Show Notes: wetflyswing.com/424
The French Fly Fisherman Antoine is here to take us to Euro nymphing. We find out how to present your fly more effectively and how to identify big fish, and we touch on many of the Farmington river hatches today.
We also find out why Antoine traded his ski boots for a fishing rod. Antoine also shares his tips on guiding and teaching beginners, including those who are not confident with their fly casting.
4:00 – Antoine worked with Kyle Leard and Pete Kutzer at the Orvis Fly Fishing School for several years before moving to Connecticut with his wife. He became a guide on the Farmington River, where he shares his expertise in Euro nymphing and identifying big fish.
08:47 – Antoine started skiing competitively at age 12 in the Alps until he was 16. Later, he met an American woman in Paris at 21, and they eventually settled in New York for 15 years before moving to Vermont.
9:44 – Antoine had to quit skiing after breaking his back and having 20 screws put in it. He continued to ski until his doctor advised him to stop to avoid being confined to a wheelchair. He now channels his passion into fly fishing, fly tying, and building automatic watches.
11:45 Antoine tells us the story of how he got into Orvis School. We did several episodes on Orvis before. We had an episode with Perk Perkins and also with Tom Rosenbauer.
14:35 – Antoine discusses the year-round fishing opportunities at the Farmington River, a tailwater fishery known for its excellent brown trout population. He said late spring is considered the best time to fish there.
19:16 Antoine delves into Euro nymphing, sharing tips and techniques especially useful for those interested in learning competition tactics.
22:01 – Antoine shares insights on the equipment he uses for fly fishing, including his preference for high-end gear and his practice of building his own leader. He uses a Scientific Angler competitive line like the SA Mastery Euro Tactical Mono Nymph Fly Line.
24:00 – Antoine uses a Hardy 9’9″ 2wt rod for Euro nymphing and a longer 11 and 1/2 rod for go-all conditions. He also uses his Hardy 9’9″ 2wt rod for low-water conditions in the summer when fish may be more easily spooked.
28:32 – Antoine shares his approach to building leaders, using Devaux, a French brand, for most leaders and combining it with Orvis’s tippet. He also notes that for beginners, he starts with thicker leaders to help them get a feel for casting.
38:05 – Antoine shares with us how the fishing conditions at the Farmington River vary throughout the year. He also talks about Euro Nymphing in different conditions at the Farmington River.
42:40 – Antoine shares that the Farmington River has a healthy population of big fish, with 20-inch brown trout and wild fish being a common catch.
47:49 – Antoine shares some valuable insights on identifying trophy-sized fish and techniques for presenting your fly effectively to increase your chances of catching them. He also talks about his approach to guiding visitors who may not have great fly-casting skills. He said he uses a lot of CDC.
59:06 – We discussed the hatches on the Farmington River, particularly the Hendrickson hatch, which used to be a major event but has become less stable due to changes in water flow. They also have the glimmer hatch, caddis, blue-winged olives, and winter caddis.
1:05:45 – The Farmington River has a major Isonychia hatch that starts in June and goes until mid-November.
1:07:38 – We then talked about fly shops around the Farmington River. Of course, there’s Orvis and also UpCountry.
1:09: 36 – Antoine discussed a new product called SwimWell ™ Oxygenated Fish Recovery Spray, which sprays oxygen onto fish to aid in their recovery. The product is set to be showcased at an upcoming fishing show in Denver.
1:12:08 – Antoine shared that if he had to choose just one fly, it would be a size 16 Perdigon. And if he could choose one river to return to before he dies, it would be the river in the eastern part of the Pyrenees.
Show Notes: wetflyswing.com/424