It is with sad heart that we must report Bob Bates, longtime producer of the Fly of the Month, passed away on October 16, 2013. We pay tribute to Bob and all of his work he did to promote fly tying and the sport of fly fishing. If you would like to read more about Bob, please click the picture below.
Fly of the Month was produced by Bob Bates, a longtime Federator, serving the Washington Council of the IFFF.
Robert C. Bates, age 83, passed away peacefully at home on October 16th, 2013. He was born April 15th, 1930 in San Francisco to Beda Marie Stone and Thomas J. Bates. Robert married his wife of 53 years, Dora (Greenly), and they lived in Spokane while raising their three children: Hilary Bates, Felicia Bates and Eugene Bates.
Bob was a life long member of the IFFF where he served as editor of the "Fly of the Month". Bob was the 2013 recipient of the Dick Nelson Fly Tying Teaching Award. Bob was a gentle and kind teacher and relished the opportunity to share with people of all ages, especially children. Bob loved the Federation and especially enjoyed the recent International Fly Fishing Fair in West Yellowstone. Even though, in his words "the air was a little too thin in West Yellowstone" he enjoyed the time he spent with his Federation friends. We were all blessed to spend time with Bob at the president's awards dinner.
Bob was a mining engineer, graduating from the University of California-Berkley in 1955. Later he received two masters degrees in engineering and mathematics. At Gonzaga University he was at the forefront of the computing age and was the first student to be allowed to use FORTRAN to fulfill his foreign language degree requirements. He used his computing skills to serve the Inland Empire Fly Fishing Club and Washington Council IFFF as newsletter editor and web master.
Bob served his country in the Korean War and was stationed in the Philippines as a survey engineer for the U.S. Army. Bob moved his family to Spokane in 1964, and took a position with the Bureau of Mines. Bob took up snow skiing after retiring from the Bureau of Mines in 1988 He loved to ski and served as a ski instructor and the ski school director at Mt. Spokane. He was a volunteer at the Little Spokane River Fish Hatchery, where he guided hundreds of guest through the facility and the hatchery process.
Bob's main passion was fly fishing. He spent many of his early years fishing alpine lakes with his family in the Colorado Rockies. He received many awards for teaching and community service. Bob was considered one of the early pioneers of steelhead fishing in the Pacific Northwest, particularly on the Grand Ronde. He loved fishing all waters and, with age, his passion turned to still water. He spent many days fishing Amber, Medical, Coffee Pot and Silver lakes where he loved to test his special fly ties.
He is survived by his children, Hilary, Felicia and Eugene, daughter-in-law Leora Bates and his grandchildren Forest, Madison, Sierra and Melissa. He is preceded in death by his parents and his wife Dora. He was a caring and loving man and we will all miss him.
If you use the Fly of the Month in your publications or on your website he asks that the International Federation of Fly Fishers be given credit for the production.
The current month's Fly of the Month will be posted to this page around the 1st of every month. Back issues of the Fly of the Month can be found at the bottom of this page in PDF format.