Posts Tagged With: ghoti62

Quill Gordon Wears Steel-Toed Drinking Shoes

The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society has 100 members and 1 employee, which in itself could explain my desire for an occasional snootful. Sometimes, though, it seems the issue is not as much that I partake of volatile spirits from time to time but rather the company in which I do so. Why, just the other day, someone asked me, “Gil, why the heck do you hang out with that bunch of drunken ruffians?”

My interrogator was Dr. Calvin Butz, and the drunken ruffians in question were my friends Milt, Wally and Stinky, whose combined age is 274.

“Because I like old-timers, I guess. Why do you ask, Calvin?”

“Call me Cal. I think they are rude, offensive, and downright dangerous, that’s why.”

“They’re not so bad, Calvin. Come on, they’re old, give ’em a break. Besides, Wally’s pretty upset.”

“That may be, but he doesn’t have to take it out on me! What’s he so upset about, anyway?”

“Well, for starters, some Nazi shot a tank out from under him once. Need more?” Continue reading

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Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

The Fish are Easy

The members of the Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society are wonderful people, each and every one a shining example of virtue and sportsmanship. Go ahead; ask them yourself. They’ll tell you. It’s those other guys that are the problem.

I don’t think the trout of Fish in a Barrel Pond really give a carp one way or the other. All men are equal before trout, as the saying goes, so as another season of fishing comes to an end, with the slopes of Nonesuch Mountain bathed a gaudy, autumnal glow, I take a moment to reflect on the ways of both people and fish, circa 2012. Continue reading

Categories: Fly Fishing, nature, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Quill Gordon’s Obligatory One-Year-After-Irene Post

It was one year ago this week that Hurricane Irene was downgraded to a “mere” Tropical Storm and kicked Vermont’s ass anyway. Cowardly wench that she was, Irene didn’t stick around for what she had coming to her, and made it clear across the Atlantic before finally fizzling out somewhere over Europe, leaving us with nothing to do but try to pick up the pieces of our tiny, flood-ravaged state.

Photo by Victor Salvo

Repair and replacement of roads and bridges continues, though not nearly on the scale of the first few months, and here at Fish in a Barrel Pond we patched up what we hope is the last of Irene’s wrath just a few weeks ago.

The aftermath of Irene in this neck of the woods was covered in these pages for over a month and there is a tab at the top of this page that leads to a post with links to those stories, all neat and orderly, for a good look back at what she did to us. Most of the photos in those stories were taken by Victor Salvo, who in some circles is quite notorious. He is also an accomplished photographer and a good friend. He came to Vermont after Irene to help and to document what he saw as recovery efforts got underway. Take a look at the stories in A Project: In Vermont, After Irene. I think you’ll enjoy Vic’s work very much. You can also view some of his other work on his web site victorsalvo.com.

One year later it is obvious that, while amazing effort and incredible expense have been put forth, thanks to Tropical Storm Irene, some things will never be the same. Continue reading

Categories: Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Bamboopalooza, Part II: Fall River Rods “South Fork” Meets Your Grandfather’s Rod

There are some very nice bamboo fly rods being made today, by craftspeople every bit as talented and innovative as famous rod builders of the past, but one of the things that attracts many anglers to old, used, bamboo fly rods is that they are old and have been used. The workmanship of the builder ensures their durability, and many rods made as far back as the early 1900s, or even earlier, still see service today. Part of the fascination they hold is the thought that they have stories to tell. How could a rod that has been fished for 50 or 75 or even 100 years not have stories to tell?

Those old rods were once brand new and, like the anglers who cast them, they acquired their patina over time, little by little, cast by cast. Every outing adds another page to the story and this is one page near the beginning of one rod’s story.

The Outdoor Blogger Network teamed up with Fall River Rods, Montana Fly Company and RIO Products this spring to put together a rig consisting of an 8ft, 2-piece, 5wt “South Fork” bamboo rod, Madison reel, and double taper, floating line to be fished by 15 far-flung anglers over the course of the season. One of those 15 anglers will own the rod, reel, and line when all is said and done, along with an accompanying journal in which all 15 anglers will record their thoughts and experiences during their time with the rod. With a first season like that, the story of this brand new rod is off to a very good start.

My time with the Fall River Rods “South Fork” is over. I’ve written my journal entry and sent the whole shebang on its way to the next lucky angler on the list. It’s a great rod to fish with and a lot of fun to cast but, as I discovered, some of the best qualities of bamboo shine brightest away from the water.

Continue reading

Categories: Fly Fishing | Tags: , , , , , , , | 17 Comments

Bamboopalooza, Part 1: Fall River Flyrods “South Fork” is Not Your Grandfather’s Rod

The Outdoor Blogger Network announced on March 1st that Fall River Flyrods was building a custom bamboo rod to be fished by 15 anglers over the course of the season, with one of the 15 owning that rod when all was said and done. The lucky 15 were chosen at random from over 100 interested anglers, which worked out well for me because I am much better at random chance than well-developed skill.

Montana Fly Company provided a 5/6 wt Madison II reel, with a beautiful “River Rock” finish, and RIO Products chipped in with their Trout LT DT5F fly line to complete the outfit. I would like to thank Fall River Flyrods, Montana Fly Company and RIO Products for giving me and 14 other anglers the opportunity to play with this rig, and I would especially like to thank Joe and Rebecca for all the hard work and dedication they have put into making The Outdoor Blogger Network the great place it has become. Over 1000 Outdoor Bloggers, all connected together for your reading pleasure. Imagine that.

I would also like to point out that I have no connections with Fall River Fly Rods, Montana Fly Company, or RIO Products. Except for the chance to fish with this rod, reel, and line, I received nothing other than a great time, good memories, and a chance to connect with a wonderful bunch of outdoor bloggers.

Fall River Flyrods “South Fork”

There was a time when fly rods were made from glued strips of wood, such as ash and lancewood. Exceptionally long, and requiring two hands to cast, those rods were heavy and cumbersome. Rods made from split cane bamboo were shorter and lighter, bamboo was relatively plentiful, and in 1874, H.L. Leonard began making bamboo rods exclusively. A trade embargo on Chinese imports in 1950, along with the development of modern synthetic materials, pretty much ended large-scale bamboo rod production but a number of makers continue the tradition, producing custom rods that are not only beautiful but also make use of the best qualities of the long fibers of bamboo.

An entire generation or more has learned to fly fish using synthetics, and the trend has been toward lighter, faster rods, especially of graphite and boron, that load and have most of their power in the upper third of their length. Traditional bamboo rods are heavier, slower, and flex deeply, well into their lower third. Hand a bamboo rod to someone used to fishing rods made of modern materials and, at the very least, you will get a funny, puzzled look as they try to figure out what the heck just happened to their cast. Most will eventually catch on and settle into the rhythm of bamboo but they will more than likely say it is much too heavy and slow for them.

Jason Zicha, of Fall River Rods in Pocatello, Idaho, has created tapers for the rods he makes that more closely mimic the action of graphite, loading quickly and flexing toward the tip, like the “South Fork” model currently making its way around the country as part of a project put together by the Outdoor Blogger Network. Fifteen anglers will be giving this rod a workout (and a history) through the season and writing about it on their blogs, as well as adding their thoughts to the journal that is travelling with it. This is Part One of my experience with that rod. Continue reading

Categories: Fly Fishing, Product and Gear Reviews | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Trout Candy Eye Candy

I have no idea how many species (or genus, for that matter) of mayfly can be found on, in, and around Fish in a Barrel Pond, but only one gets anglers all aquiver like the Hex. Hexagenia limbata is one of the most geographically widespread mayflies in the United States and in addition to being huge (two inches long or more, including tails) they are known for emerging by the millions, in swarms so thick they show up on weather radar.

Around here, they emerge in numbers closer to the dozens, but a Hex hatch is a Hex hatch and I am constantly being asked if it is on.

A newly-emerged dun on the window is hard to miss and worth a closer look. Continue reading

Categories: Fly Fishing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 12 Comments

Something You Don’t See Every Day

While driving from camp to camp, gathering garbage and used linens yesterday morning, I saw what I believe to be an immature bald eagle in a dead tree down by the swamp and got out to take a couple of quick pictures.

Immature Bald Eagle

Eagles never look particularly happy about anything but this one seemed especially grumpy. It didn’t take long to figure out why.

Robin Attacking Eagle

It can’t be easy, trying to get a little rest with robins bouncing off the back of your head.

Categories: nature | Tags: , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

Having Fun or Not, Time Flies

WWQGD?

What Would Quill Gordon Do?

When the workday is through, and he has a choice, do you suppose he would choose A):

or B):

The correct answer, of course, is “B” but sometimes it is “C” which involves falling asleep in a large, comfortable recliner like normal people.

*********** 

Q & A

Question: “Quill, if I just give you some money will you take me out and show me how to fish this darn lake?”

Answer: “No.”

Question: “Quill, would you like to go fishing with me?”

Answer: “Oh, yes! That would be delightful.” Continue reading

Categories: Fly Fishing, nature | Tags: , , , , , | 15 Comments

Quill Gordon and the Nonesuch Mountain Howler

A strange sort of crazy settles in as winter comes to an end and spring begins. It is never a smooth transition, weatherwise or otherwise, and sometimes I think I’ve made it through the dark time without succumbing to a bad case of the Shack Nasties when it turns out I only repressed them.

The thaw came on early and strong this year, turning lake ice to slush and frozen dirt roads to pudding. The string of calm, sunny days felt like it would never end. Winter was done, or so I thought when, as I watched the ice disappear a month ago, a mosquito bit me hard, just below the right eyebrow. Being the first bite of the year, it promptly swelled to the size of a plum in celebration. Continue reading

Categories: +The Neverwas Nonesuch Angling Society, Humor, Rural Life | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

A Big Old Dose of Spring

At Town Meeting, back on the 6th, I was told Mud Season would begin on the 7th.

It did.

A protracted spell of unseasonable warmth made it even deeper and more tenacious than usual and, two and a half weeks later, it’s still not over. Entire dump truck loads of stone continue to disappear in the slop.

While several feet of saturated road bed thawed in the warm spring sun this week, the ice on the lake remained thick, but not to be trusted.

Continue reading

Categories: Humor, nature, Vermont | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

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