A Short Time at Tibbett’s

A Short Time at Tibbett’s . . .

October Colors Bluegill (NYC 10 2016)

October Colors
(NYC 10 2016)

One busy day off encumbered by multiple projects may convince you there is no time for fishing. There is. Three or four hours at the end of the afternoon spill before you like a glass set beside an unopened bottle of wine. Time enough, though truncated. The goal, fresh air, and to be gripped to a cork handle, arm held strong in the wrestle with a fish.

The path that passes like a spine north through Van Cortlandt Park in The Bronx is one best run. The occasional lingerer, for whatever purpose, may at times shadow a more slow footed exploration of the path. The plus side of this urban nature space still wins a day spent angling here. Tree canopy above is impressive and full of common eastern songbirds. The public  golf course on the eastern side of the path affords glimpses at some good games in process.

Tenkara, Running, Packed. (NYC 10 2016)

Tenkara, Running, Packed.
(NYC 10 2016)

Running tenkara continues to make fishing life more easy. Horizons expand. Running feet have the ability to arrive energized, to rush unmolested beyond strangers, and to connect promising fishing spots like dots along the brook.

Tibbett’s Brook, like the path, connects the lakes of two city’s. One can follow this path and continue north to Tibbett’s Brook Park, but that is not NYC; the park resides in Yonkers.

So, the Tibbett’s Brook, then. October sees the very tips of just some trees turning toward the yellow or the red. The brook, as does the Van Cortlandt Lake, reflects low, clear water.

Tibbett's Water (NYC 10 2016)

Tibbett’s Water
(NYC 10 2016)

The fish? Bluegill. Crappie. One pair of largemouth bass cruised in parallel swimming pattern in a manner that resembled a mathematical equal sign, which  hinted at other impulses in mind. A few more bluegill; a sweet spot of crappie bright like tarnished uncirculated silver. More than one a full handful, even on a bright, chilly afternoon trip of a few hours on runner’s foot.

Numismatic Crappie (NYC 10 2016)

Numismatic Crappie
(NYC 10 2016)

Time enough. Tenkara Time.

— rPs 10 25 2016

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Bass Trio

Bass Trio . . .


Rock Bass

Rock Bass (09 2016)

Rock Bass
(09 2016)


Smallmouth Bass

Smallmouth Bass (09 2016)

Smallmouth Bass
(09 2016)


Largemouth Bass

Largemouth Bass (09 2016)

Largemouth Bass
(09 2016)


September is a fishing month for bass.

This may be the best bass time of all.

What a (foot)ball!

Fishes keep biting, again and again,

When you continue to release them.


— rPs 09 23 2016


Postscript: The fly pattern used in all three examples was my Green Guarantee, size 8; my one fly for freshwater tenkara.

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C.A.S.T. for Kids at Harlem Meer

C.A.S.T. for Kids at Harlem Meer . . .

I learned of C.A.S.T. for Kids from my fishing friend named Morgan. My appeal to you directly regards the event, a morning of city fishing, to be held  on Sunday, September 18 at Harlem Meer in Central Park.


My reasons are founded on several strong personal connections:


1) My wife’s twin brother, Louis, is a special needs citizen.

2) I am the author and illustrator of two books on fly fishing. The second, Small Fry: The Lure of the Little, includes a chapter on Harlem Meer as well as fly fishing with younger anglers.

3) I work part-time at Urban Angler, Ltd. on 5th Avenue and have independently guided several clients along The Meer, so I know the lake and how to fish there well.

4) I maintain an ongoing blog on tenkara, a simple form of Japanese fly fishing, great for Harlem Meer, which requires only rod, line, and fly. Physically challenged anglers have found the more simple style to be a godsend that allows them to keep fishing despite challenged limbs.


I’ll be there. Will you?



C.A.S.T. for Kids at Harlem Meer

8:30 a.m. -1:30 p.m. Sunday

September 18, 2016

Dana Discovery Center

Harlem Meer, Central Park

New York, New York



– rPs 09 14 2016

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Olympian Gymnasts

Olympian Gymnasts . . .

Tenkara fishing a smallmouth stream in summer. (07 2016)

Smallmouth Stream in Summer
(07 2016)


The jumps of the smallmouth bass are spectacular feats of athleticism. You could jump from the lawn to the tip of the gable in one hop if your legs were so strengthened to scale.

Smallmouth Season.  Small Creeks. The smaller waters where smallmouth reside, if only for the warmer months, offer slow runs over submerged logs rooted in silt, or stretches of swifter, shallower water where the shoulders of boulders break the clean current.

The small stream smallmouth is a seasonal fish. Bass swim upstream into these tributaries of larger flows in search of secluded spawning areas, cooler water, more relaxed currents. One may find only a half dozen such stretches of several hundred feet along one or two miles as the map reads.

Here plenty of creatures forage and become forage for the bass. Summer is also a time when large caddis dry fly patterns can coax fish rising to such naturals.

I have used the Deer and White, size 12, on streams where a smallmouth one foot in length was the average. The standard of measure I use is The Jump. Most bass of this size are Olympian Gymnasts above the water. Vertical jumps of several feet numbering as many as six, the smallmouth has both height and number!

Winded in The Net (07 2016)

Winded in The Net
(07 2016)


The rare use of the exclamation point is earned. Smallmouth bass are that exciting to seek out with rod, line, and fly. In between, the encounter with the redbreast sunfish gives added weight to the pull I feel for small bass streams in summer. And redbreasts do pull; they fill the role of permit here.

Fooled by a Soft Hackle: Redbreast Sunfish (07 2016)

Fooled by a Soft Hackle: Redbreast Sunfish
(07 2016)


The occasional stream bluegill may pop up, too.

Stream Bluegill (07 2016)

Stream Bluegill
(07 2016)


As may the fallfish take the place of tarpon. Large adults of twenty inches, silvered and strong, match the profile and can porpoise in defiance of any standard or tenkara fly tackle.

Fallfish and TUSA Ebisu (07 2016)

Fallfish and TUSA Ebisu
(07 2016)


Grand Slam! Yes, there is even more, that much more, to love about Smallmouth Season. Go find out! (hint-hint: that exclamation point again and again)


–  rPs 08 03 2016

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American for French

American for French . . .


One From New York City, USA to Nice, France (NYC 07 15 2016)

One From New York City, USA to Nice, France
(NYC 07 15 2016)


A NYC daily newspaper headline stated the fact:


Here today this American’s Red, White, and Blue supports the Bleu, Blanc et Rouge.


— rPs 07 15 2016






Postscript: (Pictured: Blue Claw Clouser Kebari, size #1, arranged with assorted French and American coinage)

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Tenkara Vegetarian

Tenkara Vegetarian . . .


Vegetarian Tenkara 07 2016

Genus Fucus (NYC 07 2016)


One photo with one caption can at times tell it all.

Location: the salt waterfront of Manhattan Island.

– rPs 07 11 2016

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Tenkara Reigns

Tenkara Reigns . . .

Tenkara Reigns Here (05 2016)

Tenkara Reigns Here
(05 2016)

Several thousand words may be contained in photographs from two days in May. Tenkara reigns at such times in such places as this average freestone trout stream fished first under full sun and bluebird sky, followed the next day by a bright gray ceiling of cloud shedding passing short showers.

Ben Feezer from R.D.O. Marketing, Inc. had earlier in the season dropped off a Fisherman’s Combo forcep-nipper-zinger-retractor set that found itself stream tested on the bank besides small glades of blooming Mayapple and in the steady stream somewhat higher than felt over the past few seasons of more feeble flows. The T-Reign nippers came into frequent use during fly pattern tests. Both 6x and 7x tippet require a tight, precise bite, which the T-Reign provided in a baker’s dozen hours on the water.

T-REIGN Pinned In Place (05 2016)

T-REIGN Pinned In Place
(05 2016)

T-REIGN nipper and small retractor (carabiner) clipped the tag end of the knot attached to this size 14 Partridge and Olive. (05 2016)

T-REIGN nipper and small retractor (carabiner) along with size 14 Partridge and Olive.
(05 2016)

The first day, bright, clear, just a bit bit breezy, still allowed dry fly fishing as three different mayfly emerged. The March Brown, what looked to be a Hendrickson best matched by a size 18 Adams, and a very few large Sulphers.

Dry Fly Fished Upstream (05 2016)

Dry Fly Fished Upstream
(05 2016)

Deer and Herl unweighted met many sips from fallfish feeding in the surface film of the flow. The Green Guarantee and one of Ira Hainick’s Killer Bug variations met with steady interest from the same school.

This fallfish fell for this variation of Ira Hainick's Killer Bug. (05 2016)

Ira Hainick’s Killer Bug: This fallfish fell for it.
(05 2016)

Some attentive observations prove to happen in repetition in enough frequency to be at least called a pattern. One of my own: selectivity imbues the few scattered trout pods surviving the year’s spring stocking. Such hardy fish may take just two or three positions along a mile’s length of suitable stream. Deep runs or pools may be just as well as the deceptive, flat, moderate runs that get overlooked by angler’s seeking obvious honey holes. This handful of pooled spots  and riffled runs may hold one to several rainbow, brook, or brown trout, but usually rainbow. Fish acclimated to the conditions and natural forage of the given creek, fish able to survive the predator angler in stream as well as  the heron and the hawk spiraling, almost as if wrestling, in the open air above.

One of those naturals is the mayfly. March Brown hatch in May as does the Gray Fox, a variation now lumped in with the former by more formal entomology. To my impression the Gray Fox is the smaller, size 16 March Brown mayfly somewhat translucent of wing sustaining a body tan trending toward the grey.

The Hatch (05 2016)

The Hatch
March Brown
(05 2016)

The Hatch Black Tadpoles (05 2016)

The Hatch
Black Tadpoles
(05 2016)

The Hatch Fish Fry Bait Ball (05 2016)

The Hatch
Fish Fry Bait Ball
(05 2016)

The Muddy Moreblack matched some aspects of the natural(s) encountered. The body color of the March Brown, the overall black of the tadpoles bunched up in still stream side puddles, and the silvered profiles of fish fry gathered in balls as tight as is seen in the salt.

The Match Muddy Moreblack (05 2016)

The Match
Muddy Moreblack
(05 2016)

The wet fly pattern, worked with slow rise and fall motions by the limber Ebisu rod, resulted in two strikes at different times and one trout in net. I attribute this catch to the location, the deep run of the trout’s holding lie beside a submerged boulder and a knot of tree roots in combination along the bank, for it was in just this one place I netted a selective arco iris this time out.

The Trout (05 2016)

The Trout
(05 2016)

Yes, that is a crack in my hardwood Brodin net. Another, out of view, is already bound in duct tape.

Good gear gets used. The Tenkara USA Ebisu continues to be my chief tenkara tool. The Brodin net weathers well and endures to hold humanely the struggles of the fish I have been able to catch. Redington Palix River pant waders and Korkers Greenback boots make my moderate thigh high wades easier, and The T-REIGN nipper with carabiner, new and proven, is attached even now to a vest owned and operated by my wife, Maryann. Happy marriage allows us to take such sharing turns.

“Tenkara Reigns.” The sentence of two words popped into my mind as precise as the bite of of the T-REIGN nipper, the casting action of the TUSA Ebisu tenkara rod, the decisive take of the holdover rainbow trout. There, the pun is left not to be avoided, if I “May” now that it is June.

— rPs 06 03 2016

Postscript: Learn more about T-REIGN Retractable Outdoor Products here:  http://t-reignoutdoor.com/

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