Archive for the ‘Books’ Category

Rick Kustich writes about Great Lakes Steelheading in Swing the Fly Magazine   2 comments

Check out Rick Kustich’s article in the latest issue of “Swing the Fly” magazine. He talks about autumn Steelheading in the Great Lakes region.


Click the Pic to go to the article - Copyright Rick Kustich/Swing the Fly

Click the Pic to go to the article – Copyright Rick Kustich/Swing the Fly


Rick’s book Advanced Fly Fishing for Great Lakes Steelhead is a great read as well.







Rich Osthoff Books on Nymphing   8 comments

I recently bought two books by Rich Osthoff, who lives in Mauston, Wisconsin. The books focus on long-line nymphing for trout when there’s “No Hatch to Match”, a common occurrence in our Driftless Region trout streams.


Active Nymphing by Rich Osthoff

Active Nymphing by Rich Osthoff


I’ll report back with insights learned from these books. And hopefully I’ll have plenty more stories of success catching fish as well.


Nymph Rigging - From "Active Nymphing" by Rich Osthoff

Nymph Rigging - From "Active Nymphing" by Rich Osthoff
 interview with John Gierach   Leave a comment

I’m a fan of John Gierach and his writing, and perhaps you are too. It’s probably worth your time, if you enjoy chasing trout (or bass or bluegills or any other fishy fish) to read some Gierach. You’ll enjoy it.

John Gierach

John Gierach

Below is a link to a recent interview of Gierach done by Trout Underground.

I found the discussion of fly fishing as an extreme sport interesting. It really isn’t an extreme sport, but I suppose that’s what sells these days, isn’t it? But then you’ve got this idea of trout fishing being so insanely intense with action that maybe you go home a little disappointed once in a while. And that’s not that good, is it?

Give the interview a read. Let me know what you think, if you want to.

Trout Underground interviews John Gierach

Gaylord Shanilec – Mayflies of the Driftless   Leave a comment

Wisconsin Author and Artist Gaylord Shanilec has done a guest post on The Biofresh Blog, a blog on the science, policy, and conservation of freshwater ecosystems. There’s a neat story about his interaction with University of Wisconsin entomologist Clarke Garry. Click on the BioFresh logo below to see the post.

BioFresh Project

BioFresh Project

Check out Shanilec’s blog “The River“. He lives near Stockholm, WI on the Mississippi River and has done some incredible art related to the animals and scenes that are common in the Driftless Region of Wisconsin.

Report from Pool Four

Why do fish jump?

I also encourage you to investigate his books and works, and his process of making art from wood engravings. His creativity, skill, and talents are self evident. What a wonderful treasure for Wisconsin!

Baetis sp 1. - Shanilec

Baetis sp 1. - Gaylord Shanilec

Muskie on the Fly at On The Creek   1 comment

Your favorite fly shop and mine, On The Creek in Cross Plains, will be hosting author and Muskie expert Robert Tomes this Tuesday night! Stop over from 6-8 to hear Robert discuss his secrets. Nick and Todd will have the door open for you. Bring refreshments, they’ll provide the snacks! See you there!

Dude, that's sick!

This could be you.

The Fisher of Small Streams   1 comment

Here is an excerpt from Trout Bum, by John Gierach, a book I’m currently enjoying. This excerpt caught my attention because I got a case of what John describes as “Big-Fish Syndrome” on opening weekend. Let me tell you, if I keep the attitude I had over the weekend going I am not going to enjoy my season to its fullest.

Get yourself a light rod, fish the small streams until you’re used to the scale of things, and then hook a 12- or 14-inch brook trout or a 15-inch cutt. Sooner or later it will happen. That fish will be breathtakingly large. You may panic and break him off.

I can guarantee that unless you happen to be a victim of the Big-Fish Syndrome. That’s a disease that affects people who have a mild character flaw anyway and who then fish Bristol Bay, the Big Horn, or some other water where the landing  of countless fish over 20 inches (that mystical number) “ruins” all lesser fishing for them. Don’t laugh; I’ve actually heard people claim that. When I was a boy in the Midwest, the same condition was known as “The Mopus”, in which the sufferer became filled with crap right up to his heart.

Though all fishermen have a thing for big trout, most are immune to the more virulent strains of the Syndrome. To those who aren’t, I can only say that catching average trout from average streams may be a lousy job, but someone has to do it.

12-Inch Flat Creek Cutthroat, Jackson, WY

12-Inch Flat Creek Cutthroat, Jackson, WY

Trout Camp   1 comment

Tom and I have started the thread of an idea.  A ‘trout camp’ that would involve finding a secluded spot in one of our state forests to back-country camp with our young boys in order to hasten the development of something the poet Gary Snyder might call ‘the practice of wild’.

The human species has been around for some 70,000 years and it’s only in the last 100 or so that we’ve begun drifting away from the activities that shape how we interact with our environment.  Speaking for myself, I can often feel displaced and anxious if I haven’t gotten out into the great wide open and let my legs take me where they may.  Usually into anywhere from 6 to 48 inches of cool running water.  I want my kids to understand that there are real things you can do to alleviate the white noise of everyday life!

Not speaking of exactly where, we won’t be offering any thoughts about an exact location, I thought it might be nice to hear of other fishermen experiences related to this activity. Anybody out there ever participate in something like this? If so, we’d love to hear a story or two.

Also, for those of a literary bent, I have recently uncovered a treasure trove of ‘fishing’ writing which keeps my river dreams richly running even when I’m not near the water.

A friend of mine passed on a signed copy of The Nail Knot by John Galligan, a Wisconsin native and dedicated fly-fisherman.  It’s the first in a series of works that John has written about a down and out trout-bum named ‘the Dog’ who can’t seem to help himself solving mysteries.  I highly recommend giving this one a try.  You’ll be sure to investigate the rest soon after.  They are all available through the local library.  The latest, The Wind Knot, is scheduled for release very soon.

If you have a taste for something more involved I can’t say enough nice things about Tom McGuane’s The Longest Silence a fishing memoir that gives you your favorite subject from a justly famous scribbler.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg of course but these are the works that I wanted to pass along.

Beyond the ‘trout camp’ idea maybe somebody else has read something that we might not have run into?   I’d be very excited to hear about that too.