View Full Version : Bamboo Gathering - May '08

03-03-2008, 07:15 PM
UPDATED: 3/3/08

Let me preface this whole business with this: The situation has improved substantially and we seem to be “looking good”! We are still in the grips of a major drought, and the streams in the Smoky Mountains are not yet in real good shape despite recent rains. But being optimistic, we believe the situation will continue to improve. The Little River Outfitters website continues to be your best source of information.


This situation exists from the Blue Ridge in NC all the way south to the trout streams of Georgia. I continue to maintain a close eye on things in western NC, and keep up a regular correspondence with "Bo" Cash and Dave Male… both of which are intimately familiar with the area. The USGS folks have a web site:


that shows flows in major tributaries… one of which is a favorite of "Bo's" and mine. For the past 18 months this tributary has been running at 20% of normal flow. Whenever a major rain even occurs (very infrequently I must stress) the flow bumps up a bit, and within 24-48 returns to approx. 20% of normal flow. This trend continues….Hopefully; we will get sufficient moisture over the winter to alleviate this situation.

Given the foregoing, we will try to keep things simple again this year. I do want to run something by you folks. Many want a bit more structure and information included. Since everyone likes to fish, and the main fishing really peaks at dusk, I guess the best time to do anything "formal" is in the AM. Thus, I'm proposing the following:

Friday and Saturday mornings we will have formal presentations on:

No. 1 - Bamboo rod basics.
No. 2 - Who made them and their various attributes
No. 3 - Collecting/Using bamboo rods
No. 4 - Fishing the Smoky Mountains, and similar areas
No. 5 - Casting the bamboo rod.

I'm proposing that No. 5, No. 1, and No. 4 are certainly topic for Friday… with possibly an abbreviated presentation on No. 1 on Sat. for customers of LRO.

Byron and Paula have again allowed us to use the class room this year.

Informal evening gatherings will continue as in the past!

We WILL MEET the weekend of 16 - 18 May; you will note that I have missed Mother's day this year. This is also the weekend of Troutfest in Townsend, which means more people and more activity. So if you are planning on coming… then make reservations early. We are planning on using Dock's again as a headquarters. This should be a lot of fun, and a lot to do.


Our list of confirmed attendees is getting quite impressive. These gentlemen will also be available to talk to and learn from!!!

Tightlines and crew…… Collectors and fishermen extraordinaire
Harry Boyd … Premier Rod Builder
Leaky Waders … Collector of FINE rods
Paducah Michael … Rod Maker and Restoration Expert as well as Author of Restoration Handbook (Copies will be available)
Bob Nunley … Premier Rod Builder and Author
Dave Male … Rod Maker, Local Fishing Expert, All Around Good Guy
Rich Margiotta …. Rod Restorationist, Local Fishing Expert, Neat Person

And many more to come!!!!

Dave Male has graciously volunteered to provide ferrule tightening at little or no charge!!! What a guy!!!

Ralph Shuey
Huntsville, AL

03-05-2008, 10:12 PM
Hi Ralph -

Finally got registered on this forum. The activation email got hung up in spam filter. Finally fished it out.

I plan to take Dave up on his offer to tighten ferrules. I have two old Heddons that need help.

Glad to hear the outlook for fishing is improving. If you've had the wet weather like we've had in Paducah for the last week, you should be about ready to launch the ark.

Take care - see you in May!


03-05-2008, 11:01 PM
Michael, I would be glad to work on the ferrules. I just cannot believe you actually own a couple of Heddons.If I know the ferrule size,it would help me to judge what size vice-grips and sledge hammer to bring. dave

03-06-2008, 01:13 AM
Hi Dave,

Yes, I do own two Heddons. And both were basket cases that I thought would be fun to work on. One's a trade rod with a #2 ferrule, the other is a big old #14 with a 2 3/4 ferrule.

Oh - but I'll bet you want those sizes in 64ths, don't you. I'll get those measured tomorrow if I can find my calipers.

Thanks for doing this! Michael

03-06-2008, 10:11 AM
Please Michael this is not rocket science why would I need to know 64ths. It is quite obvious #2 is two inches long and the #2 3/4 is two and three quarters inches long. I am glad to hear that they are clunkers as the vice grip/sledge hammer method can be harmful to the structural make-up of bamboo(it can break it). Also if I need more info on those ferrules I have a book by some Sinclair guy. dave

03-06-2008, 09:02 PM
You two are having FAR too much fun... these poor E. TN boys aren't going to know quite what to make of it!!!