An efficient, tight line fly fishing technique utilizing rod, fixed line, and single fly developed on the mountain streams of Japan.

It’s 66 degrees in the mist covered mountains of a far away land of ancient traditions and mystery. A lone man wades upstream in crystal clear high mountain water with tenkara rod in hand.What is traditional Tenkara?

A lone man wades upstream in crystal clear high mountain water with tenkara rod in hand. He methodically scans the stream, moving with expert stealth, stalking his elusive goal.

There it is, a small eddy of water below a beach ball sized boulder in the center of the fast moving stream. He crouches low, kneeling in the cool water, and casts his fly with the precision of a modern sniper.

BAM! The strike is hard and fast as the trout devours the fly. Success at last.


As you have worked to develop your fly fishing skills you have learned a great many things. Some of these fly fishing basics include proper casting techniques, choosing the right fly, working on your presentation of that fly and reading the water for suitable fish habitats.

One of the most basic skills a fly fisherman must develop in order to be consistently successful is the ability to recognize fish feeding signs.

Your odds of catching fish will drastically improve if you locate fish that are feeding. The reason behind this is simple- feeding fish are more likely to attempt to eat your artificial fly!  Not only do you have to be able to recognize when fish are feeding, you also must learn to distinguish where in the water they are feeding and what specifically they are eating.

Let’s say that you can see movement on the surface of the stream, which tells you that the trout are actively feeding. You throw on a floating fly and present it perfectly to them, but they fail to take it. Why would the fish continue eating all around your fly but avoid taking it? The probable answer is because you are not recognizing where and what they are targeting. These skills are definitely fly fishing basics that you should take the time to learn!

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Currently there are over 700,000 Chinook that have passed Bonneville Dam and the run is expected to hit 800,000.

Steelhead on the other hand is below the 10 year goal with only a total 200,000 across Bonneville Dam with about 100,000 across The Dalles.

On one hand this is a success story for the Fall Chinook, granted the low number over the last 10 years but at what expense.

The Deschutes River is known for its superior steelhead summer steelhead run.

“With the development of hydroelectric projects, habitat degradation, interaction with hatchery fish and fisheries, these changes have caused declines in the wild portion of many salmonid populations (including steelhead) within the basin (national research council).

The decline in steelhead populations has led the National Marine Fisheries to list several steelhead on the Columbia and Snake as threatened or endangered according to the article “the migratory timing of Adult Summer-Run steelhead in the Columbia River over six Decades of Environmental Change.


Ask A Flyfishing Guide: Q&A With Fly Guide Whitney Gould

October 3, 2013

I don’t have the patience to tie my own flies, I don’t think I could ever be a guide for the same reasons. DD You are a leading guide and casting instructor. How did this happen? Timing, many hours of practice, luck and helpful mentors. Spey casting seems to have blown up in the last […]

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Fly For Fly Fishing: Tying Crab Flies

October 2, 2013

The real reason for this post was that now that I’m salty, or at least brackish, in my fly fishing pursuits, I figure I need to put some thought into tying saltwater flies.  I can tie a Clouser minnow, but that’s about it. Not a new revelation, but always good for a 2nd grade giggle…as […]

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The Minimalist Guide To the Popularity of Rainbow Trout

October 1, 2013

The greenish/gray back, spotted body, bright red gill plates, and the bright red stripe extending the length of the fishes body are where the rainbow trout gets it name, but this fishes popularity is about much more than this fishes beautiful coloration. Rainbow trout are known as a cold water fish that thrives in the […]

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9 Questions About Bonefishing You Were Afraid To Ask

September 30, 2013

The first time I heard about bonefishing I pictured a wishbone, underwater on the end of a fishing line. DD Today we’re doing the same for our favorite sport on the flats in the Bahamas – bonefishing! This post is meant for people who are new to bonefishing – if you’re already an expert you’re […]

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Fly Fishing Fall Trout Tactics

September 29, 2013

Summer days, summer nights are gone/ I know a place where there’s still something going on.   –Bob Dylan It’s happened, in Michigan at least.  There’s football on screens, hot cider in hands, the shrill whine of leaf blowers in the air. It’s around this time of year that the trutta army starts to splinter.  Some […]

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8 Ways To Design the Perfect Fly For Fly Fishing

September 25, 2013

Fly tying is something I do not have the patience for. I do not tie my own flies. There…I said it. DD When tying fly patterns, it’s very important that you try your best to incorporate several different elements of fly design to increase their effectiveness. No one knows with complete certainty what order or […]

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2 Things You Must Do When Casting Heavy Flies

September 24, 2013

Question: I have a problem casting big, heavy flies. I get lots of tailing loops and wind knots, and I worry about getting hit by the weighted projectile every time it comes by my head. What’s the secret? Answer: Heavy flies present casters with several troubling problems. We are all taught that good casting means […]

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