Wednesday, December 28, 2022

All Day Fly Tying Workshop with Phil Rowley on February 11

 Hi Everyone!

I hope you had an enjoyable Christmas break. We are quickly heading towards January 2023 and I want to get this workshop organized. As many of you know, it has been a tradition to have Phil come to Red Deer to do an all day fly tying workshop. He has done 11 over the years and there is a window of opportunity to get the 12th workshop in! Phil is an outstanding educator and instructor. Whether you are new to fly tying or a seasoned tyer, this will be a workshop you will definitely want to take in. 

The workshop will cost $75 and will include  a pizza lunch (part of the cost). To make the workshop a go, we will need approximately 25 tyers. Phil will supply the tying materials. He may ask you to secure some basic thread or wire or I will supply them.

Phil's workshop is about tying technique and he will be teaching us how to tie flies that he has in his fly box that have an international flavour to them.

Can you get back to me ASAP about participating. We need to order the tying materials for the 11 fly patterns Phil will be teaching us to tie. Check with your tying friends. This promises to be an outstanding day of fly tying! This workshop is for everybody, no matter what your tying skill is.

We will also have a PUB NIGHT on Friday February 10th. It has been a tradition to get us all socializing. Phil and his wife will be there! 

See everyone on January 9th when we get Fly Tying Mondays back up and running. Rick Miyauchi will be our guest tyer. Rick is an outstanding fly tying instructor.

Take care and I look forward to hearing from you!

You can text me: 403-598-3802 or email me


Tuesday, December 27, 2022

How Do You Seal the Deal?

 Hi Everybody!

I have started to tie up some chironomids for the 2023 fly fishing season. I honestly have been using about a dozen different chironomid patterns. My favourite or perhaps most used pattern was John Kent's, Rusty Nail. I tie them size 12 and 14 mostly! When chromie like chironomids are emerging, this is definitely my "Go To" chironomid.

As I was sealing my chironomids, I wondered what fellow fly tyers were using to coat their chironomids. As you can see from the above picture, I have tried lots of different products. I have noticed several tyers not able to use resins because it bothers them. Resins should be used in well ventilated areas for sure.

My favourite is using Solaraz Bone Dry and then coat it further with Sally Hansen's Hard As Nails. Some guys who tie a lot of chironomids just use layers of Sally Hansens. I have not had any skin issues using Solarez products. Loon Flow, Deer Creek and Canadian Llama Company's Pro Tyer Formulations are all worth considering. At times, I just use Crazy Glue. I guess it is personal preference. 

I am trying to tie up 6-12 flies a day. It is really a time of relaxation. I do know that being in the right frame of mind helps the quality of my flies.

Sunday, December 25, 2022

Thursday, December 22, 2022

Fly Fishing with our Precious Fur Babies

Karen and I said goodbye yesterday to our precious elkhound, Pepper. It was a very difficult day to say the least. Doing what was the "right thing to do," is so hard. Pepper was our 4th elkhound. Shali, Pinball, Tiki and of course Pepper were amazing family dogs. They all loved our outdoor lifestyle. Skiing, hiking, fly fishing, canoeing, camping, chasing squirrels, taking care of grandkids and just hanging out with Karen and I always included our furry family.

I have several fly fishing friends who have fishing companions. I have spent many a day with these friends and their fantastic fishing buddies. I was looking for pictures of Pepper last night and I encountered many other fantastic furry fishing friends. I have included a few here.

Pepper as did our other elkhounds was a fantastic companion on lakes, hiking to the backcountry and enjoying days on the rivers. Karen and I are going to miss our precious hound.


Tiki and Pepper

Tiki and Pepper flying to the Churchill River

My Favourite picture of Pepper

Tessa with Phil and Patsy

Bakon with Steve

Dr. Bill with Copper

Camping with our fur babies

Tiki watching us fly fish

Monday, December 19, 2022

Talk and Tie Workshop with Phil Rowley and Tim Flagler this Wednesday December December 21st at 7 pm Mountain Time

Hi Everybody! Phil Rowley and Tim Flagler are doing a workshop this Wednesday at 7 pm Mountain Time. The theme is tying with deer hair! This is a free workshop. You can tune in on Phil's You Tube Channel or on his Facebook Page. If you have any questions about tying with deer hair, please send them to Phil. The easiest way is on his Facebook Page. I always learn lots from these two master tyers. 


Sunday, December 18, 2022

Fly Tying on Monday December 19th is Cancelled Due to Extreme Cold

 Hi Everyone!

It is going to be colder than -30C tomorrow night and I do not want any unnecessary travel with the extreme cold. We will reschedule Larry's presentation until later into the season! Merry Christmas. Stay home and tie flies. 


Thursday, December 15, 2022

Details of Fly Tying on Monday December 19th at 7 P.M. with Larry Prowse

 Hi Everyone!

Larry Prowse is our guest instructor this Monday, December 19th. Larry will be tying a Super Nymph, Aero Beat Nymph and a Spilt Cased PMD. You will need
white thread, and brown thread. If you have a black/brown sharpie please bring it along!

This should be an outstanding presentation.

See you there!

Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Some Pictures of Evan Ritchie Over the Last 15 Years with our Club

I took the time this morning to take a scan of my photo library to find pictures of Evan Ritchie over the last 15 years. He did so many presentations for our group. I loved his tying sessions and he was a wonderful person to listen to and visit with. We are going to miss you my friend.


Tying Apps Worm-An Effective English Fly Pattern We All Should Have in Our Fly Box

Phil Rowley has been using several English fly patterns for his entire career out on the water. The Apps Worm is a crazy looking pattern that is so effective. It is easy to tie and you definitely need to add it to your fly box. Take a look!


Monday, December 12, 2022

Honouring Evan Ritchie and Tying Stimulators

Hi Everybody!

Tonight we took the time to honour one of our founding members, Evan Ritchie. Everyone had a story or two to share about Evan. John brought the notes from a fly tying course he took from Evan almost 30 years ago. There was no question that Evan was one of the pillars that help build the tying club to what it is today. There were lots of heavy hearts as we talked about our mentor and leader. Definitely a sad day full of nostalgia. I do not think there was a single person in our group that was not touched by Evan's instruction and kindness.

We had 16 fly tyers out this evening. Everyone was tying several of Randall Kaufman's iconic pattern, the stimulator. We tied them with legs, underwings, flash and the traditional method. It was an excellent opportunity to get to work on correct proportions for flies, while working with deer hair and hackle. We also owe Garnet Clews a big thanks for the idea of using pro wrap for the body material. What a great idea! We also need to thank Bob Edens for the deer hair we used. Thanks again Bob!

Next week, Larry Prowse is our guest instructor. I will send out the details of his workshop shortly!

I hope to have all of the details of Phil Rowley's workshop out in the next few days!  The workshop is on February 11th. See you next week.

Thanks Adam Karras for making this!

Stimulators-Randall Kaufman Originator

Thread: 8/0 orange or yellow
Hook: TMC 200R sizes 4-12
Tail: Deer hair or elk hair
Body: Pro wrap or antron dubbing
Hackle: brown saddle
Wing: Deer hair or elk hair
Underwing: Crystal flash and antron (optional) (see example below)
Front Hackle: Grizzly

Note: Many tiers use small wire to reinforce the hackle

Take a look at how Randall Kaufmann ties a Stimulator (below)!

Pro Wrap-You can get it from most physiotherapy establishments. It is used under tape when you tape an ankle or a knee for physical activity.

Some tiers add rubber legs for added movement and extra floatability as well as an antron underwing with some flash

Skwala Stoneflies found along the Red Deer River near Little Chief Park

Golden Stone-North Ram River

Golden stonefly-Livingstone River

You will be missed Evan Ritchie