Lost Zac - the Meandering Boo Boy

Photos and Meditations on Fly Fishing in Southwest Montana and wherever.....

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Fishing when I was supposed to be doing something else

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World-renound trout rivers flow a few miles down the road from where I live. However, sometimes it is not possible to wade inside them, and experience casting Sweetgrass bamboo upon them. Sometimes, in fact, I have to do things like, "work" -- a concept I am still trying to understand. During these "work" periods, I must settle for the little, unknown stream that flows a few feet from my back door. Sad story, I know, but stick with me. There is a happy ending.
 

 
It is a beautiful stream, certainly, however many people living on its banks, suck it near dry, come Summer's end. After all, what would we do without green, non-native grass on our lawns? But there are fish that make it through the Summer lows, and Winter freezes. These survivors intrigue my senses, and when I am supposed to be working, often I sneak away, and search for these durable trout.
 
 
This little guy is fat and healthy, and took a caddis emerger I cast with an eight and a half foot, four weight Sweetgrass prototype. I like longer rods, oftentimes, even on small streams, to keep my drifts direct. 
 
Though much of the water is fast and shallow, which helps dissolve oxygen, there are few holes where the fish can hide under Cottonwood shadows. It is in these shadows I found another survivor.
 
 
This one was about an inch longer, and a great discovery while taking a quick break from...whatever it was that seemed to be so important at the time.
 
 
 
In Wild Waters,
 
Zac Sexton
 
The Meandering Booboy
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Bamboo fly rods are the most mystical fishing instruments ever fashioned by craftsmen. In fact the craftsmanship of these rods surpasses their usefulness. They have become collectable objects of desire. The Sweetgrass rod company, staffed by the legendary Boo Boys, combine several decades of rod-making expertise to craft some of the most artful rods found astream. It is Glenn Brackett and his quads, as well as Jerry Kustich's pent. rods that lead many bamboo enthusiasts to Twin Bridges, driving Hwy. 41 with a smile on their face.

In 2005, I made this journey to meet the Boys. They have gone out of their way to help me in bamboo rod making, fishing tips, and life in general. Jerry even invited me to sleep on the shop floor, when a snowstorm loomed over the Tobacco Root mountains, and I planned on camping out. They are always so giving!

Through the years I have been lucky enough to help in the shop, splitting bamboo, sanding nodes, sweeping the floor and other miscellaneous jobs. The Boys have always made me feel welcome, and at home. I have learned much about the magic of bamboo, and get to try out different rods every time I visit. I've only broken one, so far.

During a recent conversation, Dave Delisi and I, talked about the revised web site and other shop news. I love to write, and fish more than I do much else. I've tried to work, but it just doesn't work out that well. I am usually found wading meandering streams, casting cane (or one of Sam's wonderful carbon fiber rods) – if I am found at all. Given my propensity to fish, and tell tall, adventurous tales, Dave and I thought it might be interesting to post stories on the Sweetgrass site, to keep visitors coming back to the shop – either online or in person. We cast the idea to Glenn and Jerry, who were happy to go ahead with the project.

Therefore, I am happy to announce my official designation as the Meandering Boo Boy, and will be posting weekly blogs on the Website. The blogs will cover my adventures astream, casting Sweetgrass cane. They may be short, amusing stories, details of life in the shop, or just a pictorial from a recent fishing trip.

My name is Zac Sexton, and I am from the Bighorn mountains in northeast Wyoming. There, I started casting my dad's old fiberglass fly rod at age seven. By 12 years of age, I was fishing that rod for Bass and Bluegill in a nearby pond. It wasn't until age 15 that I actually caught a fish with a fly rod! At 17, I bought my first bamboo fly rod from an antique shop, and managed to entice many trout to bite my offerings. I was smitten with bamboo rods from the first time I laid eyes on one.

During my formative years, I worked at a local fly shop, tying flies for it at age 16, and guiding anglers by 17. In college I restored several old rods, and managed to get published in a few newspapers and magazines. I wrote for the University of Idaho college paper, as well as an outdoor column for the Lewiston Morning Tribune.

After college, I traveled around the country – fishing for the most part. I made my first bamboo rod, starting from the culm, in 2006, and am still busy working on my own rods, as a hobby. I currently guide outdoor and fly-fishing trips for the Rock Creek Cattle Company, outside of Deer Lodge, Mont., and fish on my days off. I look forward to hearing from Sweetgrass fans, and hope you enjoy my stories.

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