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The Advocate and Democrat.

Walter Babb preserves art of bamboo rods

Published: 2:47 PM, 11/26/2012

Author: Tommy Wilson
Source: The Monroe County Advocate

Walter Babb quietly sits in his shop working on the details in the quality of his passion for fly fishing. The reputation for the quality of his silent work is measured in thousands of an inch. Babb's art is not a lost art, but rather one that must be sought out. Only 3,000 people in the entire world practices the art of making bamboo fly rods.

Those who have discovered Babb's work are spread across the USA. That being said, he thinks little of being a bit of a celebrity. This gentle man is more about being consistent with the quality, and no one ever saying they are disappointed in his very special bamboo fly rods and handmade flies.

Thirty-three years an employee of Viskase in Loudon, Babb started making these rods just to see if he could make one he liked. His mentors, Stan Smartt and David Ray, over the years, had shown him just enough to make him feel he could make a bamboo rod if he could find the time to devote to such a delicate project. It took retirement to make that time.  

See full story in the Sunday, Nov. 25, edition of The Advocate & Democrat.

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