Welcome to Just Old Flies

Welcome to 'just old flies,' a section of methods and flies that used-to-be. These flies were tied with the only materials available. Long before the advent of 'modern' tying materials, they were created and improved upon at a far slower pace than todays modern counterparts; limited by materials available and the tiers imagination.

Once long gone, there existed a 'fraternity' of anglers who felt an obligation to use only the 'standard' patterns of the day. We hope to bring a bit of nostalgia to these pages and to you. And sometimes what you find here will not always be about fishing. Perhaps you will enjoy them. Perhaps you will fish the flies. Perhaps . .

Part Fifty-seven

A Door Into Spring

By Old Rupe

I have a fairly dumb dog that has become a member of the family over the years. She hates my Lake Erie boat but will tolerate my bass boat and just loves to run through the brambles collecting burrs and assorted nasties just being a dog while I fly fish.

A dog is a great companion even on a boat. She will get excited when I catch a fish, something my family has failed to do for years, and I'll let you know that it's a great thing. It's kind of nice when late at night you are tying to have someone that loves you snuggle next to your feet. It sure makes it easier to tie those last five or six elk hair caddis.

Once when my veterinarian mentioned my dog had cataracts my wife was all set for high dollar doggie surgery. It took me three weeks to explain how painful that surgery was in dogs. If my family had to choose between me and the dog I would have to acquire a taste for dog biscuits and Amber would have to learn to tie flies.

My dogs haircut costs more than mine and she has a nicer looking barber. Old Harold my barber just doesn't measure up.

When I fish my river I take her as she really enjoys it. After a hard day on the river she likes Grable's hamburgers almost as much as Dave and neither of them get into my Fosters. Actually some days when she doesn't bark she can be preferred company since she doesn't sore mouth my trout ahead of me. It's hard to bring a friend on your river and have them sore mouth so many fish they loose count. Since my dog catches no trout she's always welcome. Anyone that catches less trout than me is always welcome. Dave and Tim take note. Try fishing the last half of the day with the fly broken off at the barb. There is a part in Fly Fishing Etiquette 101 taught at all good schools that says never catch more fish than your host. Amber has learned that small fact of life rather well, and she doesn't tie a better fly either. Maybe she's smarter than she looks.

Amber and I have a great bond that has tied us together over the years. We both hate winter, and can't wait till spring to run through the brambles on my river.

Each time I take her out to do her thing we follow the same little game. We open one door and it's cold and nasty so we go to another door, and when it's the same we go to the next.

I know what she is doing. She is looking for that door into spring. I go with her not only to humor her, but I suppose I'm looking too.

Late at night when I see her run and bark in her sleep I know where she is. She has found her door into spring. I just roll over and look for mine. ~ Old Rupe

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