Kype Magazine: Get some

by Kirk Werner on September 11, 2014

I’ve been a supporter of the online magazine, Kype, for a several years now, having contributed to content and always posting their current issue in the sidebar of my blog.  Kype is now under new publishership, with my friend Aileen Lane, of MKFlies at the helm. Aileen has great enthusiasm for the whole fly fishing thing and I’m sure her energy will take Kype to new heights, despite my contribution to the current issue.

There are some great articles to be found as well as some marginal writing on page 22. So enjoy, and please support Kype. You can visit their website and subscribe so that you never miss a new issue, or you can come back here to the UA and always find the latest issue in the sidebar (look to the right and scroll down—there it is).


And if you’re looking for some expertly tied custom flies, give Aileen’s website a look.



I’ve failed as a father, but…

by Kirk Werner on September 8, 2014

On a recent Friday while I was someplace where I was unable to answer my phone, and in fact had it on silent mode, I received a text from my son, Schpanky:

By the time I saw the message he had, of course, left for his weekend to chase salmon on the Kalama River with a buddy. Honestly I didn’t give it much thought as I assumed he knew full well which rod to take—his 8 weight. Coupled with the fact that I didn’t have my reading glasses and couldn’t see the photo on my phone very well, I gave the matter very little thought. However, when I got home later that evening I looked more closely at the photo and realized Schpanky had taken the wrong rod. He had grabbed one of my Spey rods: the Sage Z-Axis 8134. An 8 weight for sure, but it probably wasn’t going to serve him too well.

It’s not that the 8134 isn’t the right tool for the job—it would do just fine with the right reel and line.  However, when paired with the wrong line, no Spey rod is going to perform properly—especially if the line isn’t even for a Spey rod.  So unless he had grabbed the right reel, containing the right line, things weren’t going to go so good for the lad.

The reason for my doubt is that there was no way he’d have known which reel to take, as my drawer full of angling tackle contains a confusing assortment of different reels, spools and such. And they’re not labeled in a manner that anyone other than myself would be able to decipher (heck, sometimes even I get confused, and rather than taking the wrong reel I just forget to take a reel, period). Had I known he intended to take a Spey rod I would have set the proper combination of tools out for him ahead of time. It was my assumption that he’d be taking his own gear. And he did, partially: he took his own reel, spooled with an 8 weight line.

For a single-handed rod.

I’d introduced Schpanky to Spey casting briefly a few years ago, and he did quite well because he’s a natural when it comes to things like that (and tetherball). But he hasn’t done much two-handed casting since then, and what I didn’t explain, apparently, was that Spey rods require specialized shooting head lines. I should have made it very clear that just because a Spey rod has the same weight designation as a single-hander, that does not mean they are the same thing or even capable of interchanging reels and lines. I chuckled at the thought of him trying to cast the combination of rod and line he had taken with him. I may have chuckled repeatedly.

The next day, after he’d been on the river with the wrong combination of tools, I checked in with him to see how it had gone.


Somehow, according to him, he managed to get about 50 feet of line out, which is probably better than I’d have been able to manage. No fish were hooked, or landed.

I may have failed as a father, but I’ve succeeded in creating another generation of unaccomplished angler.



Wild Reverence: See this film

by Kirk Werner on August 29, 2014

Say what?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock you know that Pacific wild steelhead are facing troubled times: Loss of habitat, over-harvest and fisheries mismanagement are all contributing factors to the decline of this West coast icon.

In order to stop the decline and save these fish from the brink of extinction, we need to understand the issues. Information is powerful medicine.

Wild Reverence “The Plight of the American Wild Steelhead” chronicles one of the most sought after fish on the planet and the severe decline of wild populations with hope and solutions for a wild future.

I was fortunate to see a sneak preview of the film a few months ago at a gathering hosted by the Wild Steelhead Coalition, and I cannot overstate the importance of this film, by Shane Anderson of North Fork Studios.

Watch the trailer HERE.

And then check the schedule for a showing near you:

Spokane Sept 12th

Bozeman Sept 16th

Boise Sept 17th

Reno Sept 18th

Tahoe Sept 20th

Portland Sept 28th

Seattle Oct 2nd

Bring yourself and a friend. Bring your family. Bring your kids. Perhaps most importantly, bring people who may not be fishermen or have any hint of what’s really happening to our wild fish. Information is power.

Empower yourself.

Keep the wild, wild.




Almost scratched: The Seven Year itch

August 25, 2014

A 20 inch trout is a nice fish, no matter where you fish. Sure, a 20 inch trout on many rivers may not be all that unusual; there are many rivers—some I’ve fished, more that I’ve not—where trouts that size abound and are caught with regularity. But on the Yakima River a 20 inch fish [...]

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The Dog Days of Summer are nearly gone

August 20, 2014

  Summer goes by quickly here in the Pacific Northwet. It seems as though once July is behind us, August passes in half the time. Here it is already the 20th of the month, which means August is nearly gone. That also means September is almost here. Ever since I quit having to go to back [...]

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