Sunday, July 22, 2012

Bill's first fish on a fly

By way of background: Bill Hodge is among that very small group of people I call "friend."  In fact, he and I go back some 40 years, when we lived near Buffalo State College, Buffalo, NY.   I'm pretty sure I went there, and I think he did, but I don't remember whether we graduated or not.  Wait, I know I didn't.  Don't know if Bill did or not.   Anyway, even back then (ca. 1972), we shared a disposition towards certain beverages from Scotland.

In case you're wondering, Bill is the one with the moustache.

Fast forward:  Bill has been a life-long gear fisherman, but since he started reading this blog, became mildly interested in the finer form of fishing, that which involves the fly.  He took the free Orvis half-day Fly Fishing 101 course at his local (that would be Buffalo) Orvis dealer, and took advantage of their generous discount to course-takers, purchasing their Clearwater outfit.  Lots of lawn casting apparently ensued.

Faster forward:  After several aborted efforts (usually due to me staying overlong in New Brunswick), Bill took the train to Albany where I picked him up for a few days stay here in Bennington, Vermont.   Point of trip:  take the Lund to Cossayuna Lake over in NY for some real fishing with the fly.  OK, popping bug.  Still fly fishing, though.

First thing I noticed was his reel was set to left hand retrieve, the way all good reels should be (heh heh, that'll raise some hackles).  Problem is, Bill's a lefty, so he needed right hand retrieve.  A simple enough operation on the Clearwater reel....IF you have the right fingernails.  We didn't.  So he coped with the issue.  (Note:  the guy at the Orvis shop in Buffalo, upon Bill's return, didn't have the right fingernails, either.  Fortunately, Orvis' cleaning lady did, and all became right with the world).

Once Bill began stopping his forward cast before the rod tip was touching the water, he was just booming his casts out there, and was popping that Sneaky Pete for all it was worth.  Eventually, the big reward...Bill's first fish on a fly:

Uh, well, actually, that's his second fish on a fly.  The first one didn't quite show up in the photo, if you know what I mean.

I think we both had a grand time both on the water, and just hanging out.  Although Bill has aged a little over the past 40 years.


  1. great piece of photo-journalism Gary - I liked it!

    take care, and by the way, you look like me with hair.

  2. I dont think his moustache or yours have changed other then the color of yours Gary. lol Now all you have to do is take him to the chi in sept for some real fishing. Great job Bill on getting into fly fishing.


  3. Great blog entry, Gary! Congrats to Bill and long live the 'staches!



  4. Gary, It's amazing, you look exactly the same today as you did in that earlier picture. What's your secret. Kenny

  5. Great read again Gary... I am more like your friend than I care to mention but all is good now that I have begun casting the fly more this last couple of years than I have in my life combined...

  6. Those are some dandy moustaches!!
    Great read Gary!