Archive | April, 2011


22 Apr

Three months of steady work in New Jersey have come to an end.  The Fly Fishing Dojo “Dry-Heat Crew” is now back home in Arizona, getting unpacked and settling in. As we do so, I would like to reflect a bit on the past few months in New Jersey.

It was a good time on many levels. I was able to again see family, including my dad, mom, daughters, Jess and Kim and especially my grandson Stratton. At 19 months, the little guy is turning into quite a handful and a bit of a daredevil. With his Mom, Jess, he even took his first ride in a cherry-picker!


I was able to spend time with my Sensei, Shihan Thomas DeFelice, Ku-Dan (9th degree black belt) and hone my physical, mental and spiritual skills.

With great pleasure, I attended weekly training sessions at the USA Goshin-Ryu Karate Dojo of Shihan Wayne Norlander, Ku-Dan (9th degree black belt) in Bogota, NJ.

Shihan Norlander graciously allowed me to use his Dojo to produce a unique video entitled “Fisherman As Warriors”. Here is a convenient link to the video which is archived on the “Video & Media” Page –

I was especially honored to have attended the senior black belt promotion of Sensei Pablo Peneque, Roku-dan (6th degree black belt) and Sensei Scott Zamora, Yon-dan (4th degree black belt).

The promotion ceremony was a forum for a reunion of several of Shihan DeFelice’s Goshin-Do Karate-Do Yudansha (black belts).

After three and a half days on the road, we arrived back home in Arizona on April 18th.

Di, Chloe and I were able to be on the water for the first time on April 20th. A great morning was spent at Veterans Oasis Lake in Chandler; even Chloe got a chance to “savor” a few bluegill.

And thus, begins another segment of the Fly Fishing Dojo weblog. The “Dry Heat Crew”, including Sensei John, will continue to provide Arizona Fishing Reports, while our New Jersey correspondent, Sensei Bob, will continue to submit reports from the Garden State.

Much more to follow. I remain,

Sensei John

Fly Fishing Dojo can be found on Facebook; please see the “Video & Media” page tab above.

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You are also invited to read my martial arts protocol, philosophy and ideology weblog for non-martial artists at WWW.SenseiJohn.Wordpress.Com.



6 Apr

Fly fishing is where and when you find it. To be sure there are those that plan and save for an exotic fly fishing adventure in a far off land casting to “promised as advertised” finned beauties. For me, I want to fish each and everyday as often as possible. When I am home in Arizona, my daily fly fishing desire manifests itself at one of several lakes in Arizona’s Urban Fishing Program. I recently had the opportunity of several weeks of steady work that took be back to my roots in northern New Jersey. During my stay, I was able to flick a few flies on the gloried, pristine trout waters of my youth.  To my (stress) relief and pleasure, I was also able to find consistent “Big-city limits fishing” within a twenty minute drive from work.

My big city fishing was at the lake at Hudson County Park. This man-made lake is set in one of New Jersey’s most densely populated areas; to wit: Hudson County, New Jersey.  Admittedly, the location, set against the New York City skyline and nestled in amongst condominiums of various size and shape, is not the most pristine of natural environments. But, as much as “Home is where the heart is”, I say, “Nature and beauty is to be found all around you, if you open your eyes to it.”

I often left the hectic pace of a day at work,  drove east on State Highway 46 into Cliffside Park, cut across Anderson Avenue to neighboring Weehauken and North Bergen and found my solitude amongst the several hundred visitors to the park. I stood on its concrete shoreline and cast my sharp feathery flies into the depths of its “citified” water.

A fisherman hooked this rainbow on a black Mepps in-line spinner.

Every now and then, I hooked a leaf, twig, even a plastic bag and a discarded fast-food-seller’s soft drink cup. More to my liking, I hooked the sporadic finned citizen of the lake. Such are the basis of urban legends.

I caught & released this rainbow using a # 14 Ju-Ju Bee Nymph fished behind a # 12 Black Wooly Bugger.

It is my understanding from the local fisherman that the rainbow trout caught during February are hold-overs from a stocking that took place in November, 2010. The next time you find yourself yearning to fish, give an urban lake a try. You may not be disappointed. A word of caution though (courtesy of the Parks Department):

Until the next submission, I remain,

Sensei John

Follow FLY FISHING DOJO on Facebook, see our Video & Media Page.

Please feel free to “window shop” our unique logo products by clicking on the “SHOP” page tab above.

You are also invited to read my martial arts protocol, philosophy and ideology weblog for non-martial artists at WWW.SenseiJohn.Wordpress.Com.

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