finding joe brooks…

I was honored when Joe and Michael Brooks, nephews of the late great Joe Brooks reached out to me and asked if we would take on the premiere of the new documentary entitled: “Finding Joe Brooks” a ninety minute film, a story of one man that would eventually change fly fishing culture forever. Joe Brooks was a true pioneer, a man that every fly fisher should know on first name basis. If it wasn’t for Joe, we wouldn’t have Lefty, the FFF, the IGFA, world travel fly destinations and so much more. He was truly the source of all modern day fly fishing in the states and around the world we now take for granted. I highly recommend that you put this on your calendar and Save the Date! We will support two fine non-profit organizations that are holding on to what Joe believed in, education and conservation. We will be supporting Casthope San Diego Chapter and The Joe Brooks Foundation. Tickets will be $25 each and will include the party and film.  Patagonia SM has graciously opened it’s door to host this amazing night. We will have a pre-film fundraising party entitled: Brooks, Bourbon & Barbeque across the street from the Patagonia Store in Santa Monica starting around 5pm. Traegar Grills will be there to barbecue, there will be a Bourbon tasting from Old Elk, Music by Par Avion and a great raffle and much more! We are still confirming sponsors and partners. I will add them to this post as they come in. Tickets will be on sale on Eventbrite through Patagonia SM website, so look out for it. It will sell out and there is limited seating.  The film will start in-store at 8pm. I hope I see all my fly fishing friends at this fun event, it will be one to remember.

More details to come…

 

-Al Q

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reel talk…

from our good buddy Nicolas Blixt! Please try to come out to support this event!

“I’m helping to host an event at Patagonia Santa Monica on 9/19 to share information about the Magnuson-Stevens Act and how it helps protect our saltwater fisheries. There will be free beer food, and music,, and we’ll do a panel with a few commercial and recreational anglers (including yours truly and Louisiana redfish guide Lucas Bissett).

Reel Talk: Panel on Fisheries & the Magnuson-Stevens Act
Time/Date: Thursday, September 19th at 7:00pm PST
Location: Patagonia Santa Monica (1344 4th St, Santa Monica, CA 90401)
Facebook Event Link: https://www.facebook.com/events/2482150688471646/
Event Description:
The Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act is a landmark law that guides the long-term sustainable use of our marine fisheries. Over the last 40-plus years, it has dramatically reduced overfishing and helped to rebuild fish stocks. Despite its long history of success, anglers across the nation are having to unite to fend off an array of attacks on the law and update it to better address issues like climate change and ecosystem degradation. Join experts from the world of fishing and conservation for a panel discussion about both threats and opportunities. We’ll also have beer, live music and snacks at this free event.

Hope to see you guys there!!!”
Nick

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calicos on the rocks: shaken and stirred…

I will be doing a couple of fly talks this week, one on Wednesday, August 28th at Deep Creek Fly Fishers in Riverside and one in Long Beach on Thursday, August 29th at The Long Beach Casting Club. Both will start around 6pm! I will also tie a few flies prior to the slide show. Hope to see some of my old buddies and friends and hopefully make some new ones. There will be a COOL perk for those that attend…just saying, LOL Tight lines

-Al Q

 

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still catching em…

A few custom Beach Bugs tied by Al Q photo by Al Q

photo courtesy of Ryan White

photo courtesy of Ryan White

I got a nice email from Ryan White this morning and want to share it…It’s unfortunate UMPQUA has retired this fly from its production line, it still continues to catch fish all over the world not just in California.  Thanks for the kind words Ryan, I am glad you got into the slab perch, they are really fun on the fly…

Hi Al,

Long-time fan, first time caller. Just wanted to drop you a note of appreciation for sharing such a great pattern.

While on vacation last week, I snuck off from family duties for a quick morning session in the surf near Santa Cruz. In a little over an hour, but Q’s Beach Bug did a number on a dozen local perch, including two slabs in the two-pound range (I thought I finally had a striper and started backing up the beach to get it on the reel, but it finally surfaced as a porker of a surfperch). They finally shredded half the estaz off and it was still catching fish.

Anyway, the pattern has been killer for me wherever I’ve used it in the surf, and I really appreciate how generous you are with patterns, knowledge and helping other along in the sport.

Cheers,
Ryan

 

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maybe time to change tactics?

photo by Al Quattrochi. This fish ate the fly right on the edge of a crab bed almost exposing his head on dry sand.

As we get deeper into the Corbina season we notice the fish are gorging themselves on sand crabs and they start to get picky. If you are fortunate to fish during the low tides during the late morning or early afternoon when the sun is higher and visibility at its optimum you will notice that the fish get really spooky. You can see them and they can see you! LOL This is the time to switch to a clear intermediate (Aqualux II, pictured below) or slow sink line (Type 3) mainly for low impact and stealth. When the fish get super spooky and are feeding right at the edges of the waves, you need to stay far back and drop down your gear to as light as you can throw for soft landings. This is the time to increase your leader length, and slow your heart rate! LOL

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pics of the day!

My ten year old daughter Quinn, made me a little art project at camp and handed it to me the other night.  It was totally unexpected, blew me away and conjured up the memory of landing that amazing rooster fish off the beach.
So, i thought you might want to see some footage of that beautiful rooster as I guided it towards the sand, during the end of a thirty minute battle. Watch closely as he had a little friend with him. Hope you enjoy! Thanks to a great video shot by my bud, Larry Acord

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happy anglers in bean land…

The full moon minus low tide cycle, combined with warm water temps were a slam dunk for corbina sight casting on the fly this past week. The last few days were as good as I have seen it on our local beaches with lots of happy fish moving around. It’s good times in bean land, lets hope it continues through the summer.

photo by Al Quattrocchi

photo by Lino Jubllado

photo by Lino Jubllado

photo by Lino Jubllado

photo by Al Quattrocchi

photo by Geno Centofani

Categories: Corbina Patrol | 7 Comments

don’t stop believing….hold on to that feeling

photos courtesy of Larry Acord

Me and my buddy Larry flew to Mexico to visit my old friend Jeff DeBrown (thereelbaja) out of Los Barriles, on the East Cape of Baja last week with the soul objective to try and land a Roosterfish off the beach on fly. With only three days to fish, it would be a challenge to say the least. Prior to setting out we went through the routine of casting and stripping the fly, over and over. Jeff didn’t want any “what ifs” or leave anything to chance, we would maybe get a few shots, so they had to count. The most important piece of this puzzle was to make sure our flies swam straight at high speed, we had good knots in our leaders, and we stripped out enough fly line in seconds to make accurate casts. These exercises would come into play and had to be executed at the highest level, for anything could go wrong in the heat of the pursuit.

So we set out on the first day, the three of us on a ATV, loaded with two fly rods and a positive attitude. Searching and hunting endless white sand beaches for any signs of life. The first two fish came early, down the line from left to right, my bad side of course, so i jump off the ATV running to get way ahead of them, my line all messed up, wrapped around my tip. Jeff yelling to slow down and breathe, I regroup and make a good shot just ahead of the fish and immediately start stripping the fly, NO LOVE, unaffected, I run ahead of them like a sprinter doing a hundred yard dash and throw again, strip, strip and NO LOVE, this continued two more times until they turned out into deeper water. Scratching my head and completely winded, I looked down in defeat, thinking this might have been my only shots. I reran the tapes in my head to try to understand why the fish didn’t turn on my fly and the only thing I could think of was I was using an intermediate line with a light fly and didn’t let the fly sink long enough for it to be in their feeding zone. It is weird and hard to perceive the depth of water, it looks shallower than you think. The water was fairly deep even though it was only a fifty foot shot. Ok, live and learn, do better next time dummy!

Back up on the ATV, we cruise mile upon mile of beach, when my buddy Larry says stop, and begins to run left with a rooster hugging the darker strip off water just off the beach. Jeff jumps off to assist him. I am sitting watching them when it dawns on me, grab you rod and walk the opposite direction, you never know? I look and see two nice fish coming right to left about a hundred yards away. They are happy and moving nice and slow, about forty feet off the beach over white sand. Ok, i will repeat the drill but this time I will sink out my fly. So i take off stripping line running left, Jeff looks back and sees me, He jumps up on the berm of the beach and yells at me to slow down and breathe. When I get in the perfect position to make the money shot, I throw a tight loop and let my fly sit. They approach, the larger fish on the outside and a smaller fish on the inside. When they got to around ten feet away from the fly, i bumped it and watched the attitudes of the fish, nothing, I bumped it again and the smaller fish saw the fly and came forward. I stripped as fast and steady as i could watching the smaller fish track and gain on the fly as it got to about ten feet from the waters edge, when all of a sudden the larger fish made up the time in a nano second and shouldered the smaller fish out of the way, inhaling my fly within two feet of the sand. Comb out of the water, this giant, with it’s belly on the sand turned and retreated, I hit him three times, driving the fly in the corner of his mouth and doing a Mexican tap dance as i cleared all my line onto the reel. Drag singing, it was game on!

With an instant loss of two hundred yards of backing, Jeff comes running up asking me how much backing do I have, I reply about three hundred yards, he says, That may not be enough? I fight this fish hard, using side angles, staying down and dirty, walking up and down to gain precious line. I had on straight forty pound so I knew I could pull and put the wood to this fish, making sure I never gave her any slack. Within thirty minutes I had my fly line and started to figure out how I was going to land her. I told my bud, Jeff that if he tailed this fish I was going to kiss him, she was tired and massive, glimmering in the torquoise water. I saw a small wave and decided to swing her around and use the wave to push her onto the steep sand, which worked to perfection. Jeff jumped in the water and grab his tail like Mike Tyson throwing an uppercut in the corner of the ring. We estimated this fish between 60 and 70 pounds, it took two of us to lift her out of the water. When it came time to release this fish I grabbed it by the tail and it kicked so hard it almost knocked me over, drenching me from head to toe, LOL. She swam away, healthy to fight another day. What an experience, I am blessed it all came together for me, Jeff and Larry. We all witnessed an unreal accomplishment, sight fishing and landing a super grande off the beach in Baja, a bucket list accomplishment and a memory I will never take for granted…  – Al Q

A fish of a lifetime! Photo courtesy of Larry Acord

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liquid structure…

This fish was caught in what I refer to as liquid structure. The flat I was fishing this morning was as flat as a pool table with no visible hard structure. This can make for a long, frustrating morning, when there is no place to hold fish. So where to you fish if the Corbina can go anywhere like loose pool balls on a hard slate table? You look for anything that is slighty different. I noticed as the tide started to push there was only one spot on this gigantic flat that had two seams crossing each other as moved towards the shore. This is what I refer to as,”liquid structure”, Often times, the fish will use this extra 6 inches of water like a kiddie slide to propel them toward the shallow end of the pool as the tide begins to fill in the flat.  Focusing on this area of the flat allowed me to toss into a group of about five fish moving towards me, and lucky for me, one ate the fly. So the lesson here is you have to create your own luck by concentrating on areas that hold promise. The fish ate a size 6 pink, Holy Moley.

 

Every now and then I get a stupid one to eat my fly. Photo by James Dwyer

Early morning sun over the horizon. Photo by Al Quattrocchi

Pretty in pink. Photo by Al Quattrocchi

Loving my Hatch reel new Sonic Surf fly line combo…Photo by Al Quattrocchi

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keeping it real…

I can’t believe that it has been almost three years since the last, One Surf Fly which was held at Dockweiler State Beach in 2016. We had our raffle ceremony at the Redondo Beach SEALAB  courtesy of our buddy John Whitaker, who volunteers working the sea bass pens. It was the grand finale for me and we were proud to hand Capt. Charlie a check for $2500. Me and my daughter also picked up plastic from the beach prior to the event and hand-made Charlie a plastic fish which he really liked! We had the honor of supporting Algalita, which was founded by Capt. Charlie Moore to help clean up the ocean. For those not familiar with Charlie Moore:

In 1997, while returning back to the mainland from Hawaii from a sailing expedition, Charlie stumbled upon what is he referred to as the “Garbage Patch”

In Charlie’s words,

“As I gazed from the deck at the surface of what ought to have been a pristine ocean,” Moore later wrote in an essay for Natural History, “I was confronted, as far as the eye could see, with the sight of plastic. It seemed unbelievable, but I never found a clear spot. In the week it took to cross the subtropical high, no matter what time of day I looked, plastic debris was floating everywhere: bottles, bottle caps, wrappers, fragments.” An oceanographic colleague of Moore’s dubbed this floating junk yard “the Great Pacific Garbage Patch,” and despite Moore’s efforts to suggest different metaphors — “a swirling sewer,” “a superhighway of trash” connecting two “trash cemeteries” — “Garbage Patch” appears to have stuck.

As a family we use metal straws and no plastic cups. When we go out to eat, we refuse plastic straws. its a small start, if everyone did their part we can begin to reverse this crazy practice of killing our oceans and wildlife, especially ocean birds.

Check out Capt Charlie’s NY Times Best Seller, The Plastic Ocean

Plastic garbage is swimming on the water surface — Image by © Gary Bell/Corbis

 

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