Bob Banfelder

Bob is an award-winning novelist & outdoors writer. He has also penned a fishing handbook and a hunting handbook. He is currently working on a bowhunting book.

Search This Blog

June 17, 2018

Tying a Deadly Foam Dry-Fly Hopper for Absolute Angling Success

by Bob Banfelder

As with the ant imitations we tied earlier while employing foam bodies, let's tie a deadly foam hopper that is at home in both fresh water and salt water.

Materials Needed

Hook: Mustad-Octopus Beak 2/0 or 1/0
Thread: Danville's Flat Waxed Nylon ~ black
Body: Two strips of 2 mm-thick foam ~ 3/8 inch wide ~ one yellow, one light brown (6-inch lengths are easier with which to work).
Underbody: Peacock Herl
Legs: TNT Hopper Legs ~ brown
Wings: Deer Hair natural color from belly or tail (bucktail)
Head Cement: Hard-as-Hull or 2-part 5-minute epoxy

Step 1: Wrap a thread base starting behind the eye of the hook to a point halfway around the bend. Come back up with the thread to the top of the bend, thread perpendicular to the hook's barb.

Step 2: Tie in the two strips of 3/8th-inch foam at the top of the bend (yellow on top, light brown on the bottom), excess material facing toward the rear of the hook. Wrap the strips down securely to this mid-point section in the bend.

Step 3: Tie in a strand of peacock herl and wrap the thread forward to the top of the bend. Lock the thread with a half hitch then bring it forward to the eye of the hook, resting the thread on the bobbin cradle. You will now be able to wrap the peacock herl, unencumbered, as the bobbin is out of the way.



Step 4: Wrap peacock herl to the top of the bend, being very careful not to apply to much tension or this delicate strand will break. Remove the bobbin from the cradle then lock in the strand with secure thread wraps.



Step 5: Bring the foam strips forward, just over the section of peacock herl. Wrap foam down securely. We have created the hopper's underbody.



Step 6: Cut off excess foam and set aside. Secure with several tight, contiguous wraps until the ends are completely covered. Tie off.

Step 7: Now, we need two more pieces of foam to form the front of the hopper. Only this time, you are going to momentarily invert the colored strips; light brown on top, yellow on the bottom. Tie in the two foam strips ¼ inch behind the eye of the hook (excess material initially facing rearward), wrapping the strips down securely with contiguous wraps to a point where they practically join the rear section. Bring the thread behind the strips and continue wrapping to form a 1/16th inch gap.

Step 8: Within the gap, tie in a TNT Hopper Leg on one side of the body (two loose wraps then tighten); tie in the second leg on the opposite side. Bring the thread forward of the foam strips.



Step 9: Next, take a small bunch of deer hair (less than the thickness of a wooden match stick, approximately 2 inches in length (tips facing upward; i.e., butt ends down), placing it directly in front of the foam strips. Tie down the hairs securely atop the hook shank. Separate the deer hair evenly with your dubbing needle (bodkin). Gently pull the foam strips forward between the two clumps of hair to a point 1/8th inch behind the eye of the hook, wrap securely then trim excess foam. Secure with several tight, contiguous wraps, working the thread to a point directly behind the eye of the hook. You'll note that the dark brown foam is now on top and yellow is on the bottom.



Step 10: Gently bend and push the two clumps of deer hair down and rearward along each side of the body to form the wings. Cut off the excess foam and wrap to a point directly behind the eye of the hook. Secure with several half hitches.

Step 11: Apply a dot of Hard-as-Hull head cement or a 2-part 5-minute epoxy to the thread head.


Deadly hopper fly.

Note: The hopper legs are made of Ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA), which is an elastomeric polymer that produces soft, flexible, rubber-like appendages. According to Wikimedia, "the material has good clarity and gloss, low-temperature toughness, stress-crack resistance, hot-melt adhesive waterproof properties, and is resistance to UV radiation." I purchased several small packages of hopper legs in green, tan, and brown from the Dan Bailey fly-fishing shop, Livingston, Montana. The pair of these realistic-looking hopper legs weigh in at 1.0 grains on the money, so don't think that you're adding unnecessary weight to the fly. Legs and deer hair body lend realism and gives the angler an added edge.

Good to go.



Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there.

Bob Banfelder
www.robertbanfelder.com

Award-Winning Crime Thriller Novelist & Outdoors Writer
Member: Outdoor Writers Association of America
New York State Outdoor Writers Association

Recent recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from Who's Who in America


Several of My Award-Winning Crime Fiction Novels Incorporate The Great Outdoors

Top to Bottom:
Fiction:


The Richard Geist Three-Book Series ~ Trilogy

Dicky, Richard, and I. A story of madness in the making. A curious mix of a mother's care and cruelty concerning her young son, Dicky Geist, and the precocious boy's metamorphosis into that of a multiple murderer.

The Signing. An account of a clandestine murderous cult monikered the Inner Circle of Friends, led by Richard Geist. Geist and cult members are hellbent on creating chaos and bringing about the eventual collapse of our government.

The Triumvirate. A tale of Neo-Nazism. Three most powerful men covertly control governments around the globe. Fifty-year-old secrets begin to surface referencing Hitler's progeny, the Manhattan Project, and Nazi gold in this mystery within a mystery. It is the genesis of the Fourth Reich.

The Justin Barnes Four-Book Series ~ Tetralogy

The Author. A prolific serial killer is the author and architect of a covert operation whose job it is to place government operatives within the ranks of worldwide extremist groups. Justin Barnes, a street savvy Afro-American maverick, searches unrelentingly for the madman who viciously murdered Justin's female cousin.

The Teacher. Justin Barnes, working clandestinely with Suffolk County homicide detectives on Long Island, is assigned to help track down Malcolm Columba's associate, serial killer Professor Clarence Emery. The pair had worked in concert, and Justin is out to stop Emery before he strikes again. A terrifying tale of evil and what it takes to stop it in its tracks.

Knots. Kalvin Matheson, an out-of-work insurance salesman obsessed with immortality and hero worship regarding two notorious serial killers, follows in the footsteps of his two diabolical pals, but with a subtle signature twist, utilizing intricate knots.

The Good Samaritans. In this final four-part series, Justin Barnes, once again, assists Suffolk County homicide detectives as part of a covert operation in tracking down Sep Cramer, a politically well-connected, ruthless serial killer.

**********


Trace Evidence. Inspired by the Robert Shulman Serial Killer Trial in Riverhead, N.Y., Robert Banfelder spent every day for 15 months as a spectator to obtain fodder for this novel.

**********


Battered. Based on a true story of an abused woman who murdered her husband, Robert Banfelder communicated with abused women, one of whom spent 15 years in prison for her crime.

Nonfiction:

The Fishing Smart Anywhere Handbook for Salt Water & Fresh Water. A concise yet comprehensive angling and on-the-water activities handbook covering spin, bait, fly-fishing, fly tying, clamming, crabbing, kayaking, canoeing, seafood recipes and much more. For novice through experienced anglers. Endorsed by Left Kreh and Angelo Peluso. [black & white photos]

The North American Hunting Smart Handbook: Bonus Feature: Hunting Africa's & Australia's Most Dangerous Game. A concise yet comprehensive small and big game hunting handbook covering guns and bows. Includes upland bird hunting, land management, whitetail tactics and much more. Special bonus feature includes stories of big game hunting in Africa and Australia by seasoned hunters. [color photos]

The Essential Guide to Writing Well and Getting Published. A must-have guide for both novice and veteran writers. This handbook includes tips on how to make money and gain rewards from outdoors writings. Color-coded lessons for easy comprehension.

May 02, 2018

A Seafarer's/Landlubber's Delight: The Preston House ~ Haute Cuisine, Riverhead, L.I.

by Bob Banfelder

A treat is in store for those who savor seafood, steaks, and fowl—served at their finest. The fare is simply fantastic. Riverhead spearheads an outdoors mecca of the north and south forks of Long Island. It is where Donna and I begin our fishing, clamming, crabbing, and boating adventures come spring through fall. The east end of Long Island's new upscale/laid-back/casual restaurant is but steps away (across the street) from the Long Island Aquarium and Exhibition Center in Riverhead. Wait! If you think for a moment that I'm carelessly positing a series of self-contradictory locutions, please reserve judgment. We'll begin with a curious juxtaposition of old and new.


Foreground: 1902-03 renovated Preston House Restaurant
Background: 2018 ultra-modern Hotel

The descriptions of fare presented at the Preston House Restaurant have been identified as "New American" and/or "Rustic-Elegant," the latter of which surely paints a picture in one's mind as, well, rather oxymoronic. Much like the seemingly incongruous phrases of ‘JUMBO shrimp' or ‘LARGER half.' While these expressions may seem clearly confusing, it all makes perfect sense after a dining experience and a tour of the establishment, for the hundred-plus-year-old house has been transformed into a highly refined eatery.

Rather than raze the Preston House as was initially intended, architects and engineers saw great potential for both refurbishing and preserving. For example, remnants of an old stone wall were restored along with traces of other building materials that accent an eight-hundred bottle wine cellar. Presently, the restaurant seats eighty-eight folks, with expansion in mind for the near future.


1905 Wine Lounge

Donna and I started off by relaxing with a glass of Vietti Barbera d'Asti ‘Tre Vigne' from the Piedmont region of northern Italy, a medium-bodied ruby red with a cherry aroma and hints of vanilla ~ $13 by the glass.


Preston House Dining Room

For appetizers we gravitated to and shared, for openers, the East End Clams Casino. A generous portion and presentation of four beautifully plated, mouth-watering melding of clams, diced bacon, shallot, butter and breadcrumbs; not mere morsels but rather a step up between top neck and cherrystone size shells, yet delivering the delicate flavor of fresh, sweet littlenecks. The best we've had in our travels, and a bargain at $7.


East End Clams Casino

Paired with a second appetizer, Donna and I split an order of Seared Point Judith Calamari, prepared with watermelon radishes, fat green olives, and pepper jelly. The dish was pleasingly presented with a light golden-brown dusting of breadcrumbs and a flavorful, truly tender texture upon the palate—the way calamari should arrive at the table ~ $16.


Seared Point Judith Calamari

Before ordering our main courses, I had to indulge myself with what turned out to be a bottomless bowl of Preston's Down East Style Chowder [spelled Chowda on the menu so as to give it that down-home folksy, rustic flare]. The server had the good sense to bring a second spoon for sharing. The chowder is comprised of local clams, North Fork potatoes, and garlic croutons; in a word, scrumptious.


Down East Style Chowda

We relaxed a bit with a second glass of wine before ordering our main course. This time around, we selected a glass of Firesteed Pinot Noir, Willamette Valley, Oregon. The aromas consisted of raspberry, blueberry and cherry and was lighter in color, body, and on the palate than the Barbera d'Asti grape variety. Donna and I lean toward a heavier, heartier bodied red. And although the fare thus far consisted of seafood, white wine being the so-called usual rule of thumb as an accompaniment, we rarely subscribe to rules save lawful ones. So, there. Firesteed Pinot Noir ~ also $13 by the glass. A suggestion would be to add a couple of affordably priced bottles of red wine to their fairly extensive list as selections start at $36.

Turning our attention to the main course, Donna ordered the Crescent Farm Duck Confit, served with seasonal chutney (sweet and sour relish), farrotto (wheat substitute in lieu of rice and more nutritious), and herbed artichokes. Simply stated, a Crescent Farm duck (Aquebogue, L.I. N.Y.) is always a winner. Donna's duck was delicious. Crispy on the outside; moist, tender, and succulent ~ $35.

For my main course, I ordered the titled "A Nice Piece of Fish (market price)," which happened to be halibut that day. It was especially pleasing to the palate: a golden brown crust surrounding a thick brick-sized shape fillet, unbelievably moist yet flaky—Wow! Prepared to pure perfection ~ $36.

From the Sea Bar or main menu, another winner catches the eye: #1 Big Eye Tuna Tartar, served with seasonal citrus, whipped avocado, taro chips ~ $23. Go for it! At the expense of mixing metaphors, you'll be as happy as a clam that you did. Delectable.


Tuna Tartar

We passed on dessert for two reasons: one, we usually forego dessert; two, we couldn't handle it if we had to as our tummies were replete. However, the list certainly sounds seductive: Triple Chocolate Fudge Brownie with candied popcorn, buttermilk ice cream; Warm Beignets in a Brown Bag with dusted powder; Burnt Basque Cheesecake with organic Meyer curd; 4-2-8 Cookie Jar (the restaurant's address—cute): ginger snap, chocolate chip, lemon sugar, almond date; Today's Ice Cream & Sorbets ~ all desserts are $12. Now, if they would only add a ‘Sweet Tart' to their dessert menu, it would help balance out what is ostensibly another contradiction in terms.

Humor aside, in a nutshell, the fare and service at the Preston House Restaurant is purely fantastic! The very best eatery we've been to in Suffolk County, and that's saying something after dining in the area for thirty-one years.

Ah, Donna and I did manage another visit during Restaurant Week. I opted for a sampling of their Shinnecock Sea Scallops, served with smashed celery root, winter mushrooms, and wilted rocket (leafy, peppery) greens ~ $35 on main menu for larger portion.


Shinnecock Sea Scallops

Chef Matty Boudreau is the wizard behind the curtain . . . ah, apron.

Annexed to and owned by the restaurant group is their luxurious twenty-room hotel. Be ye a boater or a landlubber, tie it all together in a splendid visit: aquarium, fine dining in a relaxed setting, touring the areas many nearby vineyards, and/or staying for a spell in their most comfortable hotel [studio, one bedroom suite, or corner suite], taking in, too, the alluring Peconic River.


One Bedroom Suite

**********

Next month, we'll be angling on the Peconic River after a fly-tying lesson referencing a deadly hopper pattern for brackish waters. Stay tuned.


Donna Boating on the Peconic River


Bob Banfelder
www.robertbanfelder.com

Award-Winning Crime Thriller Novelist & Outdoors Writer
Member: Outdoor Writers Association of America
New York State Outdoor Writers Association

Recent recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from Who's Who in America


Several of My Award-Winning Crime Fiction Novels Incorporate The Great Outdoors

Top to Bottom:
Fiction:


The Richard Geist Three-Book Series ~ Trilogy

Dicky, Richard, and I. A story of madness in the making. A curious mix of a mother's care and cruelty concerning her young son, Dicky Geist, and the precocious boy's metamorphosis into that of a multiple murderer.

The Signing. An account of a clandestine murderous cult monikered the Inner Circle of Friends, led by Richard Geist. Geist and cult members are hellbent on creating chaos and bringing about the eventual collapse of our government.

The Triumvirate. A tale of Neo-Nazism. Three most powerful men covertly control governments around the globe. Fifty-year-old secrets begin to surface referencing Hitler's progeny, the Manhattan Project, and Nazi gold in this mystery within a mystery. It is the genesis of the Fourth Reich.

The Justin Barnes Four-Book Series ~ Tetralogy

The Author. A prolific serial killer is the author and architect of a covert operation whose job it is to place government operatives within the ranks of worldwide extremist groups. Justin Barnes, a street savvy Afro-American maverick, searches unrelentingly for the madman who viciously murdered Justin's female cousin.

The Teacher. Justin Barnes, working clandestinely with Suffolk County homicide detectives on Long Island, is assigned to help track down Malcolm Columba's associate, serial killer Professor Clarence Emery. The pair had worked in concert, and Justin is out to stop Emery before he strikes again. A terrifying tale of evil and what it takes to stop it in its tracks.

Knots. Kalvin Matheson, an out-of-work insurance salesman obsessed with immortality and hero worship regarding two notorious serial killers, follows in the footsteps of his two diabolical pals, but with a subtle signature twist, utilizing intricate knots.

The Good Samaritans. In this final four-part series, Justin Barnes, once again, assists Suffolk County homicide detectives as part of a covert operation in tracking down Sep Cramer, a politically well-connected, ruthless serial killer.

**********


Trace Evidence. Inspired by the Robert Shulman Serial Killer Trial in Riverhead, N.Y., Robert Banfelder spent every day for 15 months as a spectator to obtain fodder for this novel.

**********

Battered. Based on a true story of an abused woman who murdered her husband, Robert Banfelder communicated with abused women, one of whom spent 15 years in prison for her crime.

Nonfiction:

The Fishing Smart Anywhere Handbook for Salt Water & Fresh Water. A concise yet comprehensive angling and on-the-water activities handbook covering spin, bait, fly-fishing, fly tying, clamming, crabbing, kayaking, canoeing, seafood recipes and much more. For novice through experienced anglers. Endorsed by Left Kreh and Angelo Peluso. [black & white photos]

The North American Hunting Smart Handbook: Bonus Feature: Hunting Africa's & Australia's Most Dangerous Game. A concise yet comprehensive small and big game hunting handbook covering guns and bows. Includes upland bird hunting, land management, whitetail tactics and much more. Special bonus feature includes stories of big game hunting in Africa and Australia by seasoned hunters. [color photos]

The Essential Guide to Writing Well and Getting Published. A must-have guide for both novice and veteran writers. This handbook includes tips on how to make money and gain rewards from outdoors writings. Color-coded lessons for easy comprehension.

You are not logged in: Log inRegister
Affiliated Sites:   noreast.com   2coolfishing.com   Stripers247.com

© 2007 Noreast Media, LLC.
Terms under which this service is provided to you.
Print this page
Contact us | Boat Reviews
Get help using Allcoast.com | Boat DIY

All Coast Media Network 2 Cool Fishing Noreast.com Stripers247.com All Coast Ifish.net