Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Monday, December 22, 2014

Sunday, December 21, 2014

2014 "Frosty" fly

Hook: 1/0 Stainless steel hook
Thread: White (markered yellow for nose)
Nose: Orange glow bug yarn
Head: White spun deer hair
Eyes & mouth: Black ball head pins cut to length.
Pipe: Olive ice chenille & brown thread wrapped on bent wire. 
Smoke: White Maribou
Top hat: Black foam construction 
Hat decoration: Wide holographic tinsel, olive biots & red beads.

Saturday, December 6, 2014

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Friday, October 24, 2014

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Brown trout

Some ipad artfulness 
While your team self destructs for the second night in a row, you find something else to occupy your time and mind. The Rangers tank, the trout lives on.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Friday, October 3, 2014

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

North Country Fall Color ‘Hoax’ Revealed

By PAUL HETZLER   reposted with permission
The sunny days and cool nights we’ve had recently are creating an especially intense “art show” across our hardwood forests. We’re fortunate in New York—the northeastern U.S. is one of the few places on the Planet Earth where trees produce such a phantasmagoria of color. You’d have to go to northern China or Japan to see anything close to what we have here.
The autumn foliage in northern New York is approaching peak color, and it’s time once again to explore just how this explosion of pigment came to be. Very few people alive today remember, but years ago we only had orange fall color—thanks to carotenoids in the leaves—with no yellows or reds, which are caused by xanthophylls and anthocyanins, respectively.
Then in the 1930s the Hoover Administration rolled out new leaf-color enhancement legislation to boost tourism in the northeast as a response to the Great Depression. It was called the Hoover Omnibus Anthocyanin and Xanthophyll bill, or HOAX.

OK, it’s unlikely it happened that way, but hey, I wasn’t alive then, so who knows? We know more about fall color today than when I was a kid, but we still don’t understand it all.
Most of us were taught in school that during the growing season, dark green chlorophyll masks the lighter yellow and orange compounds that naturally occur in leaves. Each fall, trees actively seal the vascular connections between twigs and leaves with a waxy abscission layer. This kills off chlorophyll and reveals yellow and orange.
Every tree species has its own paint palette. Birches turn brilliant yellow; serviceberry and many poplars often give us a mix of oranges and yellow. But whence come red leaves? This is the mystery. We know that relatively few tree species create red fall colors. Red and sugar maples are renowned for their ruddy foliage. Some oak species produce a deep scarlet, and our native white ash can make an intense red-purple hue.
The chemicals responsible for the red and purple range are called anthocyanins. These are large, complex organic molecules that take a lot of energy to create. Many plants invest in them in springtime to protect their tender emerging leaves from UV damage. Once the foliage hardens off, the plant stops making this “expensive” compound, and the anthocyanins break down. That early-season outlay makes sense, but what about in autumn?
Chlorophyll is more vulnerable to UV damage at cold temperatures, and you may read that anthocyanin is produced in the fall to protect chlorophyll from UV rays. Sorry, but I don’t buy that.
Renowned as frugal and pragmatic creatures, trees don’t expend energy without a dang good reason. It seems far-fetched they’d use precious stored energy to protect dying chlorophyll at the same time they’re busy making the abscission layers that are killing said chlorophyll. If the “fall suntan lotion” explanation is correct, maples would turn red at roughly the same time, with all leaves coloring evenly through the crown, and in all weather conditions.
One thought is that it’s a strategy to change soil conditions under its drip line to favor its species. Certain natural chemicals (including anthocyanins) made by plants can inhibit the growth, or the seed germination, of other species. This is known as allelopathy. Perhaps maples and oaks are trying to limit competition from their neighbors. The problem is that anthocyanins are weakly allelopathic. Also, maple seeds are intended to disperse on the wind; acorns via animals. Leaves fall close to the parent tree, where they don’t want loads of their progeny.
Someone told me that one of the most important phrases for an educator to learn is “I don’t know.” Well, I don’t know why foliage turns red in addition to yellow and orange each fall. But whether the reason is a conspiracy or just a mystery, I’m sure glad it does.
Paul Hetzler is a forester and Cornell Cooperative Extension of St. Lawrence County horticulture and natural resources educator.


Monday, August 25, 2014

Monday, August 11, 2014

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Monday, July 28, 2014

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Rod and Gun

The 100th Anniversary Massena Rod and Gun Club book first printing is done. It was a fun project. Thanks to the hard working folks at the club for getting all their historical newspapers, pictures and articles assembled for the layout.


Sunday, July 13, 2014

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Kids...will be kids...

Last evening, after a tasty jalapeno burger from the grill, I decided to take a quick run over to Seven Signs with the
Seven Signs
fly rod to see if I could land a bass or two.  Once there, I glanced down river and spotted one of the cairns I had stacked the day before. Ahh, still standing.
 I was soon joined by four kids, fishing poles in hand, who wandered down and settled in about 10 feet from me. Two of them recognized me from last year when I was launching the tube for a river float. It was the tube that made the lasting impression, I remembered them being really fascinated by it. So I guess they felt they knew me enough to plunk their tackle boxes down on the rocks next to me and start fishing "my water".
The red tube thing with the chair
 Kids will be kids...
And, kids being kids, I knew it wouldn't be long before they wandered off. But before they did, the conversation began by one of them telling me that he remembered me and that "red tube thing with the chair". Followed by "it must be really fun to catch a bass on one of them rods" and "Oh, you've got a floating thing on your line...that won't catch anything got to get deep". I smiled as I watched them toss their spinning rod lines out into the middle of the being kids...the longest cast must catch the biggest fish. Right? And even if it doesn't...well it was still the longest cast.

 I continued to patiently work the water above a drop off about 6 feet in front of us with a great big top water fly, drifting it over then stripping it back with long, big, attention getting splashes... until smash...big bass.

A big bass

Nothing gets a kids attention better than being proven wrong, especially when you don't have to say a word.
And now that I had their attention, I explained to them that its not really cool to fish right next to someone and cast over someone else's line.
 They all just kind of stood there and looked at me, with that look you get that makes you wonder if they're "getting it" or they're just thinking "shut up, you stupid old man". 
 It wasn't long after that, they split up and took off. Two went upstream, two went downstream, all at comfortable distances. Which left me alone wondering even more... 

I fished on, and landed a couple more really small ones. Timing truly is everything.

The quick cairn
  A while later, I noticed the two kids that ventured downstream had taken up a rock throwing contest...trying to hit and knock down the cairn that I'd built and was so glad to see was still standing. I thought about yelling down to them...but realized that would definitely put me in the "stupid old man" category. I mean, it was just a pile of rocks and it wasn't even a particularly good stack, a quick cairn, if you will.
 I had stacked it there to give anybody who happened upon it, a little bit of pleasure. Kids will be kids, and they were certainly getting a lot of pleasure trying to topple that thing. I watched as their rocks missed right, left, and high. With each salvo they stepped a little closer until they were finally close enough to deliver the fatal blow.
 I smiled. And the stupid old man on the river thought, "Kids will be kids."


Monday, June 23, 2014