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Michael Gracie

Let’s close this trip out on a good note

INTREPID PHOTOG (WITH THREE CAMERAS, FOUR RIGGED RODS, FIVE LENSES, AND A SIX PACK OF MODELO IN TOW): This looks like a good spot for closing out this trip. I need a really good shot, so don’t splash up the pool when you step in. You’ve been fishing that same fly all weekend … sure you don’t want to change it up? How ’bout a dropper?

YOURS TRULY (WITH ONE PARACHUTE ADAMS, TWO FEET OF 6X TIPPET, AND A THREE WEIGHT RADIAN IN HAND): I’m good.

INTREPID PHOTOG: If there is anything here, it’s gonna be sitting on the right edge. Deeper over there. Sun’s at your back, so watch your shadow. Be careful of that big log behind you. Wanna cast this rod?

YOURS TRULY: Got it. Nope.

Thirty seconds later …

INTREPID PHOTOG: Dude, where’s your fly?

YOURS TRULY: (Sigh)

Another minute goes by …

YOURS TRULY: Satisfied?

MG signing off (because it felt like work, but business was good)

Photo credit: James “You Really Need A Dropper” Snyder

Angler credit: Michael ” No I Don’t” Gracie

I’ll turn this Australian into a fly fisherman if it kills me

Fly fishing plunger Craig Berg came to America seeking the good life. And outside of a grand career and a happy, healthy family it’s been a unmitigated disaster. If you have to ask why, you obviously have never fly fished with my crew and I.

First and foremost, I’m a drill sergeant. You lob a weak cast, I scream. You snag your flies and try pulling them loose without walking up first, I scream. You allow your line to drag on the surface, I scream. Tangle your leader…scream! Asked me to retie your knots…scream! You get the picture – I’d fail guide school because I’m a terrible babysitter. But over the last few years Mr. Berg has figured out trout, and I take full responsibility.

Alas, it was time to move on to bigger and better things, and today was the breakthrough day. Tough love works…

Berg's first carp on the fly
Gracie rig and fly choice (and a little yelling)

I’m still figuring out this carp thing myself, but it’s always good to have a whipping boy quick study around to test my theories for me.

Editor’s note: special thanks to James Snyder of Primal Fly Fishing for piping his own version of the Comedy Channel into our outing, making for an even finer day. And, no…neither James nor I netted jack. Class dismissed!