Summer Ants, Brown Trout Kill on Yellowstone, and ICast 2017

Summer Ants

antsAs early summer moves into mid-summer, fishing terrestrials becomes a more important part of the game. Many of the mayfly hatches are over for the season and trout will turn to what is available and that is often a grasshopper, beetle, or ant. While we have had some very good fishing, at times, with craneflies, caterpillars, and other less popular terrestrials, it is often an ant that will please a finicky fish. The photo shows a number of ants that were found in the stomach of a trout.

While ants are often hard to locate on the water a winged ant is easier to see, and if that doesn't work, an ant is a good choice to fish as a dropper behind a larger dry fly that is easy to find and follow. Use your hoppers and large beetles in the pocket water and riffles, but when you find a sipping fish in a pool, consider an ant or a small beetle. It might just fill the bill.

Our black fur parachute ant and our winged cinnamon ant are good choices and the wing will aid in locating the fly. Also, Jim's Real Beetles in brown and black are excellent choices at this time of year too because the flies are smaller than most beetles and have a spot of orange yarn on the back to help in locating them on the water. Check out these and other terrestrials in our store.

Brown Trout Kill on Yellowstone

Biologist samplings on the Yellowstone River have recently turned up an unexpected brown trout fish kill along with expected whitefish kill. Read More.



Our friend and Fly Fishing Show founder, Chuck Furimsky, sent this photo from Gangler's Lodge (Canada) where he was recently.  Beautiful pike.  Good job Chuck!  


Farbank Runs Away with Awards

Sage, RIO, and Redington (all Farbank brands) ran away with Best of Show awards at the iCast/AFFTA show last week in Orlando. The annual IFTD (International Fly Tack-le Dealer) show recognizes manufacturers for outstanding new products. Sage won for the new Salt HD fly rod, RIO for new innovations in leaders and tippet, plus the Big Nasty fly line, and Redington for the Minnow. Sage also won Overall Best of Show. Quite a year, congratulations to everyone at Farbank who helped make this possible!

sage  sage10

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Ug Nymph & Salt Season

Barry's thoughts on the Ug Nymph

ugA few years back we were floating the Limay River in Patagonia and not having much luck. The water was a perfect level with good clarity and temperature, but for three hours we had not put a fish in the boat. Our guide, Nico, opened up his fly box and pulled out a fly he called the Ug. We knew the fly by another name although we had never fished it. One look at the fly and you realize how simple it is, a lot of rubber legs, a chenille body and weighted. Well, it saved our day then and it has many times since that day on the Limay. The Ug has produced some extraordinary fish here on Fishing Creek as well as other trout waters throughout the world.  0389 LIMAY RIVER 2017

It works best fished deep with a dead drift technique. It certainly looks like a giant stone fly nymph or, in a darker color, a helgramite. That said, it also works on Susquehanna small mouth. If you like fishing nymphs and looking for big fish, this is a must have fly pattern in your fly box.

Click here to visit our Online Fly Shop

Salt Season

While we're knee deep in trout season here at home, we can't help but daydream about our Belize trip coming up quickly in early May. Sage has recently released a new Saltwater Campaign and we're happy to bring you the first segment.1191 GRAND SLAM 2015

If you've chased permit across the flats, you will love to read Tom Bie's perspective on permit, bones, and snook. It's easy reading. Enjoy.


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Bighorn Fishing, Mayfly Spinners, Two-Handed Season

Availability on the Bighorn

BH collage 2We still have a few rooms left on our 30th annual trip to the Bighorn River in August for what might be the most incredible dry fly fishing you've ever seen. In recent years the trico fishing has been amazing and we expect a repeat in 2017. Float the river in comfortable skiffs and get out to fish the productive runs, pools, and side channels. Check out the video clip. For prices, dates & details.



Featured Fly: Mayfly SpinnersMay fly spinner 05A

Mayfly spinners are incredibly important to a fly fisherman who enjoys matching the hatch. The final stage of the adult mayfly mates in the air often high above the water until finally both male and females come to the waters surface and after egg laying by the females, both lay spent on the surface with their cellophane-like wings out to the side. Most of the spinner falls happen in the last hour or two of light and they can provide a feeding frenzy with trout quick to take advantage of the massive numbers of insects. Like most rules in fly fishing, there are exceptions though, for example the early morning trico spinner falls. But whenever you encounter a spinner fall you want to be prepared with a hatch matching imitation.Slate drake spinner 08 

We have two favorite spinner designs that we fish with. The first was made popular by the late Vincent Marino who believed that the spent hackle wing was the perfect imitation – and we agree on water that is flat and smooth. But on faster rougher water we like the poly wing spinner which floats better under those conditions. We offer both to imitate the major eastern hatches. Click here to go to our store.


Two-Handed Season

sage1 Are you a subscriber to the Sage blog? Two Handed Season is a beautiful piece written about, well – you guessed it – two handed rods. If you love steelhead season and this type of fishing (and even if you don't), I think you'll enjoy the story and the photographs. Oh, and don't forget to subscribe. You won't want to miss the next issue.



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Farbank President Moves On, Winter Fly Fishing & Fly Fishing Show Season

Farbank President Moves On

Travis Campbell with King0003

Travis Campbell, president of Farbank Enterprises for 8 years, has accepted a position at Smart Wool. Travis is a long time employee with Farbank, owner of the Sage/Redington/RIO brands. He will be missed by all of us. Good luck with your move and your new position, Travis. Read More.


Winter Fly Fishing

We found an interesting perspective and short story in MidCurrent by Michigan guide, Tom Hazleton, on winter fishing. We hope you enjoy it. We're having a mild winter here in Pennsylvania – a good winter to continue fishing.  2010 Winter fly fishing0682


Fly Fishing Show Season

It was great to see so many of our readers and friends at the Somerset, NJ, Fly Fishing Show over the weekend. Unlike many years, the show had great weather and no interference from play-off or Super Bowl games, so we enjoyed record attendance and lots of new interest in tackle. The star player in the Sage booth was the new "X" rod. RIO was busy helping anglers match proper lines, explain tapers, weights, presentation, spey, etc. Of course, Redington was showing new waders, boots, rods & reels. The show is an excellent opportunity to see new products, ask questions, and to test rods. Thank you to everyone who attended.

The Fly Fishing Show moves to Atalanta, GA, this weekend, Friday & Saturday. If you're in the area, stop by. For location, hours, presentations, and seminars, go to flyfishingshow.com

001  SUMMERSET 2017  029  SUMMERSET 2017  111  SUMMERSET 2017


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Yellowstone River Closure, Washing the Skunk, & the SAGE X visits Ireland

The Becks are fishing The Bighorn as we speak and we all wanted to know what was happening out West with the parasite/water problems... Here's a little blurb from Cathy. She also sent a few photos for us as well.

  Yellowstone River Closure

It's 10 day old news now about the Yellowstone and all tributaries being closed to all kinds of activities including boating, rafting, swimming, etc., but the latest news is that it may be a long time before the river system is open again to these activities. The tributaries include the Paradise Valley spring creeks, the Boulder River, the Shields, and others.  This, of course is devastating news for lots of businesses along the waterways; hotels, guide services, fly shops, rafting companies, restaurants, and campgrounds. We hope they find a solution soon to exterminating this horrible parasite.


IRE X- From the Field with the Becks

We are also happy to share with you Barry's blog from Ireland published last montcathy irelandh on the SAGE blog.  You can read it here.  


Washing the Skunk

And lastly, we found this article in MidCurrent and although it doesn't directly relate to fly fishing, you never know when you might need this advice!!  Check out the article by clicking here.

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Sage Rods

The Sage Bookends — "X" and Pulse

Sage   Two exceptional rods at two very different prices.

We've said it before, how does Jerry keep coming up with new rod designs? True to form, Sage is introducing the new Sage X Rod Group 590-4 Detail-2"X" fast action rod this week. Kirk Deeter reviews it in the Angling Trade News (via Field & Stream) and if you like being on the cutting edge of fast, accurate and technical rods, you'll be falling in love all over again! Read the press release in MidCurrent here.

At the other end of the spectrum, we have to say that we've been using the Sage Pulse rods for our clinics, casting lessons, and as loaner rods for a couple seasons and these rods continue to impress us. At a cost of $450, the Pulse is classified as a fast action rod, but with a RIO Grand line, it loads beautifully close up and doesn't hesitate to step up to the plate for longer distances. Beautifully finished blanks are lichen green blank with olive wraps. Same lifetime guarantee, made on Bainbridge Island. View the video below.

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Alaska openings & Fly Fishing Weekend recap

Last Minute Openings in Alaska

Sold out for months we now find ourselves with a couple of available tents at Reel Action on the Kanetok River, August. 5-12. Prime time for silver salmon, rainbow trout, and lots of other 2988 ALASKA  BECK IMAGE 2014salmon and char. At the mouth of the Bering Sea, Reel Action Camp offers fishing that no other camp can offer. Get the fish first as they come into the river. An amazing week of action! Individual tents, $5,000. per person. Check the photos and itinerary for details and then call us!




Recap on the Frontier's Fly Fishing Weekend

ff weekend


It was a fun weekend here on Fishing Creek with the group. We learned about casting, bugs, leaders, flies, stripers, bluegills, and trout. The weather was uncooperative, rainy, windy and cold — it even snowed for a couple minutes. From Canada, Kentucky, and Pennsylvania the group had a great time. Can't wait to do it again. Thanks to Frontiers, Sage, and the Lodge at Raven Creek for hosting a great event!



Great News! Denver International Airport Rail Link

A reminder for anyone traveling to Denver this summer.  Check out the Travel Insider article here


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Spring Guiding & Sage MOD

Hendricksons, Caddis & March Browns

Our guiding is off to a great start here on Fishing Creek. With light drizzle for most of this week, the fishing has been very good each day with Hendrickson spinners, grannom caddis and the beginning of the March Browns. The weather has been cold and we're dressing warm, but that comes with the season and it won't be long until we're hoping for some of the cooler spring temps!











Speaking of the early spring hatches, we can't hardly write about the fishing without mentioning the new Sage MOD fly rod. Paired with a Sage 4250 reel and the RIO InTouch Perception fly line, it's been the perfect rod for our eastern Sagespring fishing. The MOD has just enough backbone for handling light streamers or a couple of small nymphs, but switches easily to a beautiful presentation when the hatch starts or the spinners fall. It's accurate, sensitive, and an absolute joy to cast. If you haven't tried one yet you should the next time you visit your local fly shop. We're pretty sure you'll fall in love all over again.  Check out the video of the rod here

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Mexico Fishing Opportunity & A Great Fishing Story

Campeche and Grand Slam, Mexico

0680 CAMPECHE 2015


We still have a couple rooms available on our Frontiers Campeche/Grand Slam departure. If you're dreaming of baby tarpon, permit, bonefish, and snook, this is for you.
4 Days of baby tarpon at Campeche and 4 days of everything at Grand Slam. Take a look at the trip and let us know. We'd love to have you. $5,550 per person,
based on double occupancy. 8 days fis1198 GRAND SLAM  2015hing. April 4-14. Shorter itineraries available-see itinerary here.     








Great Story By Guest Blogger, Alex Blouin

A few weeks back we posted a northwest salmon fishing story from a young team member of Sage/Farbank, Alex Blouin. We invited Alex to share the adventures of him and his brother, Bryan, as they fished their way across country when Alex moved from New Hampshire to Washington state to accept an entry level job at Sage. It's encouraging to see such enthusiasm and motivation from a young x-college kid searching for his place in the world. We know you'll enjoy the story, it might make you wish you were in your 20s again and able to make these same decisions - we wish you much luck, Alex.    4458 BECK IMAGE 2014


In the spring of 2015, I sat in class trying to listen and pay attention to my professor, but my mind was elsewhere. My mind was in a world that consisted of seeing, learning, experiencing and enriching my life through the ways of a fly angler. I was dreaming of a life that would test me, get me out of my comfort zone and enlighten my spirit; thus certainly out of that lecture. After the professor spoke her last words of the class, I knew that those were the last I would hear from her as a student of Plymouth State University. I walked out of Boyd Hall with my head held high, took a deep breath of crisp New Hampshire air, and moved forward with confidence in my pursuit of greater self-enrichment through fly fishing.   

I spent every spare minute my next summer outside and fishing for Striped Bass with my twin brother, Bryan, as he had just commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant in the United States Army, and this would be our last summer together embracing our youth. He was leaving for his training and duty station at the beginning of September, and I had accepted a position working in Warranty for Sage Fly Rods starting at the end of August. I was going to be driving from New Hampshire to Washington with all of my belongings, and to a couple of young, adventure-bound brothers, this meant only one thing; road trip.

On a previous cross country endeavor I had made a few months prior, I drove a friend, Milan, from New Hampshire to the South Fork of the Snake River where he was to work for that summer. We made many great connections along the way in such areas as the Wisconsin and Minnesota Driftless, the Platte River in Wyoming, Yellowstone National Park, and of course where Milan was working on the South Fork. My brother and I planned to follow a similar route, and gave ourselves two weeks to get from the Atlantic to the Pacific. We celebrated our birthday together at home, and two days later we were on the road.

Our first leg of the trip was a 23 hour haul to Milwaukee, WI, where a good friend of ours and Bryan's college roommate resided. We recharged the batteries for a day exploring different areas of Milwaukee, eating cheese curds, and making new friends. We left that night headed for the Minnesota Driftless, and camped at a state park right across the border from Lacrosse, WI.

The next day, we explored the small, tangled spring creeks of the Driftless, armed with 3 weights and a Tenkara rod. Bryan managed to get the day started on the right foot, landing a beautiful Brown that slammed his hopper right off the bank. With the creek being only a few feet wide at most points, and tall, thick brush all around, making a good cast isn't easy and getting a fish to eat isn't any easier. Starting the day off with a nice hopper eating Brown was certainly welcomed. We continued to push on upstream, landing many beautiful fish along the way, including Bryan's trophy; a gorgeous colored up male Brook Trout that took a nymph right underneath the undercut bank. With a full day of the Driftless under our belts, we left town and continued our journey west. Our next stop would be the North Platte (As far as fishing is concerned. We did stop in South Dakota to check out Rushmore and the Black Hills).

We arrived on the rim of Fremont Canyon well past dark, and set up camp under the light of a billion stars. The skies were as clear as I had ever seen, and we were able to catch the tail end of the Perseid Meteor shower as we sat and reminisced on our past, present and future. This was certainly an evening I'll never forget. We woke up in the morning to a crisp air, and the sun's rays that had barely broken over the peaks above. There was just enough light to see down to the river below, and were able to spot several large Rainbows feeding ever so gracefully in the surface film. We rigged up the rods, and slipped down the side of the canyon wall eager for a tight line. Bryan and I both set up perches on the rocks and tossed our dry flies to the rising fish. Bryan was the first to hook up, and landed a very nice 18 or so inch rainbow. We continued on for another hour or two, landing a few fish between us, then packed up our things and continued on to our next destination; the South Fork of the Snake River.

We arrived in Swan Valley, Idaho well past dark, and were greeted by a cheerful and enthusiastic Milan. After catching up over a few brews, we decided our next move would be to a local spring creek where we were to toss mice into the dark abyss. We trudged through the thick muck, and set up in a nice pool with lots of overhanging branches and cover. I was first up, and made a few casts straight across and skated the mouse underneath a large overhanging tree. Almost immediately a fish smashed the mouse, but missed the hook. We continued to work our way up, eventually switching to an upstream presentation, and connected with a number of large fish, but only one 16" cutthroat was landed. We called it a night and prepared for a float on the South Fork the next day. Upon hitting the water, we soon realized the quality fishery of the South Fork, and landed countless Cutthroat, Rainbows and Whitefish on nymphs and dry flies. This was where Bryan also landed his first Cutthroat; a native Snake River Fine Spotted! After a full days float, we all checked in for the night, and Bryan and I said our goodbyes the following morning and pushed on to Yellowstone National Park.

Upon arrival in Yellowstone, we met up with a good friend of mine, Cam, who was working in the park for the summer. We spent a few days in the park, but the most memorable day was certainly the last. We hiked in to a pond that held one of the last populations of Arctic Grayling in the Continental United States. None of us had much expectation as to what we would find, but we certainly didn't expect the quality of fishing we found. We landed beautiful Grayling and Cutthroat from 6-14" all day long on large dry flies. Towards the end of the day, Bryan ended up breaking the butt section of his 3 weight, and so rather than quit and head out, he laid the butt section and reel in the grass and started casting with just the tip sections. This turned out to be quite the unexpected discovery, as we are able to cast this broken rod just as efficiently without the butt section, and continued to land fish after fish. The sun started to go down, and we made the hike out, said our goodbyes once again, and continued on our westward journey towards Bainbridge Island.

Our original plan was to head up to Glacier National Park, but extreme forest fires prevented us from getting there. The rest of the ride from Montana to Washington, we barely saw blue sky as the smoke was so thick; sometimes visibility was down to less than a quarter mile. Rather than drive our last leg from Montana directly to our destination, we made a detour and met one of Bryans college buddies, Tom, a good friend of both of ours, at Mount Ranier National Park in Washington. We explored the surrounding area a bit, and took in the incredible sights of the large volcano; something we had never seen before. This was certainly an inspiring way to be welcomed to the great state of Washington.

I moved into my new residence a couple days before my first day of work at Sage, and was able to make a trip out to Olympic National Park with Bryan before he boarded his plane back to NH, and after that I was on my own.

I spent the next few months working in Sage's Warranty Department, fixing hundreds of broken rods, connecting with passionate anglers all around the globe, and of course exploring the waters of my new home on my days off. My sights were first set on encountering Salvelinus Confluentus, the Bull Trout, in their native habitat. It took a few trips and countless hours of research, but I was finally able to land my first "Bully" in the Northern reaches of North Cascades National Park. Once the spawning rituals of the Bull Trout were under way, I turned my sights towards one of the most majestic and revered creatures in all of angling; the native Steelhead.

My first escapade in search of these mystical creatures led me to Forks, WA to fish the Hoh and Bogachiel Rivers with new friend and co-worker, Brett. We spent most of our day driving around and exploring the water that was completely new to the both of us. The last place we stopped was on the Lower Bogachiel, and we found a great run to practice our spey casting and swinging techniques. Upon Brett's request, I had tied on an un-weighted traditional streamer I had created years ago for Landlocked Salmon and trout back in NH. The fly was missing one of its signature Jungle Cock eyes, and thus we dubbed it Ole One Eye. I worked through the run with Ole One Eye, casting, swinging and stepping my way down towards the bend. About halfway through the run, my line went tight and my first thought was that I had stuck bottom. After a short bit of trying to get un-snagged, I noticed my line slowly creeping upstream... I knew it couldn't be a fish, but sure enough I felt the tell-tale head shake, one stronger than I have ever felt. Before I knew it, my reel was singing as the fish made run after run trying shake the hook loose. After a long battle, Brett was finally able to get a solid grip on her tail. I immediately ran over, through my rod to the water, cradled the fish in my arms, and collapsed to my knees in awe of what I beheld. The immaculately beautiful Hen Chinook Salmon that sat in front of me was the largest fish I had ever landed on a fly. No measurements were made, but we presumed the fish was somewhere in the 20-30lb class range. This was an incredible experience and one that I will surely never forget. Nevertheless, the elusive Steelhead has still evaded me...

Since I have been with Sage, Redington and Rio here in Washington, I have had the pleasure and opportunity to learn from some of the greatest fly anglers in the business. My knowledge and understanding of the industry, sport, and my own self has grown at an exponential rate to a level I never dreamt was possible. My decision to leave the standard pathway of a collegiate career and pursue a life dedicated to my true passion has certainly been gratified. As a parting thought, I urge all of today's youth to push themselves, not to succeed in a world fabricated by others around them, but to forge their own path and ideals, think for themselves, and create a life which is unique to them, fueled by their passion, and one they can ultimately be proud of.

Tight Lines,
Alex Blouin

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New Zealand Follow up And Sage BOLT Fly Rod

Barry and Cathy are on their way home from New Zealand as I write the blog for this week. They report another week of beautiful summer weather at Owen River Lodge. The rivers are fishing well and the group has enjoyed a wonderful New Zealand fishing experience. They have fished a number of rivers on the South Island in the Murchison area, saw lots of beautiful New Zealand countryside and loved Owen River Lodge. The food, guides, accommodations and personal attention were exceptional. Everyone agreed that fishing doesn't get more technical or more rewarding than New Zealand! They are all coming home tired and happy.   



Also, we found a few interesting articles in the Angling Trade E-News last month that we wanted to share:

Sage Bolt Rod Review

Kirk Deeter reviews the new Sage Bolt rod in Angling Trade E-News. If you like a fast rod, this might be for you.


In the same issue is a short clip of rising trout - actually a very hungry rising trout! Click here to view the issue.  Enjoy.




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Somerset Show Follow-Up


Somerset Show

The Somerset Show was a great success with record attendance. It was a good weekend for traveling and a lot of Sage rods were tested on the pool. We talked fishing, travel, and tackle. The presentations were all well attended and everyone had a great weekend. We'd like to say thanks to everyone who stopped by the Sage, Redington, RIO, and Frontiers booths. When you can't be on the water, the next best thing is being with a lot of other fly fishermen sharing stories, talking about new products, new destinations, and great memories yet to be made! 


Also, we came across this little story on MidCurrent and want to share it with you. Lefty needs no introduction, nor does Joe Brooks. We might add that Lefty was here on Fishing Creek last fall with his friend Mark Lamos enjoying the unusually warm weather. Enjoy.


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Spey Clinic, Susie Fitzgerald & Sage Blog

*Spey Casting Clinics with Simon*

*November 2 & 3, 9:00-5:00, Fishing Creek*

This is an exceptional opportunity to learn or improve your spey casting from the master. Sought after around the world, Simon is coming to Fishing Creek for two days of spey clinics. Choose Monday or Tuesday, or both, for an intensive-care spey clinic and a delightful time with this entertaining enjoyable Brit.

simonSimon needs no introduction. Not only is he known for the (very important) hat that he wears at the RIO line company, he has also written three books on Spey casting and has both cast and fished for England in British, European and World Championships and was Captain of the England team for the 2003 World Fly Fishing
Championship. He is A.P.G.A.I. and S.T.A.N.I.C. certified in the U.K. and C.I.,Master and T.H.C.I. certified in the U.S. He is acknowledged as one of the world's leading authorities on spey casting and he lives in southwest Washington, close to his beloved northwest steelhead rivers.

*$350 per person payable with reservation, lunch included. Directions will be included with confirmation.   Only 6 students per day.   Call 877-278-5638 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to reserve your spot


Sage Blog Publication

Cathy & Barry wrote a blog while on the Bighorn & it was published on the Sage Blog last week.  If you didn't see it already, take a minute to read about the Tricos on the Bighorn by clicking here


In Memoriam:  Susan Burt Fitzgerald  1939-2015  susie

Everyone loved Susie Fitzgerald.  Mike and Susie Fitzgerald started Frontiers with a dream in 1969.  In the years to come they would make friends all over the world. She will be missed by us and everyone who knew her.  The thoughts below from her family remind us all of what a great lady she was. 

It is with heavy hearts that we write and advise that we lost a great lady, our mother, Susie, on Thursday, August 20th following complications during heart surgery. An elementary teacher by training and former stewardess, Susie married her high school sweetheart, Mike, and they followed a shared dream to co-found Frontiers in the autumn of 1969.

This ambition was bolstered by their love of the outdoors, and the ensuing innovations of the Frontiers experiment were formative to the sporting travel industry we know today. Their adventures took them to the furthest corners of the world: from Iceland to Iran, Egypt to Ecuador, and Scotland to Senegal. But Susie had particular affinity for Christmas Island, Argentina, Denmark, and Spain.

They leave a legacy for us to carry on with pride, and their lives' work affirms that not all who wander are lost.

Susie used to say, "Michael handles the forest, and I handle the trees." All who knew them can appreciate the testament this bears to strength of their partnership. Indeed, Susie's perpetual optimism was balanced by unwavering practicality and an eye for the details.

Of course this metaphor may also be interpreted literally: Susie was most at home among the trees in her splendid garden. A passionate horticulturalist, she had one of the most admired private gardens in Western Pennsylvania. Susie undoubtedly had a green thumb, but it was not just the trees and flowers she nurtured. Her generous spirit and boundless compassion (and her love to dive into a 'project') deeply enriched the lives of all who had the privilege of knowing her.

Though small in stature, Susie bravely faced giant health challenges. Diagnosed with breast cancer as a young mother at age 29, she soldiered through massive doses of radiation, moved house, wrangled toddlers, and started a business. This was a gargantuan feat that only tiny Susie could have managed. In the subsequent forty-six years, she was blessed to be cancer-free and lived each day to the fullest. Ironically, the radiation that cured her cancer induced the heart disease from which she suffered in her last decade and created the insurmountable obstacles she encountered in her final hours.

With love and happy memories,

The Fitzgerald Family

In lieu of flowers, those wishing to make a donation in Susie's memory
may consider the following:

The Cancer Caring Center of Pittsburgh

The Drew Mathieson Center for Horticultural and Agricultural Technology www.drewmathiesoncenter.com

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South Island, New Zealand

We recently came across this video clip by Gin Clear Media and wanted to share it.  "The South Island has vast tracts of some of the most intact, undisturbed natural areas left on our planet—these last truly wild places deliver beauty and isolation in spades but it is the allure of giant trout in crystal clear water that draws anglers from around the globe to this treasured land."


We don't use rafts or boats, we don't camp, and we much prefer Sage rods, but this clip is about the island, the fishing, the adventure, and there is no place on earth like the South Island of New Zealand. We are there every February. This destination has drawn us back again and again for many years. If you've thought about New Zealand or if it's on your bucket list, come with us. Your itinerary can include one or two lodges and the most incredible scenery and fishing for wild browns that you'll ever find anywhere. Details here.

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Twisted Fly Lines and Fishing with Jay Green

Does Your Fly Line Twist?

Russ Miller of the Far Bank family has a great tip for untwisting fly lines. Not everyone experiences line twist, but if you are with us and have been frustrated with this problem, here's the solution.


Also, Barry has been out of the office quite a bit the last few weeks and when I asked him what he was up to he told me a little bit about his time with Jay Green.  I asked him to type me up a story for a blog and he did.  Enjoy!

Sage's Jay Green

We watched the big rainbow in awe, sitting dormant on the stream bottom, it showed no sign that it was feeding. "That's a big fish" Jay said and I quickly agreed. But, with no signs of movement, it looked like he had lock jaw. I had little hope that we could interest the big fish but hope springs eternal so I said to Jay "Lets give him a try". The water was gin clear and I knew our first cast would have to be perfect, one mistake and it would be over.

Jay quietly slipped into the water and found an angle to make his presentation. On the end of his fourteen foot 4x leader was a bead head pheasant tail nymph. I watched as the fly line moved through an arc as Jay delivered forty feet of line leader and fly. It was a perfect cast and I watched as the small white strike indicator floated toward the fish. I could see the white mouth open and close as the strike indicator paused. I yelled "Strike!" but Jay had alread3049 BECK IMAGE 2014y started to lift the rod. Fifteen minutes later a beautiful twenty inch plus rainbow lay in my net, the pheasant tail nymph hooked in the side of the jaw. Together we watched the rainbow swim back to freedom as I congratulated Jay on a job well done. He smiled and said that single fish was worth the trip. 

The trip was a long plane ride from Seattle to our Fishing Creek valley but Jay makes the trip each year and we get to spend a few days together fishing and talking about the fly fishing industry. It's always something that I look forward to, for Jay is at the helm of a company called Far Bank which owns Sage, RIO and Redington, three of the top brands in the fly fishing world. The name Green has long been associated with Sage as Don Green was the founder and today we have Jay, no relation, but both men with a commitment to building and offering the best fly rods out there.

Jay has traveled the world fishing both fresh and salt, and has brought to net just about every species available to a fly fishermen. An extremely focused and well disciplined angler, Jay is the perfect individual to lead Sage into the future. For those of us who love our Sage equipment it's nice to know that Sage is in the safe and capable hands of Jay Green.

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Brass and Steelhead

It's no secret that Barry and I feel very fortunate to be aligned with the Farbank companies, Sage, RIO, and Redington. NRuss Miller1910ot only because we think the products are the best, but because the "brass" are really serious fishermen. These guys care about the sport, the resource, and the future. It's what they do on their days off, just ask Russ Miller, Far Bank Pro Site Supervisor, who is holding the beautiful steelhead in the picture. 

So, it doesn't surprise us to read that Travis Campbell, president and CEO at Farbank, began talks with TU brass earlier this year and has added Far Bank to the list of Wild Steelhead Initiative supporters. The Wild Steelhead Initiative
(WSI), will eventually encompass east and west, wild and stocked. The Great Lakes steelhead introduction program has been hugely successful and offers us easterners a place close to home to fish for magnificant steelhead. At the same time, no one can argue the value and sheer beauty of a wild, free, northwest steelhead, there is nothing like it. With organizations and people working together on both sides of the debate, maybe we can find common ground and move
forward - for the sake of the fish as well as the future of the sport.

And that brings us to two very good recent articles in our industry magazine, Angling Trade News, about wild steelhead, the WSI, the issues at hand, and the organizations and companies who are coming together to find that common ground.
Look for "Why Wild Matters" and the "Currents" column. It's good reading. Click here to read the current issue.

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Report from the Field- From Cathy at Tres Valles Argentina

What a way to start the trip!!



Nico Fliess hooks and lands a record brown trout from the lake at Tres Valles. 

The monster brown measured 33" length, 16 pounds, and was perfect in every way.  The three of us were fishing this morning hoping for a nice fish to photograph when Nico landed this fish on RIO 3x tippet, his 590-4 Sage ONE rod and RIO Grand line, fishing a #12 caddis pupa.  His reaction was, "I am so happy", which was repeated many times, followed by

"I've never seen a brown trout this big", and added as an after thought, "I love my Sage ONE."   It was the best morning we've ever had on the lake with 12 fish landed, none under 6 pounds!  We love this place!


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Somerset Fly Fishing Show Starts Tomorrow

flyfishingshowThis year marks the 23rd annual Somerset Fly Fishing Show, the largest all fly fishing show in the world. This year manufacturers have expanded their presence from any previous year. All the big names in the sport are showing their latest gear for your pleasure. Dealers will be stocked with everything from show specials to state-of-the-art tackle. With more than 200 exhibits, 50 of the best tiers, over 10 presentations every hour, casting demos, and dozens of authors to sign books, this will be a spectacular weekend!

For more information, directions, and presentation schedules, check out the website at flyfishingshow.com

Garden State Exhibit Center, 50 Atrium Drive, Somerset, NJ 08873
Friday: 10-6
Saturday: 8:30-6
Sunday: 9-4:30

Barry and Cathy will be in the Sage booth. Stop in and say hi.


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Cathy's Report from the Field

We're having an interesting week here at Coyhaique River Lodge in Chile. Our first day was rainy, chilly, and windy and we all suffered through it and hoped for better weather ahead. And we got it - As it turned out the first day was our worst day and now we are more than half way through an absolutely beautiful week of weather, guides, and fishing. Our group chile1is fishing an interesting combination of rivers, spring creeks, and lakes.  We've seen winds gusting up to 40 mph (first day), beautiful mayfly hatches, big rainbows on the lakes, and lots of fish landed. After the first day, the weather straightened out and we've had lots of sunshine and moderating breezes. The dry fly fishing has been very good using a lot of parachute Adams and today we caught a number of big fish on Super Buggers on the lake. It's been a perfect week for the Sage Method and ONE rods throwing foam flies. We've put both to work evchile2eryday. It's nice to have a rod that steps right up to the plate when a little more backbone is called for in these Patagonia breezes! On one lake we found big rainbows cruising just under the surface and had a lot of fun casting big beetles to them. The take was very slow and gentle, but immediately upon being hooked they would explode and take off across the lake. Great fun. Actually our guide, Gaston, asked what line we had on the ONE. It was the RIO Perception, a beautiful line on either rod. In addition to the interesting fishing, Coyhaique River Lodge is new, spacious, and comfortable with an excellent staff and amazing guides. I suspect this will be a week we won't soon forget and we'll look forward to coming back.

Thinking of new destinations, we're working on two new trips for 2016, Ireland and the Seychelles. Our itinerary for Ireland will include several castle stays with private trout/salmon fishing at each. This will be much more than a fishing trip, we'll tour the castles, enjoy the accommodations, and take advantage of the fishing. Timing will be summer. Details will be forthcoming. Please let us know if you're interested. It won't be a big group.

It's been at least ten years since our last visit to the Seychelles and it's way past time for a reunion. We loved the amazing fishing and accommodations on our first trip and we don't know why we've waited so long to go back. If you've thought about Giant Trevally and the Seychelles, we'd love to have you join us. Planning is still in the very early stages, but if you've an interest in the Seychelles, please let us know and we'll keep you posted as we finalize plans. It's bound to be an exciting destination.2262 ARGENTINA DEC 2013

We also have one room still available (1 or 2 people), at Tres Valles, Argentina for March 1-8, 2015.  It's a great destination and a great time of year to be there.  Trout fishing in the Andes, beautiful scenery and lots of fish.  Give our office a call at 877-278-5638 if you'd like more information.  

We'll talk more next week.


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New Year's Update

 We hope you all had a wonderful Christmas holiday and a Happy New Year! We certainly enjoyed the time with our families and the optimism that comes with the start of a new year. We wanted to take this opportunity to give you a quick overview of some of the new and exciting things going on here looking at the year ahead.

 First of all we are currently working on improving our website. Since launching our new site 2 years ago, we have updated, changed and worked on most every part of it, and continue to do so. We are looking to make it easier for you to navigate along with adding more options to keep you in the loop of what Barry & Cathy are doing. Their trip schedule, our store, and Barry's photography continue to be our top priorities and we are always looking for ways to improve your online experience with us.

Where's Nancy going?

On a more personal note, we have some upcoming changes in the office. Nancy, who has run the whole show here for more than 10 years is looking to semi-retire. She has recently become a Grandma for the second time and is looking forward to spending more time with her family. Although we have a huge void to fill with her leaving, we are thankful that she is willing to help us through the transition and will still help us out one day a week.

Eddie & I will attempt to pick up most of Nancy's tasks. She is currently showing us the ins and outs of all that goes on here, and although I'm sure some things will change, our goal is to make this transition as seamless as possible for everyone. We are looking forward to getting to know each of you through email, phone calls, and hopefully even in person. I look forward to talking to you the next time you contact the office.officeselfie

Me a photographer? I don't think so.

 From the photography end, I know Barry is keeping up with the new technology and cameras. Evidence of this is found in all the boxes that have been delivered from Roberts Camera. I can't tell you much more about this as I'm still most comfortable with my iPhone camera (see office selfie)! I'm sure these new cameras will deliver the best in photo imaging for 2015. I'm looking forward to seeing the photos from his next trip. In regards to photos, my goal is to share more of his images with you this year. I get to "travel" to so many amazing places through his lens, and I know you would love to see what I see here while editing. I'm adding this to my to-do list.

Any new trips?

And last but not least, Barry & Cathy as Frontiers hosts have some exciting travel news for you....Cathy and Barry are currently on their way to Chile with a group to visit a new lodge, Coyhaique River Lodge, which they are very anxious to see and anticipate it being another great trip and destination for us. In March they are taking a few "regulars" along and fishing a new lodge on the Limay River in Argentina. The Limay is a favorite of theirs, but the destination has always lacked adequate accommodations - until now. In April, they will be in the Yucatan fishing for baby tarpon and snook in Campeche and dovetailing it with Grand Slam Lodge for permit, bonefish and tarpon. A combination they are excited about. And in June they will be returning to Iceland, but this time in association with Fish Partners, who specialize in customized angler excursions throughout Iceland, and are excited about seeing new water, relatively close to Reykjavik. This means lots of new photos will be coming my way!

Who is Farbank?

3067 BECK IMAGE 2014

This was one of my first questions when I started here and I am asked it often. Farbank is the company that owns the three brands that Barry & Cathy are ambassadors for - Sage, RIO, and Redington. Cathy & Barry have been with Sage, and now Farbank, for over 25 years and have recently signed a rather long term contract continuing their association. Farbank is in extremely good hands with Jay Green at the helm. The Becks have always said that Jay is the kind of owner every company dreams of, he's totally dedicated to the sport of fly fishing, has an appreciation for the history of the sport and is an outstanding angler. Barry and Jay fish together each year here on our home stream, Fishing Creek. I've looked at many photos of beautiful fish that Jay has landed on water that can be extremely complicated at times (so I'm told). On the Sage end, rod designer Jerry Siem continues to create incredible casting rods. Simon Gawesworth and his crew at RIO continue to push the envelope in fly line design and technology. I think that the Beck's relationship with Farbank and hosting trips for Frontiers is a perfect fit.

I should also mention that they have worked and represented Smith Optics for probably as many years and have a long standing relationship with Nikon camera, two premier companies in optics. We welcome your questions with regards to any of these brands and products.

Thanks for supporting us in 2014, we are truly grateful for our clients and friends. Happy Casting in 2015!

Sage  riologo redington smithoptics-logo nikon

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Sage & RIO take home the trophies - Again!

sageThe annual IFTD (International Fly Tackle Dealer) Show was held in Orlando, FL, last week. We're proud to announce that once again Sage and RIO won Best of Show for new 2015 products. We don't know how Jerry Siem continues to improve on the best fly rods made today, but he finds ways. The new Accel and SALT rods took Best of Show and the SALT series took Overall Best of Show. Simon Gawesworth and RIO were also right there in the trophy receiving line with the new RIO Permit Fly Line. We're proud to be aligned with these two American Made Companies who continue to make the best better. rio

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