|Photo Courtesy of George Daniel|
If you haven't purchased or read George's Dynamic Nymphing, what I can tell you to expect from Strip-Set is a book loaded with so much information that you will be continually going back and re-reading page after page and learning something new every time. In addition, the photography alone will likely be worth the purchase just to experience the beautiful aesthetics of trout and the gorgeous places we pursue them.
In anticipation of Strip-Set's release, I reached out to George with a few questions to hold us over until we get notification that our pre-orders have shipped! A huge thank you to George for taking the time to answer the following questions!
CH: With your extensive background in competitive fly fishing and expertise on nymphing tactics, streamer fishing is kind of a different direction. What prompted the change?
GD: I’ve always loved streamer fishing. My addiction came in 2002 when I met and fished with Russ Madden. Russ was the first to show me articulated streamers and introduced me to the Kraken-a Russ Madden original that was a favorite of mine for over 5 years. However, the name of the game with comp fishing is to catch numbers of fish, which meant often looking at nymphing as a primary tool. In all honesty, nymphing is my least favorite tactic but one I do the most since I do like to catch fish. If I had it my way, I would chuck streamers from a drift all day-everyday!
CH: What’s your favorite species to fish for? Do you have a bucket list species?
GD: Without hesitation - TROUT. Trout live in beautiful places all over the world, including near my home in Central PA. I do have a bucket list of fish but not in any particular order. I would like to catch everything from a Golden Dorado to a Taimen.
CH: What are your top 5 go to streamer patterns?
GD: Sparkle Minnow, Lynch’s Drunk and Disorderly, Strolis Head Banger, Sculp Snack (Bugger Variation), and Schmidt’s Grumpy Muppet.
CH: If readers take only one thing from the new book (I highly doubt that’ll be the case), what would you like it to be?
GD: Match the approach to the conditions. I know this sounds like common sense but that means looking at floating lines, sink tips, full sinkers, un-weighted and weighted flies options. This is no different than choosing when to tight line versus indicator fish when nymphing. My hope is for readers to learn to adapt their approach to the conditions they face.
CH: You traveled all over the country doing research for this book. What destination did you most enjoy? Why?
GD: The northern location of the lower peninsula, MI. The AuSable, Manistee, PM along with many others. Those rivers are designed for the streamer angler, chocked full of fallen timber and deep undercuts. The lighter colored stream bottoms make it easier for the angler to see a trout chasing a streamer, which heightens the sensation of streamer fishing.
CH: Guide’s day off streamer float. Where are you fishing and what two anglers are in the boat with you? Who’s on the sticks?
GD: White River, AR in February with Lance Wilt and Brian Wilt (no relation) while taking turns on the sticks.
CH: Is there a place you have not yet fished but would like to?
GD: Yes, I would like to spend some time fishing the tropics in Mexico, along with several countries in Eastern Europe, including Slovenia and Austria.
CH: How does Pennsylvania rate in comparison to other destinations?
GD: While Central PA doesn’t have the trout populations as say the Green River, WY, it has such a diverse number of fisheries all within several hours. I enjoy the seasons, the green, the mix between freestone and limestone, along with the challenge our fisheries offer anglers. While it’s great to travel, I enjoy coming back home.
CH: What affects, positive or negative, do you see social media having on the fly fishing industry over the last few years and going forward?
GD: Both. The great thing about social media is that everyone has a voice, so there are some great anglers/tiers/writers who would never have been discovered if it wasn’t for social media. There are so many talented people out there who have no interest in writing books or articles, but who simply enjoy sharing their experiences along with their thoughts on certain subject matters.
The downside I see is that many lesser known streams or sections of rivers are located through social media. Everyone has the same right as I do to fish any of these rivers, but some people feel the need to post every big fish photo of themselves and in doing so they generate a lot of buzz about their secret fishery. Many of my friends who are recreational anglers or guides do not post many big fish photos for the reason that it often attracts too much attention. There are some private sections of water that are now closed because of sudden pressure brought on by social media.
CH: What’s in your CD player or on your iPod for your drive to and from the river?
GD: I like a little bit of everyone. On my Pandora station I have the following artists: Johnny Cash, Mumford and Sons, Lumineers, U2, Eddie Vedder, Eric Church, Luke Bryan, all the way to the Dallas String Quartet. Odd, I know.
CH: What’s your beer of choice?
GD: Troegg’s Perpetual IPA.
CH: You’ve written THE book on contemporary nymphing techniques, we’re all drooling over Strip Set, and you recently mentioned that you spent an impressive 75 consecutive days guiding. What’s next?
GD: There’s always something. I hope to have my nymphing DVD available by Christmas, I’m still working another 20 days on the water guiding, I have a full line of clinics/shows lining up from now till the end of 2016. I’m about to begin work on a third book project, but most importantly spending more time with my family. For the first time in 5 years, I was able to spend multiple weekends with my family. I also got to spend 24 days on the road with my daughter during a western trip. My hope is to continue to write, create additional DVD’s, expand my business in other areas, and to incorporate my family more into the business model.
CH: Is there a current topic or issue (conservation, ethics, etc.) you’d like to take a few lines to talk about?GD: Recently when traveling to the Driftless Area of WI, I was amazed by the sheer number of public accesses the state has acquired over the years through easements. The state had the foresight to put much of their time and money to acquire easements that now offer any license holder the right to fish these waters. The work the state of WI has done over the years will guarantee access to many generations of anglers. I truly hope our state, along with others, will follow WI’s example.
Thanks again to George for taking the time out of his busy schedule to answer these questions. If you can't tell, I can't wait to get my hands on a copy of this book and I'm sure most of you feel the same way. No doubt, we're all in for a treat!