About

I’m not an angler who writes; I’m a journalist who fishes. The Fly Line is about news, commentary and reflections on fly-fishing. It’s New York-centric by default, since that’s where I live, but fly-fishing news and perspective from everywhere is welcome. I write a weekly column on fly-fishing for The Daily Gazette in Schenectady, N.Y. and the On The Fly column in the New York Outdoor News. I have young kids, an old house and a day job, so I don’t fish as much as I’d like, but life is good. –Morgan Lylehouse frame, mo mug, flies aug. 17-21

8 responses to “About

  1. Hi Morgan,
    I’m willing to finally give Fly fishing a go. Now that I have seen Tenkara, I feel like I belong on a stream. Western Fly fishing always seemed like to much un-needed effort, and a un-efficient reel. Could you suggest a good moderately affordable kit for a beginner here? We have a cabin in Ashe County, NC, close to the New River and many small creeks and river where Tenakra seems the first choice. I am stoked to have found this simple and pure art of fishing… cheers.
    Neil

    • Hi Neil,

      I can heartily recommend Tenkara USA for rods and lines, if that suits your price range. Most people consider the Iwana (about $160) to be the best all-around trout rod (the 11- or 12-foot model, depending on your preference. I’d go with the 12 unless your local streams are extremely brushy.) The Traditional Tenkara Line ($20) will cast nicely.
      If you’d rather spend a little less, check out Fountainhead rods. They don’t come with a rod tube like T USA rods do, but I have cast one Fountainhead rod and it was very nice. I would recommend the 12-foot Stone Fly ($75.) You might also consider Tenakara-Fishing, which has a starter kit for $155 that might be just the ticket, but I’ve never cast their rods so I can’t vouch.
      You can also visit http://www.allfishingbuy.com, which has a huge range of interesting rods, but I also have no personal experience with them or the rods they sell.
      Besides a rod and line, all you need is a spool of 5X tippet from any fly shop (maybe add a spool of 6X for small flies and fussy fish) and a basic assortment of flies.
      You should spend some time at the Tenkara USA site, whihc is beautiful and has tons of info, including a great forum, and at TenkaraBum, where you can buy flies, lines and other accessories and which has detailed reviews of lots of rods.
      I’m glad you’re interested in trying tenkara. It really is a fun and effective way to fish for trout, and the New River region sounds ideal for it. Let me know if you have more questions.

  2. I like your blog’s title.

    With many of the same time space challenges as you, I probably fish way more than I should.

    But somebody’s got to do it.

  3. Morgan, I am predominately a warm water fly fisherman in Texas, and I have been simplifying my approach to fly fishing over the years. I started helping some folks learn to tie, and actually bought your book for some ideas for my beginners… little did I know that it would be one of the best tying books I have read in a long time. I have a podcast releasing our first episode on May 31st, 2016… The Warm Water Flyfisher Podcast. I would love to interview you for the show sometime.

  4. Hi Morgan,

    My name is Austin Stevens, I’m originally from Montana but attending college in Vermont. I’m loving your Simple Flies book, but I’m having some difficulty getting the Deer Hair Sedge to float in fast pocket water, especially the size 6 rubber-legged terrestrial version. I originally thought I hadn’t tied the deer hair thick enough, but Wyatt’s own photos and your book appear relatively sparse. Are there are tricks for making the Deer Hair Sedge more visible in fast-moving water (especially as a dry-dropper – I’ve reduced the average dropper down to a size 16 tungsten hare and copper), maybe flaring the wing a bit more prominently (or does that even matter)? If you have the time, I would greatly appreciate any tips on this topic, especially if I’m using the wrong fly for the situation.

    Best,

    Austin

    • Austin, thanks for writing and I’m glad you’re enjoying the book. Two things come to mind: make sure to treat the wing (but not the body!) with floatant, and maybe choose a non-tungsten bead for your nymph. Even small tungsten beads sink really well and might interfere with the dry fly’s ability to float.
      Drab flies like the DHS can be hard to see, especially on a broken surface. Having a few extra-bush ones for the fast/pocket water might be a good idea!

  5. Morgan, thank you for the response. Your response has given me some great tips during my days spent going after brookies here in Vermont. I’ve had great success with the snowshoe hare emerger during a trico hatch recently- is there any hatch you find that fly generally not effective for? Is it an effective midge pupa fly during a midge hatch? Also, I noticed in your book the Jiggy is shown with the bucktail worked around the hook, like a bucktail deceiver. However, other sources often show it with the bucktail off the hook entirely and jutting up from an angle (http://www.fluefiske.net/wp/wp-content/images/stories/fluebinding/jiggy8.jpg) Does it make any difference on the action or hook-side up position if the bucktail is worked around the hook shank vs jutting up from the hook? If you have any spare time in your busy schedule, it’d be great for any tips on any of these questions!

    Best,

    Austin

  6. Hi Austin. Glad you’ve been having some luck with the flies. I haven’t found the snowshoe emerger not to be effective in any particular hatch, but I haven’t tried it on that many hatches either. I would want it tied very small and slim for tricos or midges, and I might be temped to try something slimmer, like a Wingless Quill Gordon. Or, more likely, a small Phesant Tail Nymph. As for the Jiggy, it probably should be tied with all the bucktail stacked on the top side of the hook. But I’ve tied and fished many of them with the bucktail surrounding the hook, at least partly, and they work just fine.
    I go to fish the tricos on the Battenkill in New York years ago, and it’s a great hatch!

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