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A Conversation With Dr. David Burns

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The following is a transcript of an email conversation that I had with Dave Burns. The whole thing began, of course, with a photo he was sharing of one of his beautiful "Classic" fly original creations. It was fascinating, to me at least, the way it unfolded, so i thought I would share it in a different way.


Some people don't like mixing modern materials with classic styles. On the other hand, I love it! Attached is a picture of a fly that I created for the 2014 Western Idaho Fly Fishing Expo. auction. It is very whimsical and I call it the Nightmare on Washington Street. I live on Washington Street. Very colorful flies seem to do best at auctions. I thought that you might get a kick out of this irreverent mess!Ē

Slŗinte maith, h-uile latha, na chi 'snach fhaic!
(Good health, every day, whether I see you or not!)

Nigtmare on Washington Street


It may be irreverent to some, but I love it too! Iíll bet not too many people at Fly fishing were offended or even got the play on words. If I show this on Salmonfly.Net with your explanation, would you mind?

Steve, †

As always, you have my permission to display my works of irreverence. It won't be auctioned until next year. Plenty of time for offense by some. Not that I really care at this point in life.

John McDade trying to coach me own younger bro on the pipes at the 40th of me and Kay.

P.S. Post this too if youíve the wee Willies. John McDade trying to coach me own younger bro on the pipes at the 40th of me and Kay. That was great fun. Wish you were there!

Cup made by Sherilyn Paris


 If you decide you use the pic of my brother trying to play the pipes, it should be credited to Sherilyn Paris. She is the wife of the pipe-major John McDade. She made the wee cup that I am toasting with. You can't see it in the picture, but it has a Celtic salmon cut into it. If you'd like me to try and mange a picture, I'd do that.


Best fishes!



Iíve got the wee willies. Thanks for the new material for another posting!


Dr. David Burns fly fishing the Secesh River

Dr. David Burns, Master Fly Tyer, conservationist, and fly fisherman, is currently enjoying his time in retirement after serving a distinguished career as an educator, a 3 year stint with the Washington Department of Game, and 30 years as a fisheries biologist with the USDA-Forest Service. During that time he has written, published, or presented many professional reports and papers dealing with fisheries science and conservation and has been an active member of several professional organizations. Read more about him on his Contributing Fly Tyer page,  The Flies of Dr. David Burns.

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