Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Wish list for 2011

The crew at OBN has a point. With the new year approaching, it is worth while thinking about what I would like to accomplish this year with regard to my fishing pursuits. As such, I have come up with a list of ten things I am looking forward to .... tackling... *ah-thankyou*... during 2011.


1. Truly understand the spey verses one-handed debate.
2. Fly fish Minnesota's Driftless area.
3. Fly fish during an explosive hatch.
4. Be more like Phil Dunfee: "I'm a cool dad, that's my thang. I'm hip, I surf the web, I text. LOL: laugh out loud, OMG: oh my god, WTF: why the face."
5. Tie flies to match a hatch.
6. Blog 2 poems per month (minimum).
7. Organize/create my tying bench.
8. Take better pictures of my fishing outings.
9. During intern year, when I have a chance to fish, spend that time with my wife instead. Not every time, but at least once :) Sorry, Sara.
10. No matter where I match for residency, find some local fishing.

Here's to a good year, Phil.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Heart of Gold

He doesn't start playing until about 1:40 in, so be patient.

I'm heading out to buy some new gear. Harvesting the fruits of Christmas. Don't worry, my waders will always be leaking.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Luckier than ever. 12/27/10

Good evening, little one.
Thank you for being all that you are.
Your long hair
And creative contributions
Inspire me in all aspects of my life.
Just to sit here
As you, in adult-sized footsies,
Organize jewelry,
I feel luckier than ever.

- dln

Friday, December 24, 2010

Holy Perch!

My brother caught the biggest perch I've ever seen while ice fishing
in Minnesota. I think we can thank catch and release for this hog. Super awesome.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

one more post :)

Great video I found on The best way to find happiness and satisfaction is to turn what you love into your job.

Here you go! Click and watch the video called "preOccupations."

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Last post before Christmas! Caddis Pupa!

As I continue to learn about fly tying, I realize how the process parallels other things I have learned in the past. I grew up playing ice hockey (goalie) in Minnesota, and as you develop your style, you tend to emulate your play after players you look up to. For me it was a teammate one year ahead of me who is playing professional hockey still and Patrick Roy. By copying their style, I developed a platform of skills and techniques that would eventually allow me to grow into my own style. The same pattern of events occurred when I learned to play guitar. I had some artist I liked and I tried to learn their songs. After a while, I began to write my own using the strumming patterns and chords I had picked up.

With regard to fly tying, I've been watching Youtube videos and searching other fly fishing blogs. One blog I really like is I really enjoy WFF's tying, photography, insights, and presentation of his posts. For instance, a great thought he had in a previous post was that, in order to get a better understanding of how your fly will look in the water after you tie it, throw it on some tippet in a glass of water. He astutely stated how easy it is to overlook that part. We are so focused on how it looks as we tie it, but dubbing looks quite different when wet.

Anyway, today I used WFF as my tying guide. He has been working on his caddis pupa presentation and tying. So much so that it inspired me to tie a few. I made three attempts. Two with bead heads, one without. One was using a skinnier (0.5mm diameter) clear tubing/thread for wrapping. This gave it more of a grub appearance.

Well, enjoy the snapshot. I used a cork from a wine bottle to hold the flies and this worked nicely. Have a happy holiday weekend!

Why Fish?

Why Fish? 12-22-10

A bond forms when walking a stream.
Whether you study its fluid dynamics,
The aquatic fauna and flora,
Or simply enjoy the company,
The line connects the rod holder
To a ballet of scales and invertebrates.


Rhythmically paddling back and forth,
Stationary at the seams of faster currents,
Patiently waiting for the optimal meal
Until a passing morsel
Drifts closer.


Sitting on the trunk of my little black car
Emptying my sieve-like waders
And breaking down my gear,
I feel complete after a day of fishing.
I am the rod, the line, the fly, the water,
And the fish.

- david

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Look who's organized!

A fellow Cornhusker Fly Fisher tipped me off to these boxes for
keeping your tying hooks organized. It is a bead or craft box made by Craftmates with a
locking mechanism for each hatch and rounded bottoms so it is easier
to grab the hooks. I taped labels to the lids and threw away all the
crappy bags I kept my hooks in. Score!

Total cost of box? $3.99 at Hobby Lobby

Oh, we've come sooo far...

Ladies and Gentlemen (mom and dad), I am proud to tell you I am now listed among the many superb blogs on the Outdoor Blogger Network. It is a great collaboration of those of us who are striving to shore our outdoor passions. I'm excited to continue looking through the pages on the website and encourage you to do the same! They have more than just fly fishing blogs. They have hunting, fishing, outdoor sports, photography, boating, ecology, etc. Enjoy!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

1st Cornhusker Fly Fishers' tying session

It was a good first session for me. I tied some basic flies. Nothing difficult, but while focussing on technique, I noticed they were a bit sloppier at first. So as you go from left to right in the picture, the flies get progressively a little better.
Things I came away with:

1. getting much better tying on dubbing.
2. realized the importance of wrapping hackle feathers consistently fly to fly.
3. judging hackle feather size appropriate for fly.
4. I learned how to reattach my muffler to my car with iron wire.

I tied 5 "Soft Hacks Flies."
- 3 size 14, 2 size 12
- olive/green dubbing
- partridge hackle

and... 1 "black fur ant"
- size 12
- black dubbing
- saddle hackle

Friday, December 17, 2010

a few photos from this year...

1. Dad with a nice crappie last winter.

2. Steve (in picture) and I heading out Muskie fishing. No pictures of fish. No fish caught.

3. Fishing with friends in Northern Minnesota. Neither of those people are me :).

4. Northern Minnesota lake. Don't remember the name. Evening fishing with freinds.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Wildfire Poly Caddis and Modified CDC Emerger

Wildfire Poly Caddis:
-Size 14 hook
-Zeeba Dubbing (our cat)
-"Homespun" Yarn: color Wild Fire
-70 Denier Black Ultra Thread

Modified CDC Emerger:
-Size 16 emerger hook
-Tail: Mallrd Flank Feather
-Red ultra wire (didn't have white)
-Some leftover black thread
-Zeeba Dubbing
-Wings: I don't know what the feather I used is called
-Head was finished off with a little more dubbing and then tied off

* I'm calling it modified because I didn't have the proper colors or wing materials. It called for CDC Puff feathers.

** Woo Hoo!

It's worth a try, right?

Odds of winning this contest? Probably at most 1:500,000.

Would it be sweet to win? Hell yes.

White elephant gift!

To follow up on the Cornhusker Fly Fishers group post yesterday, it
just so happened it was the group's annual Christmas party. I was able
to join the group (in spite of bad weather) and meet several of the
members. We were supposed to bring a white elephant gift for less than
$10. I brought some liner wading socks and below is the gift I got in
return. It is a leather bound fly case. It looks like it is rather old
but has not been used ever. It is great! Excellent start to the group.
We are meeting again on Saturday to tie.

This is going to be fun.

Walking Beside a Creek by Ted Kooser

Walking Beside a Creek by Ted Kooser

Walking beside a creek
in December, the black ice
windy with leaves,
you can feel the great joy
of the trees, their coats
thrown open like drunken men,
the lifeblood thudding
in their tight, wet boots.

*this is from a daily email I get called "The Writer's Almanac." Garrison Keillor picks the poems of the day and mentions notable events in the day's history.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Spectacular. Hell or High Water.

I've found a new outlet...

So I stopped by Omaha's only fly shop, which is in Cabela's. There I met Bill, the guy who was working the fly shop. We chatted about tying and fishing in the area and he mentioned they are having a fly tying course this Saturday the 18th.

Not only that, but he mentioned a group called Cornhusker Fly Fishers. Interesting... Their website looks like it needs maintinence. Apparently they meet at Cabela's each Thursday to tie. This could be a great opportunity to formally learn some skillz (wow, I've never used the "z" like that. I feel a little ashamed but also a little liberated).

I'll probably stop by this weekend. Maybe tomorrow night as well.

I'm such a beginner at this, in reality. I need some people to teach me. I've been fishing my whole life. I've been trout fishing off an on since I was in 5th grade. I just have never taken that leap to really get taught about fly tying and fly fishing. In fact, I think I have always been resistant to asking for help. Instead, I figure things out my self even if that means I don't know everything I should. So this will be good for me. I will be start attending this group to really learn how to be better.

On another note, today is a good day to try and write some poetry. Let's give it a shot.


Eastern Nebraska in the winter.
It's as much an island from
Fly fishing
As the Sahara.
The waters are slow and frozen.
The fish are hunkered down.
I either need to hunker down
And tie like a mad hatter,
Mind poisoned from the cement,
Or pick a date
And escape
To a stream with enough
Kinetic energy to
Bare its ripples and expose her fish.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Murder Mystery Fishing Stories by Victoria Houston

So I recently stumbled upon this book, "Dead Angler" by Victoria Houston. I'm in the middle of the book and it is a good read. A murder mystery that takes place in Northern Wisconsin, but with an appealing underlying theme.... fly fishing. Even if the topic is there for the novelty and, at times, it seems a little unnecessary, I'm liking it.

I like to read a many different types of books (historical, scientific, introspective, biographies, novels, and, of course, Harry Potter). My "fluff" books usually are thrillers. To be able to combine a murder mystery with fishing simply rocks.

I'm already a huge fan of the books and I haven't even finished. She has 10 books total in the "Dead ____" series. If you're board this winter, read them. The Omaha Public Library has the entire series.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Flying out of Utah

I sitting here on the plane waiting to finally get back to Omaha after
a very long delay of flights. I have only been to Utah once and I'm
wishing this were a fishing trip. Oh well.

- David

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The result

Harvesting Zeeba dubbing

Winter is here...

So as the cold rolls in, the local fishing season has all but shut down for me.

That being said, I spent some time chatting with my brother about a possible winter trip to the Big Horn out in Montana. There is a great place there, the Cottonwood Camp. They have some excellent guide services and with it being winter, there shouldn't be too much of a crowd at all.

It would be either sow bugs or midges. I think it would be an amazing experience. That being said, it is a 14hour drive from here. If I don't go in the next few weeks, the next opportunity would be in April. It would be an awesome experience either way.

Besides that, I have been tying to build up my fly box. I have been tying scuds lately and then I think I will go with midges or something else basic. I will try to post some pictures to show you the scuds. They are pretty cool because I'm using cat hair dubbing from our cat's brush and a mini snicker's wrapper for the iridescent top of the scud.

Anyway, hopefully there will be more posts to come :)

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Muddy Waters. Little Papillion Creek.

So last weekend I made it out to Little Papillion Creek (I think that is what it is called) by 132nd-ish and Fort-ish. It was another stunningSunday. (The weather really has been beautiful in Omaha lately.)My plan was to walk the creek upstream in search of rises and possibly catching some fish. I new it would might be a mirky creek, but I read a Papillion Creek Water resources management page that mentioned the potential for fish. I figured it was worth a shot since I haven't been catching anything at Standing Bear.

I basically walked up the stream for about 2 hours cas
ting a San Juan Worm, hoping it would catch some attention. I didn't see any top-water action, so I didn't feel the need to switch to a dry fly. Besides the pretty scenery, and occasional teaser pools, I didn't see a thing. The water was SO muddy. I stepped in a couple times and immediately slid into 4-6in of silt. Thank you Nebraska farm run-off.

I decided to take a short break and just sit for a while.
I have to admit, I was frustrated with four consecutive outings without single fish. I had one great strike weeks ago at Standing Bear and I pissed that away, no problem. Fishing is a lot better if you are catching fish. And if you aren't going to catch anything, it is at least nice to have dry feet, which I won't have until I buy new waders. Since I am, honestly, to cheap to do that any time soon, I will be soggy for years to come.

I am mostly kidding, of course. I love getting out and fishing a stream or lake. It is just wonderful to be outdoors and interact with nature in a unique way. Being that close to the water gives me peace and joy. I will keep going back no matter how few fish I catch. I probably won't return to Little Papillion Creek anytime soon, but that is only because I didn't catch fish, not because it wasn't beautiful.

Fortunately, my frustrated mood didn't last long. I picked up a four pack of Tallgrass Brewing Co. Buffalo Sweat and had a wonderful evening. It is a great stout. So refreshing in fact that I found myself craving it after a 6 mile run later in the day.
Now that is a good beer.

Friday, October 15, 2010

one more time with feeling...

So another shot at Standing Bear. Last Sunday morning I went out and it was absolutely gorgeous. Perfect day. Not perfect fishing. No strikes. No rises. Nothing.

I walked east along the north shore of the reservoir. It got really muddy. No wind or current so wasn't sending clouds of silt all over the place.

On my way out there last time, I noticed a creek (that I have since learned is Papillion Creek) a mile away that looked big enough to fish. My hunch is there isn't much in there, but who knows? I figure, either tomorrow or Sunday I will go walk it north of the city to see if I can spot some fish and throw them something they like. Worth a shot, right?

This is the worst fly fishing blog out there. Ha. My waders leak and I can't catch anything.

At least it is supposed to be another beautiful day out there.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Back at Standing Bear

Last Sunday the wife and went back to Standing Bear Rec Area. Sara did some reading at a picnic spot and I waded a 100 meter stretch of the north shore. It was about thigh high and not too windy. The clarity was poor, and with the little chop, I couldn't see any fish action on the water. I was casting a wet fly I tied last week using a size 6 hook, Zeeba Dubbing (hair from our cat's brush), olive maribou, and some red and yellow neck hackle.
This was also my first attemp wading after sealing up the entire front seams of my waders. ankles to crotch. Result? The sealing cement is great and easy to work with. My waders may be beyond repair. I will try to reinforce the crotch and butt a bit more, but I may just have to settle with leaky waders until I have the means to replace them.

Anyway, with an hour and a half to fish, I worked the shallows and practiced my casting. It was very slow. In the picture below, on the left hand side, you can just see the edge of a downed tree. I worked this area pretty hard and just as my attention was waning, I had a huge swirl at my fly. I was pulling it only a few inches below the water and the fish, not sure if it was a bass or carp, missed showing me a decent 13-15 inch dark colored back. I couldn't get a profile view or see the tail, so I can't say for sure what it was. But it had some decent size and surprised the crap out of me.

Another reminder to try and be focused when fishing. Regardless, it was a beautiful Sunday in Nebraska and I learned a lot about that part of the lake. I will be able to walk that pretty easily in the spring and think I should eventually find some luck at Standing Bear.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

my leaky waders

my waders have been worn well.
not always consistently.
a season skipped.
but worn well.
they are paper thin
with neoprene booties.
i tie on my felt bottom boots.
they say we should move away from those.
we run the risk of transferring aquatic hitchikers.
stepping into the water a trickle of cold begins.
down the back of my calf. each leg.
kissing my kneecaps.
gigglingly cold.
rising slowly to body temperature.
catch my breath when crotch hits waves.
give me a minute.
ready to fish.
later I slosh, slosh, slosh up to my car.
out comes the flood.
music and the road.
that's a good day.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Lake Standing Bear Recreation Area

Went out today for a run at Lake Standing Bear Recreation Area in NW Omaha. It is located at about 132nd and Military Rd. I've read a few peoples posts about decent bass fishing there, and apparently it is stocked with trout. I imaging they run a little deeper here, but I could be wrong.

As my wife and I ran around the lake I kept looking at the shoreline to see what I might be working with if I try to wade it. It seems like it has a steep drop off along most of the eastern shore but there are plenty of fingers that may be shallower.

A couple of thoughts run through my mid with regard to what fish to go for.

1. whatever is biting.
2. try for the stocked trout.
3. go for bass.
4. I'm intruiged by the thought of hitting a slob carp.

I think I'll just pick a day coming up soon and see what happens. The mornings in Omaha are much less windy so I will have to start early. I'm finishing two weeks of night shifts which mean my days are for sleeping. Maybe next weekend.

I also have to face the music and address my leaky waders one of these days. After an hour in waist high water, I am filled to my knees. The problem is, I don't see any obvious tears. I'll just have to hit up the seams and knees with Hodgeman repair cement.

I'll let you know how it turns out.

Until then.

Friday, September 24, 2010

the brown

metallic and sleek
shining antique gold
spotted with cocoa cigarette burns along her back
autumn maple along her side

rise slowly
nipping the the surface
but with tenderness

let her take the fly
with a salute
an homage to her beauty
let her run

Monday, September 20, 2010

I found this page last night

partly my inspiration for this page's new direction.

Check it out.


Sunny/Windy Day in September

The heat rolled in last night
causing us to sweat in our sleep.
Out came the grasshoppers this morning
popping like Mexican jumping beans on the pavement and grasses.
Great Plains winds carry the hopping crazy men
off course and deliver them to the water.
Dare I take advantage of their misfortune
to fool the hasty fish?
With a slow pull and a quick roll
I send the hopper over and over
begging for attention.

My fly rod.

I just thought I should introduce you. Wooden handle. Medalist reel. 8
1/2 length. 5 weight. Graphite shaft. I made it in about spring 2002.
I've got an Earplug Bug (hopper) on there that I tied last week. It is pretty darn dirty, but the fish don't seem to mind.

waaaaaaaay too windy...

Out to Chalco Hills today to get a quick hour of fly fishing in. Right when I left the apartment, it was clear what kind of success I would have. Very little.

Nebraska is amazingly windy. It never occurred to me when we moved down here that we would face such gales.

Regardless, it was gorgeous out there. I waded a length of about 100 yards. I walked with the wind. This gave me an hour worth of practicing my roll casts.

The results of today's efforts: 0 fish. 1 pair of leaky waders. 1 happy guy. 1 tip from a catfisherman about a place called Walnut Creek where the bass are biting. Who knows? Worth a shot.

... also, it may be getting time to seal/patch my waders. this is getting ridiculous.

something new to try...

I have been using this site to post my occasional peotry and such. This has been fine, but I honestly don't feel I have gotten much out of it. I write the poetry whether I post it here or not. Was my hope that I would gain readers? share my thoughts and find growth in new places? I'm not sure.

So, I am going to give this site new purpose. In addition to writing, I have another activity that gives me joy: fishing.

I have recently been tying flies. Here in Omaha, Nebraska, I don't have much access to trout streams, but I have found a few area lakes where there are some eager panfish and bass.

I am going to begin telling you about my journey to find and catch the fish. I may tell you with photos, essays, or poems. Either way, I am hoping if give me and this blog a new sense of purpose.

here's to the future.
here's to the fish.
here's to my leaking waders
and a fishing poet's wish.

- dln

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Summing up Michael Gary Scott

An intervention is a surprise party for people with addictions.
And you get in their face and you scream at them.
And make them feel really bad about themselves.
And then they stop.

- Michael Scott, Regional Manager Dunder Mifflin - Scranton Branch

Saturday, April 10, 2010


Out to the trail this morning.
It is a beautiful day.
Our healthy bodies are amazing machines.
Pumping oxygen to each cell to fuel the race.
I can't wait to sweat, be sore, feel alive, run for miles, lose my breath, race a stoplight, and then rest.
What a great day.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Around this time last year,

Sara and I were playing in the Pacific's waves near

Cabo on the Baja Peninsula.

This is where we would like to be now.

Is this too much to wish for?

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Discovery (song lyrics)

The thunder rolls into the desert like a wolf on the chase of a lone girl.

Kicking up sand and kicking dust, making her way to Omaha.

Blistered toes and bleeding knees.

Stitch in her side, can’t breath.

Lucky luck fell into me.

Lucky love fell into me.

Rain falls from the charcoal clouds, feeding the thirst of our young girl.

Lay your lay me down to sleep, you’ve gone so hard so rest your feet..

Ease your eyes.

Dream of me at your side.

With the moon comes the tide.

Just as the cactus blooms, so we will too.

Just as the cactus blooms, so we will too.

Rescue me from my demons, these are things a bottle can’t do.

You don’t know it yet, but I knew you before we met.

Mississippi running girl.

Doing that Franklin twirl.

The West Bank on Riverside.

The West Bank on Riverside.

Just as the cactus blooms, so we will too.

Just as the cactus blooms, so we will too.

Discover me, my discovery.

Discover me, my discovery.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Loohcs Lacidem [] Medical School

With the pedal always to the floorboard you get to do so many things.
Opportunities will pass you by, but stagnation is a foreign concept.
We cover so much ground watching the scenery flicker away, like a time-lapse video of the seasons changing or the rain forrest jumping at unclaimed sunlight.
Responsibility is thrust on our shoulders, barely giving maturity a chance to catch up.
Before we can take that deep breath to let our thoughts and reflections sink into the dry soil, we are forced to decide which path to take.
Mr. Frost chose the road less taken. A scary concept, indeed.
Maybe it isn't so much which road is traveled less, but which road fits the soles of our feet best.
So as the landscape flies by, and we sift through our best options, we need to listen to our aching toes and ask, which path feels the best?
Then all that is left is to steer the car and watch the slideshow.

Frozen Morning

The lake is frozen

The snow, a blue reflection of the sky

Split by the forested horizon

A golden path bumps across the lake’s surface

Leading to the waking sun

I would like to think I see the same beauty

From this house that I would from a yurt or a teepee

But would it feel the same?

The only thing missing is my wife

She sleeps deep in the warm den

Dare I open the door

Letting light pour in

Flooding her out of the sheets?

I dare.