I’d been thinking about trying a bamboo rod for a while when seemingly the perfect opportunity came along. Well known Oregon builder Mike Brooks advertised one of his Payne 100 reproductions on Clark’s Classic Flyrod forum at a sale price due to a small cosmetic imperfection (which you or me would never, ever notice if it wasn’t pointed out). The forgiving Payne 100 taper (7’6″ 4wt) and Mike’s durable ‘permacane’ finish seemed perfect for a first bamboo rod so I jumped jumped on it. I don’t know much about bamboo rods (yet) but I really like the feel of this one. ”Casts itself” and “smooth” are what you always hear about bamboo and this is no exception. I just need to remember the “casts itself” part a little more and quit trying to rely on brute force to compensate for my crappy casting stroke. Bonus! It smells fantastic!
Seen here with a nice 3 1/8″ Perfect. I have a Godfrey Classic that will be paired with the rod once it gets back from Ted Godfrey’s shop for a little tune up. These reels are painfully expensive but they are really ‘last reels’ that I hope my son & daughter (or their kids) are still using when they are my age. I’ll still keep modern sealed drag reels on my big Meiser two-handers for anadromous fish, but for trouts, I could probably stuff the line in my pocket and catch just as many fish. Still… these heirloom reels are like a broken in leather chair, more beautiful and comfortable with use.
Fishing report – nice day on a small stream. I had planned to hit a different stream but the Spring flows were a bit too high so I hit a closer stream, also too high. Beautiful day, temps around 60F, a little breezy but not too bad. About 2PM a great BWO hatch came off with a few larger, brownish mayflies also popping. Didn’t seem quite big enough for March Browns but I did find a lot of dark clinger nymphs under rocks, who knows…? One problem – all that food and no trouts. Didn’t see a single rise or any other sign of fish. I’m beginning to think they must migrate to some (unknown to me) location to hide from the big Spring runoff they know is coming any day now.