Close but ……..

Jay Nicholas Rockfish Cloousers.JPG
I wanted to share a photo of two flies I was fishing in the ocean one day this summer with Kevin on his Breaker Dory.

I was fishing two flies on the same leader, as I sometime will. and was missing fish after fish. Most of these were Pacific black rockfish.

At one point I pulled in my line and looked at my flies. This is what a fly tied with Steve Farrar’s Blend looks like when it has been chewed on and spit out by a fish (of any species).

I should note that the practice of fishing two flies is very dangerous, even if it is fun. I have had grief on occasion when hooking two giant lingcod. or when a salmon gets wound up in the two hooks and breaks the leader. I’m often tempted but only yield once in a while.

 

By the way, these are very effective Clousers.

May you have a day filled with only goodness.

Jay Nicholas – October 2017

Dave Stewart – “Steelhead Fly Fishing Interview with Jay Nicholas”

I’m baaaaaaaack!

Jay Nicholas steelhead interview by Dave Stewart

Here is Dave Stewart on the right asking the tough questions at my cabin last week.

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(Hey there, the image above is not the link to the interview, it is a screen shot of Dave’s most excellent website!)

Goodness where on earth has the time gone? So much has transpired since my last post that I’m a gonna spit out a flurry of posts (ha ha, maybe you are probably thinking) in the next few weeks.

For starters, here is a link to an audio interview recorded by my friend Dave Stewart.

Totally awesome topics in the interview indlude the following:

  • Why you shouldn’t start fly fishing for salmon
  • Tips on finding steelhead
  • Understanding spey lines (and how to avoid destroying the economy)
  • Rio Fly Lines has a cool app that helps you select a new spey line to match your rod (click here)
  • How the non slip uni knot will increase your time in the water (Click Here for a short video)
  • Jay’s Top Flies for steelhead fishing (summer and winter)
  • Fly tying magic and our caveman connection
  • Tying Atlantic salmon flies
  • How to create your own original fly patterns

Dave will soon post the video of the interview, but if you are fly tying and have your iPhone or computer nearby, you can listen along to this audio masterpiece just for fun.

My thanks to Dave for creating this small audio recording for the historical record.

Best to you all

Jay Nicholas – September 29 2017

 

 

Photo of the Day August 3rd

Jay Nicholas leaping Chinook salmon.

This is a screen shot taken from a go pro movie shot this season. You will need to look closely, but there is a chinook leaping off to the right side of the photo. Unfortunately this salmon was not attached to my fly line. Still, this is a nice memory of a day when fish were not shy to roll, but were entirely opposed to grab my fly. And yes, I cast my fly to this fish immediately, to no avail. Best wishes to you all

Jay Nicholas August 3, 2017

Donated Guide Trips to Support Salmon Fisher’s Journal Publication

Jay Nicholas smiling while swinging a Burkheimer.
That’s right. Several of my guide friends have generously offered to donate their on-water time to support publication of Salmon Fisher’s Journal. This is a rare opportunity to reserve a guided fly fishing trip with several of Oregon’s premier steelhead guides AND support the publication of my most ambitious writing endeavor.

Here is the list:
Jeff Hickman (Fish the Swing)
— one person, winter or spring as mutual schedules allow, location TBD

Jeff Coffey (Fair Flies)
— one person, Oregon mid coast, preferably October, TWO DAYS with overnight at the Nicholas cabin in Pacific City

Josh Linn (guide and employee at Royal Treatment Fly Shop)
— one person, Sandy/Clackamas, winter or spring as mutual schedules allow

Michael Gorman (michaelgormanflyfishing.com)
— one person, Siletz or Nestucca winter steelhead as mutual schedules allow

How to reserve one of these guided fishing trips?

Contact me at jaynicholas@comcast.net and indicate your interest in one of these trips. I will let you know if any are still available as well as means of payment.

My Kickstarter Campaign will wrap up at the end of this weekend, but this is an open offer that will remain open for a slightly longer window.

Call ASAP to book one of these trips with extraordinary angling guides who are donating their supporting my dream.

Thank you.

Jay Nicholas August 2, 2017

Urban Spring Chinook Fly Fishing

We dream of bright grabby salmon and steelhead in remote, wilderness settings.

Sometimes there are good fish close to home. Perhaps the salmon aren’t quite as large as we might prefer. Sometimes they are found in uncomfortable proximity to people who care little of our passion for clean air, clean water, and clean fish.

Beauty, like peace of mind, is to be found in surprising places, if we can find what we need where we are at the moment.

I have been blessed with good friendship and strong bright salmon, and for both I am grateful.

Jay Nicholas – July 2017

Pacific City Dory Launch and Fly Fishing for Rockfish

This is a very short video that records highlights from a recent (mid July) trip on my friend Kevin’s dory. Kevin, Rob, and I fly fished for Pacific black rockfish and had a very enjoyable day on the ocean out of Pacific City.

The video shows the process of dumping the dory off the trailer, a little of the fishing, and the run onto the beach at the end of the trip.

Several people have asked for video of the launching process, so I hope this helps people understand the what is involved when we launch into the surf. I note that the ocean was very calm on this day.

My best to you all.

Jay Nicholas July 22, 2017

Steelhead Simplicity — still strong in 2017

Jay Nicholas Jon Hazelet summer steelhead

Some ten years or so past, my friend Jon Hazelet taught a spey casting clinic on the Mckenzie River for the Caddis Fly Shop. As I spoke with Jon at the end of the day, I opened up one of my fly boxes and picked out a dozen or so of my favorite summer steelhead flies, several color varieties of the Steelhead Simplicity.

Yesterday, on July20, 2017, Jon sent me this photo and a short note.

“Just caught my first summer steelhead of 2017 ten minutes ago. Remember giving me 10 or so flies years ago after the first Caddis Fly Spey class I did? Thanks buddy for the good mojo!”

Thanks for your note Jon. You made me smile. The Steelhead Simplicity will be featured in Modern Steelhead Flies (Stackpole Books; Rob Russell and Jay Nicholas, due to be published in fall 2017) as an example of the humble roots  of the innovative and specialized range of steelhead flies that are being fished today across the range of the species.

The modern steelhead angler now has the opportunity to fish excellent patterns that had not even been imagined 50 years ago.

I still have a few, probably less than two dozen, of the flies that were in the box that held the flies I gave to Jon. I’m really-really happy that those flies are still producing.

My best to you all –

Jay Nicholas (21 July 2017

 

 

 

 

 

Salmon Fisher’s Journal is a go!

FlyFishingJournal_Social-Kickstarter_0003_4

Wow, thanks to 108 backers, we met our goal on the fifth day of the Salmon Journal Kickstarter Campaign. This means that we will be able to deliver the goods (books) early in 2018 if not sooner.

On behalf of our volunteer production team, I thank everyone who has already backed our work. The early achievement of our goal is both stunning and heartwarming to all of us.

But please don’t stop now!

A ton of the supporters who have backed out project to date are names that I don’t recognize, and this tells me that there are many friends and long time supporters, both within and without the community of dedicated fly fishers, who have not yet turned their attention to supporting publication of the Salmon Journal.

Achieving our goal has already assured that we will be able to deliver a great product, but by exceeding the goal, we might be able to 1) bump the delivery date, 2) double-down on the book’s specs, and 3) add a companion, soft-cover edition containing text and images that we cut to condense the original manuscript.

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So, on the dawn of day 8 of our 30 day Campaign, we are sitting at 104% of initial goal.

I’m asking for your help reaching out to people who haven’t acted to back us yet, or people who have not yet heard about the opportunity to back this project.

Finally and again, thank you all very much. Publishing the Salmon Fisher’s Journal in true “coffee table” style has been at the very forefront of all my book writing and publishing to date. I’ve saved the best for last. We’re where we need to be to deliver.

Securing more backers now is a delightful bonus that will up our game — and that will please everyone associated with the project. This is angling literature history. Thank you all for being part of the dream.

Jay Nicholas, July 15 2017

Salmon fishing with Jack Harrell June 2017

I had the opportunity to fish with my friend Jack Harrell nearly two weeks ago, and he kindly rowed me around the estuary looking for any signs of spring Chinook. Our evening was most pleasant and relaxed. Jack hooked a fine bright hatchery springer late in the day, and I rowed him over to shore where he beached the fish. Thank you Jack, for another great time on the water, sharing stories and making plans for the future. Thank you for your friendship.

Jay Nicholas
June 23, 2017 (posted on June 26)

 

Fly Fishing Baja with Gary Bulla 2017

Jay Nicholas Baja Dorado by JB

I just returned from a very enjoyable week fishing with Gary Bulla in Baja, La Ventana and Baja Joe’s to be more specific. Gary runs a great show for fly anglers of all skill levels and his panga captains are gentlemen as well as fly fishing mentors.

I put together a short clip of highlights from the week, of course I failed to record some of the hottest action during the week plus, I lost one of my cameras at the end of day 6 of the trip. Oh well, stuff happens don’t it?

I also posted a trip report with more photo images on the Oregon Fly Fishing Blog.

In short, I did not catch a rooster, but I came close. Really close. I was told that you can’t retrieve too fast for the dorado and roosters, but I now question that advice, as I’m pretty sure I pulled my fly away from both species at crucial moments when they were trying to chomp it.

Again, oh well.

Jay Nicholas with Gui in Baja

On day 6, our guide Fedilito cruised in near a buoy and threw a few ballyhoo to see if there were any dorado about. Well, there were three dorado ready to chase bait and they commenced to crash the surface, throwing water two feet in the air in the process.

This was my first week fishing for dorado and I had never seen fish of this size crashing around chasing bait. My angling companion for the day, Karen, commenced casting as I did. She is an experienced dorado fisher and kept her cool, but I was going nuts casting to the giant fish as it raced around in front of us. Of the three dorado we saw, two were very large and one was modest sized. We both cast and cast, Fedilito threw a few ballyhoo to keep the fish active, and  — oh my gosh — the biggest dorado was chasing my fly straight towards the boat as I was retrieving! I probably only had ten feet of fly line out of my tip-top when the dorado consumed my fly and turned away from the panga.

As usual, I shouted with excitement, just like a kid.

Game on.

I did not capture any of the excitement before hooking this big dorado, but it was much like the action of a few days earlier when I hooked a modest size dorado and managed to record that event on the Go Pro. I am pretty well captivated by the sight of brilliantly hued fish chasing bait and flies around in plain view. This sort of fishing excitement is something I could easily become addicted to. Oh my goodness.

Our panga captain Fedilito was as pleased as I was to have the big fish take the fly. It was a good 200 yards into my backing in a flash and jumping while I turned on the Go Pro. Fedilito cautioned me — grande dorado, no break.  This fish was a real prize to a young panga captain.

Here is the video clip. I hope you enjoy it. Better still, I hope you are able to go fishing down in Baja someday yourself. I never imagined that I would make the trip but thanks to my dear friends Gui and Jim, I decided to accept their invitation to join them and I booked a trip and a flight less than two weeks notice.

Sure glad that I did.

My best to you always. May your fishing and your world be good.

Jay Nicholas — May/June 2017