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The Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Podcast

Produced by The Orvis Company and hosted by Tom Rosenbauer, author of The Orvis Fly Fishing Guide, this podcast will provide you with tips on how to get the most of your time on the water. Read more about Orvis at www.orvis.com/podcast.

In this week’s podcast, we continue our series on steelhead fishing by going into even more detail on demystifying the terms used in two-handed casting, when to use a Spey or a switch rod, and lots of detail on lines for two-handed rods, because it is a whole new world with new vocabulary.  But take heart—Jason Cotta, fishing manager of Orvis Bellevue, walks us through the details and explains them very clearly.  He also gives some solid tips for the novice steelhead angler.  In The Fly Box, we cover dealing with road kill squirrel’s tail, small stream rods, saltwater fly lines, difficult albies in shallow water, fly pattern trademarks and royalties, fish leverage on various types of hooks, the life of nylon tippet, bobber alternatives, and the effects of drought on small stream trout populations.

Direct download: More_on_Steelhead_and_Demystifying_Two-Handed_Casting_with_Jason_Cotta_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:05pm EST

This week I have an interview with Frank Willets of Pere Marquette River Lodge on Michigan steelhead fishing.  Frank grew up fishing in Michigan and knows the ins and outs of Great Lakes steelheading intimately.  I know you’ll pick up some tips and this one is sure to be controversial because on the PM they use the chuck & duck method quite often and make no bones about it (they also swing flies in the traditional manner).  We’ll also answer questions on why you seldom see hatches, how to play steelhead, pre-treatments for dry flies, “must fish” rivers for swinging flies, two-handed rods for the Florida surf, streamers in low water, what part of a deer hide to save, and other bizarre questions only a fly fisher could love.

Direct download: Willets.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:49am EST

For this week’s podcast we have an interview with author, guide, fly designer, and master steelheader Greg Senyo, who grew up in the Steelhead Alley region and knows it intimately.  If you are heading to Lake Erie this year, or to any of the Great Lakes tributaries, you’ll find some solid tips on how to have more fun.  In the Fly Box this week we talk about “dry fly nirvana”, where to go on a Rocky Mountain trout trip (I don’t give any recommendations and I say why I don’t), how to catch suckers and carp in a trout stream, tying flies with silk, keeping your pant legs down when wearing waders, why expensive sunglasses are worth it, tips on tying Glo Bugs, the benefits of micro jig hooks, and why dry flies sometime twist your tippet.

Direct download: Steelhead_Alley_with_Greg_Senyo.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:04pm EST

This week’s podcast is worth listening to, just for the entertainment value of hearing a listener say he doesn’t listen to many of the podcasts because I “speak too slowly as if you are a grade school teacher teaching remedial students”  and that “Words or ideas that are so basically common knowledge of this sport need no explanation.  For example, if one of your listeners doesn’t know what a tippet is, they should look it up elsewhere and not waste the other listeners’ time with a long, slooow, and overdrawn explanation”  So take that, you dummies!  Use Google and don’t bother me with your basic questions.  Are you bothered by this?  Or do you have a different opinion?  If so, please listen to the podcast and then come back to this post to air your comments.  If I’m boring you I want to hear about it.

Oh, yeah, and my long overdrawn explanations this week cover right-angle nymph rigs, rotary vises, lines for bonefish, year class dominance in trout, why there is no magic fly for a hatch, tying the Surf Candy, and much more.  And the main event is an interview with Adam MacNamara, manager of the Orvis retail store in Portland Oregon and longtime steelhead angler and guide.  And you’ll never guess what we talk about…

Direct download: Steelhead_Tips_with_Adam_MacNamara.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:54pm EST

This week the main event is a chat with John Herzer, owner of Blackfoot River Outfitters and one of the savviest anglers and guides I know.  John talks about late fall and winter fishing in the Missoula area, although the solid tips he gives would work anywhere in the world when you encounter colder conditions.  Also in the Fly Box we discuss wet flies vs. nymphs and when to use them, single-handed steelhead rods that also work for bass and salt water, night fishing for rainbow trout (don’t), native fish species, and my brilliant career picking flies out of carpets.

 

Direct download: Fly-Fishing_in_Colder_Conditions_with_John_Herzer.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:11am EST

This week we had lots of great questions in the Fly Box because I have not done a podcast in a few weeks—so there were lots of good ones in my inbox.  We talk about using the Non-Slip Mono Loop knot for fresh water, tippet rings, tough rising fish, Depth Charge Lines, fly boxes for big dries, click-and pawl reels for trout, up vs. down vs. ring eyes for fly hooks—plus two great suggestions from listeners:  one on casting fatigue and the other on a very innovative way to dry CDC flies.

And in the main event, casting instructor extraordinaire Pete Kutzer and I try to simplify Spey casting and lines for two-handed rods.  I am not sure we simplified it much but hopefully it will answer some of your questions.

Direct download: Spey_Casting_Made_Easy_kind_of.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:41am EST

 

In the podcast this week, I have the pleasure of interviewing my old friend and co-worker Bill Reed on stillwater trout fishing.  We get requests for stillwater podcasts regularly but honestly I’m not very good at stillwater  trout fishing and just don’t do it enough.  Bill gives us his 8 tips for stillwater fishing, and whether you are an expert at this discipline or just thinking about it, you’ll get many valuable tips.  Also on the Fly Box this week we ramble about night fishing, streamer fishing, how to organize your fly box, how to catch fall landlocked salmon, dry/dropper combinations, wire leaders, parachute hackles, and landing fish in the weeds.

Direct download: Stillwater_Tips_with_Bill_Reed.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:23pm EST

 

In this week’s podcast we talk to Chris Strainer, owner of Crosscurrents Fly Shop in Craig, Montana.  Chris fills us in on how to beat both the heat and the crowds on one of our most popular trout rivers, the Missouri.  He has some great tips on this, as well as suggestions for fall fishing opportunities when the crowds are gone and the weather is cooler. 

In the Fly Box we talk about mending with a dry fly, fishing emergers and wets upstream, prospecting with smaller flies, losing fish when they jump, protecting rubber legs on crab patterns, casting fatigue, big fish on light rods…and many other crazy topics.

Direct download: Lessons_from_the_Missouri.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:21pm EST

This week I give Ten Tips for Trout Anglers to Beat the Heat, I think a timely topic with the weather we have had lately.  In the Fly Box, we also talk more about fly lines for bass, when to change a dropper fly if only one pattern is working, whether it is OK to harvest small brook trout for lunch, how to decide amongst the thousands of attractor patterns, best flies for perch, “RADD” (river ADD), how to practice for trout on your local panfish lake, and best rods for kayak fishing.

 

 

Direct download: Ten_Tips_to_Beat_the_Heat.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:59pm EST

 

This week I have the pleasure of interviewing our CEO Perk Perkins, who as you know if you listen to the podcasts is a big leader and tippet geek.  He also has strong opinions on floating trout lines, and in the podcast he talks about why he loves textured lines and what taper he prefers and why.  Also in the fly box we discuss upstream and downstream mends, what happens during a crazy olive hatch, slack line under your rod tip, setting the hook too aggressively, fishing saltwater flies for trout, and lots of other good questions.

Direct download: Perk_Perkins_on_Fly_Lines.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:56pm EST

This week my guest is one of our top warmwater fly fishing experts.  You probably know of Kip Vieth as a muskie guide, as he is one of the most famous fly-rod muskie anglers.  But his first love is smallmouth bass, and it’s fascinating that his location is the most famous river in the United States, the Mississippi River.  He fishes the upper river where the water is clear and the location is unspoiled by the endless development we think of when we imagine the Mississippi.  As well as discovering his unique part of the world, you’ll also pick up many tips on catching smallmouth bass anywhere.

In the Fly Box section I try to answer some questions on targetting carp,, alternatives to wire when fishing for muskie, using flies with a spin rod, my "method" when approaching a river, and more.

Direct download: Kip.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:00am EST

 

This week we’ll travel to the Low Country of South Carolina to interview Captain Tuck Scott, who is a master at finding redfish along the South Carolina coast.  In addition, historic Beaufort sounds like an amazing place for a family vacation, so this one might be a trip to plan where fishing is only part of the plan.  Tuck gives us plenty of intelligence on finding and catching redfish in the Low Country, and also some special redfish tips that will work anywhere.  In the Fly Box this week we talk about missed fish on downstream wet flies, fish chasing streamers but not connecting, organizing fly-tying materials, the benefits of hiring a guide, and tips for fishing scuds on spring creeks.

Direct download: Finding_and_Catching_Redfish_with_Captain_Tuck_Scott.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:19am EST

Last week we were fortunate to have Daniel Galhardo, owner of Tenkara USA visit our office and he had a few minutes to stop by for a podcast interview.  In this week’s discussion, he talks about what he has learned since his original podcast with us, especially about fly patterns and the rationale for using a single fly.  He also talks about—gasp—fishing a huge streamer from Shawn Combs’ drift boat with his Tenkara rod.  So much for being a purist.

 

Even if you are not interested in Tenkara fishing you will probably find something of interest in this week’s podcast.  We tackle questions about rinsing gear after saltwater use, how much backing to put on a reel with a sinking line, the use of stinger hooks on saltwater flies, fishing lake-run browns and steelhead in the Great Lakes in estuaries, whether metal studs spook trout, and a great tip from a listener for cleaning your fly tying bench.

Direct download: Return_of_the_Tenkara_Master.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:26am EST

 

In this week’s podcast, we were fortunate to have Bob Irvin, president and CEO of American Rivers, in town for a visit.  Bob and I got to chat about their “10 Most Endangered Rivers” list for this year, and he goes into detail on the ones most important to fly anglers.  If you care about moving water, this is a must-listen.  Also, in the Fly Box this week, questions range from whether switch lines spook fish, whether to go back to the head of a pool after catching a big rainbow there, whether it is ethical to remove streamside brush in small streams, how to pick the right glass rod, and how to tell if your local river holds big fish.

Direct download: The_Ten_Most_Endangered_Rivers_of_2015.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:33pm EST

 

On this week’s podcast Patrick Fulkrod, the 2014 Orvis-Endorsed Guide of the Year, gives us a very full accounting of fly fishing on the east Tennessee tailwaters, specifically the Watauga and South Holston rivers.  He spills some of his secrets on hatches, seasons, water levels, and special techniques.  In the Fly Box, we have questions on trimming hackle for dry flies, hackles to use on saltwater flies, how to set the hook on downstream fish, what to do on an unfamiliar river, crane fly larvae, how to fish nymphs for cutthroats in over 15 feet of water in a river (my advice—don’t), and finally how you can lose weight and get in better shape by listening to the podcast.


 

This week I have been asked to narrow my fly selection to three nymphs, dries, emergers, and streamers with one hand tied behind my back because the guy who wrote the question said I couldn’t use any of the old standbys (and he even specified them, most of which I would have picked).  So I dug deep and also asked my fishing buddy and co-worker Bill Reed to come in and discuss his favorites to see how our lists match.  Also in the fly box this week are questions about spotting fish in the water, how to keep a trout on the line once you have hooked it, how to spend $1500 wisely after your first year of fly fishing, and fly line color.  In addition, we have a couple great letters from listeners offering suggestions on eye safety and fishing the UK chalk streams on a budget.

Direct download: Bill__Toms_Excellent_Fly_Lists.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:00pm EST

Every now and then, when Tom is too busy fishing to get into the studio, we release one of his more popular shows. Here is a great one he recorded on May 28,2013,

In this episode we explore the topic of whether you should fish upstream or down, not only what direction you should move but also which way you present your fly.  The podcast will tell you exactly which direction to fish every time you go out by using a simple formula (just kidding—did you really think it would be that easy?) 

In the fly box we answer questions about setting the hook (again), what length rod to use (again), adding tippets to knotless leaders (again), what to do about minnows sinking your dry flies (aha!  A new one and a fun one, too), and how to improve your roll cast by using a different line.  I keep answering those repeated topics because it seems they are universal questions and sometimes a different question or slant on a question may make it more clear to listeners.  Have fun!

Direct download: Best_of_Tom-_Upstream_or_down.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:29am EST

This week we are including the most recent episode  of the Orvis Hunting and Shooting Podcast with Reid Bryant. If you enjoy the show, please go to orvis.com/podcast and subscribe.

In this episode, Reid interviews fomer Orvis gun smith, John Skinner on the age-aold controversy of side-by-side vs. over-under shotguns.  He interviews John Skinner, former Orvis Head Gunsmith and Shooting instructor.  He relays the nuances of one format versus another and goes into some of the history as well.

Direct download: Over-Unders_vs_Side-by-SIdes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:16pm EST

Tom interviews his boss, Orvis CEO Perk Perkins on leaders. Don't let the CEO title fool you, the guy knows his stuff.

Would you like to be on the show? Tom tells you how to win a new contest and be one of our next guests.

Also, Tom answers lots of your questions in the Fly Box.

Direct download: Our_Leader_on_Leaders.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:01am EST

 

This week I have a long and fascinating interview with Mike Schmidt, designer of such giant trout streamers as the Junkyard Dog.  He gives up his secrets on when to fish a giant streamer (and when not to), what techniques he uses, and also some tips on tying these flies and why he designs them the way he does.  I don’t think I have learned so much in a podcast in a long time and I hope you find it as inspiring and interesting as I need.  I am ready to charge out there with some giant streamers right away.  In the Fly Box this week, we range from catching smallmouth bass in clear lakes to catching stocked trout and channel catfish in Houston, how to get more involved in the fly-fishing industry, whether or not wings are necessary on a dry fly, and much more.

Direct download: The_Ultimate_Streamer_Episode_until_our_next_one_with_Mike_Schmidt.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:35pm EST

This week I interview my old friend Kirk Deeter about Trout Unlimited’s Lifetime membership.  This is a great gift for yourself or for a special person in your life (people often gift these to their kids for a special occasion) and this year the thank-you for the lifetime membership is a special Orvis Helios 2 Rod and limited-run CFO reel in Trout Unlimited’s green color.  You can see how this rod was built in the video of our rod shop here: https://vimeo.com/116177056

 

Kirk and I do talk some fishing, and there is lots more in The Fly Box.  Questions about the value of emergers, chest packs vs. waist packs vs. sling bags vs. vests, realistic vs. impressionistic flies, and the value of UV materials in fly tying are just some of the quick topics we cover.

Direct download: A_Lifetime_of_Trout.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 6:53pm EST

 

In this week’s podcast, we continue our series on fly tying with an interview with a man sometimes known as The King of Swing for his steelheading skills, but he also has been called Lord of the Flies.  Shawn Brillon is in charge of flies and fly tying materials at Orvis, and as a result he has his pulse on what is going on in the wild world of making bugs on hooks.  Our topic this week is natural vs. synthetic materials—when you want one or the other, which ones Shawn and I can’t live (or at least tie) without), and the future of fly-tying materials.  In The Fly Box this week, we answer questions on the best rod for smallmouth bass, how to prospect unknown waters in the spring, whether older fly fishing tackle puts you at any disadvantage, non-toxic wire as a substitute for lead, uses for antelope hair, and a great reader suggestion to add to my list of “10 Things I Wish I had Known When I Started Fly Tying” from last week.

Direct download: The_Lord_of_the_Flies_Returns.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 12:45pm EST

 

On the podcast this week I am all by myself--it's a topic I've been asked to address before and didn't require a special guest.  It's entitled "10 Things I Wish I had Known About Fly Tying when I Started", and although fly tying is a never-ending journey, I thought I would share some thoughts with listeners with the hope they will pick up on these tips, tricks, and materials quicker than I did--although some of them were not even around when I started tying almost 50 years ago!  Also in The Fly Box this week we talk about the "X" system for describing hook shank length, whether to crimp the barbs on saltwater hooks, strategies for filling fly boxes during the winter, when to let a dead fish float away, how to remove the smell of head cement from recently tied flies (a great listener suggestion!), and how to determine which side of a feather is the "shiny" side.

Direct download: 10_Things_I_Wish_I_had_Known_About_Fly-Tying_when_I_Started.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:33pm EST

 

This week I ramble a bit with fly tying expert Tim Flagler, the hands and the voice behind those great Tightline Productions you enjoy every week.  We did intend to talk about material substitutions and we do, but we also go off topic here and there.  Also in this week’s Fly Box:  Does one spooked fish ruin an entire pool?  Can I start right out fly fishing in salt water with no other fishing experience?  How do I avoid a rat’s nest in the sink when cleaning my fly line? How to become a commercial fly tier.  Best materials for parachute wings.  And, finally, advice from an experienced commercial airline pilot on how to travel with fly tying materials without being pulled out of the security line.

Direct download: Fly-Tying_Tips_with_TIm_Flagler_of_Tightline_Productions.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:20am EST

 

In this week’s podcast, I interview Dan Frasier, noted fly-rod carp angler and writer, on tying flies for warm-water species.  But don’t miss it if you are not a fly tier because he also gives lots of tips for catching carp, largemouths, smallmouths, pike, walleye, and even gar on the fly.  And even if you don’t tie flies for warmwater species, he also offers great stuff on tying bigger baitfish and crayfish imitations in general.  In The Fly Box, we range from where to where to go on your honeymoon to recommendations for my favorite brand of stepladder to other questions I can answer like what small-stream trout do in the winter, how to treat your flies in the off-season, clamp vs. pedestal vises, and much more.

Direct download: Tying_Flies_for_Warm_Water.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 4:39pm EST

 

This week we celebrate our 5 millionth podcast download and what better way to celebrate than have my hero and mentor Hank Patterson as my guest?  As with all things Hank, you never know where you will end up so be prepared for this one!  On the serious side, this week in the podcast we talk about tips for tying the Adams, best rods for casting practice, whether or not you need a net to land trophy smallmouths, the pros and cons of UV-cure vs. two-part epoxy, and what to tell an outfitter if the guide he matches you up with is less than stellar.  Happy New Year!

Direct download: Tom_Interviews_Hank_Patterson.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:43pm EST

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