

A Guest Post by Julie Gilbert

Julie Gilbert contacted me about doing a guest post.  Here is her article.  Thanks Julie.  

Fishing- A Bonding Exercise?

If you’re hosting a corporate event or day out with your employees this year, have you considered taking your team fishing? Corporate events are all about team-building, and fishing is a great outdoor event that can be enjoyable for all members of any team, whilst also promoting a little friendly competition! Fishing is a cost effective sport and well worth the money for the banter and fun that would be had on the water. It definitely makes a change from many other corporate events your team may have been to in the past, and it can be suitable for people with a wide range of fishing experience from novice to expert! With the right weather conditions, a day of fishing could be a very unique, enjoyable and interesting way to help your team bond!

Corporate Packages

The Orvis Company offers fly fishing trips in many parts of the United States along with trips to Europe, South America, and Africa.  They can help your dreams come true.  Many fishing companies offer corporate packages specifically tailored to your requirements. The Great River Fishing company in British Columbia arranges a day of fishing led by professional and experienced guides and jet boats to speed off down the river in. Start and end times, as well as the length of the trip, are all very flexible so can be easily arranged to suit your event and all fishing equipment is supplied. Lunch and refreshments are provided for a small cost and prices and quotes are available on request. Deep Sea Fishing Charters located in Miami Beach offers a similar package with a custom built trip to suit your targets and overall aims for the experience. Again they include all the fishing tackle you will need, the day is led by professionals who will teach you how to catch the biggest and best fish and they also supply food at an extra cost. They offer trips for over 20 people per boat, so plenty of room if you have a larger team! They are based 10 minutes away from the Gulf Stream where they do all of their fishing.

Friendly Competition

There is always going to be plenty of natural competition in today’s corporate world and this event could be no exception! Creating an element of some healthy competition between members of your team can give people who don’t usually mix a reason to spend time with each other! At the same time it can also continue to build and improve relationships with people they already know. There is also ample opportunity for valuable one to one ‘face time’ and the excitement of the sport and setting is ideal for honing working and personal relationships. Competitions and tournaments can be arranged between small groups, or if there is a large team, perhaps two or three teams could be spread between a couple of boats! The day could then culminate in a ‘Catch of the Day’ award, with a small prize given to the winner of the competition. Hopefully everybody will leave having caught fish to be proud of, but for this award there can only be one winner!

Learn A New Skill

One of the additional benefits to a fishing team building day is members of your team who had previously not had experience in this sport learning the rudiments of a new skill! The excitement and satisfaction of catching your own fish is a great feeling and infectious within a group, encouraging interaction with all members of the team throughout the day. For beginners, the importance of encouragement and support from fellow team members is crucial to building their confidence in their new skills. This is another way that your team will be able to improve their relationships with each other, and is something that is transferable directly to your work place environment.

A Bonding Exercise

Of course, it isn’t only corporate teams that can reap the benefits of a fun day of fishing. Fishing can be a great bonding sport, as it brings like-minded people together and is a great chance for families and friends to swap stories, techniques and experiences in a relaxed, natural environment. Being outside on the river encourages activity and a healthier way of living, as does eating the fish you catch, which are high in protein and low in fat. Fishing is a fulfilling activity for many people, as it can be quite a meditative sport at times but it can then suddenly become an exciting trip out with your friends, and it really is something that can be enjoyed at any age. 

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Complimentary Liver Pate and Fruit Spritzer from Orvis

Leland Miyawaki from Bellevue Orvis makes a smooth, creamy, duck liver pate.  Most people don't this about him.   He serves it spread on little crackers.  I'm told it is delightful.  How wonderful.  Jason Cotta, also of Bellevue Orvis, prepares a  refreshing fruit spritzer for which he is becoming well known on the Internet.  On a hot evening Jason's spritzer is a wonderful complement to Leland's duck liver pate.  Jason also makes a tasty gelato; it is light and delicate, perfect for an after dinner refreshment.  For those who wish to partake, Leland will be serving (small) glasses of his favorite white wine also.  People will be lined up for a block just to taste Leland's liver pate and Jason's spritzer.  You might like to come and give it all a try this coming Thursday at 6:00 PM. It's free; compliments of Orvis.   Dress is cocktail casual.

If you are still reading I will be doing my Carp on the Fly video seminar at Bellevue Orvis at 6:00 PM on Thursday, July 11.  The store will be closed during the seminar so it is okay to serve alcohol.  There is no liver pate, no spritzer, no wine and no gelato.  There is going to be pizza and beer though!  If you thought all that other stuff sounded good, I don't know what to say to you.  If it sounded bad to you then come to Orvis; you'll fit right in.  We're gonna have a good time!   Oh, and wear whatever the heck you feel like.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Some Fish are Just More Fun Than Others

On Sunday, Katy and I arrived at the Carp Lodge.  Just for clarity, she doesn't usually call the house  the Carp Lodge--big surprise, I know.

After we unpacked I drove a short distance to a spot on the river and fished for about 90 minutes; I actually got a nice fish.  I caught it dropping the fly right in front of him.  He moved a little and sucked in the fly.  While it is "up close and personal" I just don't enjoy dropping the fly as much as I enjoy casting it.  Casting to fish I can see is the best; plain and simply it's the best.

Yesterday the predicted heat was a bit intimidating for this older middle age guy.  It ended up being 109.  The Columbia is a cold river so wading in it feels very good on a hot day.  Getting out to walk the shoreline, well that feels pretty hot and sweaty.  I drank a quart of water before I left the Carp Lodge, I drank 8 ounces when I got to the river, I drank the quart I was carrying while I was fishing, I drank another pint when I got back to my truck.  It was bloody hot.

The section of the river I fished yesterday will always be one of my enduring favorite spots.  I walked through the first section fairly quickly.  Partly because I wasn't seeing a lot of fish but even if I had been seeing lots of tailers I was already resolved to move to the second part, the rocky section, before I was tired since that is where I am likely to see bigger fish.  I was glad I did.

I was rewarded by some apex athletes as well as a few 8-9 pound fish.  John Montana coined the term "apex athletes" for Carp that are 16-18 pounds.  It's perfect.  Pound for pound they are the best.  A fish that is over 20 pounds makes a great picture but I swear a 22 pound fish doesn't usually fight as well as a 17 pound fish.

There was no dropping flies today; it was all casting, just how I like it.  I had to sit down on a log a few times and rest but I fished all of this particular piece of water.  It is a hell of a lot of walking.  I won't be able to do it someday.  For now, I am extremely grateful for the opportunity.

This fish weighed 17 1/2 pounds.  In the end what I really remember is that I saw him take the fly, I set the hook, and he put up a dogged, persistent fight--truly an apex athlete.

I had the video camera on for some of my casts and I got a few takes recorded.