He’s back — with a psychic friend

This lake doen’t get the praise of some other Louisiana gems – and that’s just the way regulars like it.

This summer, Superman is back in theaters, Roger Clemens is back on the mound for the Astros, and Paris Hilton and Nicole Ritchie are back on TV living the simple-minded life. Even old rock groups like Manfred Mann are getting back together. They’re busy re-recording their ’60s hit “Quinn the Eskimo” but with the more politically correct title, “Quinn the Native Aleutian-American.”

Sooner or later, everything returns. Even that cabbage casserole I ate last night is trying to return.

In keeping with the trend, we hereby welcome the return of the Fly Fishing Answer Man. So if any of you have questions about fly fishing or even paddlesports, please send them by letter or email.

Now normally we would wait a couple of months for responses. But thanks to the aid of the renown psychic, Karnak the Great, we’ve been able to anticipate your questions before you even knew what to ask.

Mike in Metairie will send us an email wanting to know if we had any recommendations for a four-piece rod under $200 for inshore saltwater fishing.

Mike, there are so many quality offerings in the moderately-priced category that it’s nearly impossible to recommend just one. I would suggest you test-cast several makes to find the one that best fits your casting stroke.

The rods that I like, based on performance and company’s customer service, are Sage Launch, TFO Professional or Teeny series, St. Croix Avid, Scott Voyager and Orvis Frequent Flyer.

The last one in the list is a seven-piece series that I recommend for more experienced anglers. All these rods come with a lifetime warranty, so if you break it for any reason, just send the rod back with $25 or $30, and they’ll send you back a new one.

Scott in Natchitoches will want to know why his self-made leaders keep coming apart.

There are three possibilities. If you’re using flourocarbon instead of mono, be aware that only certain knots will hold. For interconnecting knots with fluoro, I strongly recommend the Double Uni-knot.

A second possibility is that you’re trimming off the tag pieces of your knots too close without tightening the knots first with pliers. One solution might be to leave just a bit of the tag pieces sticking out until you’ve caught a nice-sized fish, then trimming them off. One good fish can do a better job than most pliers.

Finally, don’t mix different makes of material for sections of your leader. For example, using Orvis Big Game for your butt section, Trilene XL for your midsection and Frog Hair for your tippet. Stick with one brand/type all the way.

Nelson from Gretna will send us a letter asking where one can purchase flies in his area, and what colors and sizes I recommend for specks and reds.

A large selection of flies are available at these fly shops: Uptown Angler in New Orleans, Gulf Coast Outfitters and Mayer Company in Baton Rouge, and White River in the Bass Pro store in Bossier City.

Also, Spillway Sportsman in Brusly, Lafayette Shooters in Lafayette, The Honey Hole in West Monroe, and various Academy outlets sell a decent selection as well. The fly shops are really clued in to what flies are catching fish at the moment, and can set you up with the right colors and sizes.

In general, most of my marsh flies are size 2, with size 4 for small shrimp and size 1/0 for poppers and large baitfish patterns.

Cormier’s 5th Law states that “speckled trout love any color as long as it’s chartreuse.”

For redfish, nothing beats a spoon fly, preferably in gold. Crab patterns and pink charlies come a close second.

Nita in Mandeville will email telling us she’s having trouble with her roll casting, and asking what we suggest to remedy it.

Recently I attended a fly fishing expo where Lefty Kreh, one of the most knowledgeable experts of our time, was doing a seminar on basic casting. Kreh says that if you’re able to make a good forward cast, then you can execute a proper roll cast simply by bringing the rod back slowly to 1 o’clock, then executing a normal forward cast to 10 o’clock. Most folks have a tendency to drive the rod down forcefully while roll casting, and this is what causes the line to pile up rather than go out straight.

Thad in Lafayette will be asking if there’s any trout streams closer to his home than Gatlinburg, Tenn.

Most definitely! Arkansas and Oklahoma offer several of the best trout waters in the South, and a few world-class as well.

The Mountain Fork near Broken Bow, Okla., and the Little Missouri near Murfreesboro, Ark., are a little over six hours away from where you live, and hold plenty of 10- to 14-inch trout.

Northern Arkansas offers the Little Red River near Heber Springs, and the White and Norfork rivers near Mountain Home. All are fishing great this summer, and according to area guide John Wilson, are rewarding fly anglers with at least one fish per day over 20 inches.

If you have kids under 16 who enjoy fishing, then take them to Dry Run Creek, a youth-only stream near the dam of Norfork Lake, where they’ll have an opportunity to catch several trophy-size trout.

Curtis in Baton Rouge will email us with a problem regarding his two-piece kayak paddle. Apparently it gets jammed after use, and can’t be taken apart.

If sand or mud gets into the joint, then I recommend submerging the paddle after use to loosen up the particles and provide lubrication.

If the kayak paddle is new, then one possibility is that the joint was fitted at the factory under a cooler and drier environment, and exposure to hot South Louisiana weather has expanded the joint.

To fix this, take a 5-inch section of 400 grain or finer sandpaper, and wrap it around the internal joint piece. Then rotate the paddle piece smoothly so it sands down evenly. Stop every few seconds, clean off the joint, and then check for fit.

You want a snug fit, especially if you’re making this fix outside on a hot day (which I recommend) so that on cold days the fit isn’t too loose. Never lubricate your paddle joints with any grease or oil-based product.

About Catch Cormier 275 Articles
Glen ‘Catch’ Cormier has pursued fish on the fly for 30 years. A certified casting instructor and renowned fly tier, he and his family live in Baton Rouge.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply