Check your line 

In PA we are getting ready for our Trout Season opener on March 31st (Regional) and State wide on April 14th. Some Anglers have been dormant all winter long. Either tying, resting or just sitting on the couch watching TV. For those of us anxiously waiting, I have a few tips for getting your line ready. The last thing you want to find out, is your line is shot while just crapped your pants, hooking up with the largest trout of your life. 

1. Check your line for any cracks, cuts, rips, tears etc… if they are in a “smaller” length cut the line and start fresh. You can add a new loop with the, perfection loop or wrap your own.

2. Clean all of last year’s scum off. Take pull the line off your reel to the backing. Soak it in warm soapy water for 10-15min… then dry.

3. Treat your line with some lube. Loon line Speed, Umpqua Guide Line Dressing, SA Line Dressing etc… give you’re a good ol’ massage.

4. Check the connections to the backing. Make sure all your knots are good. No need to be second guessing. Take your time and do it right.


Good Luck Anglers!


Nucast 4wt vs. massive bow

IMG_3610On a local limbstoner with many trout breaking the 20″ mark, mainly browns and rainbows, I head to one of my usual haunts and bring the 9′ Nucast 4wt to do some tightline nymphing. Blue winged olives are just starting to pop in the morning so I load the rod with a small olive nymph  with a heavy hares ear pattern I’ve been working on that suits this particular stream well to get down deep fast. Well I have a long standing history with this fish, I won the first battle with her two plus years ago but  she has won a few in between. Today she met the size 18 olive nymph that was attached to the Nucast rod and  Nucast synergy Reel. She was going no where, Head shakes were as violent as could be but the light rod forgave all of them. The drag on the reel is incredible and pinned that fish in front of me the entire fight, now it was up to me to make a clean net job, unfortunately she doesn’t fit in the net to well as you can see in the photo, so I scoop her head the best I can and safely snap some photos and send her on her way!

Thank you for reading! And thank you Nucast!!


Salmon River NY

Hey everyone, just got back from an awsome weekend with too good friends on the salmon river in upstate Ny. The Salmon river is a large tributary to Lake Ontario. Stretching 44 miles from the Tug Hill region in Upstate New York north of Syracuse. After the last of two hydroelectric dams the river turns into the one of the country’s greatest sport fishing tailwaters. With large Chinook and coho salmon making their way up the tailwater to the spawning grounds some natural reproduction but most find their way into the Salmon River Hatchery run by the state of New York. The steelhead and brown trout follow the big kings up the river later in October to gorge themselves on eggs to prepare for the long cold winter. The river has some of the largest fish of the 6 species of trout and salmon in the Great Lakes that make their way up the river. The river is very important to the economy of the town of Pulaski, which has countless tackle/fly shops and lodges/ bed and breakfasts and restaurants that cater to the millions of anglers that find their way through the year, but fall is the most important time for these businesses.  These salmon make this town what it is today, A world-class fisheryIMG_3341IMG_3355IMG_3356IMG_3363

Lackawanna River

After longingly waiting Keith and Bob and myself finally got up to the Lackawanna River in North Eastern Pa, the Lack is a class A wild brown stream that stretches roughly 40 miles from Carbondale to the Susquehanna River in Scranton Pa, the water stays consistent all year from feeders coming out of the hundreds of mines in the areas mountains, all though always carry a thermometer during the summer months on any stream, we have been extremely lucky this season here in Pennsylvania I must admit but years like last haven’t been so true.

One of the more technical rivers I’ve fished this class A was quite humbling. Making us change flies change leaders change weight etc. We were certainly challenged but that is what this game we call fly fishing is about, that’s what truly makes a fly fisherman/fly fisher woman keep coming back for more. Some days we enjoy ass beatings, definitely betters your skill so the next time hopefully you have learned something. Stones and caddis seemed to produce the fish we did catch although not hooking up on some of the trophies that are In there we knew we left plenty of fish including some slammers behind but that’s why we will be back. Wild Urban trout are so pressured and that’s why we feel blessed to catch what we did.

Special thanks to:

much appreciated all the information they shared with me to make a plan of attack on this stream. Please Check them out in Dickson City during your Visit

Buying a Rod 

Thanks. Sat is booked, my wife’s sister is visiting from Michigan. Sunday is clear. What about you? 
Sent from my iPhone
On Aug 22, 2017, at 7:25 AM, David Jolie <> wrote:
Great stuff keith! How’s your weekend looking?

Tight Lines and Screaming Drags

David Jolie

Chief Executive Officer, RiverBum, Inc.

office: (888) 674-6360 x701

cell: (509) 202-0621
On Mon, Aug 21, 2017 at 7:16 PM, <> wrote:

Hey bud, 
Give this a review.. 

Let’s talk about buying a rod. With so many brands out there, what do you buy, what do you spend? Now a days you can spend as little as 10.00 at a yard sale or 1,000. But why spend so much?!?!? 
Each rod has had its own special characteristics, that someone may or may not like. From different grips, reel seats, guides, wrap color, weight etc.. the list goes on and on.
For me I’d like to decide on.
1. Price, do I want to spend that much? 
2. Weight, casting a 1970’s Fenwick all day may be a bit tiring, compared to a new age Echo. 
3. Warranty, I like knowing, if something happens to my, I can get it fixed or replaced. Accidents do happen. 
4. Color, yea.. it’s silly and stupid. But I like different colors. Not everyone will, Today there are some wild colors, thanks to Swift Epic and Blue Halo. 
5. If I buy that 900.00 orvis rod, will I cast better and catch more fish? 
My answer is no. I can cast the same, with a 39.99 Eagle Claw Sweetheart Glass rod as I can with a 900.00 Orvis Helios. This is just me. Others out there will say different. But I know my crappy casting. It’s all the same. 

My final thoughts are. Buy the rod. Not the company. Go out and test each rod, with reel and line you plan on using. Take your time, get a feel for the rod. That is why there are so many different rods to choose from. What works me, will not always work for you. 

Hopefully this helped some of you out and makes sense.

Wild Urban trout

Hey everyone welcome to the ReelandHackle blog, today I want to chat about something near and dear to me and the type of fisherman that I am,  urban wild trout.  I think when people think of flyfishing and wild trout a lot of times their brain goes to images of cascading waterfalls, grizzly bears, big tall mountains like places like Montana, Wyoming and the upper Delaware and  central Pennsylvania. But for me growing up in an urban environment with class A streams minutes away I was blessed to learn to fish for wild trout in walking distance of my home where I grew up and also now reside.

History of urban trout is long, but times like the industrial revolution with steel industry, Mining and railways really damaged many trout streams in the eastern part of the country. Steel companies  like in Bethlem steel put more chemicals and iron in the Lehigh River there any nuclear power plant around and places  like the Lackawanna river in Scranton I could’ve been  destroyed due to mining and that’s just one  percent of thriving wild trout streams that could’ve been no more. But with help from government organizations like DEP EPA and nonprofit groups like Trout Unlimited all to name a few but there are so many organizations that have brought back wild trout to city’s all over but right here in eastern Pa is seeing some of the best fishing opportunities in the state right along with central Pa and the pocono mountains. I love fishing those places and they are so special they all have amazing fishing and bug life is out of this world but these Urban limbstoners and spring creeks can hold some gold if you know where to look.  Thank you for following ReelandHackle  *JG*IMG_1705412D7949-4A75-4887-8423-7E6BED7E4C60IMG_2888IMG_2898

TailWater Techniques


Today I have a special write up, form my buddy David Jolie. This post is about fishing TailWaters. What is a TailWater? Wikipedia states..

“Tailwater refers to waters located immediately downstream from a hydraulic structure, such as a dam (excluding minimum release such as for fish water), bridge or culvert”

“Tailwater can refer to a type of fishery. Tailwater fisheries can be defined as Tailrace fishing which occurs at the outflow from large dams, where the size of the reservoir creates a steep temperature gradient, with colder water stored at the bottom of the reservoir near the outlet. The constant cold-water flow provided by the reservoir’s outflow, coupled with the generally silt-free nature of the outflow, creates ideal water conditions for cold-water fish such as trout in environments that ordinarily might not support a robust trout population”



TailWaters will provide great fishing, do some research and go out an explore.

Thanks Dave for a great write up, check out the link and promo code!








Tailwater Techniques

If you have tailwaters near you, you are very lucky. Tailwaters are commonly referred to the waters below a dam.  The bottom of the lake above will have nice cool water.  If the dam is bottom releasing as many are, then as they release water through the dam the lucky side effect the creation of trout habitat in the waters below them with a constant flow of cool water.

Tailwaters create interesting ecosystems, not unlike large spring creeks in water chemistry and biology. Some spring creek techniques can work on tailwaters.  Following are some tricks I’ve learned over the year….and some good bugs.


  • Go small close to the dam. The water temperatures can stay pretty constant. The water won’t go through the typical seasonality as a freestone river. Thus, the constant very cold water that comes from bottom release dams doesn’t usually grow large insects. Some typical sizes are 22-16 for most dry flies and nymphs.
  • This can be very technical fishing. You really need to match bugs exactly as you can. Tailwaters tend to produce large numbers of bugs so fish get very good at knowing what they are eating.  When matching, go size first, then shape, then color.


  • Get you bobber. Most tailwaters produce large numbers of aquatic invertebrates that never turn into flying bugs. Scuds, aquatic worms, and sowbugs are often very abundant in tailwaters.  Fish stay down. Why risk going to the surface and getting plucked by an eagle or osprey when you’ve got a food conveyor down deep.


  • Remember that tailwaters have different hydrology than other rivers. Some large hydroelectric dams vary their outflow according to energy needs, creating flows that fluctuate enormously. Some dams have very stable outflows, far more stable than a river formed by snowmelt or rainfall. It is wise to check with local fly shops and government agencies about what to expect out of the tailwater you plan to fish. You can check the current flows on our site here.


  • Fish during off periods. In the dog days of summer, most streams are far too warm to fish…..not tailwaters. During the dead of winter when everything else is frozen over…..not tailwaters. Give ‘em a go, you’ll be glad you did.

That’s it for now my fishy friends. Remember, put in “Blog20” in the coupon code section and get 20% off all of our flies

Tight Lines and Screaming Drags


-David Jolie-


IMG_2839.PNGWell I finally got out to the stream to test out the new Nucast smokin hot 4wt this weekend. With having two little kids fishing time has been tough but was really glad to get out for a few hours early in the morning.

The valley had some good rain and the streams are very full and it was perfect for nymphing and throwing small streamers and that is what I did.

Managed a few fish on nymphs and one good rainbow on a weltys wooly bugger, tied by my good buddy Bob.

As far as the rod review the smokin hot 4wt from Nucast casted small streamers effortlessly and had great action during the retrieval. Unlike some rod where you feel disconnected from the streamer, I felt constant tension from the current which to me is a key to success. It’s a beautiful rod and the casting and action is 2nd to none and competes with some of the much more expensive rods I’ve used. A very good rod for an even better price, check them out at Nucast.usa. I’m very pleased to be an ambassador of such a great fly fishing company.


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