1 877 426 2934 toll free phone or toll free fax; 314 426 2934 local number
email at: ldffish@hotmail.com

You know I usually try to make people laugh somewhere in my newsletter, but now I guess Iím out of jokes. Besides, this is the day after Utah beat Alabama and Iím not happy about it. With no offence meant to Utah fans.

Let me try this. Do you have any special pride about any of the fish youíve caught? I donít necessarily mean the biggest or most unusual, just memorable for some reason? Something about a catch that makes you proud? I have a couple of fish that Iíll always remember. It was early spring of 2001 and I took off one early morning and drove out to a little lake for about a three hour trip. I thought I would catch a few crappie and come home. I did catch a few crappie on a little white beaded marabou streamer, but I also caught a couple of other fish. Two redear sunfish. In different parts of the country they call them shellcrackers, pumpkinseeds, etc. Donít laugh at me, but Iím as proud of those two fish as any two fish Iíve ever caught. One of them measured 10 inches long and weighed ĺ pound, the other one was 8 inches and weighed a little over a half pound. The redear is usually 3 or 4 inches long. Theyíre used as catfish bait. Iíve told people about those fish ever since. Iíll bet I donít see redears that big again.

Ok, finally on to fishing. As far as my fishing last year, believe me it was limited. The rain here was awful. I wish we could have sent some of it down south because I know a large area of the southeast needs the rain. It started to rain here in mid winter and never really stopped. We ended up with 58 inches here. Everytime I made plans it was pouring. Now I know youíre saying that rain shouldnít stop anybody from fishing. True. But flood should! And that was our trouble. I wanted to fish right before Christmas, but couldnít because of heavy rain and some flashflooding.

Out West, last winterís snowpack wasnít bad at all. So through the summer, water conditions werenít bad and fire was limited. I talked to a few people who went out to Montana and came back happy. I didnít hear anything about giant fish, but a couple of customers told me about some great days on the Yellowstone around Livingston. Plenty of rainbows and a few nice browns on some ordinary Wooly Buggers. Nothing to gripe about, especially considering thatís one of the most beautiful places in the US. Just my opinion.

I hope my customers down in Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, South Carolina and North Carolina have some water. I just canít believe some of the stories Iíve heard the last couple of years. Town reservoirs down to bare ground in north Georgia are hard to believe. For many people outside the southeast, itís surprising how drought occurs in that part of the US and then lingers. It does though. I do a little family history and learned that in the late 1840s and early 1850s there was a multi year drought around the eastern Tennessee River valley. You can still probably find some old timers down in north Georgia who can tell you about the drought in the 1920s. Thatís supposed to be the Big Daddy of Ďem all. Well, all you folks down there, donít hesitate to email or call about whatís going on. These days I have limited capacity to travel so I rely on the kindness of others for my info about different parts of the US. Thanks to all for the calls.

Just a reminder that LDF is only a fly seller these days. If you do have tackle needs and would like LDF to help out, give us a call and weíll see what we can do. We can usually order most things.

Thanks to everyone who purchased from LDF during í08! I know LDF is a much different business from the old days. I just want everyone to know that I plan to continue selling flies. Some of you know that in late í07, I thought it was probably time just to close up. I couldnít do it. This stuff is in my blood. So I decided as long as I can make a little money, Iíll keep going. That meant getting rid of what few tackle items were left and just generally cutting back. No more color in the catalog, shrink the catalog, etc. Those of you whoíve been buying from us for a long time, should notice that LDF flies are still distinctive, durable and fish catching. So I hope nobody quits us just because weíve gotten smaller. LDF is one of a handful of companies (so they tell me) still producing USA made flies. I hope I can continue to deserve your support.

Say, a neighbor told me he heard that in India a child can be fed on $10 a month. The next day he put his kids on a plane to Calcutta. True.

Let me tell you about the lack of new patterns. Many great new patterns have come out in the last few years. However, most of them are so time consuming, there is no way I can tie and sell them. Nowadays, if you have an elaborate fly pattern, itís very easy to commercialize. Just send it to a third world manufacturer where the tyers work for $15 per week. No problem. I wish I could do some of them. So I am still on the lookout for new patterns. I will be looking hard, and I hope testing hard, this coming year.

Hunting stories. Hey, weíre not just looking for fishing stories, but also hunting stories. Bear stories are great. Longtime customer Tom Liddy up in New Jersey hasnít told me bear hunting stories, but heís let me know about the bulging bear population in New Jersey. Yes, I said New Jersey. Years ago, I used to travel through the state on I-80. What eye opening trips those were. That portion of the state is rugged. It doesnít surprise me one bit to read and hear about growing black bear populations in New Jersey.

Hey! LDF now offers Priority Mail service. Itís available on the internet site. We also have that option available on the written order form. The cost is $5.00. Priority is usually one day faster than First Class Mail.

Do you tie your own dry flies? If you do, do you buy the top quality necks? Have you seen the prices? Are they unbelievable or what? Wholesale cost has gone up by a bigger percentage than the retail pricesótake my word for it. Well, there is an explanation. It consists of two wordsócorn ethanol. Those of you who follow commodities know that grains declined this year, but the high cost of chicken feed finally got passed along by the poultry growers. If you buy chicken Iím sure you have noticed higher prices. Whether itís chicken for food or chicken for feathers, itís all the same market. Itís incredible. Iím crossing my fingers that things moderate through the year.

You know, prices in this sport sure are funny. Fly prices have collapsed in the last several years. Iíve seen quite a few low priced rods in the last few years. All of them made in the third world regions. Tying material has not gone down. Of course, with the proliferation of tying factories, theyíre bidding the material and hook prices up all the time. Plus, much of the material comes from hunters and many of those guys donít want to keep skins and feathers. Thatís the spot weíre in.

We do still have some leaders and tippet material left, but please go to the website (www.ldfflyfishingtackle.com) or call us on the toll free line 1 877 426 2934 for info on whatís left. Quantities are in ( ) parentheses. Here are some of our specials:

1)Black Gnat poly wing parachuteóThis one has an orange poly yarn post. 15 #12 and 2 #14 left as of January 2, 2009. These are only .80 each. I know what youíre saying. ďI can get this pattern from the Fly Shack (or name your favorite third world internet retailer). Sorry folks. As I say, these are American made and I canít go any lower.

2) Dai Riki Velvet Tippet Material (1) spool of 4x left.

3)Dai Riki Velvet Leaders 8 foot leaderó(2)6x; (11)5x;(11) 7x. 10 foot leaderó(11) 6x; (7) 7x.

4)Dai Riki Standard Leaders7 Ĺ footó(7) 5x; (1) 7x. 9 footó(1) 4x; (4) 6x; (6) 7x

5)Maxima Tippet Material (7) 6x; (8) 5x.

6)Maxima Leader Material 9 footó(3) 4x; (2) 7x.


As usual, good health and good fishing to all!

Robert Schneider
LDF Fly Fishing Tackle * 3801 Eminence Avenue * Berkeley Missouri 63134 USA
www.ldfflyfishingtackle.com Order online!
Or call 1 877 426 2934 toll free!