The last time I went fishing was on the Beaverkill River, a river that I fished for 25 years. It was in the late fall and I was wearing my Korkers boots with Kling-On® Sticky Soles. They didn’t feel that sticky when I was slipping on didymo (Didymosphenia geminata). Not wanting to spring for new boots with studs, I bought a wading staff. I still slipped, but did not fall and felt old. I noted that I should get some studs for my boots in the future.
My next trip is to Silver Creek in Idaho. Instead of springing for the $50-$70 for new Korker soles, I decided to buy some screws and put them in the soles myself.
I first tried drilling a pilot hole in the rubber with a 1/16” drill bit but then I found if I just used pressure to force the screw to start, they seemed to hold very securely. The sharp point of the screws protruded through the top of the soles so I ground them off with a Dremel cutting wheel.
I’ll have to get in the water to really see how they work.
Addendum, July 24, 2002
I just spent a week fishing in Idaho on the Silver Creek and Big Wood River. After a couple of days on the Big Wood, a freestone stream, I noticed that my left foot was slipping on the rocks on the bottom. When I checked the soles, nine of the twelve screws that I put in the left sole were missing. The right sole was missing five of the original twelve screws.
It seems that because the Korkers boots have interchangeable soles, the threads on the screws didn’t have enough material to hold. I’ve seen some people suggest using some kind of adhesive on the threads, but given the torque that the screw would endure, I don’t think that it would help.
On my drives from New York City to the Catskills to go fishing on the Beaverkill River, I always took Route 17, because it was a little more interesting.
Off the George Washington Bridge, I’d take Route 4 in New Jersey and then NJ 17 near the Garden State Plaza. Once I crossed back into New York near Suffern, the surroundings started to change from urban to rural.
Joseph Berger at the NY Times wrote about the Red Apple Rest’s location: “What made the Red Apple so essential a summertime port of call was not so much its food as its location. Before the New York State Thruway opened in 1956, the ride up to the mountains along the old Route 17 could take four or five hours and the Red Apple Rest was almost exactly halfway. While there were three or four other pit stops, the Red Apple, watched over by its founder, Reuben Freed, became the place to go.“
“Joan Wulff handles a fishing rod with grace and explosive power. In 1960 she set the women’s unofficial world record for distance casting—an astonishing 161 feet. Now the grande dame of fly-fishing at age 81, Wulff has not lost her touch. Standing on the banks of the Beaverkill River near her fabled fishing school in New York’s Catskill Mountains, she raises and points the tip of an 8½-foot rod just over her shoulder, gives a sudden backward snap of the wrist and sends 40 feet of line sailing straight back behind her..”