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Thursday, November 28, 2019

Fly Fishing, Being Thankful, and Gratitude ~ 11/28/2019

This won't be the typical blog post of a fishing report, a fly pattern, or notes from a trip from me today. Gonna be freestyle, something that I'm very familiar with. I'm taking a suggestion from long time native Northern Californian fly angler/guide/artist Hogan Brown and just share something totally different, AND my special friend from Arvada, Co who has the most inspiring posts on social media platforms - The Cat! Today I write about thoughts of the past, present and the future. Just random flashes of thoughts, the ones that keep me up at night, or wake me up in the morning - The good ones. Like, do you realize I get to fish with Hogan this spring on a scheduled payed trip to Lake Oroville for bass, a lake I lived right up the hill from growing up in Paradise. My dad was a master on that lake, and I was lucky enough to have him take me fishing there when I was very young. Funny thing is, back then, there were no bass. We fished for rainbows, browns, and Cohos. Lime Saddle Marina, the arms of the North Fork and West Branch Feather, Goat Ranch, Parish Cove, and Brown's Cove just to name a few. By the way, click on the orange highlighted wording for external links to those subjects.

It's Thanksgiving, I'm alone today, and that's just fine. I've been looking forward to being holed up during a big storm where I can work on upcoming articles for publication. This winter I will be writing at least a half dozen articles on various subjects that  publisher Richard Anderson of California Fly Fisher can use throughout the year. I do my best writing during stormy weather with rain pelting off the windows, or dense falling snow swirling around with powerful winds that scream and whistle. I love the power of Mother Nature, and it's always good to have our asses kicked by her now and then. So yeah, it's Thanksgiving, and I'm thankful for the life I've lived so far from the highs of being an action sports pioneer, fly fishing in the good old days, and the adventures of mountains from climbing technical granite walls to ascending monoliths of snow hoping to reach the summit - and the lows of the shittiest cards ever thrown my way that either teach me lessons, or continue to haunt me and effect my perception of reality. Yeah, we all receive some of those bad cards from the dealer of life, unfortunately some of us lose at the game of life with those bad cards, while others handle them better, and keep our heads above water. I won't be drowning anytime soon, that's for damn sure, so don't worry about me, but I'm thankful for all of your support - It makes a huge difference and keeps me motivated to keep on doing good things.

Down time and tying. Winter time is my tying time. Sessions. Not just banging out patterns all the time, but really looking over the huge amount of materials I have which spawn new ideas, or remind me of old ones. Like the vast supply I bought from Jay Fair when he lived off West street in Portola some 20 plus years ago. I cherish those older materials from Jay because you cannot even buy them anymore. Chick-A-Bou, the feathers from around a chicken's ass. You cant buy that anymore with the creative custom colors that Jay came up with. When his materials company sold, the colors of his products changed, in my opinion those colors changed because the passion and knowledge from Jay was lost. Yeah I get it, some of the ingredients and suppliers of  the stuff have run out, and it is what it is. Another aspect of slowing down at the tying bench is making custom dubbing blends. For example I ran out of my olive blend which I use for all sorts of nymphs and dries, so I mixed another batch yesterday which is a combination of a natural and synthetic base, mixed with some of the real Gary LaFontaine antron and Jay Fair glister (sparkle dubbing). When you create fly patterns using totally different materials than the main stream fly shop crap, your catch rate will increase. Like when bead heads first came out in the mid 90's. Man, I caught so many nice quality fish with those golden balls of plenty. One trip on the McCloud river that first year of using them was ridiculous. I could do wrong. I offered them to some of my old school mentors and they put their hand out in the fashion of a street traffic cop and simply said "No thanks....LOL"

Gratitude: /ˈɡradəˌt(y)o͞od/ noun - the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness. The older I age, the more I'm thankful for and really realize just how lucky I've been to do so many things in life so far. So many, it seems almost impossible to me. I've lived the lives of 10 people so far, and I'm far from being done. I've also learned to appreciate the knowledge from many of my older peers, men and women with life skills that teach me to understand just how life works, and why. Hats off to those fellow board members of the Truckee River TU Chapter Board of Directors and my fellow club members of the Tahoe Truckee Fly Fishers - Your insights, support, and appreciation for what I bring to the table does not go unnoticed. A big part of gratitude is to return kindness. A good example would be when I was on the Yampa River during my vacation in Colorado last September when I stopped fishing to help a complete Nube with his rig (supplied everything for the dude, leader, tippet, flies, indicator - the works), then showed him how to make the proper presentation, which minutes later landed him the biggest trout he ever caught in his life. That's what it's all about right there. I love to help others, so much that other guides feel I give away too much information. Tough shit. My dad did the same, it's the legacy he left me, and I will continue to share all things fly fishing and help others until I leave this earth.

I had a great time on my So Cal Presentation Tour. You know... this time on my second tour was a lot easier, I knew what I was in for. The logistics of it all, the fast pace, hopping from one town to the next. I'm thankful for the nice lodging provided by the clubs, and the patience it took for a little slow paced mountain troll like myself to cope with the traffic. During my tour, most of the program directors where very concerned if I was on time, and if everything was ok. Things like, do you have the right equipment? Are you sure you're going to be there? Just the details of such that can mean complete failure or stardom. I take my presentations very seriously and my programs are meticulously put together with so much detail and information I could make three programs out of just the one. I'm currently revamping three of my power point programs, Eagle Lake, Lake Davis, and Frenchman Lake for the Northern Sierra Stillwater Seminar hosted by Delta Fly Fishers this coming December 7th in Lodi, Ca. For example I'm totally redoing the mapping with the Eagle Lake program including animation and graphics on key access areas to SOME of the major buckets. This involves many hours of physical work with raw graphics from scratch. When club members sit in the audience to watch the show, they don't see that, and think I'm being payed too much for my time (hey, I'm a lot cheaper than the so called expert presenters out there). The latest from some of the fly clubs in Northern California is that they do not want to pay for speakers anymore and just pay expenses due to a few guides with shitty ass programs who over charged them (thanks pals...). I don't work for free...Do you expect your attorney to work for free, or your plumber? Yeah, I didn't think so. Either way, I enjoy sharing my knowledge on fly fishing and entertaining the crowd. It's what I do.

"The Umpire Run", Little Truckee River. 

I got a lot on the table for this month, one of which is filing my actual use reports to the United States Forest Service for my three permits in the Plumas, Lassen, and Tahoe National forests which includes my 2020 operation plans for each forest. In case you didn't know, when you have a forest service permit you can't just go anywhere in the forest and guide. You have to list those areas and provide detailed mapping of those areas. Guides who work for a shop or a booking agent have it easy, everything is done for them, all they have to do is prep for the day, then meet Mr. Jones and bang out the trip. Being an independent guide, I do it all from website maintenance, this blog, booking trips, the permitting and the details of such, presentations, trade shows, writing articles, advertising, social media platforms, fly club programs, conservation issues, and filling the big shoes of being a positive ambassador for fly fishing. It's a lot of work, but I love every minute of it, and for that, I'm truly thankful for on this Thanksgiving day.

See you on my winter home water, the Lower Yuba River...

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Stillwaters of the Northern Sierra Seminar ~ 12/7/2019

Looking for more knowledge on the classic stillwaters of the Northern Sierra? Look no further as Delta Fly Fishers will be having a seminar on Lake Davis, Eagle Lake, and Frenchman Lake on 12/7/2019. I'm humbled and honored to be chosen to lead this informative seminar on these special stillwaters that have greatly effected my life and outlook on fly fishing. My main focus these days is to share the knowledge so other fly anglers can experience the same joy that was past down to me by my own father, and the iconic stillwater master Jay Fair. You'll gain a more thorough understanding through my PowerPoint presentations that are a collection of my decades long experiences fishing and guiding these lakes. This event will take place at St. Paul's Lutheran church in Lodi, Ca and it will be an all day event with many different activities. I will be presenting two programs "Lake Davis & Frenchmans Lake", and also "Fly Fishing Eagle Lake" with topics like flies, rigging, leader formulas, access areas, the best fishing locations, best times of year, hatches, mapping, and the current state of each body of water! I'll also lead some tying classes where we will spin up the classic patterns from myself and Jay Fair that are proven and still effective to this day. I'll also show you hands on rigging of specialized leaders for any situation you may encounter of the water. 

You'll learn the intricate details of Eagle Lake and the fascinating history on the ancient super trout that is a hybrid of the native Feather River Rainbow, and the Pilot Peak Cutthroat that inhabits Pyramid Lake in Nevada. Unknown hatches like the zoo plankton "Diaptomus", and the "Creeping Mormon Water Beetle" will be revealed".

Techniques for the famed Damselfly hatch at Lake Davis will be shared as well as how to approach the "Fall Grab". Learn about the different seasons at the lake and how the trout's behavior and location changes throughout the year.

Secrets from the "Little Desert Lake", Frenchman reservoir, and how similar it is to Lake Davis, and also how different it can be. From minnow eaters to profuse Chironomid hatches and the locations that provide the best fishing.

Two presentations, hands on tying and rigging leaders, morning coffee and snacks, lunch, materials for tying the featured flies, handouts, door prizes, and a raffle at the day's end all for $25! This event is open to the public, but limited to 40 people. To sign up and reserve your spot online, go HERE  Need more information? contact Jerry Neuberger at gneuberg@gmail.com. Special thanks to the Delta Fly Fishers for giving me this opportunity to share, educate, and spread my passion for these timeless stillwaters. I hope to see you there!


Friday, November 15, 2019

Baiocchi's Troutfitters 2020 Workshop, Clinic, and Tour Schedule

Listed below is the tentative schedule for special instructional events like workshops, clinics, and tours in 2020. I will be adding more dates as we get into the prime time of the season, that's often the case as the response from eager participants is often overwhelming. Each event is geared towards a detailed technique, hatch, or body of water where the main goal is to see anglers progress in their skill set, and to gain knowledge. From dry fly techniques, the skwala hatch, streamer tactics, high water, tight lining, creeks of the Lost Sierra, to Native Sons Tours with the Da Dean of guides Frank Pisciotta, you can be assured you will be receiving the very best from our decades of fly fishing on our Native Northern California waters and beyond with our hosted trips.

For specific details for each event and to sign up, go to my "news" page on my website HERE. We are looking forward to sharing the knowledge with you and promoting healthy fly fishing! 

Baiocchi's Troutfitters 2020 Special Events Calendar

1/11- Dry Fly Workshop, Yuba River.
1/25 - Lost Coast Outfitters Dry Fly Workshop, Yuba River.
2/12 - Skwala Workshop, Yuba River.
2/15 - Lost Coast Outfitters Skwala Workshop, Yuba River.
2/27 - Dry Fly Workshop, Yuba River.
3/14 - Lost Coast Outfitters Dry Fly Workshop, Yuba River.
4/25 - Lost Coast Outfitters High Water Clinic, Truckee River.
5/2 - Streamer Workshop, Truckee River.
5/16 - High Water Clinic, Truckee River.
5/23 - Tight Line Workshop, Truckee River.
6/6 - NST Middle Fork Feather Tour.
6/27 - Lost Sierra Creek Tour, Graeagle, Ca.
6/28 - Lost Coast Outfitters Bug Class, North Fork Yuba.
7/11 - Lost Coast Outfitters Fly Fishing 101, NFYR.
7/18 - Lost Sierra Creek Tour, Graeagle, Ca.
7/24 & 25 - Native Sons Tour, Big & Little Truckee Rivers.
8/1 - Lost Coast Outfitters Fly Fishing 101, NFYR.
8/14 & 15 - Native Sons Tour, Big & Little Truckee Rivers.
8/22 - Lost Coast Outfitters Fly Fishing 101, NFYR.
9/7 to 9/11 - Colorado Hosted Trip.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Busman's Holiday ~ Trinity River 2019

Busman's Holiday: A vacation or form of recreation that involves doing the same thing that one does at work. Except on this trip I was the guest for two days of guided fishing on the Trinity River. Joined by my long time buddy @shogun_of_denver, we had the odds stacked against us. Bright warm sunny weather, low clear flows, and not many fish in the system due to the tribe opening up the weir downstream a month late (politics). None of these factors could deter my annual trip to such a beautiful classic Northern California watershed, besides we're chasing steelhead, the unicorn of freshwater fish. 

On Day 1 we floated the lower river, a little more water down there, but still pretty much bone dog flows. Fishing pressure was extremely light and there were very few steelhead to be seen. We boated some Halfers and Tweeners, and a few adults came unbuttoned. The weather was absolutely gorgeous, not a puff of wind either. Warm in the sunshine, and in the shade, much cooler. 

On Day 2 we floated the upper river launching from Indian Creek Lodge (best place to stay and eat in the area) and were into fish right away. It seemed for most of the float that this section had the most salmon and steelhead, but conditions change daily on where the fish hold on the Trinity. Here to today, gone tomorrow, and always on the move. More bent rods than the day before, including 4 adults, but just could not get them to the net. Oh well, this is my vacation, easy come, easy go. Go to flies that produced were big dark rubber leg stones, and eggs. I might add there was zero fishing pressure, we did not see another angler all day. 

All in all, a great trip. Bent rods, I went for a swim, a phone went for a swim, and all was recovered. We can laugh about all that now. The one thing I left with is just how amazing and beautiful the Trinity River is. I sure hope in the next decade that future restoration projects will have more thought put into them, and the politics with the tribe can be smoothed out for the benefit of everyone. I'm no stranger when it comes to such as I watched my own father wage a 40 year war against all odds for the better of all watersheds in California, putting the habitat, the fish, and the entire ecosystem first. At least now NGO's, state and federal agencies, and the general public are working together. That's much better than the dog and pony show and back door deals from the good 'ol boys that occurred decades ago. There is hope.

Special thanks to Brian Clemens of Nor Cal Fly Guides for another great trip. This guy works much harder than most, and sets the bar extremely high for what a guide should bring to the table. Honest, reliable, and just a fun dude to be with on a river. Until next time, may the skies open up and drop some rain on our parched Northern California landscape. Good luck out there steelheaders!

Friday, November 1, 2019

So Cal Fly Fishing Presentation Tour ~ November 12th - 21st, 2019

I will appearing in the Southern California area November 12th to the 21st for the "7 Club" Presentation tour. My program will be "Mastering the Dry Fly ~ A Visual Experience". I'm honored and humbled to be invited down again as my last tour in So Cal was in 2015, which was a lot of fun sharing the knowledge! The dry fly program was created for numerous fly clubs looking for a more technical program on fishing the dry fly. “Mastering the Dry Fly” entails a brief history of the dry fly and those anglers who were involved from the beginning, simple to complex presentations, understanding rise forms, approaching water structure, tips & tricks, and my favorite patterns for eager to educated trout. Beautiful images and new detailed animated slides provide the audience with clear and concise information for future endeavors on the water while dry fly fishing. This will be a program you do not want to miss!

Here is the schedule below. Please click on the links for meeting locations, times, and all the details. I hope see my So Cal followers there!

- 11/12, Conejo Valley Fly Fishers
- 11/13, Fly Fishers of Orange County
- 11/14, Pasadena Casting Club
- 11/18, Golden State Flycasters
- 11/19, Wilderness Fly Fishers
- 11/20, Sespe Fly Fishers
- 11/21, Sierra Pacific FlyFishers

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