Date:  Sat. and Sun., March 7th and 8th

Time:  10am - 3pm

Place:  Elaine Cook’s home

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Bass Poppers

Bass Popper

Instructor: Elaine Cook

Spring is right around the corner. Time to get an arsenal of flies into your box for bass and bluegill. The class requires two days for the epoxy drying, and will be held over the week-end, not the usual second Wednesday of the month.

Signups are MANDATORY! Either sign up at the club meeting or call Elaine ((831) 688-1561). There is limited space. Beginners need to know how to use a vise and bob-bin. There is no charge for members, and all materials will be provided. Directions and what to bring will be provided when you sign up. The class will also include an hour of bass fishing instruction.

* As we go to print the class is full. A cancellation list is being maintained

Date:  Wednesday, March 4

Time:  Open - 6:45 pm; Meeting 7:00pm

Place:  Aptos Grange, 2555 Mar Vista Dr., Aptos

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Five Best Reasons to Fly Fish Montana
with Guest Speaker Ed Lawrence

by Jim Black, Programs Director

Our speaker this month will be Montana outfitter, Ed Lawrence. If you have ever thought you would like to plan a fishing trip into Montana, Ed Lawrence, should be your go-to planner. He will help you with your choice of rivers if you wish.

A number of SCFF members have planned fishing trips with Ed. I and a long-time friend of mine traveled to Montana last year with a goal of fishing four or five rivers in five or six days. We wanted to fish the Yellowstone, The Madison, the Jefferson and the Missouri before discussing our choices with Ed. Our final plan with Ed’s suggestions, was to fish the Missouri twice in different places, including a third day fishing The Land of Giants, and along with the Madison and the Yellowstone.

It was a great organized, efficient trip. We met our guides in the morning, fished all day, drove to the next river that night, had dinners on our own after fishing, then spent our nights in Holiday Express Hotels, all arranged by Ed. We then met our guides the next morning at our front lobby door and went fish-ing. So, after that, we flew into Bozeman on Sunday, started fishing Monday on the Madison and were able to fish five days in a row. We returned back to Bozeman in the evening of the last day and flew home the next day, actually seven days all together, making it a very enjoyable trip, which I plan to do this year and next and next and next.

I would be happy to discuss our Montana with anyone who is interested, and Ed’s program will entice you even more to find out what the five best reasons are to fly fish Montana!

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First Light

Yawn! It’s 3:15 a.m. and I’m up getting ready to head to the airport. I like getting up early. Especially if I’m getting on a plane or into my truck to head out on an adventure. There’s just something about that special excitement that comes from discon-necting from the normal work flow of life, planning to get into the great outdoors and fish.

My favorite time to be driving is so early that even in the Bay Area, no one is on the road. Your only concern the potential of a deer, coyote, mountain lion, raccoon, or pos-sum crossing the road. Coffee! Always on the road long enough for that break from black to navy, to dark blue as the sun is long from the horizon, but letting us know that it will soon be first light.

When my brother and I first drove across the country more than 37 years ago, I still distinctly remember when that first light started to occur and where. The most stunning is when we were driving through Cheyenne, Wyoming. That one I’ll never forget. In Albu-querque when my dad and I drove across again and it had snowed on our way into Flagstaff, Arizona.I can’t really explain it, but maybe it’s this weird sense of being ahead of everyone else, being the first to see what no one else was seeing, and to see it all pure, quiet, no traffic, no one else. It’s kind of like those winter days in Ohio when it snowed a foot, was still snowing heavily, and the bunch of us ventured out to the Metro Parks in the hills, and how almost unnaturally, crazy quiet it was. Or the time Mona and I were at eleven thousand feet on the Bear Tooth Mountain pass in Mon-tana hiking a couple miles back into the wilderness to fish for Brookies. We stopped and just looked at each other, marveling at how we could hear nothing. Nothing at all but for a bird, a bug, or the sound of the breeze.

Last year, I was up early and passing through the foothills in Roseville, on my way to my first Pyramid fishout, when that first light occurred again. Could not have been a bet-ter morning, capped off by seeing my good friends of SCFF by First LightBy President Tom Hogye10:30 a.m., then landing my first Lahontan Cutthroat by 12:30. This would be where they do that “mic drop” thing – boom. One and done, baby!

Or there was that morning, freezing cold, ice on the guides, can’t really see the river you’re entering. How light makes you rub your early morning eyes as if they need help adjusting, then that grab hours later and you’re off and running with a steelhead on the other end.Even though this morning means sitting in the airport on a Sunday morning heading for a conference in Florida, where it’s all about “how much more can you bring in the door, Hogye”, I am looking forward to those other mornings, those mornings I might not have a chance to do if it weren’t for my work, family, friends and SCFF. Makes everything worth it.

Over the next couple of months, watch for the new SCFF website! Thanks to PatSteele, Bob Peterson, and your board, we willbe fast moving into the 21st century with some really exciting, intuitive and vibrant changesto the Santa Cruz Fly Fishing website. We’re really excited. And if you’d like to lend yourexpertise and be on the cutting edge of this work, helping us withour monthly newsletter, content, email lists, and other resources we are working on, please reach out and we’d love to have your help.

If you need a good book to read, look for “Feather Thief”. It’s a very interesting look at what happened to the fly-tying industry and one particular person. I’ve listened to the podcast twice and then met Bill Keogh from Keogh Hackles at this year’s Fly-Fishing Expo in Pleasanton, where so many of us met for what you could rightly call our second “Christmas.” It’s such an awesome place to meet so many people who love the out-doors, fly fishing, and all that it encompasses. Was another really great year.

At this moment, sitting on the plane for yet another work trip, I’m looking forward to trips with SCFF, my family and friends. See you soon!

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Google Groups Help

Help with Google Groups before the March 4th meeting @ 6:40 pm

In less than two weeks, over half of the club membership has accepted the invitation to join santacruzflyfishermen Google Group and are getting email updates. To help get everyone on board, Scott Kitayama will be assisting and answering questions before the March meeting. Subjects to be covered:

  • What is Google Groups? What does it look like?
  • Did you get an email invitation from santacruzflyfisher-men around February 11th?
  • Are you receiving the emails from the group?
  • Do you have a Google Groups account?Come on by and let’s get everyone included in the group.

Come on by and let’s get everyone included in the group.

Publisher’s Note: This is important information to know, and will serve as a way for members to stay in touch, stay current, and pair up on last-minute local fishing trips in the interim between the old website going offline and the new one being launched. Please take advantage of Scott’s expertise!

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38th Annual Salmonid Restoration Conference

We are pleased to announce that the final conference agenda packet is posted for the 38th Annual Salmonid Restora-tion Conference taking place in Santa Cruz, CA from March 31 – April 3, 2020. The theme of the upcoming conference is 2020 Vision for California’s Salmonscape. Please see the SRF website for information on workshops,field tours, and concurrent sessions. Information regarding the Plenary Session and other special events is now posted as well.

Conference Registration

You may register for the 2020 Salmonid Restoration Con-ference via any of the following methods:

  • Register online and make a secure payment with PayPal.
  • Fill out the registration form and fax it with your payment infor-mation to (707) 923-3135
  • Mail your registration form and payment to the SRF office: 425 Snug Alley, Unit D, Eureka, CA 95501; make checks payable to SRF
  • E-mail your registration form and payment information to

SRF Membership Soiree

SRF’s annual membership dinner will be a strolling soiree at NOAA’s Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Exploration Center. Tis event will coincide with the launch of the Sanctuary’s interactive California Salmonscape exhibit and will feature a short presentation by the legendary artist Ray Troll, whose art is highlighted in the exhibit, and Sarah Mesnick who leads the science, art, and seafood campaign at NOAA Fisheries.

2020 SRF Conference Poster Session

The Poster Session will be 7-10 pm on Thursday, April 2 at the Cocoanut Grove. This annual event is open to all confer-ence attendees and is a great venue to network with your peers. There is no additional cost to attend or present a poster. We encourage posters, pamphlet distribution, software exhibits, and multimedia (video) presentations.Please visit the conference FAQ page for more informa-tion about the conference venues, hotel options, and more. Thank you and please contact us with any questions, Dana StolzmanExecutive Director – Salmonid Restoration Federation

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Forget March Madness—We have great March prizes!

by Monthly Raffle Director Jeff Goyert

Just in time for your big trip to Pyramid Lake we have an Echo Ion XL 9 ft. 8 wt. Rod which features a twin ring locking reel seat, alignment dots on each of the four sections, and a nice little fighting butt. Paired with this rod is an Echo Ion large arbor Rulon disc reel. This package is perfect for the big fish and the big winds that Pyramid is known for. It also is a nice rig for the surf.

In case we have forgotten, it is still on the cool side of spring so it might be nice to have a little bit of heat on these cold mornings when we are outdoors. This Little Buddy heater runs off the small propane tanks putting out 3800 BTU’s of heat for in the tent, the back of the truck or in the shop. It will heat up to 95 square feet and will run for over 5 hours on single tank of gas. Also great for the bath at home when the power is out.

As long as we’re up early in the dark or possibly facing a power outage, a GE Enbrighten lantern can help light the way. It puts out 500 lu-mens of bright white light for 180 hours running on 4 D cell batteries. It features 3 light levels and a carabiner style hanger handle.

DOOR PRIZE! EVERYONE GETS A FREE TICKET! We have a really nice little pocket knife by Opinel of Savoie France. It has a twist lock ring and Trout image wooden handle. The company dates back to the late 1800’s. It is perfect for streamside picnic lunch preparation.

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10 Tips for Wilderness Survival

wilderness survival shelter

Sometimes we forget how easy we have it. Amid our crazy life schedules, we tend to take for granted that purified bottle of water when thirsty, or the push of a button to light a fire. But it’s important to remember that in the blink of an eye, it can all be gone. The unexpected happens, you get in an accident or lose your way; now, it’s just you and the wilderness with no ties to civilization. Here are ten basic survival tips to get you prepared- just in case.

Communication is key:

Please, please, please tell someone where you are going before you set off for a trip. No matter where you go, even if you end up stranded unexpectedly, you started from somewhere in civilization. Tell close friends and family where you are going and if you have a specific route or amount of time you will be gone.

Keep your head on:Now is the time to be calm and think positive. It doesn’t sound like much, but optimism goes a long way, and in a survival situ-ation, it starts with you, your attitude and your will no matter how scared and alone you may feel. First, keep a realistic outlook and diligently plan to keep yourself in the best possible physical and mental state. If something isn’t working out, like building a fire or shelter, don’t rush, because that can lead to panic. Stop, breathe and think about what you need, observe your surround-ings and organize a new plan.

Take inventory:Keep everything you’ve got, because the second plans go south, these items will become your most prized possessions and could save your life. Don’t underestimate the worthiness of even the smallest knick knack-inn Gary Paulson’s classic, The Hatchet, Brian Robeson used his shoe lace to make a nifty bow and arrow for survival!It’s time to get creative. Familiarize yourself with how to build a lean-to; there are various types of shelters you can build and each has different pros and cons. Obviously you want overhead covering for warmth at night and protection from the elements. If you are in rocky, mountainous terrain, look for overhangs. Otherwise, use limbs and leaves or anything that can provide in-sulation. Pine needles usually blanket the ground in thick batches, excellent for bedding.

Agua por favor:

Your body will not last more than three days without water. If you are lucky enough to be near a body of freshwater – good for you, just make sure to boil before quenching your thirst. No water in sight? Continue your search and construct a rain catcher or water still.10 Tips for Wilderness SurvivalFrom that belly happy: Things can get frustrating when it comes to finding adequate sources of food when you are in survival mode, especially since malnutrition will work you mentally and physically, making you feel weak, cranky and delirious. It’s a good idea to get familiar with edible wild berries and plants for future reference when out in the wild. Also, it’s time to grow up and ban-ish the word “picky” from your vo-cabulary. When it comes to survival, embrace anything and everything (carefully) including bugs, eggs, fruit, leaves. Learn to build some simple traps to catch small animals and don’t rely on just one single food source. Protein is important for strength; know what various nutrients your body needs for prime sustainability.

Light that fire:Those glowing red flames provide light, cooked food, warmth and protection from predators and pesky bugs. Here are a few tried and true techniques for conjuring that mighty blaze:

Fire Plow –

Bow and Drill –

Lens Method –

Fire from Ice –

Soda Can and Chocolate –

Battery method –

One word: Tool:

Keep a pocket knife, or multi-tool with you at all times, because you never know when you will need it- and when you do need it, you will rejoice that you have something to cut, protect and prepare food- even if all you have is a crappy, little knife. Keep it sharpened.

H-E-L-P:Survival is your first priority, but don’t forget – you need to get rescued as well. Come up with an action plan in case a plane flies overhead or there are search parties nearby. You’ve seen it in the movies – prepare a giant, easily visible fire pit out in the open or lay out stones in the pattern of HELP or S.O.S. You can also use any shiny, metallic object for reflection purposes.


It’s a good idea to have a compass with you at all times, but if not then what? Get old school and use the stars- it’s a lot easier than you think. Also, keep note of rivers, paths or mountains – follow-ing these can lead to roads and civilization.

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Schroeders Parachute Hopper

It’s never too early to get ready for summer with a few hoppers. This old pattern continues to be very effective and has an entirely different profile than foam patterns.

Hook: TMC 5262 or 5612, sizes 6 – 12
Thread: Tan 8/0
Post: White calf body
Body: Golden brown Antron dubbing
Wing: Mottled turkey quill feather
Legs: Ringneck Pheasant tail feather
Hackle: Grizzly, barbs 1 1/2 – 2 times hook gap
Thorax: Same as body

  1. Crimp barb.
  2. Attach thread behind eye in touching wraps 1/3rd back.
  3. Cut a small clump of calf body hair from hide. Clean and stack. Lay on shank with tips forward extending 1/2 shank length beyond tie in; securely tie in. Cut butts at an angle; wrap down. Holding upright make many wraps in front to hold upright.
  4. Dub generous body to within 1/8” of post.
  5. Treat windings with lacquer or Flexament. Separate section of quill 1/4” wide, cut according to diagram. Place round end to rear of fly, butt up against the post and tie in place.
  6. Using 6 – 8 Pheasant feather barbs, tie knot in center (tricky, go to web for techniques). Apply Zap-A-Gap to keep fibers together. Tie in one leg on each side behind post according to diagram. Cut excess.
  7. Prep hackle end with “crew-cut” (diagram). Tie in front of post. Hold upright and tie to base of post.
  8. Dub generous thorax. Leave thread hanging on your side of shank.
  9. Make 3 – 4 hackle wraps around base of post. While holding hackle downward, make 3 thread wraps around base of post.
  10. Tie off behind eye. cut excess hackle
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Sautéed Striped Bass w ith Lemon and Herb Sauce

If you find sea bass to be strong-flavored, remove the pan drippings from the skillet before making the sauce for a milder final product. The wine-butter sauce is a good complement to the dish, especially with caramelized lemon notes.

4 (5-oz.) skin-on striped bass fillets (either hybrid striped bass or wild), patted dry
1/4 teaspoon black pepper1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1 lemon, halved lengthwise3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons dry white wine
2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


  1. Sprinkle fillets with pepper and 3/4 teaspoon salt; let stand 20 minutes.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Add lemons, cut sides down, and cook until lightly charred, about 5 minutes. Add olive oil, and place fillets, skin sides down, in skillet with lemon. Cook, undisturbed, until sides of skin begin to brown and fish is almost fully opaque, 5 to 7 minutes.
  3. When the fillets appear to be approximately 90% cooked through, gently shake skillet. When cooked with patience, the fish will release itself from the pan, allowing you to flip the fillets without sticking. Flip fillets, and cook 1 minute. Transfer fish and lemons to plates. Cut each lemon half into 2 wedges. Wipe skillet clean.
  4. Reduce heat to medium-low, and add wine, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, and butter. As butter melts, whisk to emulsify mixture. Spoon sauce over fillets. Sprinkle with parsley, and serve with a charred lemon wedge
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Gone Fishing/Shopping at the Pleasanton Fly Fishing Show

by Steve Rudzinski

We had a great day roaming the building to find things to buy, attending a couple power point lectures and getting the gear we want for the trip to Pyramid Lake in March.

The tailgate party actually had a tailgate, Jim brought his own smoked salmon caught off the4 Play last summer. The color and taste of local fish is the best.

We all brought sandwiches and coldbeer and snacks to share. The tuna jerky was pretty strange, we agreed later.

To miss the traffic mess home, we went to the Hopyard Brewery/restaurant for sliders andPliny the younger or elder beer. Thanks to Jeff (Yog) for designated driving Jim Tolonen’s car home,and to Sam Bishop who had us over for a cold one, he drove in his truck and therefore is not in thephoto. We saw many club members there and friends from other places. It was like a reunion feeling all day.