2020 Virtual Gathering
In the absence of actually being able to meet at the moment, we thought it might be nice to share what we've been up to or planning. This isn't a substitute for the real thing, but hopefully be a sneak preview of what we can get together and discuss in more detail before too long.

(Click here for the intended 2020 Cressy Cane Agenda - it will still be a basis for our next gathering)

Thank you to everyone who contributed.

We did this on short notice, so if anyone has additional submissions I'm happy to add them. Entries below are alphabetical (by first name), starting with our Japanese invited guests for 2020.

This is the sort of contributions that we are after…
- Rod projects - recently completed, on the bench, or in planning
- A highlight or two of the past fishing season (or a wedding maybe)???
- Fishing or rodmaking books or films you’ve enjoyed recently, or even the music you’ve had on in the workshop
- Ideas or topics you might want covered when we do get together at Cressy, so that we can tune the program accordingly

Stay safe and happy planing

Nick Taransky

Bill Higashi
I've been communicating with craftspeople here to compare notes, how they are doing and what they are up to.  Here is an interesting comparison of Tonkin and Madake cane… The latter is a quality specimen harvested by Katsumi Harada. Every winter he selects the locale, talks with the land owner, and ask for the harvest of several.  He cuts 3-4 year old culms and lets them sit for an additional 3-4.

He's found a lot of small harvest tips and tricks over the years, and he will be ready to share them with you (through me) when we meet up!  

From Nick - Re our Music suggestions, Bill also put me onto this Japanese girl - Aimyon… "Aimyon's unplugged clip (i think it is un-official). Kimi ha rock wo kinakai - "You don't listen to rock music" - www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6o5Ul6-U7U
Tonkin vs Madake

Naoto Shibuya (via Bill) (www.kawatsura.com/en)
The rivers in my area are opening up, but with the soft lockdown I cannot have clients for my guiding .  So I have extended my "craft" season.... I still work as a lacquer artisan for big pieces like these traditional box shelves.  It takes a lot of concentration and several layers to produce the smooth surface!  The brushes I use are made of human hair...they are very strong fibres and don't become brittle. 
Kawatsura Rod by Naoto Shibuya
Ferrule Plugs
Traditional Urushi

Boris Gaspar
From Nick - Below is an edited version of Boris' contribution. For the full detail of his travels and reel restorations I have setup a dedicated page which you can view by clicking on the button below.
Last January 2019 I was in Patagonia for a two week fishing trip. January wasn’t the best time for the biggest trout to be around but I had no other choice as that was the time I had available. BTW not all trout in Patagonia are big but they are all beautiful in beautiful waters.

I’ve also been working on a few reels to repair them and to gain skills to eventually make reels.

Rod work over the year has been slow due to focussing on reels but I’ve decided to make a few longer rods with a PHY Martha Marie modified to 8’6” on the bench. As well as this a double hander is also in split pieces ready for the next step.

This year in March I had the good fortune to sight fish to and catch my first western lakes brown. It was a memorable catch of the beautiful fish on a dry fly.
Boris Gaspar Patagonia
Boris Gaspar Patagonia
Boris Gaspar Patagonia
Boris Gaspar Patagonia
Boris Gaspar Patagonia
Boris Gaspar St George - before
Boris Gaspar St George - after
Boris Gaspar JW Young - before
Boris Gaspar JW Young - after
Boris Gaspar Perfect - no agate
Boris Gaspar Perfect - with agate
Boris Gaspar  - Western Lakes

Callum Ross (Indi River Rods - indiriverrods.com)
Since talking Peter into selling me his Morgan Hand Mill, I have continued to make hex rods but have also started focusing on quads for no other reason than that they are different to what I have been making for over 20 years (that doesn't mean I know what I am talking about). The MHM takes some getting used to and I still need to open the handbook to make sure I am setting everything up correctly. The mill is definitely more time consuming to set up than planing forms and tapers require additional time in Excel to calculate settings. At times there is more paper on the bench than bamboo; however, it is an interesting tool that opens up new options.

There is a learning curve to making quads (not damaging corners, splitting wide enough to factor in the cross-section dimensions), but it is mostly due to having worked one way for a significant time. I have been using scarf joints in place of bamboo or NS ferrules and so far have had no issues. It is taking some time to work out which tapers convert successfully to quad and what conversion amount works best.
Morgan Hand Mill and Quads
Morgan Hand Mill and Quads
Morgan Hand Mill and Quads
Morgan Hand Mill and Quads
Morgan Hand Mill and Quads
Morgan Hand Mill and Quads

David Anderson (Instagram - riverstoned65)
I've just sent through some examples of the flies that I've started drawing.

Apart from that, I've been making some 8', 6 weight rods. I've been making two of each, one blonde and one heavily flamed on both sides to see the difference in casting each one. I was inspired by the book on Eustice Edwards, by Patrick Garner, "Playing with Fire". It's well worth a read from a historical perspective as well as Edward's perspective on flaming cane. The rod tapers I've been exploring are from Morris Kushner ( I read a Traver short story about him about two Cressy Cane's ago) and a 3 piece Ray Gould taper of a rod he made and presented to Joan Wulff. All of the rods are quadrates. I've just started to make my first quadrate Spey rod - 11', three piece 6 weight, heavily flamed.

Music… While this has been going on I've been inspired by music from:
Horseshoes and Hand Grenades
Russell Pedersen
John Prine (passed away 5 days ago)
Armand Amar
Samantha Fish (strangely appropriate)

I've also set up my instagram page (riverstoned65) with a focus on fishing, cane fly rod building and Lost Trades.
Fly Sketch 1
Fly Sketch 2

David Hemmings
(via Nick)
From frequent correspondence with David, I can tell you that our illustrious bamboo leader has been very busy! In parallel with moving house in Hobart, he has been relocating his whole rodmaking setup to a new (under construction) workshop on the Tasmanian North Coast.

In the meantime he has snuck out for some fishing, as the photos below attest…

He also sent me these links…

A new video on American rodmakers and rodmaking called "Chasing the Taper".

April Vokey interviewing Hoagy Carmichael on her "Anchored" Podcast - "Hoagy Carmichael on Everett Garrison".
Vivid brown
Butter Brown

Fred von Reibnitz (via Nick)
Fred has been sending (taunting?) me with photos from regular trips to the South Island of New Zealand, with Will Spry, where he tends to fish each day with a different bamboo rod. These include:
- an impressive (and rapidly expanding!) stable of Vintage Hardies, including a number of CC de Frances, Fairchilds etc
- South African rods including Dugmores and Marshalls
- a couple made by me
- the only (to date) genuine "von Reibnitz", that Fred made at my rods classes at Cressy

As you can see from the photos, Fred puts the rods fully through their paces, and have all stood up to the fish and conditions, including an antique Hardy Fairchild from the 1940's.

Fred and Adrian Maroya have been trying to educate me in regard to British and other European rods and tapers, so I can see a Cressy Cane presentation taking shape????

Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island
Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island
Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island
Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island
Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island
Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island
Hardy Fairchild
Von Reibnitz rod with NZ Trout
Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island
Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island
Fred von Reibnitz NZ South Island

Hamish Murray
The call went out for my mates daughter’s wedding, loves fishing, so I knocked up a pair of Nicks Monaro specials 7’3” and my favourite 6’9”.

Not wanting things to be easy, I decided to make some planes inspired by Ken Bradbrook and David Anderson's presentation at Cressy. I decided the end model would be out Ebony so I made a few draft models out of Jarrah and Blackwood. (Hock Blades)
The final plane works really well and the smaller Blackwood one is really comfortable also. (Cheap arse blades but hold an edge, just!)
Mallet Jarrah and Tasi Oak handle

With Christmas coming up (2019) I decided to make some leather pouches for a couple of reels I have. After some web searching I found a really basic plan and ordered some leather tool kits from China. Basically I just used the gouge and the little pitch fork looking things to punch out the stitching holes. I used some water based timber stain (Cabolts) and stuck in some Spotlight fur.

Twin needles and waxed thread (4x the length of the stitching and away you go. One of the pouches has a press clip while the other I didn’t want to rely on any other fixing so I made what I call the Echidna Nose fastening system as shown.

My mate wanted one for his matching Mitchel reels so I just made it deeper and added a removable merkin (well that’s what I call it).

There was a rumour I also made a little ripper cane 5’6”spin rod, but I will neither confirm nor deny anything about the dark side.
Hamish Murray Rods
Hamish Murray Rods
Hamish Murray Rods
Hamish Murray Planes and Mallet
Hamish Murray Reel Cases
Hamish Murray Reel Cases
Hamish Murray Reel Case
Hamish Murray Reel Case and Merkin!
Hamish Murray Reel Case and Merkin inserted

Hank Wu
(From Nick - Hank is from Taiwan and was planning to attend Cressy Cane this year until it was overtaken by events. We hope to see you when the event is rescheduled)!

Here are photos from last year when I learned long drift leader fishing in Akita from Bill and Naoto.



Naoto Shibuya, Hank Wu and Japanese Yamame
Japanese Yamame from Akita

Jason Beard
(From Nick - Jason was the recipient of the blank kindly donated by Robert Morwood in 2016)!

Unfortunately I haven't made any further progress on my bamboo rod but it is started, it's staring at me, and I'm keen to have a crack at again this winter. If I'm going to be stuck indoors, I may as well enjoy myself and build something!


P.S. I hope everyone is ok and have dodged the virus and the crazy stuff going on in this world!
Jason Beard recieves the Robert Morwood blank

Jeff Wagner - (www.wagnerrods.com)
(From Nick - Below are a few highlights from Jeff's recent "Shop News" and "Tips and Tricks" Newsletters. They are highly recommended and if you haven't subscribed yet, you can do so via his website)!

From the "Tips and Tricks" Newsletter…

Tip(ping) of the Month
Stacks Image 367
I'm working on a rod for a customer in a custom color wrapping scheme to match his Wagner reel. The main wraps are in black, tipped red. In between each guide I'll wrap 5 intermediates in red to match the 5 indicator dots on the reel.
It's been the fashion to make tipping and intermediate wraps as delicate as possible, which makes them quite understated vs the much wider intermediates found on old vintage rods c. 1920 and earlier. I use 3 turns of size 100 silk for tipping and intermediates, which doesn't leave much 'grab' for them to hold firmly.

To make things go easier, between my wrapping jig and myself I place a pie pan filled with water and soak the thread for each intermediate/tipping wrap(ie, not the spool lol). I'll lay down two wraps to get started, cut off the excess and lay in the tie loop, then do one more wrap and pull it through and cut it with a fresh razor blade. The wraps are allowed to dry thoroughly before being color preserved.
Stacks Image 369

and from the "Shop News" Newsletter…

Wagner Small Batch Reels Model 3 Webpage and Model 4 Announcement
I finally got around to posting a webpage on our Wagner Small Batch Reels Model 3, of which the last bespoke reel was delivered in February. The page has a lot of pics of the process of making these reels from scratch, so if you are so-inclined, take a look…

My Friend Rodmaker Jim Downes, Movie Star
My good friend Jim Downes is featured in this gorgeous video. Enjoy!
Against The Grain: The Story of The LJ Downes Rod Company
(From Nick - I visited Jim in his amazing workshop, while fishing with Jeff through May/June, 1999, and he very kindly GAVE me one of his rods. I'll bring it to show at the next Cressy Cane).

Videos of the Month: Stuff Made from Bamboo
With no sports on the horizon, Casimira and I have been having a ball streaming videos thru our Roku box and one evening she came across this mind-blowing woman from China, Liziqi, making bamboo furniture. Amazing!!! I could watch her work for hours!
Using bamboo to make some sophisticated old furniture--Bamboo Sofa|Liziqi channel

Another cool one we found deals with how cane reeds for woodwind instruments are made. This video shows the process of growing, harvesting and aging the cane and making the reeds..
Why are Saxophone Reeds So Expensive? | Rigotti Reed Factory Tour

Jim Morris
From Nick - Below is an edited version of Jim's contribution. For the full detail of his glass ferrules and fishy tales I have setup a dedicated page which you can view by clicking on the button below.
Glass Ferrules
Since our last Cressy Cane, most of my making/building energy has been devoted to experimenting further with Glass ferrules. The 3-pce Perfectionist I produced for Cressy was the first prototype and since then I’ve finished four, 2-pce rods ranging from a 7’ PHY Driggs through to an extended PHY Para 15 of 8’6” (yep, it is very parabolic!). Although all of the ferrules look good and have performed well, the not unexpected conclusion with 2-pce rods is that lighter, more flexible ferrules are an interesting novelty, but probably don’t make a huge difference to how they cast because of their location and number.

Aside from the 3-pce Perfectionist, I’ve also built two other 3-pce rods with glass ferrules. The first is an 8’6” Leonard 51 (6 weight) which is an excellent lake rod… Conclusion? Lighter, flexible ferrules can be a big plus for 3-pce rods.

Finally, 4-pce ‘pack rods'. Both are based on the ever popular and great casting PHY Para 15 taper but stretched out to 8’6” because that’s the length I like most for lake fishing…
Glass Ferrules 1
Glass Ferrules 2
Glass Ferrules 3

John Herriot
From Nick - I've had some email correspondence recently with John on hollowing and bamboo speys, but it seems he's also decided to make his first guitar…

I am really only in the beginning stages with the guitar making. So far I have resawn timbers on the bandsaw for the back, sides and soundboard , and have started splicing and shaping a neck out of some quartersawn leatherwood. I have made the workboard to mount, glue and frame everything. Soundboard is celery top although Huon might  also be  a good choice (mixed opinions but I played a Cole Clark with a Huon soundboard that was priced at $6000). A 500W heat cartridges wrapped in foil and inserted in steel pipe and wired to a thermostat will be the heat bender, ($30 for a cartridge vs $500 for a heat bender). I purchased plans from Luthiers supplies and first guitar is a smaller parlor guitar but including a truss rod. I am following a book called "Guitarmaking Tradition and Technology" by WR Cumpiano as the basis for this project ... so far seems like a lot of fun.

Justin Ansell
I'm really looking forward to the next get together! I was really looking forward to learning about Naoto's urushi lacquer work and rod design. My contribution for the virtual Cressy Cane:

I've started to make pentas. Tapers have been hard to come by, so I've been converting/tweaking a couple of hex tapers. I've finally finished my first blank, a 7'6" 3 piece based on a Perfectionist. Should be a 3/4 weight. I've attached a picture of the ends of the butt and mid. I've had plenty of practice in making it though, I'm up to my fourth tip! The first was full of glue lines, those penta strips have delicate edges! The second and third were good, but I managed to break both applying the Gorilla Glue finish.  You would think I would've have learnt something after breaking one. I'm happy to say tip number 4 is fine, and I'm getting the parts together to finish it up now.  I've just begun work on an 8' 3 piece 5 weight penta based on a convex taper.  I've just finished reading "Split and Glued by Vince Marinaro" by Bill Harms and Tom Whittle, which discusses convex tapers and the theory behind them.  I would be happy to send this on to any one who would like to read it. Eventually I'd like to make some larger weight pentas for saltwater and bigger Australian Natives. 

For the pentas I managed to pick up a second hand Morgan Handmill from the US for a reasonable price.  It's has a small learning curve to use it, but generally it's pretty easy.  If I was just making hex's I'd stick to forms.  It can be a bit fiddly and I can see why Bob Clay said an extra base would come in handy, one for tips and one for butts.  The hard bit has been getting quality cane, Durnford didn't have much left when I picked up what I'm using at the moment. It's on the smaller side, but its usable, and keeps me going.  I'll have to check if he's got any new stuff in, or I may have to just get Madake off him, since he grows it.

I've also been picking up a bunch of cheap old Australian made reels to work on and use, such as Spalding Silverstreams, Streamcraft (Hardy Perfect copy), and a Walton (which looks exactly like the Spalding's). I've attached a few pic of the reels. In order from left is Streamcraft (with agate line guide), Walton, 2 x Spalding Silverstream Deluxe, 3 x Spalding Silverstream Standards. I'm repairing a few of them, replacing pawls and fixing handles, but there is a number ready to go.

At the next Cressy Cane I wouldn't mind hearing if anyone has picked up/used an Abbott Node press, after Bob Clay's recommendation, or any gadgets and gizmos that anyone has picked up for rod work, any tips on node work and straightening.
(From Nick - Bob Clay very kindly sent me an Abbot style node press so I'll try to bring it to the next Cressy Cane for people to try)

Bamboo shavings might make a good toilet paper substitute, but I haven't had to try it out yet!

Hope everyone is well…
Pentas from MHM
Aussie Reels 1
Aussie Reels 2

Keith Luckhurst

I tried bandsawing a culm of bamboo and then made a Garrison 206E rod. Unfortunately the cross grain made planning very difficult. I could only take off a single thousandth of an inch throughout the process. Very painful. The result was not pretty either. Lots of cross grain. However the rod did cast quite well. Below are explanations of the photos.

Bandsaw Table Saw Jigs shows the jig used to run the bamboo through the bandsaw, on the left. Previously a straight edge is required, so that is achieved using the tablesaw jig shown on the right.

Bandsaw Jig shows the jig on the bandsaw.

Bandsawing Bamboo Shows the jig being used to saw bamboo. The strips come out extremely straight and consistent in width. So heat straightening is not required. But with lots of cross grain making planing very difficult.

Tablesaw Jig 1 Shows the table saw jig in place, with a previously cut piece of bamboo. The bamboo is held in the jig and both are pushed through the tablesaw together. Fence should be against the jig. The resultant cut is very straight. So the cut pieces can be sawn in the bandsaw.

Tablesaw Jig 2 Shows the tablesaw jig without the bamboo or fence in place.

Twisted Rod Shows how the grain in the rod is twisted. Not much fun to plane. The rod also tries to twist along its length.

I also made a Baginski Beveller. It works very well. Two disks form a 60 degree space between them and they are spun by a motor. Bamboo strips are fed against the rotation of the disks and are abraded into a 60 degree cross section.

Baginski Beveller 1 Shows the beveller from the front. The strips are fed along the little platforms, under the adjustable anvil and through the spinning disks in about 3 passes. That produces a reduced width strip of exactly 60 degrees. This is equivalent to the first roughing planing. It works well and is ready for the second planing. A vacuum is attached to the hole in the bottom of the case.

Baganski Beveller 2 Shows the repurposed bench drill motor driving the disks.

Beveller Strip Shows a completed strip abraded to size and a 60 degree equilateral triangle emerging from the beveller.
Bandsaw Table Saw Jigs
Bandsaw Jig
Bandsawing Bamboo
Tablesaw Jig 1
Tablesaw Jig 2
Twisted Rod
Baganski Beveller 1
Baganski Beveller 2

Nick Taransky

OK my turn!

Fly Fish Craft Japan - www.ffcraftjapan.com
I'm really excited about this new project that I'm working on with Bill Higashi. The idea is to promote some of Japan's finest tackle artisans. We will talk about it more when we get together at Cressy and bring some items to show, but in the meantime, please have a look and please ask if you have any questions.

Move to NZ
Miri's and my planned move to NZ has been put on hold until things settle down, but all going well we should be over there before the end of the year….

New Website
I'm in the process of migrating from my old website (www.taranskybamboo.com.au) to a new one (www.taranskybamboo.com). The new one isn't live yet but I hope to have it up within a week or so.

US Visit
In May/June I had a wonderful visit to fish with Jeff Wagner in the USA. It was a rare privilege. Jeff is renowned for treasuring his solo fishing, and it is a fact that he rarely if ever fishes with anybody. Anybody! My trip will form a presentation when we meet at Cressy, but highlights were:
- Meeting up with Jeff and Casimira, and going to a baseball game (Go Tribe)
- Receiving Miri's Model 3 Wagner Reel, to go with my Model 2
- Hatch based fishing every day for a month in Pennsylvania brown trout Spring Creeks and brook trout freestones
- The Pennsylvania culture with Aamish people, fly shop hangouts, and hipster live music scene, and meeting the Lloyds
- Attending the Grayock bamboo gathering in Michigan, and fishing the iconic Ausable River there from a wooden drift boat

On the bench
For my own rodmaking R&D, I've been working on
- Madake rods in different configurations and tapers
- Bamboo ferrules, mainly 4 piece rods, (learning a lot, including some enlightening failures) - article coming on my new website…
- Hollow building - based on Bob Clay's method, but scaled down a little using a dremel and jig (article coming)
- Trout Speys
- Starting to learn about Urushi lacquer (again some successes and failures so looking forward to Naoto's presentations)
- Finishing out a couple of landing nets that I started ages ago, including one with a skeleton bamboo handle (I was wondering if there would be interest in a Cressy Cane presentation/discussion on making landing nets)?
- Sourcing and using some sensational Ringed Gidgee for reelseats from The Timber Joint

Other stuff
- I'm also eagerly awaiting a pair of lovely Japanese trout watercolours from renowned South African author and painter, Tom Sutcliffe (I've added a separate contribution with painting photos further fen for Tom)!
- I made a pair of Straight Razors at Tharwa Valley Forge

I seem to have two types of music in my head at the moment…
Rodmaking music, things like:
Tallest Man on Earth - Love is All
First Aid Kit - My Silver Lining
Bob Dylan - Blind Willie McTell (thanks Fred)!!!!
Tom Waits - On the Nickel (from the Don Lane show, for those that remember)!
Jogging/workout music (all these from GoPro Camera launches - great editing on the videos too…)
Jai Wolf - Indian Summer
Odesza - A Moment Apart
Woodkid - Run Boy Run

Plus in keeping with our upcoming Japanese theme…
Ki and Ki playing the Tsugaru Shamisen (Japanese banjo) more HERE and HERE
Wagakki Band - Japanese rock with traditional instruments

Stay safe everyone. I can't wait to catch up in Cressy and enjoy each other's company again.
Wagner Reels - his and hers
Jeff Wagner in Pennsylvania
Rebecca Lloyd and Jeff Wagner
Pennsylvania brook trout stream
Pennsylvania brook trout
Green Drake Spinner and Dun
Ringed Gidgee
Bamboo skeleton net
Urushi lacquered rod tube
Fly Fish Craft Japan Koba Reels
Fly Fish Craft Japan Koba Reels
Tom Sutcliffe Art
Grayrock Michigan 2019
Ausable River Michigan

Peter Hayes (www.peterhayesflyfishing.com)
(via Nick)

Peter has been busy as always, with the additional recent excitement of GETTING MARRIED to the lovely Di! CONGRATULATIONS. In perfect Hayes "Just in Time Management", the weather came good for the Beach Wedding, and was just before various lockdowns came into play!

Before the guiding and season ended with the current state of play, Peter had some incredible fishing with clients. Something to look forward to when we can all get back down there…

Peter has also been giving my bamboo ferruled Madake rods a work out (the Perfectionist and scaled down #13 to #12 ferule sized "Imp-erfectionist")… Here is the report (and pictured is the fish below next to the yellow rod)…
"Attached a photo of my last (and 3rd) day of fishing for the season. Had 4 hours on a nearby river yesterday. On my own with your imp and a grasshopper. It is a sensational rod. Spent the last 20 minutes wrestling with a cracker. The best of the 17 for the day. 60 cm. No set in the rod but the ferrule is too tight for me to pull apart."
(back to Nick… Well, I liked the "sensational rod part, but stuck ferrule, hmmmm, and it turns out the rod did have a bit of a set in it too which can bee seen being "put right" using the Hayes method of being held in the corner of the room using masking tape to reverse the set)!
I do
I do too
Hayes guiding 1
Hayes guiding 2
Hayes guiding 3
Hayes guiding 4
Madake Imp bamboo ferrules

Quentin Blows

Details of latest rod made as follows: -
Garrison 193 6’ 9” two piece rod with bamboo ferrule (female on tip section). Reel seat is brown mallee burl.
The bamboo has a tung oil finish, and reel seat is finished with Tru Oil. The rod casts nicely with a #4 WF line.
Decided to make this rod after reading Kathy Scott’s book Changing Planes.
Bamboo ferruled Garrison 193
Bamboo ferruled Garrison 193

Robert Morwood

Following up from last meeting attached pictures 1 of 2 rods using same taper with and without a metal ferrul, 

7’8” 4wt. Smooth and strong. 
Rob Morwood Rods
Rob Morwood Rods
Rob Morwood Rods
Rob Morwood Rods
Rob Morwood Rods
Rob Morwood Rods
Rob Morwood Rods
Rob Morwood Rods
Rob Morwood Rods

Tom Sutcliffe (http://www.tomsutcliffe.co.za)

(Via Nick)

For many of us, Tom Sutcliffe needs no introduction. Like us in Australia, his home in Cape Town, South Africa, is a little "off the radar" from the mainstream trout fishing scene. But his regular "Spirit of Fly Fishing" Newsletter has resonated with and connected fly anglers around the world with our common passion. The effort in producing his newsletter, for love rather than money (indeed, he funded it himself in no small way) has been enjoyed by many. He has said that his most recent Newsletter will be his last, but I still live in hope that he may produce an occasional (Annual?) Newsletter if he can find it within him. If not, thank you anyway, and the Spirit of Flyfishing website contains the same sentiment and a wonderful wealth of information. Click HERE to visit it.

Similarly for those of us that have had the pleasure of sharing his uniquely South African fishing, through his books, can count ourselves lucky. When Nick Lyons writes the forward to your books, you can be assured that you are more than just a casual writer.

Tom's most recent book is "Yet More Sweet Days", which I devoured over a week during our recent lockdown. It is a wonderful read. Fred von Reibnitz reviewed it recently for the NSW Rodfisher's Journal. You can read the review HERE. "Shadows on the Streambed" preceded that and is a lovely read too. But Tom's iconic book to date has been "Hunting Trout". The good news is that a new reprint will soon be available, so that copies of both it and "Yet More Sweet Days" should be able to be procurable.

Tom is a talented artist, and he illustrates his own books. And see below for examples of his magnificent watercolour paintings…

For those that aren't familiar with the South African trout fishing scene, here is a very abbreviated summary. They have many fine freestone streams, a little like our Snowy Mountains waters. Rainbow trout predominate, but there are also browns. In addition to that many farms have very high quality small dams with trout in them, seemingly of healthy dimensions (6 pounds or more).

Tom, as an avid small steam angler, has been a long time advocate and user of bamboo fly rods. There are quite a few South African rodmakers following traditional methods, as well as developing their own styles. So hopefully Tom, and maybe a few other South Africans might visit us here at Cressy Cane. In the meantime, I think I can welcome Tom as an honorary member of our Cressy Cane group…

PS. Thank you Tom for all of your correspondence over the years on both fly fishing and cricket!

Tom Sutcliffe Art
Tom Sutcliffe Art
Tom Sutcliffe Art
Tom Sutcliffe Art
South African Trout Monument
South African Trout Hatchery
Tom Sutcliffe and other South African Books
Steven Boshoff Rod
South African Stream
South African Stream