I've been fishing pretty much my whole life. I started around five years old drowning worms in the South Platte River. I spent many years fishing with fiberglass, eventually graduating to graphite. I first began fishing with bamboo around 1980 after I received an Orvis Midge/Nymph rod from my dad ... I was hooked! Since then I acquired rods from Orvis, Phillipson, Leonard, Heddon, Wright & McGill and Granger to add to my arsenal of bamboos.
My dad passed away in 2007 and I got all of this fly tying equipment, several graphite rods, reels and all of his fishing books, among them was a three ring binder book by Wayne Cattanach entitled Handcrafting Bamboo Fly Rods. After reading through it a couple of times I decided that this would be something that I might enjoy doing.
- Custom, hand crafted bamboo fly rods -
Gray Hackle Rods
With all the information available on the internet I found Thomas Penrose's tutorial on building forms, ordered some steel and started filing. I finished my forms, bought some junk bamboo to practice with and acquired more of the necessary "equipment" ... no going back from here!
From here Gray Hackle Rods was founded. I strive to make the best rods, nets and leaders possible.
I retired from Lockheed Martin in January of 2013 with almost 32 years as a Systems Engineer. My experience there spanned programs like Manned Maneuvering Unit, Peacekeeper, Titan and finally Target and Countermeasure Programs. I had the pleasure to work with some of the best people in the industry on some of the best programs around.