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Fly Fishing II

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Fly Fishing II, OSU PAC  179 class, Michael Gorman, instructor

Fly Fishing II   PAC 179
(offered winter term only)
1 credit  hour.  Prerequisite: PAC 178, or equivalent experience
Michael Gorman, Instructor

phone: (541) 737-3222    email:
No campus office, but enquire in PAC office, Langton Hall 123  
This course is intended to take the student with a basic grasp of the skills of fly fishing ---- rudimentary fly casting, knowledge of nymphing, wet fly, dry fly techniques, essential equipment appropriate to a given fish species, fly selection, knots, and simple fly-tying methods --- to the next level of proficiency, specifically as they pertain to trout and char.  In addition to demonstrations and discussions, there will be PowerPoint presentations and video excerpts that will serve as learning aids in this course.  There will be many in-class small group activities that involve internet research utilizing smart phones or laptops.

 Upon successful completion of FLY FISHING II the student will be able to:
*Conduct a thoughtful and pertinent internet search of fly fishing topics which contribute to making the student a knowledgeable and resourceful fly angler.
*Execute and analyze a standard fly cast AND a double haul fly cast.
*Generally identify immature and adult aquatic insect groups important in the trout diet.
*Make logical decisions about fly selection and appropriate fly fishing methods in a given situation.
*Tie three basic fishing knots: double surgeon, clinch and Albright or nail knot.
*Neatly dub fur on a hook in the creation of an artificial fly.  Select the appropriate-size hackles for tying dry and wet flies..
*Describe at least two different effective methods for EACH fly fishing methods: wet fly fishing, dry fly fishing and nymphing.
*Know how to select and effectively fish emerger flies.
*Select appropriate fly rod/reel/line/leader/fly combinations for a given species of trout or char in steams or lakes.
*Name ten streams or lakes in Oregon of fly fishing importance, their exact location, fish species present, and appropriate time of year to fly fish these with a reasonable chance of success.                 

WEEK 1 Slide presentation: Winter Fly Fishing Opportunities in Oregon. Using Scout and Google Maps apps on smart phones.
Review course outline & grading. Key fly fishing locations. General fly types: wet, dry, nymph. Prior to next class students will should read and consider printing out  "Water Safety Basics" available on Blackboard.  Announcement: A fly fishing video competition for those students interested.   Details on blackboard: "Fishing Video Competition"
Using smart phones, or assisting a student who has one, students will research these terms: wet fly, dry fly, nymph, Stimulator, Parachute Adams, Prince nymph, Hare's Ear nymph, Wooly Bugger, and Bead Head Soft Hackle.  A single summary of group findings, including group member names, will be sent via email to the instructor before class ends.  Prior to next class students should consider printing out "Fly Fishing Equipment Basics" available on Blackboard or on the internet.
Class fly fishing outings: E. E. Wilson Pond;   McKenzie River.

WEEK 2 Small group activity: Access online article : Fly Fishing Equipment Basics".  Basic fly fishing equipment: fly rods and lines. Fly fishing knots handout.
More basic fly fishing equipment: reels, backing, leaders, tippets. Tie knots in class: clinch, surgeon, nail/tube knot.
Thursday: "Fly Fishing Equipment Basics" Quiz.  Prior to next class students should consider printing out "Double Haul Casting Basics" available on Blackboard.

WEEK 3  Review of "Double Casting Basics" + instructor casting demo. Student groups will construct a tapered yarn casting line, and demonstrate fly casting principles in the classroom with rod tip section in prep for outdoor casting.  Students will be asked to constructively critique each other. If time allows: video excerpt from "Essence of Fly Casting II".
Outdoor casting session.    


WEEK 4 Small group research on YouTube students will view a brief video of their own on nymph fishing for trout, dry fly fishing for trout and nymph fishing for trout in streams.  Possibility if time allows: Video excerpt from “Fly Fishing for Trout”. 
Continue researching nymphs, wet flies, and dry flies, and methods for fishing them.  Prior to next class students should read and consider printing out  "Water Safety Guidelines" and "Fly Fishing Lakes" documents available on Blackboard.
Tuesday: Deadline for video competition submissions.
Water safety discussion and trip planning.   Power Point presentation: “Advanced Techniques for Fly Fishing Lakes”.  Begin small group activity:  Listing of preparation steps, necessary skills, equipment & flies, and thoughtful strategies for catching a fish in stillwaters.   A single summary of group findings, including group member names, will be sent via email to the instructor before class ends. 
Thursday Winners of video competition will be announced.
Saturday: E. E. Wilson Pond fishing outing.  Students planning to attend must print out and sign "Liability Waiver" available on Blackboard and submit it to the instructor prior to joining the organized class outing.
Consider investigating float tube rental from Cascadia Fly Shop, 900 NW Kings Blvd, or floating device rental from OSU Dixon Rec Center.

WEEK 5 Continuation of small group work on fly fishing methods for wet fly, dry fly, and nymphing methods in stillwaters.  Submit summary email to instructor before end of class.   A single summary of group findings, including group member names, will be sent via email to the instructor before class ends.  If time allows: video excerpts: wet fly, dry fly, nymphing techniques.
Prior to next class students should read and consider printing out  the "Fly Tying Overview" and  "Wooly Bugger" fly tying sheets available on Blackboard.    

Fly tying demonstration: The Wooly Bugger.   

WEEK 6 Class fly tying. The Wooly Bugger..  Students will keep the flies they have tied.


WEEK 7 Power Point presentation: Trout and Char Species.  Small group activity: List any behaviors, food preferences, and favored habitats of the discussed trout species and chars. A single summary of group findings, including group member names, will be sent via email to the instructor before class ends. 
Continue small group activity: Listing of preparation steps, necessary skills, equipment & flies, and thoughtful strategies for catching a fish in streams and rivers. A single summary of group findings, including group member names, will be sent via email to the instructor before class ends.  Prior to next class students should read and consider printing out  "Advanced Aquatic Entomology" document available on Blackboard.
Saturday:  Class outing McKenzie River.  Students planning to attend must print out and sign "Liability Waiver" available on Blackboard and submit it to the instructor prior to joining the organized class outing.

WEEK 8 Power Point presentation: Advanced Aquatic Entomology. Q & A.  Prior to next class students should read and consider printing out  "Aquatic Entomology" document available on Blackboard.
Small group class activity: Identification of preserved aquatic insects. 
Prior to next class students will should read and consider printing out  "Fly Fishing for Steelhead" document available on Blackboard.

Power Point
presentation: “Fly Fishing for Steelhead”. Small group activity: Using smart phone or laptop, research most commonly used two-hand rod lengths and most popular fly line weights. Research to discover good instructional two-hand rod fly casting video.  A message with two video links of group findings, and group member names, will be sent via email to the instructor before class ends. 
Small group activity: Listing of preparation steps, necessary skills, equipment & flies, and thoughtful strategies for catching a steelhead. A single summary of group findings, including group member names, will be sent via email to the instructor before class ends. Prior to next class students should read and consider printing out  "Fishing Photography Tips" study sheet available on Blackboard.

Power Point presentation: Fishing photography tips. Small group activity:  Using smart phones, develop some creative ways for photographing a fish --- 1. with angler    2. with rod & reel     3. with angler and rod & reel   Students will email instructor with photo attachments for the entire class to view before 1:30 pm during class.

Instructor: Michael Gorman
541-737-3222 Phone message

1.  Grading: the final grade, scored on a point basis.  230-250 points, A;    225-229 points, A-;      221-224, B+;    205-220, B;     200-204, B-;     196-199, C+;     180-195, C;     175-179, C-;     171-174, D+;     155-170, D;     150-154, D-,     149 points or less, F.
The point total is determined by the sum associated with the following criteria:
*Participation: 80 points.  After the first week of the term, 4 points are subtracted from a starting total of 80 for each absence from participation in class.
*"Fly Fishing Equipment Basics" quiz, Thursday of Week 2: 10 points.
*Grading quiz, Tuesday of Week 5: 10 points.
*Timed open note/open book demonstration of knowledge (mid term exam), week 6: Thursday of Week 6: 40 points.
*Summary of fly fishing outing taken during the current term, due beginning of class, Tuesday of Week 9: 40 points. (To fish public waters in Oregon, the student must have a current, valid Oregon fishing license issued at most retail stores that sell sporting goods.  A one-day license is about $16 for residents and nonresidents alike.  Licenses of longer duration may be obtained at great reductions in per day cost. Also, the student is responsible for acquiring terminal gear, such as leaders and flies for their fishing outing.  At no cost, a rod, reel, and line may be checked out to the student from Langton 127 by the instructor only.)
*Extra credit: Satisfactory completion of one of the projects listed in #3 below, due beginning of class, Tuesday of Week 9: 10 points.
*End-of-term open note/open book demonstration of knowledge, week 10, Thursday of Week 10: 70 points.
Maximum point total: 250.

Students must have an ONID account in order to access their grade at the campus Blackboard site. To get an ONID account, go to   Once the student has logged into Blackboard, access this class. If you cannot access the course,
you are not correctly registered for this class. Again, you must have an ONID account in order to access your final grade.

2. Submit a type-written summary of a fly fishing outing taken during the current term: 150 – 200 words, not including the headings. Hard copies only, no emailed projects.  Deadline: beginning of class, Tuesday of Week 9.
Task #1:
Copy/write out the first five heading items below on your paper (not just the numbers "1", "2". etc.) . Under each heading, write your response for that heading. (5 points)
Date and stream or river fished, and its general geographical location (5 points). (Pretend your instructor does not know geography except for Corvallis.
Example: On Saturday, Sept. 31, I fished Steelhead Creek. From Corvallis, travel south on Hwy 99 for 26 miles to Harrisburg. Turn west (right) onto to Hwy 66. In 13 miles arrive at Steelhead Creek Park. Fished immediately below the bridge.)
Equipment used, including brand names (rod, reel, fly line, leader) and flies used. (5 points);
Description of the fishing (not casting) techniques/presentations of the flies used. Describe/explain how you presented the fly to the fish (5 points); These are not a total description of the techniques:."I used the roll cast" or "I used the nymphing technique".  Mention the direction of the cast, where the fly is in the water column, how you affected (or not) the drift of the fly, and any adjustments you made in an attempt to draw a srike from a fish.
If you used the "natural drift" or "nymphing" methods to present your fly, you must describe/explain what the "natural drift" or "nymphing" method is.
4) Get any strikes? Catch any fish?
Significant fishing “lessons” learned (5 points).
Place a photo of yourself at the river during your fishing day on the bottom portion of your paper. (5 points)
Use spelling and grammar checks on your summary, AND write at the bottom of the page: "I have used grammar and spell check when writing this report", followed by your hand-written signature. (5 points).
Papers should include PAC course number and class meeting days and time (4 points), and papers should not exceed more than one side of a page of 12-point typed text (5 points). Due at the beginning of class Tuesday of Week 9.
9) On the back of your paper, or on an attached second sheet, place a photocopy of your fishing license. (5 points)

3. For extra credit, select, complete, and submit one of the following on or before the beginning of your regular class meeting, Tuesday of Week 9: Maximum 10 points.

A. A display of 10 different (altering just the size or colors is NOT "different") fly patterns tied by the student during the current term. These will be mounted and labeled (in type, not hand-written), and neatly displayed. Typed labeling accounts for 5 points of the total. Display method is the choice of the student. A reminder: the difference between student-tied flies and purchased, commercially-tied flies is usually very obvious to the instructor. A reminder: the difference between student-tied flies and commercially-tied flies is often extremely obvious.
To receive credit for this project, the student must write on the back of their display, or on a separate piece of paper, write: "I have personally tied (made) these flies during this term." then, place your signature under the statement, and the date.

B. Collect 10 different aquatic organisms from ponds, streams or lakes, each in its own glass vial (with 50/50 mixture of tap water and rubbing (isopropyl) alcohol) available from OSU Bookstore. Each organism must be at least 1/3" long. Eggs of any organism are not acceptable. Your instructor will help with general identification if done so at least one week prior to submission deadline.. Create a typed sheet referencing each numbered vial with:
1) organism I.D. (examples: caddis larva; mayfly nymph; midge adult; midge pupa)
2) name of pond, lake or stream where it was captured
3) general habitat for each--- examples: fast water, stony bottom, vegetation at river's edge, slow water, on dead wood in water, etc

C. Read 3 chapters of Effective Stillwater Fly Fishing, or 3 chapters of Steelhead Fly Angling, both written by Michael Gorman..
1. For each of the three chapters, write the chapter title.
2. Under each chapter title write a two sentence summary of the chapter.
3. Under each chapter title write a two sentence comment about its understandability, level of interest for the reader, and anything found to be humorous.
To receive credit for this project, at the conclusion of this paper write "I have read these three chapters in their entirety.", and, then, place your signature under this statement.

Links of interest:
"A Typical Winter Steelhead Fishing Day --- Start to Finish"
"Know Your Quarry --- The Steelhead Life Cycle"

"Fly Fishing Equipment Basics"   Must reading for Fly Fishing II

Late submissions, for any reason, will not be accepted for any credit, INCLUDING ABSENCE FROM CLASS.
All summaries and projects are due no later than the beginning of class Tuesday of Week 9.
Note: Students absent from class, for any reason, are responsible for securing notes from another student in class.
If there should be an obvious typing error or conflict of dates concerning deadline dates, or dates concerning the quiz, mid term exam, or final exam, the student will not be excused for missing the deadline.  Announcements will be made in class lectures as deadlines or testing dates approach.  These announcements will supersede any typo errors.  Students are responsible for knowing this.

A few recommended books and authors:                                                           A few recommended video titles:

The Orvis Fly Fishing Guide by T. Rosenbauer                                                    Fly Fishing for Trout, 3M

Fishing in Oregon by Casali and Dinesse                                                               Strategies for Selective Trout, 3M

Western Hatches by Hafele and Hughes                                                                 Advanced Strategies for Trout, 3M

Fly Casting Illustrated by F. Amato                                                                      Fly Fishing for Bass, 3M

Lake Fishing with a Fly by Kaufmann and Cordes                                                Essence of Fly Casting, Kreiger

Steelhead Fly Fishing and Flies by T. Combs                                                        Fly Fishing for Pacific Steelhead, 3M

Please note:
Oregon State University provides clear definition and sanctions for academic dishonesty.  As a result, academic dishonesty of any kind is not tolerated. Students caught cheating, plagiarizing, or participating in any form of academic dishonesty will receive an F on the assignment or test (and possibly an F in the course). A formal report to the chair of the Department, to the Dean, and to the Student Conduct Program will be made.

If you have any questions about the extent and severity of sanctions that may result from dishonest behavior, I suggest that you take time to read the OSU Student Handbook or access the OSU Student Conduct Website at:

Statement of Risk: Risk is associated with many of life’s activities, including PAC classes.  The College of Public Health and Human Sciences classes will seek to minimize these risks by providing safe activity areas where possible, adequate equipment, and capable instruction.  It is highly recommended that you provide yourself with a student health/accident insurance policy.  These are available through the University, private carriers, or through a family policy.  If uninsured, minor accidents or health problems can lead to great expense.  If you have a condition that might affect or be affected by participation in this PAC class, you are encouraged to so inform your instructor either verbally or in writing.   Should you become ill or injured during class time, please inform the instructor or have a fellow student do so.  If you must leave class because of illness or injury it is recommended that another student accompany you. 
Sharp hooks and tools used during this class have an obvious inherent danger.  Use common sense and precautions at all times.  When on a fishing outing, common sense and precautions are urged when using sharp hooks (wearing polarized eye glasses is recommended at all times to protect your eyes and assist in safe wading) and wading in swift currents or walking on slippery rocks.  If you perceive dangerous conditions that cannot be counteracted with common sense and reasonable precautions, desist and/or speak with your instructor.

Statement for Students with Disabilities
            Accommodations are collaborative efforts between students, faculty and Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD). Students with accommodations approved through SSD are responsible for contacting the faculty member in charge of the course prior to or during the first week of the term to discuss accommodations. Students who believe they are eligible for accommodations but who have not yet obtained approval through SSD should contact SSD immediately at 737-4098.

Focus Questions and Important Info to know --- Have these in your notes!
*Name 10 Oregon streams or lakes (and general locations) that have available year-round fly fishing opportunities.
     *Name six different species of trout and char you can catch in Oregon.  Name two identifying physical and/or behavioral characteristics that would distinguish one species from the others.
     *Identify the Top Six flies recommended in class. Be able to identify an artificial dry fly from a wet fly from a nymph.
     *Besides, recommended rod lengths and "weights", what qualities would you look for in a good fly rod.
     *Know: recommended fly rod lengths/weights, leader lengths, appropriate fly reel size, different reel drag systems.
     *What factors weigh into the retail price of a fly rod?  Are all rod-building graphite fibers the same? Guide numbers?
     *Can you interpret "WF-6-F" as it relates to the attributes of a fly line?  Best choice in fly lines for streams and lakes.
     *Name three desirable attributes of braided Dacron as fly line backing.
     *Leaders: appropriate length and diameter.  How is diameter of tippet commonly measured?
     *Difference between leader and tippet.  Correlate "X" number with inches.  Appropriate "X" number for hook size?
     *Know the five guidelines for basic fly casting as discussed in class: Eat The Apple With Care.
     *Describe the general guidelines for performing a Double Haul fly cast.  What is a "haul"?
     *List four items an angler can wear of have with them that contribute to safety while fishing.
     *List three possible injuries or health-threatening conditions in a fishing environment.
     *What is hypothermia?  Name three symptoms that indicate an angler may have hypothermia.
     *List three measures that can be taken to prevent hypothermia.
     *Name three things you can do to help someone with hypothermia while waiting for medical assistance. 
     *Know the basic presentation method/strategy for dry flies, wet flies, and nymphs. 
     *Best line for fishing nymphs deep along a stream bottom?  Single best line recommended for fishing nymphs in lakes?  What is special about the Mastery Stillwater fly line?  How quickly does it sink? Interpret WF-4-S code.
     *Know some advanced presentation methods/strategies for dry flies, wet flies, and nymphs, lakes and streams.
     *What is "drag" as it relates to the drift of an artificial fly in a stream?  Name 3 methods for preventing drag.
     *How would you use a fish stomach pump?  What is a shock absorber leader?  A braided leader?  What is Gink?  What is Xink?  Name three types of strike indicator materials.
     *To the majority of feeding-selective trout: what is MOST important about your fly?  Color, size or shape?
     *Can you tie a clinch knot, surgeon knot, and an Albright knot?  In assembling your backing/fly line/leader/fly system, where is each of the aforementioned knots used?
     *Wooly Bugger: name materials and tools used to construct the fly.  Tail length?
     *What is a "hackle"?  Bird (and gender) producing the most commonly used hackles?  From what bird do we get marabou feathers?  What is a half-hitch knot?
     *Be able to describe identification differences among adult AND immature caddisflies, mayflies, midges, and stoneflies, damselflies, and dragonflies.  Wings at rest, wing pads, tails, claws, antennae, gill locations, and other unique identifying characteristics.  Contrast complete vs. incomplete life cycle.
     *Most important trout-food insects in streams?  Most important trout-food aquatic organisms in lakes?
     *What two readily-available liquids were recommended to be mixed for preserving aquatic organisms?
     *How do the numbers and sizes of trout in a quality lake compare with those in the average trout stream?
     *What is a "polarized" glasses lens?  What does polarization do for the angler?
     *Why are waist-high (NOT hip) or chest-high necessary to be a consistently effective stream fly angler?
     *Why is a floating craft necessary to be an effective lake angler?
     *List three outdoor photography tips which contribute to taking better photographs of fish and fishermen.

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Contact Information


Postal address
Michael Gorman
330 NW Autumn Place, Corvallis OR 97330
Mckenzie River fishing guides & Rogue River fishing guides specialists

To contact me please cut and paste the following email address to help prevent spam emails,
and please include the word "fishing" in the subject line of your email so your important note is not screened out by the spam filter. 
Many thanks.
Please cut and paste this email addressgorman_flyfishing@hotmail.comPlease include the word "fishing"

 somewhere in the Subject line of your email note


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