The trip back home from visiting relatives over the Holiday break involved a couple of pit stops along the way. First stop: Cabelas. Some people consider Cabelas the holy grail of all things outdoors, as the retailer proclaims themselves the "World's Foremost Outfitter". Hardly. Their retail locations look more like a clothier than a sporting goods store, and their fly fishing sections seem to shrink with every visit.
I realize that people probably do more window shopping than actually buy hard goods and that soft goods are where the real money's at, but still, stock some shit on your shelves that we want to buy. Nonetheless, I usually manage to find a bargain or two at the store during a visit. This trip: Ultrawire spools in Fluorescent Orange and Yellow marked down from $2.25 to $0.80. I cleaned out everything they had on the shelf. I threw in a dubbing loop tool for $2.49 (not a bargain) to work on creating some buggy ass looking nymph bodies. The saving grace? They had several roughfish species representing their aquarium. Greater Redhorse, Silver Redhorse, Bowfin, and carp swam the waters alongside sturgeon, muskie, walleye and pike.
On to the next stop, Craft's Direct. I knew this place held much promise. I had the opportunity to shop here once a few years back, unfortunately, I was under a strict timeline as my family waited for me in the truck outside. Hard to find bargains on an "in and out" trip. Lucky for me Mrs. Roughfisher wanted to shop too, so I had the opportunity to inspect each and every aisle. Talk about a jackpot. Not only did they have more variety and a higher inventory of items, they were cheaper than the typical retail craft store.
I don't know much about tapestry wool. I do know that the virgin yarn contains antimite so it should provide my nymphs moth protection. It was marked down to $0.50, came in a cool caddis green color, and had some nice textural properties that would blend up well. I also picked up a few more skeins of the Needloft craft cord, priced at $0.50 a skien. To my surprise they had a bunch of wacky colors like chartreuse, bright green, tangerine, and burgundy. These colors should help round out my current collection, and provide a fine compliment to my custom dubbing blends. I'm gonna experiment with pom-poms and use them as body segments and thoraces on nymph patterns. I might experiment with using the larger sized ones for clam patterns. If a carp will eat, I'll tie it up.
The craft warehouse had a significant stash of gift shred. There were more colors and they even stocked the fine metallic shred. I had been interested in this material, but didn't want to pay for shipping on a two dollar item. The brown, copper, burgundy, and pearl shred were looking might tasty and found their way into my cart. This stuff would make nice streamer bodies, but it is fine enough for adding to dubbing. Same with the next score, more silver tinsel. This stuff is holographic and crinkle cut; I've never seen a cut like this before. Best of all, it was marked down from $2.99 to $1. Looks like the grinder will be plenty busy this winter.
The score of the century: Angel Hair, aka Krystal Flash. Marked down from $9.99 to $3.99 for silver and gold, and $2.50 for the pearl. 15 gram containers, that equates to just over half an ounce and way more than the tiny hank you'll find at the fly shop. Considering that I can buy krystal flash at wholesale for $22 bucks per two ounce skein, this was a solid find.
Looks like I better get busy tying.