Not quite quintessential [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Not quite quintessential

11-12-2000, 06:35 PM
Landed my first New England trout on the fly rod today. Not a big deal since it was a stocked cookie cutter rainbow, but at this late in the fishing season, I'll take it.

Wind was a factor on the Cape today, but it seemed to get the fish out of the deep holes and into the shallows to chase forage fish. Streamers produced a pretty steady rate of bumps. The wind blew right up until sunset when it suddenly died and the surface turned into a 15 acre mirror. The clouds had vanished about an hour before and reflected light from the first stars of evening crept out over the water as stealthy as cats and reminded me of the time of year. I wanted to stay and watch the light show of the swollen red moon rising over the water, but I was borderline hyperthermic and having been reminded of the time of the year, I figured best not to extend my night fishing addiction to yet another species and scooted home.

Would like to do some more next weekend.


11-12-2000, 08:06 PM

Good job, Congrats!
We did not catch, but you've got to come check out Wachusett Res. & its connecting streams. We saw some large (striper sized) Salmon rises. And we also saw some nice Rainbows (18+") & Lakers on other peoples stringers! At least my 6" perch leads me to believe that I can present a Fly to a freshwater fish in such a way that they may eat it!

11-12-2000, 10:10 PM
Quote "Not a big deal since it was a stocked cookie cutter rainbow, but at this late in the fishing season, I'll take it."

Damn straight Al! Beggars and FF'men can't be picky. Congrats on the Bow!

11-13-2000, 08:27 AM
Al: what a treat! Next season, let's go trouting.


11-13-2000, 10:10 AM
Trout on a 7 wt. is - how to describe this? - overkill!

I've decided to go old school on this one. Last night I made a bid on a Horrocks-Ibbotson bamboo 5 wt. rod. To my surprise, I won the bid! It will need some rewrapping of the guides so I'll be visiting Smitty soon. I'm currently researching this rod to see if an orginal restoration is possible. If anyone knows of this rod or can offer anything in the way of historical errata, I'd appreciate it. It's the Cunnigham model and sold for $35 in 1947. Word has it this was the top of the line model for it's day. Now I'm starting to wonder why I picked it up so cheap.....

11-13-2000, 10:47 AM
Pure Luck Al! I am not familiar with it but know folks who have picked up $3000 bamboo rods for 20 bucks at garage sales. I have a great antique tackle reference at home, will take a look.

11-13-2000, 10:52 AM

That's a usefull page on the Classic Angler, in which they offer suggested values for a variety of bamboo rods, along with some good editorial content. They have a full page on Horrocks-Ibbotson.

Elsewhere on the site they also sell stuff, and the prices seem to be in line with the value guide.

11-13-2000, 01:44 PM
Oxford Dictionary has this entry for "quintessence":

1.The most essential part of any substance, extracted by natural or artificial processes; a highly refined essence or extract; spec. in older chemistry, an alcoholic tincture obtained by digestion at a gentle heat.

(hmmm "extraction"?-fishing, digestion of alcohol?-drinken and fishin.

2. A lofty object of pursuit after Morone Saxatilis populations have retreated south and complacent anglers begin the dilerium tremors.

(ok I made up the 2nd one)


11-13-2000, 05:36 PM
Thanks for the info, gang. Terry, my trout may not have been quintessential, but I'm hoping this rod is.....

After some poking around during my lunch break, I found out it was mass produced sometime after WW II and falls into a category that some of the more snobby classic rod sites call "blue collar cane."

The company is out of Utica, NY and while the run of the mill Cunnigham is valued at ~ $125, the model I purchased has some custom features that may make it worth a little more. The most noteworthy of these is the use of silver nickel ferrules and guides.

The only thing this rod needs is a single replaced guide on one of the tips. BTW, bamboo rods come with two identical rod tips that are meant to be swapped each time you fish the rod. This prevents a bend or set from forming in the deeply flexed tip section. I may attempt to do that replacement on my own this winter. There's a ton of how-to info on the Web.

In short, my new H-I is not a collector's item, and that suits me just fine since I plan to fish with it. (I wouldn't want to risk something of value in my clumsy hands). I'm anxious to see what line it will handle as the seller was uncertain.

From what I've read so far, casting a bamboo rod is a much more deliberate endeavor than modern day graphite. It's not uncommon to feel the action of the rod right down to the cork. The payoff is greater accuracy and loop control, something I was wishing for yesterday. A down side is that anything but dead calm wind will make for extremely difficult fishing. Regardless of how it fishes, the rod is something to look at and well worth the $80 I paid on that count alone.

If anyone else is interested in bamboo, shoot me some email and I'll share some other tips I learned.

11-13-2000, 07:22 PM
Actually Al I was just passing time in an otherwise quiet day on the board. I don't evan know how a trout can be quintessential. Maybe the trout is the essence of FF?
Anyway, I have a crappy old Bamboo someone tossed me years ago. It's so old as to be unusable, but I never looked at the lable. I'm going to now. Also I was down the cape cleaning the garage one day when the neighbor came over and said " want this?" It was a 10' bamboo surf rod. Made by Montigue. I found a book at ORvis in W. Concord that had all the values of Bamboo rods. It was in there for about 60 bucks. Oh well, nice conversation piece, and I'll always wonder what that rod saw on the cape in the 30s and 40s. Who knows it may have evan visited the Big Girl Bar before we were evan born! Enjoy the rod Al.


11-13-2000, 08:34 PM
Terry - I meant my fish was puny, but I'm psyched about the rod. Didn't mean anything by the quinessence crack.

I came across the name Montague quite often. It's another production rod. Quite durable. I learned that if the rod is sound, it is most likely fishable, and may only need a little rubbing to bring back some of its aesthetics. Might be a kick to bring your 10' bar hopper back to life.... We should have a cane clave in the Spring


11-13-2000, 11:39 PM
Quintessential. Referring to the fifth (quint) essence. At some point in classical times, matter was thought to be comprised of four essences. The quintessence was the essence of the essences, the mystical thing which made something exactly what it was. See G.B. Shaw, "the Quintessence of Ibsenism".

Pedantic mode off.

The extra tip is for swapping? I always thought it was a backup because the good folks at Montague knew that sixty odd years later I was likely to break a tip and need a spare.

I have a Montague Redwing and I actually fish it a lot. I appalled my friend Jared by fishing for winter over schoolies with it. He couldn't believe I'd risk a cane rod on stripers. Since I got it for a fraction of the cost of some Orvis graphite that I've exploded on stripers, I don't see the point. Also, it feels cool to have caught stripers on cane.

11-14-2000, 07:34 AM
Yeah, Mike, exactly. What you would expect to find down in Plato's cave, the unseen form of forms. Stocked pond trout are about as far away from the fifth essence as you can get. (Little known fact: The Philosopher King was a fly fisherman ;)

Is your Redwing a varnished or impregnated cane? If the latter, fishing it in the salt is probably not a big deal since that process makes it impervious to water and adds strength. My H-I is impregnated and flamed. If it turns out that it takes a 7 weight line, I will most likely fish it for stripers as well.

I picked up a great information source: <!--http--><a href="" target="_blank">Classic Rod Q & A</a><!--url-->

11-14-2000, 07:52 AM
Al --

Aside from switching the tips to prevent sets, you'll want to sometimes
play a fish with the guides pointed UP for the same reason. Also, with
apologies to Mr. Powers, I've only used cane in *fresh* water thus far;
but it is also good to play "larger" fish with the rod near horizontal
to the water to avoid putting too much stress on those delicate tips...

There is nothing quite as nice as the feel of a well-made cane rod flexing
back and forth as you stand in a stream someplace! (still not sure how I managed to get out only 3 times this year for trout -- but the year is not over yet, and it was one of my best years in the salt)


11-14-2000, 08:26 AM

<font size="1">Photo Luis Nasim - All Rights Reserved</font><!--1--></center>

Let's ask Luis Nasim about it... <!--http--><a href="" target="_blank">Brookies of the North</a><!--url-->, <!--http--><a href="" target="_blank"> Aurora Fontinalis</a><!--url-->.

11-14-2000, 08:49 AM
I've always loved that shot, really. Hey Juro, want to step out to some very nearby foothills, I'll show you some


11-14-2000, 09:07 AM
Not quite quintessential either.... but closer.... and a gorgeous fish, to boot.

The quintessential trout is an abstraction, an ideal that we carry around with us that can't be held or photographed. In fact, a photograph is further removed from the quintessence since it is a reproduction of a reproduction (at least according to the platonic world view). It's sort of a Heisenberg thing. The moment you seek to study or otherwise quantify the quintessential, it changes into something non-essential.

BTW, all this sophistry is just a fancy way of saying, "I need to fish!"

11-14-2000, 01:06 PM

11-14-2000, 05:26 PM
Nice collage Luis!

When can you host a clave for us or consult on where & when to go?


11-14-2000, 06:01 PM
Amen, Roop, and thanks, Trutta. Now I really need to fish!

Anyone up for hitting a Cape pond Sunday morning?

11-14-2000, 07:11 PM
RE: hosting a clave...
I only wish, Roop. I've fished a combined total of 12 or so days in the year 2000 and can't wait for it to be over. It wasn't what it was cracked up to be.

11-14-2000, 07:27 PM
Luis -

Sorry to hear about your busy year, knowing especially how avid you are.

Hey guys - what do you say we host Luis for a little Rip Trip or Big Girl bar action at the Chatham Angler's Club this coming summer to make up for it? Luis if you don't mind getting a little salty we might have the cure!


(consider it a formal invitation)

11-15-2000, 12:03 PM
Thank you Juro. I would love to do that and I just might take you up on it when the time comes. I could use some saltwater action, especially considering I've yet to try it.