Podcast: Demystifying Fly-Tying Materials (plus a hidden contest!)

This week’s podcast is mostly about fly tying—how to choose hairs, feathers, thread sizes, glues, and more. In The Fly Box, we talk about dangers on the water, how to keep your distance from your fishing buddy, Tenkara rods for kids, casting indoors, and how to do The San Juan Shuffle (hint: you don’t want to).

Note: There is also a very special offer only for podcast listeners somewhere in the podcast, and it’s only good for this week, so make sure you listen soon!

If you don’t see the “Play” button above, click here to listen.

202 thoughts on “Podcast: Demystifying Fly-Tying Materials (plus a hidden contest!)”

  1. While this doesn’t directly deal with the podcast, I no longer get notifications via the orvis iPhone app when a new podcast is posted. Are there any plans for future updates for the app? I use it exclusively for listening to the podcast, and I find the knot tying tutorials invaluable.

    1. Grate podcast.
      I’ve tied my won flies for a while now and still learned some things. Keep up the good work.

  2. LOVE the podcasts on Fly Tying!

    How about some podcasts interviewing some famous tiers? Learn how they come up with new patterns, and how they come up with new techniques on bettering a pattern or simplifying the tying process of patterns.

    I’d love to hear interviews with Charlie Craven, Tim Flagler, and Matt Grobert!

    1. Tim and Matt are famous??? When did that happen?

      Can I expect them to come down to the South Branch or the fly shop in limo’s now?

      And Matt just steal’s Vinnie’s patterns anyway…


  3. Shared on Facebook! Told everyone that if they knew someone looking to learn about fly fishing, Tom is the best resource I’ve encountered in my own journey. Keep it up Tom. Thanks for demystifying the different fly tying materials.

  4. Tom, these podcasts are priceless nuggets of gold buried in the internets (yes i made internet plural). I used to fly fish with very little information at my disposal except for an Orvis how to fly fish video at my local library. I used to rent it continuously for months at a time. I would watch it over and over again trying to learn everything I could. The information was very general, but very valuable. Down the road i started college and had to stop a lot of activities that weren’t categorized as studying or test-taking. Fly fishing was one of these activities. Now that I’m out of college and have a solid job, I started picking up my rods again, hitting the streams, as well as visiting my local Orvis store for tips and also listening to your podcast. After a few podcasts I started to recognize that the voice I was listening to was indeed the same as one of the instructors from the video I used to check out from my library as a kid. It’s nice to know you are still so involved in the sport and makes me happy that I will continue to enjoy fly fishing for years to come. Keep up the podcasts and writing awesome books. I really like the Orvis guide to prospecting for trout.

  5. Hi Tom!

    I listen to your podcasts at work and have learned a lot! I especially enjoyed this weeks podcast on Fly Tying. I have a pretty good collection of different materials at this point and this podcast has given me a pretty good idea of how interchangable these materials are. Which means that I wont have to keep buying more and more materials when I try a new fly recipe. And that makes my wife happy! Now if I could just keep the dining room table from looking like an animal barber shop… Thanks!

  6. The mystery for me, after tying for nearly four decades, is emotional: how to part with all the expensive materials I seldom use but hold onto _just in case_.

      1. I don’t know if a gift of bits of Herter’s finest from the late 1960s would set a youngster on the right path.

  7. Hi Tom,

    Sure would like to ENCOUNTER that outfit. Would like to be able to get my boys out on the stream with me.
    Keep up the great work.



  8. Tom,
    Perfect timing as I just started fly tying a couple weeks ago! I am very anxious to listen to your podcast this evening on my way home from work.

    Thanks for all you do for this wonderful sport!

    Brett Higgins

  9. Hi Tom,
    I think this contest is a really nice thing of you to do for Phil. I love your podcasts and all of the great information you provide. You have helped me get two of my friends into this great sport of fly fishing. Although I don’t trout fish that much you make me want to do 24/7!
    Keep up the outstanding work,

  10. OK. Tom, you mentioned that marabou was a “magic feather”. I have been tying for a very long time and never knew this. So after the podcast I went to my tying bench and tried doing some magic tricks with various colors of marabou. And had absolutely no luck. I was hoping to be able to pull a Woolly Bugger out of my fishing hat but the closest I came was finding some loose hair which I suspect came from my crown.
    I did notice that some of the marabou had a bit of an odor but I contribute that to that since they come from the underwing of a turkey, that particular turkey was not accustomed to using deodarant.

    I do have one question though. When mixing hare’s ear fur in your coffee grinder, do you use a course or finer setting? Also, have you found any residual hare’s affecting the taste of your coffee when using the grinder to grind up coffee beans?

    Keep up the great work on the podcasts. Perhaps at some point you could talk about gathering road kill for fly tying materials. Such as how long does it have to be dead before you harvest it. Do you prefer gathering road kill from main roads or do you find back roads a better resource?


  11. Love the podcast, keep them coming! Glad to see a podcast on fly tying. I need the tips and tricks episodes but really love it when you sprinkle in some tying ones. I would love to have more!

  12. Hi Tom,

    I have enjoyed the podcast for years. Your personal style is easy to listen to and your knowledge of the subject has provided many good tips and tricks that have helped me on the water. I am also an avid fly tier and find your tying podcasts a welcomed change to your typically format. Keep up the great work!


  13. SNORRING…BORRING…YAWNING….All words that you won’t encounter when listening to Tom’s podcasts. Listening, laughing and learning…everything from “mouse” hair use to faret proofing your material…I find myself smiling from start to finish….and take quite a few notes as well. We all need a bit of info and joy in our lives…keep Tom on the payroll!

  14. Thanks Tom,

    Ever since you got me into throwing streamers, I’ve spent all my time at the strip club working the sex dungeon.


  15. I liked this podcast. I learned a lot about things I didn’t know. I have a lot more questions than that. Fly tying is hard enough and you simplified some things I didn’t understand. I hope that encounter rod is nice, I ordered the 8wt weight one and I am waiting for it to come in. So the 5 wt would be nice too., JK

  16. You’re exactly right Tom, pet hair does work great. The problem is, I think the wife is starting to catch on…

  17. Newish to fly fishing, recently found your blogs and am going thru them all, learning so much, THANK YOU SO MUCH TOM!!
    My special words for this post… “We need more Fly Boxes and less X Boxes”

    Thanks again!

  18. This podcast on demystifying fly-tying was spot on! I listen to every podcast but I re-listen multiple times to all the ones related to fly tying. You were clear and concise in your explanations of threads, hooks, and feathers. These confusing things have really been the roadblocks to my getting into this craft. I’ve been debating making the plunge into fly tying but have not yet pulled the trigger. This podcast pushed me over the edge. My Christmas list is now full of tools, accessories, equipment and components. Now all I have to do is (a) wait for the family to pick and choose from the list and (b) get started on my first wooly bugger. Thank you so much for this one – and thank you Adam/Highland Village, Texas for putting into a letter the exact things I’ve wanted to have explained.

  19. My wife has recently shown interest in fly fishing. I can think of no better way to spend quality time than on the water with my wife. She has taken some classes (I am smart enough to not try to teach her myself)
    Nothing would make my wife more happy than her own fly rod outfit.

    Happy wife = happy life.

    Help keep mine happy
    Love the pod casts especially on Steelhead.

  20. Hi Tom,
    Awesome podcast (as they all are)..you never cease to amaze! Anyway, I’m new to fly tying, so i am eating up everything i can on the art. Thank you for the very understandable tips! As with anything that has to do with fly fishing, i was learning pretty quickly how easy it was to become overwhelmed by all the tying myth..for me it had always seemed the most direct and accurate way to become a part of the ecosystem of your particular fishing area, but it was so much easier to just buy the closest pattern i could. Now I’m headed back to the bench with a new sense of confidence and a much better understanding of my vision. Thanks!

    By the way, LOVE all of the podcasts! Keep up the tremendous work!!

  21. Tom,
    You have inspired me, and got me in trouble. To clarify a bit your appreciation for road kill has inspired me to do some collecting of my own materials. A few weeks ago I had come across a squirrel (the black ones in the Rockies) laying in the road, I drove by and thought, hmmm I don’t have any squirrel that dark nor ever seen some in the fly shop. So I went back and grabbed it, when I got home I did not have time to clean the squirrel right that moment so I placed it in a zip lock and put it in the freezer. A few days later I heard a scream in the house and came into the room to the sight of my wife looking as if she was going to kill me, and all I could think was what else was I going to do with it. Needless to say I don’t think I will put road kill in the freezer again, or at least not in a transparent bag. I did catch a fish on a fly made with the squirrel so I guess it was worth it. Thanks for all you do, and for the great information on the podcast.

    Castle Rock, CO

  22. Another great podcast.
    I wanted to throw out another idea for keeping hands warm while fly-fishing…Get one of those cold weather muffs that quarterbacks use. You can get them with a DWR coating, they have insulation, a fleece lining, and you can insert one of those hand warmer packs into it. It attaches around your waist, it’s easy to slip your hands in and out of, and costs about 1/2 as much as a pair of gloves. I saw them for $12.99 online.

  23. You were chewing over floating hair. I have two cats, one white and one NOT white. I used to save their hair when I brushed them. I noticed when I mixed the hair together, it was a very good shade for a Dace. The hair was loose and gave good action. LITTLE DID I KNOW…!!! The flotation factor of cat fur will put CDC to shame!
    NUFF SAID. Pete.

  24. As a beginner fly tier, I found this podcast very helpful. I’d further recommend the following – 1) Orvis Guide to Fly Tying; 2) Step-by-Step Beginner Fly Tying Manual & DVD by Ryan Keyes (Very basic with excellent photos/DVD – learn how to tie 7 basic patterns; supports Project Healing Waters); 3) The Benchside Introduction to Fly Tying by Ted Leeson and Jim Schollmeyer (unique split book design – reviews basic steps with each new pattern); 3) Become a Thinking Fly Tier by Jim Cramer (lifetime of tips for more advanced tier); and 4) Clouser’s Flies by Bob Clouser (always good to go to the inventor of a fly genre – excellent photos/instructions). Finally, almost all flyfishing groups have beginning classes or members that will help the newbie for free!

  25. Love the podcast! I eagerly await each new episode. Constantly reviewing old podcast and the Orvis learning center has catapulted my angling learning curve. The best advice to fellow aspiring anglers is to get on the water and enjoy it. The journey is the best catch of all. Happy fish’n!

  26. Hi Tom

    Your podcast is one of the very few fishing partners(no, not a typo) I enjoy and trust. I must say, with the amount you have taught me, or rather how little I realized I knew,it’s amazing I ever caught anything before finding the Orvis podcast.
    Another thing it’s done is made me realize how committed Orvis is to outdoor sports. I was always under the impression that fishing wasn’t a major part of their business, but after hearing how much research you guys put into the products, I am now a loyal Orvis fan.

  27. That Tenkara rod idea is genius. My wife and I are having our first kid, a boy, in about 6 days and you can bet he will learn how to roll cast before he can walk. That, and his first word will probably be trout…or Orvis. Thanks for the tying material input – much needed!

  28. Tom,
    I’ve been listening to your podcast for a little over a year now (new and the entire back catalog), and it rekindled my interest in fly fishing. Absolutely recommend this to all my buddies and recruits.
    That being said, the best advice I’ve ever heard you give was to not become frustrated and give up, keep after it, and fish often and your luck will turn. I can now say that my confidence has returned, I’m catching lots of fish, and loving going to local streams and lakes and trying my luck.

    A couple of pointers I thought would be helpful for fellow fishermen:
    1. Remember that a lot of states are in some pretty major hunting seasons. Be aware of regulations, maybe get a fluorescent orange jacket and hat and be safe.
    2. I’ve found that as the day progresses, between twilight and into the day, I can get more bites by swapping out stages of flies…. as something wears off, moving to more adult insect profiles tends to have pretty good results.
    3. Being stealthy has probably single handedly had the biggest impact on catching decent trout. Wade as a last resort (especially in small streams), keep a low profile, wear some soft natural colors, and mind your shadow!

  29. Enjoyed the podcast. I don’t tie flies or buy them. I live near Lake Superior in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Her tributaries are noted for their narrow bushy and tree-lined streams. So when trout season is over I wait for the strong November winds to knock down all the branches that I and others have hooked on errant back casts. I then pick the flies off the branches- just like you’d do to blue berries. Love the podcasts!!

  30. Tom,
    Thank you for taking the time to share your knowledge of fly fishing. I’m constantly amazed by how this sport continues to grow, develop, and change. (fishing for carp, new tying materials, czech nymphing…) It has been a year filled with my wife learning how to fly fish; catching her first cutthroat, brook trout and large mouth bass on a fly.

    Being a former guide your podcast touch on many things I may glaze over, in listening together it allows her to ask questions and understand this sport I’m so passionate about. Thank you again for everything you do to promote fly fishing and environmental knowledge.

    Ben Sheridan

  31. I just want to say thanks for sharing your valuable knowledge with us on the podcast. I am new to fly fishing and between you and the NYC Orvis crew, I have learned so much this year. I’m hoping to take my son out in the spring and teach him how to fly fish as well. He loves spin casting.
    Thanks again and I hope the podcast continues on for a long time with you at the helm!

  32. Let us know when you come to a conclusion with the UV materials. Personally I haven’t found any significant difference with the UV materials. They cost more. That’s a difference. Most likely the only difference.
    I did send a link of your podcast to a couple guys who I have been helping with their tying.
    Knee deep and tight lines…

  33. Tom, thanks for the tips and knowledge! A note on animals to be cautious of while in the river, I think you forgot about moose! Moose are very territorial and scary! My girlfriend and I were fishing The Big Lost River and were snorted at by a huge bull about 20 feet away in the willows! I also inadvertently did the San Juan Shuffle yesterday at Silver Creek, some murky mud stirred up and low and behold some dark shadows were lurking by my feet. Interesting to know that they were indeed eating. Any way keep up the good work very good to get tips from a pro! Me and some friends started fly fishing a few years ago, now we are completely obsessed! Being self taught I find the podcasts and Orvis.com/learn videos to be very helpful! So thanks for the time and effort put in on those! Check out our FB page also if you have time Lunker Vision.
    -The Tug Is The Drug

  34. Dear Tom,
    It’s late, not feeling too clever, but I’ve just enjoyed your latest podcast on fly tying very much. It is great to have clarification on things or simply verification that one’s instincts are on the right track trying to adapt what they have to make reasonable flies. I’ve rediscovered fly tying over the last year and have come realize that I’m able to enjoy many more hours with it than I’ve been able to actually spend out fishing. And I find one of the great things about it is that as you’re fashioning a fly on a cold winter evening you can be filled with the same wonderful anticipation as you are out on the water itself. Your podcasts as well are great not just instructionally, but to sit back and think about fishing and opening up our minds about all the possibilities that the sport has to offer.
    I look for your podcasts, and Tom’s quizzes, every week and hope that they will keep coming regularly for a long time.
    All the best, Jack Tolbert

  35. Tom, I just finished listening to your latest Podcast called demystifing fly tying materials. To be honest, the title is what caught my attention. It was interesting indeed. You just touched on a topic that I have been thinking about for a long time and was wondering if you could seak a little more in depth for the next session. Specifically, I am referring to colour . Nymphs and trying to “match the hatch” are clear to me simply use a colour the closely matches the bugs you see, but how about streamers? Many conversations I am involved in question wether fish can distinguish colours, yet it is not uncommon to see some flies tied with a healthy presence of red. Some use red to imitate the gills of a minnow while others are pretty much all red, the Doc Sprately for instance. Your views on the use of red would be very much appreciated.
    Thanks for your time.
    Murray ( Calgary Alberta)

  36. I no sooner hit the post button when I remembered one more item to add. A free source of dubbing material. Next time your wife runs the clothes dryer, slip downstairs and clean out the lint trap. It makes a real good dubbing material and if you can convince her to dry only grey socks, for instance, the result is a nice “Adams” grey material. Mixing up the colours is interesting as well.


    1. Dryer lint makes good dubbing. Why sneak too the dryer. Tell your partner you are cleaning that thing out.

  37. Tom,
    Good luck getting the higher comment count than Phil! I do follow the Orvis.news blogs and enjoy Phil’s contribution, but for sheer superior knowledge about practical fly fishing, it seems to me that the Orvis Fly FishingPodcast wins hands down!
    I wish I had heard today’s podcast about fly tying three years ago when I started tying. I’ve had to learn much of what you explained the hard way despite owning your fly tying textbook, THE ORVIS FLY TYING GUIDE. You added a lot of additional inormation and integrated much of the practical information. I’ve been “stream-sided” by an injury and plan on cranking out some serious flies this winter. I also have kept Phil’s Classic Fly Fishing Books list from a quiz 1-2 years ago and will have the time to get to read them. Keep up the good work, both of you.

  38. Tom,
    Thanks for the pod casts, I have been fly fishing or pretending to fly fish for the past 6 months and absolutely love it. I have also started to tie own my signature fly which I call the “Frankenstein” fly …… it looks like I made it from different materials from dog hair, aluminum foil, gum, etc… you get the picture but I keep listening to your pod casts and following using the “learn to fly fish” and the “fly fishing learning center” so my fly throwing (casting) and tying are getting better.

    Thanks for making your pod cast enjoyable to easy listen and making me feel like I am sitting in a nice comfortable place after a great day of fishing and bunch of fishing buddies talking tips and telling lies about the “big one” that got away.

  39. Tom – great pod cast, the part about the real or more likely perceived dangers in fly fishing reminded me of a good friend now long past. My friend, he went by the moniker Tinker had just moved from Jackson hole down to park city and and I stopped by to see him and after a few beers we decided we needed to go get a canoe he had left behind in Wyoming,( it was actually my canoe but that is another story based loosely on the barter system) Off we traipse to Jackson and `when we get there we find that the boat is on it’s way to St Louis with Tinkers former room mate, that said there wasn’t much to do but go fishing. Tinker knew a spot, private land but he new the owner. After a two hour drive north and another 45 min on a nasty rut filled goat trail we came to a gate heavily posted with signs eluding to trespassers being shot and then prosecuted etc. Tinker said not to worry as he got out to open the gate the owner was a good friend. We dropped down into this meadow with a picture perfect trout stream meandering in big loops through it. He had me park the truck up under some trees to keep it out of the sun… rigged up and we headed for the water but we never found how the fishing was in that little slice of heaven. As we made our way through a stand of tall saplings we came to a section knocked flat. Something had recently put a full grown steer through a blender. What a mess, blood and cow everywhere and a whole lot sow grizzly tracks and a bunch of smaller baby griz tracks to boot. Lets just say that runnin seemed the better part of valor. We high tailed it out of there and headed over to fish the Yellowstone River in the park, figured it was a safe bet. The next morning I had just waded into the river and was setting up about twenty feet from the bank when behind me a huge grunt and then a big splash made me jump out of my waders. I froze i just new it was a bear and that checkout time had arrived, moments later a one of the parks buffalo waded past, i guess it was his hole. So I spent the rest of the morning wet wading in my waders. And Tinker, he was laughing so hard that he fell in and had to be hauled out of the river a mile or so down stream by a ranger that wasn’t at all amused by his story – once again thanks for the great pod casts I look forward to them all. Scott Halleman, Carlsbad, Ca.

  40. Tom I really enjoyed this pod cast. I usually check for new podcasts first thing in the morning to enjoy on my way to work. I haven’t really had a chance to do much fly fishing over the past two years, having just graduated from nursing school along with having twins that are a year old, fly tying and listening to your podcast are the closest I have gotten to the sport. I started fly fishing along with fly tying at around 10 years old and I am now 31 but I still am learning so much everytime I listen to your podcasts. Now that my time is starting to free up, having graduated and the kids are a little more mobile, I plan on making my return to the local streams and lakes. I am really excited to get my wife into the sport along with introducing my kids to it in the future. My wife has never picked up a fly rod so it should be a very interesting process. She too will be graduating soon with an advanced nursing degree, which I am so very proud of her for. I would like to thank you again for putting together such great podcasts. For the past few years the only time to myself, when I’m not reading my nursing school text books or changing diapers, has been my drive to work in the morning which I always enjoy listening to your podcasts. It’s my way to escape reality and day dream about getting back on the water. I do have to say this last podcast was one of my favorite so far because I always enjoy your fly tying episodes. I think like many fly tyers I struggle with the idea of substituting materials. Not sure exactly why but it could possibly be that I enjoy the traditional aspect of the sport. Like I mentioned earlier I am excited to think of getting my kids into the sport in the future and our podcasts have taught me many things I will pass on to them that hopefully they will pass onto their children. As far as recommendations for future podcasts I, of course, would recommend another fly tying podcast. You touched a little on substituting materials such as ostrich herl in this last episode for wooly buggers. I did a youtube video search and came up with a few videos on using such things as cdc in dubbing loops for parachute dry flys. I’d love to hear some material substitutions in future podcasts. One such material that I haven’t been able to find ins peacock swords that are called for in the zug bug. Any ideas? I have to make a comment about an article on the orvis blog I subscribe to in which you caught a steelhead on Lake St. Clair. I found it rather interesting that the guide told you their were no steelhead considering I fished the Clinton River for steelhead and the mouth of the Clinton River is on Lake St. Clair.

  41. Tom- your podcasts are the best. I learn some much from them. I learn everything I am doing wrong, which must be everything. Hopefully I will be able to catch a fish on one of my outing. Stan

  42. Have been fly fishing for twenty years, but I still learn something new on every podcast. Love variety of the topics on the podcast. By far the best podcast on the Inernet and I have tried them all. I look forward to the new podcast each week. Keep up the great work.

  43. Well Tom, now you’ve done it with your “de-mystifying fly tying” podcast! You’ve published all the secrets and techniques so now everyone’s an expert! Don’t you know that some things are just better left unsaid??? It’s a jungle out here on the water, a battle for survival, and your podcast didn’t help our cause one bit!

    Thanks for ruining a good thing…

    The Wiliest, Biggest, Fish-of-a-Lifetime, Trophy Trout Your Listeners Have Never Caught On Their Local Trout Steam

  44. Beaver!

    Let’s say a beaver swims up silently behind a wading angler, and upon realizing the angler is not a tree, proceeds to do a violent tail slap a couple of feet behind the angler, causing said angler to jump in fright, lose their footing and a go for a cold swim.

    Every angler should be wary of the tail slap.

  45. Hello Tom,

    Listening to Tom Rosenbauer podcasts…..priceless!
    Keep up the good work, we all love the podcasts.


  46. This shows regularly debunks email phising scams and fly fishing myths.

    However this week, you let one slip through! Apparently you can win a fly fishing outfit just for “visiting our website and leaving a comment”. That’s just crazy, no one’s going to believe that.

  47. Tom,

    An outstanding podcast yet again.

    I would like to thank you and Phil by supporting an Orvis conservation or waterway initiative. Is there a way on the website to buy a “gift contribution”, for example to the culvert fund, and send the recipient an email notifying them that the donation was in their honor?

    We loyal podcast listeners could show our support for a certain podcaster, author, fly fisher and fly there that way…

    Keep up the great work, and tight lines to you and all at Or is.

    Boris from Ohio

  48. Your podcasts are always interesting and useful, even on this side of the Atlantic. This one on fly-tying was fascinating – but no mention of how to acquire the materials for tying the Tups Indispensable…

    Best wishes, and thanks


  49. Hi Tom,

    Yes please, more podcasts about tying. Would love to here more about which feathers come from what part of the skin. I have whole skins from pheasants, partridge and starling to name a few. Many times tying instructions will tell of specific feathers to use without telling the tyer where those feathers are located on the skin. Would love to know where the specific feathers are located such as biots, marabou, secondaries, schlappen etc. Also why hen for some, rooster for others, cape or saddle, brahma hen or chicabou, full skin or 100 packs are all choices to be made.

    An interesting guest would be Tom Whiting the man who is currently on the cutting edge of feather genetics. He is colorful and eccentric with a vast knowledge of trying feather genetics.

    If you pick me I’ll tell you my “R” rated chicken and feather joke.


    John from Gloucester, MA (Come on down for some stripah fishin’ some time!)

  50. Finally, I don’t have to post my score from the Trivia Challenge! Tom, thanks for everything you do for this sport and the people who love it.

  51. Tom,
    This is the first new podcast I’ve listened to after listening to all of the podcasts in the archives. I have to say, the first podcast was good, and you’ve gotten better with time. These podcasts have been invaluable in my fly-fishing learning, and have made the Orvis family of products more attractive to me as well. You are a great ambassador for Orvis, and the podcast is one of your most effective tools.

  52. Fly tying is one of the only things that helps me get through the closed season here in the UK 😉

    Another great podcast. Many thanks to you and the team Tom. Invaluable knowledge sharing and great morale boosting stuff. Orvis will always be top of my list whenever I’m out shopping for more fishing kit & toys.

  53. I’m new to fly tying and I believe listening to this podcast should be required for any newbie! Fly tying is really intimidating in the beginning, but this podcast made it so much less overwhelming and shed light on a multitude of questions that have been haunting me. Way better than most books I browsed through and covered more types of flies than just the typical trout flies!! Thanks, Tom!

  54. Two haiku (with apologies to Shiki, Basho, Buson and Issa)

    Rod no reel
    Trout samurai

    Sun plays water game
    Fly floats in bubble line
    Trout swims home

  55. Tom because I have been bad this is my chance to get something other than coal in my stocking…thanks for your consideration…

    PS…Ill take you waterfowl hunting in MD if I win…1 word Canvasback

  56. Thanks for providing me with my FFGP (Fly Fishing Guide Podcast) fix this week. Ill admit that those long stretches with only This American Life to listen to can cause some legitimate withdraw pangs. However just when I think I can’t take it any more and I’m about to hit the unsubscribe button you come through and get me hooked again. What’s worse is you announce more steelhead podcasts and now ill nervously clicking the refresh button on my iphone to see if that podcast has been released. I guess I can think of worse addictions to have. Keep up the good work and thanks for all you have taught me over the years.

    Best Regards and Tight Lines

  57. Mouse – Moose, that was the best !!! I almost drove off the road laughing at myself (BTW ask anyone at my work – my typing sucks), but then it got my wondering, along with Tom’s brief comment, about dogs and cats.
    Has anyone experimented with dog or cat fir – is Lab better then Shepherd or Terrier. For cats, Siamese vs. Tabby? Pros/Cons???
    Tonight I’m getting the coffee grinder out and make some White Lab dubbing. needless to say I have an endless supply . . .
    Thanks Tom for addressing all my questions it was really a treat – I’m now nearly demystified. Problem is answer one question, makes me come up with two more.

      1. I’ll create another list of questions and maybe you could use a few of them sometime in the future. I’m tying tonight with a group and I’ll see if they have any questions as well.

  58. Oh Tom, self promotion I cannot condone, even when ENCOUNTERED by one as fine as yourself.

    But after hearing those glorious words flow from your lips, the beauty of the thoughts and ideas I have ENCOUNTERED this date, strung together and presented to us, your loyal crowd, with such a grace and eloquence I have yet to ENCOUNTER , I say NAY to the naysayers, we must embrace the self serving, self promotion of Thomas!

    And may I lead the chorus of dedicated, loyal followers, all those blessed by hearing said ENCOUNTER, as we rise to our feet and utter words of pure jubilation “bravo, Bravo, BRAVO!”

    And with a tear in my eye and a joy in my heart, mere words cannot describe, of witnessing such a beautiful ENCOUNTER, I speak the only word I can muster…


    or more appropriately


  59. Great podcast.
    I really miss fly fishing. I haven’t been out since late august , when I caught a 8 inch brookie on a Ross special. The best thing I found to deal with this though, is to tie flies like a mad man. Then spend hours dreaming of using them in my local river. So when I saw this podcast about fly tying I got very excited. Another way I get around my “lust” for fly fishing is to read books about fly fishing, and just thinking about old fishing stories I’ve heard over the years. My favorite story involves, a 20 pound Atlantic Salmon, a steep 30 foot concrete slope and a 80 year old guy running up the slope carrying the salmon, to his car, ohhhh the old days. Thanks for another great podcast Tom.
    Reid Anderson

  60. Also a great book everyone should check out is “The St. Mary’s River and other waters” by Charles Widgery. It is a great book, with plenty of funny stories about the old days of atlantic salmon fishing in the maritime provinces of Canada (mostly Nova Scotia).
    Reid Anderson

  61. Hi Tom,

    In your response to the email about dangers while on the water. Certainly trees faling is cause to leave the water, but I think you blew of other potential dangers. I am an older guy and about as stable as a three leg chair so when I am in the water I am always on alert. Here in the midwest we also keep our eyes open for snakes also, beyond that yeh it is probably safer than the drive to the stream was.

    Thanks for the podcasts Tom..


  62. How many trout can trout bum catch if a trout bum can catch trout?

    Tom, there is a comment/question for your cause from a fellow fly-fisherman who grew up in Western New York but has now settled in New England. Love the podcasts, as well as they’re varying topics. I

    On a serious note, I know you addressed this in a podcast years ago, but with hunting seasons in full swing, I have a few questions that might be relevant to other fly-tyers:
    1) to avoid friends saving entire ducks, what are the best/most versatile feathers I should have folks save for me (I ask for flank and try to describe CDC, but seem to fail at that)…
    2) and what is the best way for them to do so?
    3) … same question for deer and squirrels?

    Many thanks in advance –
    With all my best,

  63. Love the podcast. Really explained differences in the materials. With the only fit shop over an hour away, I find myself getting creative with materials. I’m always looking through the craft section at big box stores and luckily I’ve got a free supply of feathers and furs from local hunters.

  64. You know what food makes your girl have a change of heart of letting you fish and hunt whenever you want… The Wedding Cake.

  65. The story of the word “shlappen” is old and well known in some parts of the world…. It all started with a “can” of worms and a frogs “eye”. No more than “half” a pinch of maggots and a cup of “the” best German rye. It all ended with a black bear and an unintended “encounter” . The tumbling fly fisherman and a question to “please” spare his life.

    PS. It all ended well for the fisherman. The bear liked the rythme. He just conceded defeat, but in pure german style… only made it sound terrifying with a word… “shlappen” not once, but two or even… drei.

  66. Fish are friends, not food!

    Tom I love the podcast and as a new-comer to the sport I have benefited greatly!!! Keep up the good work!

  67. Great ideas .. particularly making my own custom dubing with coffeee grinder .. loved the dubing, although must admit next batch of ground Guatemalan coffee beans made for one very chewy cup of coffee ! : )

  68. Another great podcast, Tom. Thanks for all your hard work.
    If I may be so bold, I would like to supplement your response to the question about keeping your hands warm while fishing in the winter.
    First of all, wear gloves, of whatever style you prefer, but don’t get them wet! Even if they are waterproof, take them off before putting your hands in the water. Even the smallest amount of residual moisture on them can exacerbate the cold. Second of all, and most importantly, carry an absorbent dish towel to dry off your hands thoroughly after getting them wet and before putting your gloves back on.
    Hope that helps with your next ENCOUNTER with a winter trout!

  69. Tom-perhaps you should rename the podcast “of mice and hen”?

    Thanks again for an informative podcast. After reading old tying books I have become interested by all the exotic tying materials used in classic fly tying. In particular, seal fur and polar bear hair are intriguing to me. Heron hackles, etc..Of course I understand why they are illegal in the US. What is the benefit of using such materials…translucence? Bugginess? Much appreciated.

    Mark Barry

  70. Hi Tom,

    Great potcast.!!!

    One suggestion to all fly fisherman that use indicators when fishing with nymphs… An indicator is a suspension device which gives depth to the flies… weight is for velocity of the flyes… A lot of people think split shots are for depth but they are really for velocity…. so fly fisherman have to use as many split shots as needed to SLOW DOWN the flies… how to know you’re doing ir right???. The indicator has to travel slower that the foam around it… that really change my catching ratio a lot…

    Thanks for the hard work… I have learned a lot from the podcast…

    George Rendon

  71. This should definitely win podcast of the year, just look at all of the unsolicited comments that this particular podcast has received. Amazing!

    Keep up the great work!

  72. We don’t have an off season from fishing here in the Atlanta area, Tom. I don’t tie, but the podcast taught me a bunch about the flies I use and how they are constructed. Who knows? I didn’t think much about the carp I see, either until I caught some of your enthusiasm from the podcasts. A week without a podcast is a long week.

  73. This was a great topic. I have tied for many years and it’s always good to get confirmation on what I think I know and there is always something new to learn. So now for the hard part, I would enjoy your podcast a lot more if you would spend a little more time preparing. You him and haw a lot and it’s distracting. Some simple hand written notes might help, and a little research on things like denier size would make you even more impressive than you already are. I know it’s not easy, but good things seldom are.

    1. Thanks Earl I should have done more research on denier and I should have been more clear about elk hair. Going to correct that next week. As far as the hemming and hawing–I do work from notes so you may have to live with that

  74. Tom, Thanks for teaching us the “San Juan Shuffle” I was wondering if there are any other fun dance moves we can be performing on the river?

    More seriously I really appreciate the podcast it has helped me so much in rekindling my live for fly fishing! Keep up the good work!

    I’m hoping to try my hand at fly tying this winter and all this information is really helpful.

  75. Tom, Thanks for the common sense information that confirms one does not need the armpit hair from an adolescent orangutan to tie an effective fly. Giving a haircut to frozen road kill squirrels can provide some great dubbing as well as keep neighbors from pestering you.

  76. Tom I started fly fishing a few years ago and since then have listened to almost every one of your podcasts. Some more than once.

    In the fly box section you mentioned using Tenkara rods for teaching kids to fly fish. Well, I have 5 kids and my fly fishing budget is, ummm…small. So to start them out we got $10 telescoping Crappie rods (poor mans Tenkara). A few months ago I took two of my boys fishing in a small stream in the Sierras. Timmy, my six year old, out fished (using his Crappie rod and a Stimulator fly) my oldest son and I who were using regular fly rods. He caught and released a bunch of beautiful wild Rainbows.

    This year after listening to a previous fly tying podcast of yours I decided to give fly tying a try. A couple of the boys and I took the Orvis 101 class at Orvis Roseville. I used the coupon I got toward purchasing some fly tying stuff. I borrowed your Orvis Guide to Fly Tying book from the library and started watching all the Tightline Productions videos that Phil always posts on Orvis News. Well…now I’m hooked! In fact I think I like fly tying almost as much as fly fishing.

    Given my budget I always appreciate our chickens and rabbits who are always willing to pitch in a little fur and feathers to support the family hobby. Between our animals, the craft store and the pantry I’m able to find enough material to tie a wide assortment of flies. The two older boys have picked up tying as well and can tie some pretty mean Wooly Buggers and Stimulators! My youngest daughter(4 years old) loves to watch me tie flies. A while back she started bringing me flies that she tied. It’s amazing what you can tie with a safety pin, toilet paper and scotch tape! Her little brother soon followed suit.

    Thanks so much for all you do! We try to make regular purchases at Orvis Roseville to do our part to subsidize the podcast!

    Mike Thomasson

  77. Tom,

    I would like to add a personal experience of mine to your list of river dangers…

    A buddy of mine and i rolled into a riverside campground at the Grey Reef section of the North Platte river near Casper, Wyoming at about 1am driving up from Denver. We got the tents setup, cracked open some frothy brews and decided to rig up a couple streamer rods since the moon was full and the night sky was clear. The camp ground has a nice single track dirt trail for river access so we wondered down to the river bank which happened to have some pretty thick green grass around it. I put my beer down, turned off my headlamp, and started striping line off the real. “Zip Zip Zip” goes the real, then I started hearing some muffled noise coming from the thick grass about 2-3 ft away from me…”chucka chucka chucka chucka.” As I turned on my head lamp and started looking around, I realized I had a large rattlesnake coiled up rattling its tale at me. After I changed my shorts, I slowly backed off and got out of there. I knew this general area is notorious for rattle snakes, however, not right at the river’s edge in lush green grass. Moral of the story, put on some type of thick boots (yes, we were wearing flip flops) and be more attentive to your surroundings before starting to fish.

    -Brett Higgins
    Denver, CO

  78. Hi Tom,

    I’m new to fly fishing and have been steadily working through all of your podcasts. I listen to them on the way to work, at work, while I fix dinner and even laying in bed… hoping that your words lull me into a sweet trout infused dream.

    I too would like to hear more about substitution of materials. I am intrigued by the above comment about lab hair. I have plenty of that to try! I also have donkeys, horses, rabbits, turkeys, chickens and quail that I can “borrow” hair/fur/feathers from.

    One piece of advice I’d like to give your listeners is do not forget the great resource you have in your local fly shops. Some people hang out at the mall or a coffee house.. I hang out at my local fly shop! I have not encountered one employee that is not happy to listen or help out. And if they are busy helping someone else that is even better! Just become a wall flower and absorb everything you can. It also helps to bring your local fly guys a home-baked treat or doughnuts early in the morning. 😉 You cannot go wrong spoiling your local fly shop! And if you are in the Santa Fe, NM area –drop what you are doing right now (unless you are fishing.. you lucky dog) and GO to one of two great fly shops we have: High Desert Angler or The Reel Life. Just say Lisa sent ya… 😉 Or you might even see me there lol

    Thanks Again Tom! Keep the podcasts coming.. I won’t know what to do with all my listening time when I get caught up.

  79. The flyfishing podcasts have awesome content. I can’t wait every few weeks when the notification arrives of a new podcast. I’m from Southern California and on a trip early October with some buddies we were driving up in the middle of the night. We were excited about the upcoming trip so everyone was wide awake and chatting about fly fishing. I knew that I would need someone to take over driving in a couple hours so I urge my pals to get some shuteye so they would be alert enough to take over. Despite my suggestion no one was napping so to keep myself entertained I plugged in my iPod and started playing through my collection of The Fly-Fishing Guide Podcast. I listened intently on how to organize my fly tying materials and the latest techniques on stalking carp, but there was silence from the passenger compartment of the car. I thought, wow they sure are enthralled with the podcast as much as I am. I turn around and sure enough everyone was out cold. How could they, at 3am in the morning, saw zzzs, while listening to my mentor Tom Rosenbauer, how dare they. It’s not the subject matter, or the relevance of the material, for we all are ardent fly fisherman. The only thing I can think of is that Tom’s voice is so soothing that they were in a sense, hypnotized, and were taking in the information subconsciously. I had to drive the entire way myself, but my com padres all were amazed at the fact that they knew Tom’s top ten reasons for getting skunked. Seriously we all enjoy the podcast. Keep up the great work Orvis.

  80. Tom, Thanks! I just picked up fly tying again after a very long hiatus and was trying to remember everything I forgot. Nice run down on the materials, thanks for doing this one.

    I took my daughter fly fishing earlier in the fall and we both managed to catch some trout on flies that I tied and it made the trip all that more special. By the way, think I’ll consider calling my next creation a “Fluffy Fedder”. ; ) Tight lines!

  81. I encountered your podcast this week for the first time in a while.

    And you are right- the fluffier the fedder, the higher the fly floats… When you’re shlappin your feather around the shank of your hook, stiffness of your fiber counts…

  82. Hey Tom,
    How do you explain a Cocobola wood hair stacker to the wife?
    Her answer was “All it does is align the hairs? and what did it cost?”
    Love the podcast thanks for answering my question regarding minimal equipment while backpacking.
    I recently used your tricks as I was fishing for trout and after landing the first fish realized they were small mouth bass in the stream.. so changed up the fly’s and caught seven more using tricks from the podcast.

  83. Great podcast Tom.
    Regarding streamside dangers, check the release schedule on tailwaters and know what the signal is if something catastrophic happens upstream. Three blasts could mean drop your gear and get to high ground fast.
    Keep it up.

  84. While this podcast focused on fly-tying materials, I had a bit of a revelation while listening to it; you don’t even have to fish to appreciate it and to learn from it. It is, ultimately, a fascinating, wonderful, joyful and reverential look at trout, salmon and other sport fish and their place in the web of life.Think of all that comes up in the podcasts; weather, climate, hydraulics, tides, rivers, beaches, insect and plant life, natural history, man’s effect on the environment … I could go on. I don’t hunt, but if there were a Tom Rosenbauer of deer hunting, I would enjoy that podcast because of all it would tell me about deer and their life histories and habitat. I tip my hat to Tom for bringing his encyclopedic knowledge to listeners in such an entertaining and infectious manner. It’s main service is to spread the appreciation of the natural world. The only way to improve the podcast would be to add dating tips and a contest now and then.

  85. Interesting podcast about fly tying materials.

    The question that prompted the podcast was a good one but probably posed by a beginner fly tier. I would recommend that when just starting out – or really until you are a very comfortable fly tier – that you stick to the tried and true patterns and that you follow them fairly closely. Don’t try to substitute too much material until you know what the materials do and how the substitutions will affect the action/appearance of the fly while in use.

    The common trout flies in an assortment of sizes will catch fish all year long, under almost any conditions, anywhere in the world (Adams, hares ear nymph, wooley bugger, prince nymph, PT nymph, elk hair caddis, etc). Collecting the right materials for the common patterns will form the basis for dozens (hundreds?) of other patterns.

    As the decades go by you will accumulate all sorts of other materials and tools that you could probably do without but somehow desperately need at the time you buy them. This will necessitate some sort of storage system. Tom’s idea of clothes storage boxes from a department store work great – I would recommend you go with clear, keep like items together, and label everything on the outside of the box.

    You might even be super organized and create an inventory list. This will help you avoid buying three or four of the same ‘super important’ material that you rarely use and forgot you bought three years ago, and three years before that….. This issue won’t be a problem until you absolutely need to use magnifiers to see the flies. 🙂

  86. I always listen to your podcasts twice. The first time while lying down produces a great nap while everything soaks into my subconscious. I then wake up refreshed and listen again to make sure I did not miss anything.

  87. It’s very cool to entice the listeners to comment by offering a prize and giving Phil some extra love. We respect your work and enjoy your podcasts tremendously!

  88. I do not get out nearly as much as I would like to fish, so when I can hear of ways to make my trips better I am all in. Hearing of all of the furs good for tying flies makes me want to get to know my trapping friend even more. currently he has quite a few musk rat skins drying for him to sell. Might have to try and talk him out of some.

  89. Great Podcast. My good friend, who has fished with me every summer in Wyoming (North Crandal River) called and accused me of letting him do the “San Juan Shuffle” which I had never heard of until listening to your podcast. This was the first time he ever said anything about me always fishing down stream. He is left handed, so it was just natural for him to go upstream when we walked into the river. We laughed until we realized, I have always caught more cutthroat. Adios Amigo!!! LOL!
    Thank you we enjoy talking about your podcasts, you are living our dream.

  90. Tom,

    I must say you truly can’t count out tying with mouse hair until you try it. It has great movement in the water similar to a small marabou feather. Another great fur I have mastered tying with is ferret. A friend of mine had a pet ferret and it passes away so, as a poor college student, I asked him if I could use it to tie flies. He looked at me with a confused look, not understanding the importance of having a variety of flies in the arsenal, and responded with an “I mean, I guess?” So any tying materials that anyone has access to can be tied! And if you master the art of poor mans fly tying, you can even catch fish on them!

    Great podcast and tight lines,

  91. Sanity in an insane world! (Well–at least on the drive to work!) Tom–my husband got me into fly fishing a year and 1/2 ago (little did he know the monster he was creating!) and he sent me my first link to the podcasts—I have started listening to them on my way to work–and it has been a Godsend in so many ways-awesome tidbits and advice for us “newbies” and one piece of the drive in to work that doesn’t drive me crazy or cause 4 letter expletives as I drive down the road—sometimes I just wish my drive was a bit longer so I could listen to the rest!

    thanks from a newbie

  92. Tom:

    Thanks for relieving me of the guilt and shame of having tied elk hair caddis with deer hair. It’s very helpful to learn about the qualities of the materials used rather than just following a pattern recipe exactly. I feel properly demystified.


  93. Tom,

    Ever since hearing your podcast on using roadkill to tie flies I have begun looking at my wife’s little rat dog in a whole new light every time I take it on a walk…..

  94. Across the wired waves
    throwing loops to rising rings,
    casting counselor

    Across the wired waves
    shades of steel, feathers and fur,
    tying guide, mentor

    Across the wired waves
    a fishing inspiration,
    a friendly innuendo,
    Farmer of Roses

  95. Tom,

    The “Demystifying Fly Tying Materials” podcast was another Hole in One!
    It would help me out a great deal if you could do a podcast on why wives, fiance’s, and girlfriends ought to stay out of their significant others tying materials for any reason other than tying flies. Our feathers, tinsel etc are not for costume accessories, making earrings, tying into their hair, or toys for animals 🙁
    In my case, I could probably keep her away from misusing my tying materials if she had her own rod setup…..

  96. During the spring, I have brushed and combed many dogs and cats. I figured out that cat fur makes fairly good dubbing material. The hairs are fairly fine with guard hair. For smooth bodies I pull out the guard hairs. I have used gray (blue) and orange from a tabby.

    The other good item I have collected from cats is their whiskers. The ones I have used are from normal shedding. These whisker are fairly tough and make good mayfly tails.

    Dog hairs is just too course for my liking.

    A warning about picking up feathers, especially along some our rivers. Some feathers are illegal to collect.

    Thanks for taking time for these podcast, I really enjoy them.


  97. Tom!
    As always loved your podcast, although I was disheartened by part of it. Little about me. I just started fly fishing again this June for the first time since I was eleven and Bush 1 was in his first year of office. Everything I’ve managed to learn has been from you and David Klausmyer, and occasionally (rarely is probably a better word) putting 1 +1 by myself. I live in midcoast Maine (though I was fortunate enough to grow up a stones throw from Fish River in Aroostook) and have been lucky enough to find a couple of local spots that even when I don’t get any bites (let alone actual catches) let me enjoy Maine’s unparalleled beauty. I was reading Fly Tyer magazine the other day and kind of day dreaming about hearing someone coming out of the woods and low and behold the ‘intruders’ were you and David. I told you my story and the two of you happily shared anecdotes and answered questions long past what any reasonable fisherman would have… But in your podcast you mentioned that fishing with a friend for you generally means getting to the river together, fishing separately for a couple hours, maybe meeting up for a sandwich and comparing notes on what’s working that day, then switching spots and fishing separately again until it’s time to leave… So it kind of sounds like my dream is just that, a dream.
    I’ve decided I should win the rod because at least then I can always fish with you (or at least your spirit through your rod- you made it sound like you’re not giving away a rod that Orvis asked you to so much as you’re cleaning out your closet). Think of all the bites I would have then! Or would the brookies hide even more, sensing your presence, like Darth Vader sensing Obi-Wan as he nears the first Death Star? Anyway, that’s my horrible sell on why I should win.
    And lastly my really poor fish joke: A fish swam into a wall. Dam!
    Thanks again for answering all the questions I didn’t even know that I had.

  98. If as Calvin Coolidge said, ” all men are equal in the eyes of fish”, then what must fish think of the flies we tie?. Probably the best advise I received relative to fly tying was from John Farrar of Pacific Northwest Steelhead Fame. He suggested that I should always tie in batches of three. The first one will be ugly, the second one “will fish” and the third will be the one you regret losing.
    …… and, like all other comments that preceded this one”, I too enjoy the advice, the inspiration and the anecdotes that come with the podcast, esp those that relate to a day of fishing and not fish catching.

  99. Great as always! Just wanted to note that Dan Frasier is a man-beast that may have supernatural powers when it comes to speaking the language of the carp. I think it has something to do with his red hair. If we were to shave his head, I fear he would go the way of Samson and lose his power.

  100. Hi Tom & Phil,

    I want to thank you for all the good work that you do for all the fishermen out there.

    I got a situation here and hoping you can help me out…

    I was fishing with a buddy a few weeks back and he keep waving his arms around and disturbing the water…. and of cause i got nothing for the day. And yes if you are seeing this post….. you know i am talking about you Moses.

    p.s. throw some of that behind the scene recording at the beginning or the end of the podcast! they really put a grin on my face! keep up the good work!

    have a great day now,

  101. The “San Juan Shuffle” hmmmm, I wonder if there are other secret trout catching dances such as the “Madison Macarena” the “Gallatin Gallop” or the “Beaverkill Breakdance.” Might I suggest a podcast on these secret fly fishing dances.

    Really Enjoy the podcasts and tips, thanks.
    -C Morris

    1. I am going to crack up if I see guys out here in the driftless, seemingly dancing their way down stream after this weeks podcast.

  102. Tom, my wife and I are expecting our first baby any day now and listening to these podcasts is the only thing keeping me calm and sane… Your voice may be the second one my son hears!

    Keep up the great work,

  103. Seems from the evidence in Orvis News that either:
    1. You do dating tips (awful ones), or
    2. Phil Monahan is on to you
    Really hoping for 2.

  104. Tom,

    Thanks so much for this podcast. Not just this week’s but all of them. Yes, they’re all great! Monahan should know that. As someone getting into fly fishing with no mentor or guidance they’ve been a huge help. I inherited my grandfather’s old fly rods after he passed. He & I were extremely close, as his only son, my dad, passed away when I was only 2 he & I had a very special bond. Even though we were close, I, as well as everyone else in the family, had no idea he even owned, let alone fished with fly tackle. I later found out that growing up he frequented small trout streams but once he moved to eastern NC & joined the Marines he no longer used fly tackle for fishing. So the past few years I’ve taught myself how to cast & fly fish on his old, brittle rods. One of which I refused to use as it is bamboo & hand made so it’s a display piece only. The rod I am using is an old fiberglass 6 weight. It’s an antique, but my theory is that if it were good enough for him then, now it will work for me. And recently I’ve put it all together. I’ve taken a few trips to NC’s mountain trout streams over the past 6 months & have been successful every time. This past weekend, for my birthday, I visited a small state park & actually caught a few trout on some old hand tied flies from his tackle box. That was something special & made my day.

    So I just wanted to say a sincere thank you for the podcasts & books you’ve made possible. It has helped me become a fly fisherman & connect with my grandfather long after he passed. Keep up the good work & tell Monahan that if anyone doubts your work, talk to me. It’s worth it for the ones like me.

  105. Tom,

    The real mystery for me is convincing my wonderful wife that I need all of this fly tying ‘junk’ (in her words, not mine). I have all this fur and these ‘fedders’ (in your words, not mine), the hooks, beads, barbell eyes, and so much more. Of course, I need it all. All of it. I steal bead chain eyes from the fan, I once cut the corner off of my son’s foam puzzle (great popper body!), and I have a really nice eye lash brush that she envies. I use it to get out the underfur from my craft fur and other furs. She just doesn’t get it. She was really shocked when I opened the clothes dryer and said I was getting some dubbing out of the filter. “Some what???”, she said. She asks questions like, “What is this velcro on this popsicle stick for?” and “How long will this fly take you?”, to which I reply “2 beers!”. She once asked “What do you need all these flies for?” and she even asked “Are you really going to fish with that?” to which I took as a challenge.

    Tom, how do we convince our better halves that we need all this ‘junk’, and more importantly, that we need more? In all reality, she supports it and has shown a bit of interest. Now I just have to convince her that I need to buy ‘her’ a new fly rod.

    Thanks for the effort you put in to these podcasts. They are enjoyable and educational.

    Aaron F

    1. Aaron,

      I couldn’t agree more. I just hope that when you tell her that you are calling you taxidermy friend to give him a “Christmas List” that she doesn’t look at you like you just insulted her for not asking her about it first! Great comment and I am sure all of the married listeners can relate!

  106. Hey Tom et al,

    Regarding how to set up and organize your fly tying bench, I’d like to recommend A.K. Best’s book Production Fly Tying. He spends the first few chapters talking about EXACTLY how he sets up his tying bench—everything from bench height, to which surface gives the best contrast against the fly without glare, to what he organizes his materials in… He covers everything, and the chapters are loaded with little tricks like using gardening putty to secure things to the bench – something I’d never have thought of on my own but as soon as I started doing so wondered how I’d ever managed before! The unfortunate part is that the book is out of print and is kind of expensive, but you can track it down on eBay or used on Amazon and I think it’s worth every penny just for the first few chapters.

  107. I home school so I get to fish a lot more than other kids. I listen to your podcast so much that if my mom catches me listening to them during the school week I get grounded. Currently I am not grounded so I was able to post this comment.

    Thanks for getting me grounded!

  108. Fantastic podcast. I have a young man who I am tutoring in fly tying at this moment. He is just starting out and I have already recommended that he listen to all of your podcasts. The thing that I liked about this podcast is that you covered the terms that go with tying. Most people who get into tying only know that you have a hook that is held in a “thingy” and then you take thread and tie some stuff onto the hook. You just gave that new tier a head start on those things that took all of us a lot longer to put together. Well done and keep them coming! Thanks again,

    Zach R.

  109. Tom,
    Been listening to your podacasts for some time now. Between magazines sent from home, downloading videos and of course podcasts you got me through a rough deployment recently. I’m also commenting for the flyrod giveaway, I know someone who could put it to good use. Thanks!

  110. Tom,
    I love your podcast. As a podcaster myself, I love listening to your show and hearing your take on various fly fishing conundrums. I am commenting on this podcast because I have been taking a young man fly fishing this last year that is getting really good! He doesn’t have a fly rod, though. I would love you be able to hand him his own rod that he could have so he could go and fish on his own. What a cool show and we love your productions.

  111. I dont know about the San Juan shuffle! But whenever i do the macarena across the stream the brownies stand on their tail. Ive tried to twerk but was stopped by a ranger.

  112. Hi Tom,

    I listen to the show while on the cycle at the gym. The room is dark, I’m usually alone. This is the only part of my hectic day that I get to be as close to the stream as possible–the cycle room with your podcast on the smart phone = lower stress, more fishing knowledge, and an experience with nature. What more could a guy ask for?

    Well, today (during this podcast), I’m about 4 mins. in to my workout and a guy flings open the door and points to the sound system and says, “Do you mind?” In other words, “Do you mind if I plug in my iPhone and blast music while I work out?”

    Now, I’m a very easy going soft spoken guy. I’m a 5’8″ college English teacher and this guy looks like he has the temperament of a cop after dealing with convicts all night and just needs to burn off some steam. I respect that–I do. There are days I load up on high octane rock music to sweat out the bad stuff too.

    But today is different. Today I have set aside as the day I listen to the new Orvis Fly Fishing Podcast with your host, acclaimed fly fishing author and lifelong fly fishing enthusiast, Tom Rosenbauer. Did I get that right? You see, up until today I have only listened to archived shows. I’m a relatively new fly fisherman trying to make up for lost time on the water by watching, listening, and reading everything I can. (I have two of your books on the table next to me!) The information I learn on the podcast prompts another trip to the store for more materials–or another trip to the bookstore or Orvis website, online forum, etc. for the stuff I need to master this artform.

    Of all days, this is the day someone wants to rob me of listening to a new show. I said as calmly as I could while pedaling, “Yes, I mind. I’m listening to a podcast.” He looked at me for a moment as if to show his displeasure–as if I was inconveniencing him.

    This was the kind of look you get when you unknowingly wade through a pool upstream of a guy landing browns one after another. I’ve seen the look because I went fly fishing one a whim with my dad–more on that later. I don’t plan to see this look again now that I have listened to several archived shows where you cover stream etiquette.

    So, I advised that he could get some earphones at the front desk, but by this time he had huffed and puffed his way out the door.

    I felt bad for the guy. I used to the type who only worked out so that I get the adrenaline rush–my dad used to yell downstairs to me and my brother as we lifted weights to Van Halen, “Turn it down!” He didn’t understand our bliss, we thought. Now, our basement bedroom is his mancave where he ties flies.

    But all that angst changed when I became an adult. Three years ago my dad asked me to join he and his fly fishing buddies on a trip to central PA (Penn’s Creek, Fishing Creek, Fisherman’s Paradise, etc.). Of course I got skunked–conditions were bad, nobody caught anything, I was using 30 dollar waders and borrowed equipment. I was just playing along as if I knew what the heck I was doing so as not to make a fool out of myself and be invited back.

    But slowly I realized this was for me. I was a bait fisherman as a kid–I loved fishing lakes and ponds and collecting tackle for exotic fish I would likely never have a chance to catch. It was a state of mind–to be on the water searching for that moment of the strike and learning something of the environment in the process.

    There was a wisdom in the stream with this new form of fishing I always wrote off as something dad’s do. But on this trip, suddenly the gap between my dad and myself wasn’t years or even that he was a dad and I was a “kid.” (I was now a father of two.) The distance was only an earshot away and those simple magical words, “What are you using?” A mutual respect was born between us.

    So next time a guy opens the door on me while I’m in my streamside state of mind, I’ll try a different approach and say, “Hey, if you want, we can listen to my Orvis fly fishing podcast with your host, acclaimed fly fishing author and lifelong fly fishing enthusiast, Tom Rosenbauer.”

    You never know–maybe he’s one of us?

  113. Tom Rosenbauer is a god among men! Orvis does not know the jackpot of knowledge and fly-fishing wisdom that resides within the words spoken from his tongue. If fish ever begin trying to catch and land people, it is Tom Rosenbauer that will be their greatest prize! His podcasts are amazing verbal journals filled with nuggets of fantastic fanatical fly-fishing force that will inspire the novice or expert fisherman. On the way to the river to fish, Lefty Kreh gets all his information and tips from Rosenbauer’s Orvis podcast. Any individual who classifies themselves as a fly-fisherman (or fly-fisherwoman) NEEDS to subscribe to and worship each podcast! The Orvis fly-fishing podcast is proof that the fishing god’s love the rest of humanity and wish for us to be happy.

  114. Wait a minute, all this high praise for Tom Rosenbauer, just to find out that that he chums the water (San Juan Shuffle) to catch fish??? And you admit it?

    Really Tom? Really?

    For shame.

    The mysterious aura around you has darkened, and you’ve made me hang up my rod. That’s it, I quit

    Cancel my subscription, I don’t want to listen to your lies anymore…

    Good day to your sir.


  115. you said that you’ve never have worries with animals while trout fishing.
    On French Creek, here in iowa; the farm (who nicely lets us fish his land: Thanx Farmer!!) has a Big herd of Cattle, which can Glare feircely at you for standing in their stream.
    Not to worry, you say? On upper South Bear that farmer used to keep A BULL in his pasture. That part of the stream didn’t get much fishing pressure that year.
    Swimming Rattlesnakes are disconcerting too 😉

  116. Hopefully the dance lessons will come in handy – I plan to try the San Juan Shuffle while wearing a mouse-hair jacket and hope that it leads to a GREAT ENCOUNTER!
    Thanks for the Podcast – I’ve listed from the first episode to current over the past 2.5 months.

  117. I’m just getting started with fly fishing and tying. Took a fly fishing 101 and fly tying class at the local Baton Rouge Orvis store and am hooked. The podcast information is very helpful. I’ve seen your video’s on the website for selection of fly fishing equipment. I would find helpful would be something of fly tying equipment for someone just starting out. Also, ideas on getting children started without overwhelming would be as helpful.
    Enjoyed the podcast

  118. Where mighty rivers bend and swish
    Lives the beloved creature we call the fish
    Underneath those clear blue skies
    Us anglers wait for the moment trout will rise
    And when it strikes, how all else pales
    To admire its beautiful rainbow scales
    We will claim it to be as long your arm
    As a fish tale never meant any harm

    A special thanks to Tom and the Orvis team
    Your education and products rein supreme!

  119. How do I convince my wife it is ok to shave a hare’s mask and mix it in the coffee grinder? Should I wait until after the Holiday season when the guests have gone? She just doesn’t understand… Love the Podcast!

  120. This podcast on material has re-ignited my desire to tie again. Being the father of 7 and being on the overnight shift has allowed me to listen to all of the podcasts, even the ones on dating tips.


  121. After looking through the large number of clever (and sincere) comments, I think my best bet is for replacing my current copy of a book with a signed version…

    That said, I listened more carefully to this podcast than most. I’ve recently started tying clousers with material from the Pasadena Orvis store and it was helpful to hear about how the hair properties vary over a bucktail. Dubbing has always confused the heck out of me and I keep putting off tying patterns that require it, but I think now I’ll give it a shot.

    I’ve been meaning to write and say how much the podcast has meant to me in encouraging my interest in fly fishing and maybe more importantly, in spending my fly fishing $ at Orvis. Thanks, Tom. Ha, now you’ll definitely not choose this one 🙂 Thanks, regardless!

  122. With all these great comments and compliments, I starting to think there should be multiple winners. Too bad. Thanks Tom for the great podcast I have really learned a lot!


  123. …I was thinking the San Juan Shuffle was that moment you’re waist high in water and realize you really should’ve done #2 at the last rest stop…

  124. I too hate to wear gloves when fishing. Until yesterday the only exception I would make to the “no glove” approach was when the back of my hands are frying while fishing in the tropics. I returned from a great trip to Andros on Tuesday and on Wednesday morning pulled my bonefish boxes, leaders, tippet etc from my sling pack (I have completely abandoned my fihsing vests); loaded up on my trout stuff, and headed to the Housatonic to chase some trout. Although it was not crazy cold (high 30’s when I arrived on the water) my hands were freezing–maybe a function of being in eighty degree temperatures for the previous week. In any event, I had neglected to remove my Orvis sun gloves from my sling pack. I put the sun gloves on, inserted chemical heat packs on the back side of my hands and fished happily ( and successfully) for the the balance of the day. I think the sun gloves will remain in my sling bag for the winter.

  125. Tom this probably the best breakdown of Fly Tying Materials I have heard yet. Since I started tying, I have taken the philosophy of buying materials that I can use for lots of flies, rather than special materials that only have one use. I have heard so many times that you can’t save money fly tying, but I have always disagreed. If you are careful with what you buy, the materials can go a long long way. You also don’t need lots of specialty tools, find what will work for multiple applications. There are also so many materials you can get at craft stores if you can get over that its not branded for fly fishing. I’ve even found materials at Wal-Mart and made some bright flies with it that caught me lots of shad last year. Thanks for your insight!

  126. RE: Safety on a river: While fishing a river is generally safe, we should be mindful of sirens when fishing below a dam. The water level can rise quickly and substantially and a fisherman who’s lost in the beauty of the moment could be in for an unpleasant surprise. A whistle might be handy if one steps into a muck hole and sinks to his chest – my brother pulled a friend out of just such a ‘sticky’ situation. And lastly, we must be ever aware of the words of warning our 39th President issued regarding rabbits who have gone over to the dark side and attacked those wandering in the woods. Be safe out there…..

  127. Tom,

    Your comments about fly tying with mouse hair left me intrigued… I have honestly never thought of that before – it gave me an idea: We have some mouse traps in our house, so last night I decided to set one, and before heading to bed, heard a loud “snap”. The trap pinned the tail of the mouse without killing it. I ran upstairs, grabbed a razer blade and rescued the mouse from the trap. I carefully shaved the rump of the mouse and with great difficulty, stacked the tiny hairs in my hair stacker. I found the smallest hook I owned (size 24 dry fly hook), and tied (with great difficulty) a new creation: The “mousy-bugger”. Its a little sparse (didnt want to shave the mouse completely bald), but I think it will catch fish.

    Anyway, thanks for another wonderful tip!


  128. Thanks for another great podcast, Tom. You mentioned gloves and chemical hand warmers as ways of keeping your hands warm while fly fishing in cold weather. However, there is another way. It sounds very strange, and I admit that I was dubious that it work, but it does.

    When you reach your fishing spot, submerge your hands in the water for about 30 seconds. Then dry them off as thoroughly as you can. Your body will respond by increasing the circulation and they’ll suddenly feel warm. The effects seem to last for quite a while and I have a couple of friends who rarely use gloves now as a result.


  129. When I first started fly fishing five years ago a friend gave me an entire pheasant and partridge skin from birds he had shot in Nebraska. After sitting in the freezer for a year, much to my wife’s dismay, I took them where they still sit in a shoe box at my tying table. I’m sure there are valuable feathers but. I’m not sure which ones they are or where to use them.

    I did enjoy the pod cast on tying materials.

    I would like to hear a pod cast on the pros and cons of different float devices, tubes, kayaks, inflatable pontoons, etc.



  130. Tom’s Podcast saved my life…

    Quite seriously. Several years ago I was in a real slump and felt that my fishing days were over. I grew up along the Gulf Coast (grew up in coastal MS and had gradually migrated to my current location of Pensacola about 13 years ago) and I fished every chance I had.

    Several years ago, for whatever reason, I had just lost the drive. I was tired of getting up before daylight, tired of rigging the boat, and cleaning the boat, and maintaining the boat. I was just tired of the whole thing. I tried other methods – kayaking, wading, and shore fishing; but, nothing seemed to light the inner fire.

    Deep down I knew that I still loved fishing, but I just really needed something to get me going again.

    I had already been a podcast aficionado for several years, but never really thought to look for fishing podcasts.

    Low and behold, several fishing related podcasts showed up when I searched iTunes. So, I subscribed to the Orvis Fly Fishing Podcast. Tom almost immediately rekindled my drive to fish – even though I didn’t fly fish. Yes, you read that correctly I wasn’t a fly fisher at all. As a matter of fact, I’m still not a fly fisher. But still, the Orvis Podcast just seemed to complement the other podcasts well.

    I have listened to almost every Orvis podcast since I subscribed several years ago!

    The Orvis Podcast has heavily influenced me and rekindled my love of fishing. So much so that about 6 months ago I finally gave in and purchased a second hand fly rod and reel setup from a local shop. It’s a small setup – an 8′ 6 wt and I still haven’t caught a fish with it. BUT! I keep it on my flats boat and make an attempt to cast each and every trip. Some day I hope to upgrade to a heavier setup, as I fear that if I were to hook a large redfish then my 6 wt would get destroyed, but for now I really enjoy just casting and getting a feel for the strip…

    The latest Podcast on fly tying materials has me excited too, as I see this as the next step in my evolution from spin fishing to fly fishing.

    I feel alive again.

    Keep up the great work!

  131. Great podcast as usual, but I listened to it twice and I couldn’t find any mention of soft hackle materials. Aside from the ubiquitous hungarian partridge, could you discuss other appropriate soft hackle materials in an upcoming Flybox? Where on game birds do you find the best soft hackles and what species are useful for what sizes. In the “Swinging” podcast you referenced starling as being good for small flies, but what about woodcock, quail, the different grouse species, rock dove, mourning doves, snipe, etc. Are there duck or goose feathers that make good soft hackle material? Thank you for your hard work and I hope to hear the answers to these questions in an upcoming podcast.

  132. Great tying podcast covering the materials basics. I’ve been tying for 20 years and it’s good every once in a while to hear a reminder of how different materials are used.

    You seem to have an overwhelming preference for using natural as opposed to synthetic materials and are clearly able to recognize suitable substitutes so why not start tying some bonefish flies with natural materials?

    Good thing you didn’t add more fuel for Dan Frasier by discussing jungle cock!

    Thanks for the great podcasts.


  133. Tom,
    Unlike that Monahan guy, you are a size G personality in a 10-0 world!
    Keep your CDC fluffy and your maribou dry…..

    Don “cement head” White

  134. Awesome podcast as usual. This helps me get into the mood for tying while I dream about spring hatches. Great tip on using alternative materials. I’m defiantly going to tie some mouse hair moose patterns for my next midnight monster brownie hunt.

    Here’s a tip for keeping warm in the winter. John Gulley taught me this while fishing for spawning browns on the Little Red River. Take a pair of chemical hand warmers and wrap them in a muffler around your neck. This will heat the blood flowing through your carotid artery and keep your whole body warm.

    Please keep up the great work — and don’t change a thing. You’ve got a working pattern.

    Best regards,

  135. Warm head = warm hands is a saying my Scout Master always used to say in Boy Scouts. Great tips on the hand warmers Tom but I wonder if the caller was keeping their head warm. They say like you loose like 80% of your heat out of your head so another good tip is to keep your head warm. The more heat you keep in there the more that is available for your body to pump out to the hands and toes etc.

  136. Hi Mr. Rosenbauer,

    My name is Jason, I’m 13 years old and I live about 45 min south of Chicago. I really enjoy the podcast and everything you do for new anglers. The highlights of my month are every time I get a new podcast from you. I have some access to some awesome fisheries on both sides of Lake Michigan, with my favorite rivers being the Pere Marquette and the AuSable. You were actually one of the reasons I got into this wonderful pastime is by listening to your podcasts after stumbling upon them in iTunes. I am an active member of my local TU chapter and a huge fan.

  137. Hey Tom,

    My name’s Ryan and I live with an amazing girl and her cat from hell-Munson. It wasn’t until hearing your words of inspiration in this podcast that I got the green light for the dubbing harvest. Lets just say his once perfect grey coat is missing a few chunks which helped produce some killer flies that some nice browns just couldn’t resist. We’ve got a real working relationship now thanks to you. He’s young too, with many coats to come, so drop me a line some time and maybe we can put something together for the Orvis dubbing collection in the next catalog. You guys rock, keep up the great work!

    Oh P.S. I accidentally broke that amazing girls 9’ 5 wt a couple weeks ago trying to free a snag, so a future podcast providing some tips on how to free a snag in different situations might helpful, thanks!

  138. Hi Tom. I have a bone to pick with you.
    I grew up learning to fish for carp with my father and friends using corn meal balls that we cooked. I thought I had gotten it out of my system years ago, except for an occasional fishing trip with the family, and had moved on to other hobbies. Then in September a year ago I stumbled on the Orvis store in NYC and your podcasts, and it’s like I’ve fallen into a blackhole. All my audiobooks have been deleted from my phone and replaced with your podcasts. It’s taken me months to go through them all and whenever I’m going on a fishing trip I relisten to the relevant ones in preparation. I’ve also taken all 3 fly fishing classes at the New York City Orvis store. This past July I went on an amazing trip to on the St. Mary’s River in Nova Scotia and followed your advice. I went to the local fly shop where they hooked me up with a skilled and very motivated 17 year old guide. One evening he led me to the mouth of a spring creek with native brook trout rising all around us. We caught one trout after the other, and it was fantastic. Other trips to the Catskills and steelhead fishing on the Salmon River followed.
    Right now I’m obsessed to the point that my other hobbies are suffering and my friends are wondering where I’ve disappeared to. I’m daydreaming about joining my wife’s knitting group, bringing along a vise and tying flies the whole evening through. Stitch and bitch, they call themselves. I think it might work.
    And it’s all your fault, Tom. OK, Rob at the NYC Orvis store and the two guides who have corrupted me, Craig and Chris, are also to blame. The worst part is, I don’t care. I’m lovin it.
    Thanks, Tom, for continuing to make the podcasts. They’re really an amazing resource and I try to talk them up to anyone who’s willing to listen.
    Emery from the New York City area

  139. I made it to the comments page for the contest, and all I have to show for it is this lousy t-shirt….(and an autographed Rosenbauer book for Christmas….)

  140. Ode to Fly Fishing:

    Thanks to Orvis and ol’ Rosenbauer’s show,
    My lines are all tight and my rods are all bow’d.
    My hackles are soft,
    The subsurface tug, not.
    The rivers majestic in their wondrous flow,
    Hold bounteous treasures just hiding below.
    The gear doesn’t come free,
    At least not usually to me! (Hint! Hint!)
    So please, be merciful, wife,
    With this consuming passion taking over my life.
    I promise one of these days we’ll take a vacation somewhere much hotter,
    And you’ll get my undivided attention,
    Not just the usual: me scoping out water.

  141. Great podcast Tom. I recently picked up fly tying and often times the information in fly recipes or patterns is confusing. I think the explanation of hair was really helpful, it’s probably the most confusing and intimidating part for a new tyer. Keep up the good work and keep the podcasts coming!


  142. Tom, another great podcast! I actually started fly tying after listening to your last fly tying episode. After, I went out an bought your book “The Orvis Fly-Tying Guide”. Fantastic book that really helped make fly tying easy. (Using your book I was able to catch a smallmouth on my own black wooly bugger). Now I am hooked on fly tying. As a novice fly tier this podcast was great. The majority of the topics you covered were questions I also had, especially about the dubbing. This is another podcast that was extremely helpful and I’m sure I will be listening to it multiple times.

  143. The line passed slowly overhead. Slow and flexible, like the motion of the drowsy river that stirred past my legs. Taking deep breaths to slow my heart’s tempo, I softly regressed my pace with the steady, resounding ebb of nature’s metronome. Deep breaths. The scent was woody and fresh with that watery smell you just can’t put your finger on, but yet, it is so very familiar. The same smell you wait for all winter. Here it was now.

    Slow and flexible, that’s how I like my rod too. The new rods are fast and stiff. It has been said that the rod should match the personality of its user. Then again, people are increasingly rigid and tense these days, so I suppose the new poles are fitting then, after all. Forget about power and casting distance and all this jibberish. I fish to slow down. The only distance I care about is the distance I can put between myself and civilization. I go to get lost, and to lose my worries in the process.

  144. Tom,

    Thanks for all the great information you have shared over the years on the Podcast. What I’m really writing to tell you is thanks for getting me started as a kid. I taught myself how to fly fish as a kid ~20 years ago reading the Orvis Guide to Fly Fishing. That was my fly fishing bible and basis of knowledge. One day I’m going to get you to sign it for me. I missed you in Cleveland a couple years ago. As a kid, I always thought the bone fishing chapter was the best. I still haven’t had a shot at a bonefish, but I’ve managed to hook up with 20+ other species. It will happen eventually though. I really appreciate the continuing education you provide in the podcasts. Keep up the great work. Thanks again.


  145. great podcast as always Tom, I think part of the magic of fly tying is trying out variations of patterns so all the advise on different substitutes really got me thinking about some different things I can try with some tried and true patterns. Of course knowing how a substitute may affect a flies performance is important information to know so thank you for going over some of that information as well. While fly tying podcasts are difficult due to lack of visual etc, I think you should keep doing them once in a while when the subject matter can be dealt with through speaking only. Thanks again for all you do and all the time you put in, we really appreciate it (especially me)!

  146. Am I too late?
    Hopefully I’m in time for the drawing. The blog and podcast are terrific. I’ve learned a ton and yes they make me buy Orvis stuff. Lots of it.

  147. Tom, we all love your great pedagogical podcast, and I have to say that most of my understanding of the sport comes from the immense investment you’ve poured into your listeners. Surely tomorrow’s fly fishers will thank-you for your contribution. Myself being a pizza delivery driver, listen to your podcasts repeatedly while on the road… in fact, every one at least twice! I have to say though that there are some unique idiosyncrasies to your method that I’m sure other dedicated and persistent disciples have picked up on. So all in good humor, and without further jabber, here is my attempt to paraphrase and hyperbolize your wonderful quirks that make me smile, without fail, every time I listen in to a podcast:

    “Hi, and welcome to the Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Flycast; I’m your host Tom Rosenbauer! I’m going to start off here with an email from Smitherwacker Jibbervorski” –severely butchers pronunciation of name.–
    “Smitherwacker wants to know how he can become as good a fly fisher as Lee Wulf and Lefty Kreh. So uh, Smitherwacker, here’s my five tips on how to do just that. Well I say five, but you all know I can’t count. And the other thing to remember is that there’s no hard and fast rules to catching fish, and that’s what makes fly fishing so appealing and fun to us right? Trying to crack the code!” –Tom’s obviously never spent months getting skunked out on the water… just kidding… that never happens to me… really.. don’t ask my wife!–
    “Now, TYPICALLY it all comes down to leaders, leaders, and leaders… I CANNOT express how IMPORTANT it is to use the RIGHT leader for the situation. So yeah… leaders. Oh, and PRACTICE YOUR CASTING! I know I harp on this all the time but I’m ABSOLUTELY convinced that most fly fishers out there TYPICALLY (myself included) DO NOT practice casting ENOUGH.
    “Now what is that, tip number seven? OK and ALWAYS start out fishing for bluegill and pumpkinseeds out on a pond or lake somewhere CLOSE BY where you can just have fun CATCHING FISH, not on a technical trout stream or steelhead river.” – here Tom trips over his words, coughs, and says, “Uhh, let’s do that again James.” -which of course James doesn’t edit over.
    “Sooo, uh, TYPICALLY we fly fisher’s just need to get out there and figure out what’s working and spend some time waiting and watching the water. Practice your casting. Use the right leader for the right situation. Catch sunfish somewhere close by. And remember, there is no RIGHT way to do it.
    “Well, that’s the flycast for this week. I hope you all enjoyed those 13 tips on how to become a great fly fisher. This is Tom Rosenbauer, and thanks for listening to the Orvis Fly Fishing Guide Flycast”.

    Don’t change Tom; we all love every little quirk and idiosyncrasy that comes along with the whole Rosenbauer package! Thanks for all you do for us!

  148. Inspired by the podcast, I cornered the cat, shaved a few square inches off his side; offered to walk the elderly neighbor’s dog while concealing shears behind my back; requisitioned my wife’s coffee grinder and set out to make my own custom feline-canine dubbing.

    Consequently, I am writing to you from the motel down the street. They provide free wi-fi as well as color TV, and there’s a retention pond in the back that I suspect holds some carp…

  149. Thank you tom for this podcast. I like to say I started fly fishing because of you and my buddy graham. (My Dad was the first to take me fishing so i had the basics kinda.)(living in Bozeman MT aug 2008 )So one day on the way to the Bighorn river ,listening to your podcast (Drift Boated etiquette ) I asked my buddy graham whats the best thing to buy for fly fishing. He Said ” a drift boat. Well I didn’t even own a rod at this time, maybe an old fen wick. I talked my girlfriend at the time now my wife that we needed a drift boat. I found a cheap used boat !!! We learned to float and fish together. You said Hire a guide, so i took a guide class . My son is 31/2 now and has his own rod and has taken more naps on the drift boat than i can count. He asks to listen to tom Rossenburger lol We now live on the bighorn river. I have lots of stories to tell but the;last five years have been just fishing and your podcasts. I’m not sure if i have a problem, the thug is the drug. Thank you again for so many great days on the river. Im not really sure what i did before fly fishing. Dante

  150. WOW
    You do have Kashey and you are the Guru or the Yoda of the Fly-Tying world with all that information.
    ( Five Tips to Avoid Embarrassment on the Flats 4 Nov 2010) Think I might have a go at Fly-Tying,
    Christmas is coming soon what about hinting on your next Pod cast. On all the nice stuff at Orvis my wife might get the hint !

  151. Tom,

    I really enjoyed the fly tying podcast. A real feather in your cap. I fact, I might just set up my old tape player (with the high speed dubbing) and make some copies for a few friends. The stream of consciousness that you do is very entertaining, but you always manage to tie back to the theme even if your thread leads in a different direction.

    I’m now hooked on this fly tying thing, but hey, we all have our vices, right? Or maybe knot? I think I’ve become at least a cape-able tier, but with all of the packages that show up from Orvis, I think I’ve saddled us with some large credit card bills (up to my neck in debt).

    I hope no one herls with all the bad jokes in this post… Drop me a line and let me know if you’d rather I didn’t post again in the future.

    One last suggestion- maybe you should have Phil Phil in for you on the podcast sometime?

  152. Question: who knows more about Fly Fishing, God and his Angels OR Phil Monohan?

    Trick Question: Phil Monohan is God and he has the face of an angel.

  153. Tom,
    Thanks for the great podcast.

    The San Juan Shuffle was enlightening…from the show notes, I figured it might be when you take an unexpected swim in a big river.

    I’m hoping that I can still be in the drawing for a copy of your book, The Orvis Guide to Small Stream Fly Fishing.

    (Thanks again and please keep the terrific podcasts coming. Hopefully, Phil Monahan has recovered from his initial shock of seeing the considerable uptick in traffic on this post!)

  154. Tom,

    Thanks to this podcast, I am finally going to embrace fly-tying. I have wanted to do it for years. My goal for 2014 is to learn fly-tying. Thanks for pushing me over the edge!

  155. Squirrels Beware!

    Now that I have exhausted my local supply of raccoon pelts, I can move to replenish them with all the local grey squirrels I want for my streamer patterns. I am also glad that I am not the only who doesn’t use field mice for dry flies. It is really difficult to remove them off all those sticky traps! Seriously though, thanks for all the de-mystification of some of these materials. I have only been tying for a couple of months but love hearing about all the different materials.

    Having only picked up a fly rod a few years ago and finally took the plunge into the world of fly tying this year, I love it when someone can break through some of the gobbledygook and explain what some of the materials mean and what it means for catching fish. Thanks and keep them coming!

  156. Tom,
    This was a really helpful podcast. I enjoyed hearing some of your favorite materials and how you used them in your own tying. I had a couple of ideas for either a podcast of the flybox:
    1. What are some of the newer materials that are out for tyers? I know you see things at shows etc, that I don’t see living here in Orlando, Fl.
    2.It would also be great to hear about some creative materials people are using. Half the fun for me is repurposing other things for tying.
    Thank you for all the work you put into the podcast Tom. It is really practical and I have learned a lot from you.

  157. Pingback: Tippets: Lining Up, Philosophy of Dams, Demystifying Tying Materials | MidCurrent
  158. Hey Tom, thanks so much for covering such a wide range of fly fishing related subjects. The greatest thing about our sport is there’s always something new to learn.

    Early November I was crushed by a rolling log in the back country and spent 30 days in hospital. I have some fractures and lost one kidney. My surgeon won’t give me a time on when I can wave the wand again and get back on the water so I have been entertaining myself by learning to tie the famous and historic catskill style flies beginning with Theodore Gordon’s Quill Gordon. The beauty of these flies and the richness of history allows me to engage my sport even whilst convalescing. I’m palming them off to my buddies to test drive them. Let’s hope the browns in my neck of the woods have the same penchant for the classics as those browns at the turn of the 19th century.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *