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First published April 26th 1999 - More than 16 years ago
Fly Fishing the Mountain Lakes
Reviewed by Martin Joergensen
Gary LaFontaine should need no introduction. He is well known for his fly patterns, his books and his influence in the fly fishing and fly tying environment.
Imagine a serious book where the smartest dog in the world and several pack goats - all named Rufus - play a major role! Such a book can't be boring. So be prepared for an entertaining and educating journey as LaFontaine takes you through the year of a high mountain lake freak.
LaFontaine teaches you the where's and why's. He teaches you when to start climbing if you want to hit that magic ice out moment. He teaches you the ups and downs of tricky mountain weather and winds and he teaches you what tackle and flies to use.
At the same time this book is so broad in its scope that any stillwater fisher can find useful information between its covers. LaFontaine actually refers to British stillwater fishing several times and emphasizes the importance of the many lessons he has learned from the British.
The book has a bit of a Gierarch tone. Lots of references to "me" and "my". I have never been a big Gierarch fan. With all due respect I'm sorry to announce that even though his writings are fun to read, they are just that and no more. I haven't learned much from the Gierarch books I have read. But reading my first LaFontaine book has taught me a lot. In spite of the similarity in style, there is a great difference in substance.
I might never have a chance to hit a mountain lake again (I have fished for Arctic Char over the ice edge in the North West Terretories), but if I ever do I will be a lot better prepared thanks to this book [*]. If I, on the other hand, don't... well, I will have had some good laughs with Mr. LaFontaine.
I did actually get a chance to put some of the knowledge I gained from this book into work while fishing a lake in the Colorado Rockies. We brought no goats or dogs on the trip - only GFF partner Steve... but that may not have been so different after all.