The very first post written on MichiganFly was published on Jan 9th, 2014 – 3 years ago today. That Michigan winter was especially brutal, temps that reached a high in the single digits for several days in a row and snow that was measured in feet instead of inches. Dan and I started this as a coping method as we searched for any crutch available to maintain the level mental sanity we both had. Luckily for us, jumping on the internet and acting like clowns worked to the degree that we didn’t have to resort to our final plan that involved tons of drugs and booze.
We decided at the time that we would operate the blog through the winter months, then bail out of it when time no longer permitted, usually signaled by the polar bears and penguins migrating back to more permanent arctic lands. So……..we’re back for the next couple of months. Who’s ready for Tuesday bananas?
2016 was a good year – they are all pretty damned good if you have a group of friends that you spend time with on the water. Here’s a the start of a brief recap:
Instead of typing some BS that nobody wants to read here, a video recap is probably better.
A few trout a few steelhead, nothing wrong with that. Then towards the latter half of spring, something happened that….that changed everything forever. In our circle a 20″ trout is usually referenced as a “good fish”, anything over 24″ becomes a “giant” and if you topple the 27″ mark, something that has been done once by Jeff (see his work at Fly Fish the Mitt) its legendary status.
Well, Dan (MichiganFly co-founder) didn’t just set a new bar this year, he took the old one, broke it and shoved it up everyone’s rears. Never in my lifetime did I expect to witness a 30″ resident brown trout being put into the net – but it happened.
The fish ate a fly of Dan’s own design – the Mitt Fiddle. Guess what bug got fished by everyone else a lot for the rest of the year?
Personally, I was on the struggle bus a bit streamer fishing this past spring. I had a number of opportunities at good fish maybe even a few giants in there – but usually I had my head up my ass and completely blew the chance. Definitely, something that will be addressed this year. I don’t know – is there some surgical procedure or something to remove craniums from rectums?
Rest of the year recap to come soon. Tune in tomorrow for the 1st Tuesday Bananas of the year!
January 9, 2017 | Categories: Flies, People, Reviews, River Conditions, Streamers, Tactics, Trip Report, Uncategorized | Tags: brown, brown trout, fly, fly fishing, fly tying, giant trout, michigan, Steelhead, streamer, streamer fishing, trout, trout fishing | Leave a comment
I met Dave Hise a number of years ago, I had wandered into the Grand Rapids Orvis shop completely new to fly tying and not knowing my head from my rear in regards to where to even start. Dave, sitting behind the counter was quick to greet me and offer his help. I don’t know why, but at the time it was some sort of embarrassment for me to admit I didn’t even know where to start when it came to spinning bugs – instead I started fumbling around the walls of slat board loaded with endless pegs of colorful materials that at the time I had no clue what their applications or purpose were.
I suppose that my lack of comfortability in accepting Dave’s offer to help was probably a result of my previous interactions with other fly shops. The monumental level of smugness and unhelpful attitude that I had experienced previously left me apprehensive to seek advice or help. Instead I opted to pretend to know what I didn’t know, quickly slide into the shop disguising myself as someone “in the know” grab a bunch of materials that I had no knowledge of the purpose, return home and try to figure stuff out.
Dave though, he was different. It was obvious to him that I had no idea what I was doing – so he pursued further conversation with me. As a result, I learned more in 5 minutes talking to Dave than I had in the previous 5 months. This positive encounter substantially changed the path I was on.
Dave has since moved to North Carolina, opening Casters Fly Shop (<- click here). He has won or been nominated for a number of tying and fishing awards, including a number of nominations for Orvis Guide of the Year. He has an enormous number of fly patterns (<- click here) that are carried and distributed by Orvis. Always trying new materials, Dave’s tying style is unlike most, pushing the envelope in developing ways to create fishable realistic patterns. His flies combine realism that exceeds others and yet are functional to fish.
Dave’s use of materials and innovation has always inspired me, since the time that I walked into the shop a fly tying rookie all the way up until this point. While not tied to the exact lofty standards of his flies, many of the patterns that I carry in my box are direct descendants of Dave’s flies.
Reviews of Dave’s customer service are nothing short of glowing. His ability to consistently get his guided clients into exceptionally large North Carolina trout is impressive. The innovation and knowledge that he shares with the fly fishing community has a positive impact on the direction of the industry.
Recently I was in desperate search of a few particular materials that the local shops do not carry, I needed these materials pronto for a demonstration tying event coming up. Because of extremely poor planning on my part I was in a bind, I had to get the materials quickly. I contacted Dave and explained the situation – of course he had the materials I needed, his shop has quite literally every tying material imaginable. But that is not the impressive part, Dave continued to go far above and beyond and took it upon himself to rush ship my order to ensure they arrived in Michigan ahead of the time that I needed them.
In an age where there are endless options of where to buy from, its this extremely high level of customer service that continues to set Dave apart in the fly fishing industry.
February 29, 2016 | Categories: People, Uncategorized | Tags: bass, brown, casters, casters fly shop, dave hise, fly fishing, fly tying, michigan, north carolina, nymph pattern, orvis, rainbow, Steelhead, trout | Leave a comment