Gear update

August 13th, 2019


 I acci­den­tal­ly found out about The Cur­tis Creek Man­i­festo from Huge Fly Fish­er­man and one of his char­ac­ter­is­ti­cal­ly snarky but sweet com­ments on reddit.

I googled the term and dis­cov­ered Sheri­dan Ander­son the author. There’s piti­ful­ly lit­tle writ­ten about the author, who grows more impres­sive as I con­tin­ue grok the mag­ni­tude of what he accomplished.

Like all true works of art, it will take you a while to unpack just how much is packed into this slim vol­ume.  At first glance, it looks like some­thing out of a 1960’s time cap­sule (pub­lished in 1968) but as you spend time with the book, and reread it, you will see that it holds more infor­ma­tion per page than any fish­ing book ever writ­ten, despite the fact that more than half the page is usu­al­ly cov­ered in car­toon draw­ings. I’ve re-read it sev­er­al times now and this author achieved exact­ly what he set out to achieve.

Mr.Anderson states his inten­tions right from the outset:

The major dif­fi­cul­ty with most How-to Fish­ing books is that of try­ing to fig­ure out what the author is talk­ing about–The begin­ner is assault­ed with page after page of text which he must trans­late into visu­al images before he can even begin to under­stand it. Also, most primers fail because they are so high­ly over­writ­ten that the novice becomes hope­less buried under an avalanche of infor­ma­tion, much of which is only vague­ly inci­den­tal to a firm grasp of the basics, and thus serv­ing only to con­fuse the issues…In actu­al­i­ty, most anglers learned how to fish in spite of the text­books, rather than because of them.


And then he both shows and tells the hows and more impor­tant­ly, The Whys to the strate­gies and tac­tics of fly fish­ing that feel as fresh and as applic­a­ble to mod­ern day euronyph­ing as they were to Joe Humprey’s Trout Tac­tics, back in the day; anoth­er book I high­ly rec­om­mend but I urge you to first read The Man­i­festo first  and then you will get so much more out of Humprey’s book when you get to it.


So you may ask­ing your­self, why are you rec­om­mend­ing a book pub­lished in 1968 that has more to do with the Haight-Ash­bury in SF then some Appalachi­an moun­tain stream? Why aren’t you rec­om­mend­ing George Daniel’s Dynam­ic Nymph­ing or Devin Olsen’s Tac­ti­cal Fly Fish­ing? Because while both are great books and are as up to date as any­thing in the com­pet­i­tive fly fish­ing world, they are not for begin­ners, because they make way too many assump­tions on what the begin­ner angler already knows how to do.

Hav­ing read both books, I can tell you that The Man­i­festo repeats what is impor­tant in clear and bold text, and with ele­gant, amus­ing car­toons that stick in your head and form a bet­ter men­tal map (at least for me) on what to actu­al­ly do when you are fly fishing;

For exam­ple:

The Curtis Creek Manisfesto showing the imporant technique of stalking when fly fishing

I implore you to grab a copy if you are at all inter­est­ed in learn­ing how to fly fish, or buy one for some­one you know that is inter­est­ed, and you will give them the best, most humor­ous start in the art of fly fish­ing possible.