“Fly Tying Contest”

The Southwest Miramichi Council for Arts and Culture at Blackville, New Brunswick is proud to sponsor a fly tying contest for the development of a hair wing salmon fly in recognition of the Spirit of the “Dungarvon Whooper”.

The Fly Tying Contest is open to all fly tyers who inhabit the area along the Southwest Miramichi River and its tributaries between the Anderson Bridge at Miramichi City and Juniper, New Brunswick. All fly tyers within these boundaries are asked to submit their creation, to be named the “Dungarvon Whooper”, to the following address no later than June 15, 2007.

Curtis Miramichi River Outfitters
163 Main Street, Blackville, N.B. E9B1S3


  • There will be one winner only.
  • All entries, including the winning fly and all rights to it, will be the property of the Southwest Miramichi Council for Arts & Culture at Blackville, New Brunswick. The judge’s decision will be final.
  • Only one entry can be submitted by each contestant.
  • All submissions will be submitted in a secure package and clearly marked “DUNGARVON WHOOPER FLY TYING CONTEST”
  • Entries arriving later than the closing date will not be accepted.
  • The entry will include the contestant’s full name, age, address, and telephone number along with a written pattern for their entry. Contestants will explain how she/he came up with the design for the pattern.
  • Components for the fly cannot be from any animal or bird that is on the endangered species list (C.I.T.E.S.) Convention For International Trade of Endangered Species).
  • The fly must be a hair wing version.
  • The fly must be tied on a #2 regular salmon iron (Mustad 36890)
  • The winner of the contest will receive a cash prize of $100.00.
  • If contestants require further information they can call (506) 843-7757.

    To assist in the development of this very special fly pattern contestants are encouraged to read the following poem “The Dungarvon Whooper” as a theme and to help inspire them with their creation. The poem can be accessed by going to www.nbflytyers.com

    The poem, “The Dungarvon Whooper” was written January 1912 by Michael Whalen (1858-1937) famous Poet of Renous River, New Brunswick. The poem was printed in the Newcastle newspaper, The Union Advocate, on April 3, 1912.

    The Dungarvon Whooper

    Far within the forest scene, where the trees forever green,
    Form a contrast with the beech and birches gray.
    Where the snow lies white and deep and the song birds seem to sleep,
    And cease their sweetest singing all the day;
    Where the mighty, monster moose, of limbs large and long and loose,
    Thro’ the forest sweeps with stride both swift and strong,
    Where the caribou and deer bound the brooks so crystal clear,
    Where the dark and deep Dungarvon rolls along.

    Where the black bear has his den, far beyond the haunts of men,
    And the marten, mink and sable swim the stream,
    Where the squirrel light and free, swiftly springs from tree to tree,
    And the little snow-white rabbit sleeps and dreams;
    Where the sounds of toil resound far across the frozen ground,
    With the thousand things that to the woods belong,
    Where the saws and axes ring and the woodmen wildly sing,
    Where the dark and deep Dungarvon sweeps along,

    In a lumber camp one day, while the crew were far away,
    And the boss and cook were in the camp alone,
    A sad tragedy took place and death won another race,
    When the young cook swiftly passed to the unknown;
    From that day of long ago comes this weird tale of woe,
    The sad and solemn subject of my song,
    When this young man drooped and died in his youth and manhood’s pride,
    Where the dark and deep Dungarvon rolls along.

    When the crew came home at night, what a sad scene met their sight,
    There lay the cook all silent, cold and dead,
    Death was in his waiving hair, in his young face pale and fair,
    While his knap sack formed a pillow for his head;
    From the belt around his waist all his money was misplaced,
    Which made the men suspect some serious wrong,
    Was it murder cold and dread that befell the fair young dead
    Where the dark and deep Dungarvon sweeps along?

    When they asked the skipper why he had made no wild outcry,
    He turned away and hung his haughty head;
    “Well, the youngster took so sick and he died so dreadful quick.”
    “I hadn’t time to think” was all he said;
    Each heart heaved a heavy sigh and a tear was in each eye,
    While strangest feelings thro’ each bosom throng;
    Then each reverent head was bared as the funeral they prepared,
    Where the dark and deep Dungarvon rolls along.

    Fast fell the driven snow, while the wildest winds did blow,
    Till five feet deep it lay upon the ground,
    So that on the burial day, to the settlement away
    To bear the corse impossible was found;
    So a forest grave was made and therein the cook was laid,
    While the woodmen and the song-birds ceased their song,
    The farewell words were said o’er the young and lonely dead
    Where the dark and deep Dungarvon sweeps along.

    When the crew to camp returned, their dear comrade still they mourned
    While the shades of night were falling o’er the hill,
    All that long and fearful night all the camp were in affright,
    Such fearful screams and whoops the forest fill;
    Pale and haggard was each face. “We will leave this horrid place,”
    “For this camp unto the devil does belong,
    “At the dawning of the day we will hasten far away
    From where the deep Dungarvon sweeps along”.

    Since that day, so goes the word; fearful yells have long been heard,
    Around the scene where lies the woodman’s grave,
    Sounds the stoutest hearts to thrill, yells that warmest blood to chill,
    And strike terrors to the bravest of the brave;
    Till beside the grave did stand God’s good man with lifted hand,
    And prayed that He this scene would not prolong,
    That these fearful sounds should cease, that this soul might rest in peace
    Where the dark and deep Dungarvon sweeps along.

    Since that day the sounds have ceased and the region is released
    From those most unearthly whoops and screams and yells,
    All around the Whooper’s Spring there is heard no evil thing,
    And around the Whooper’s Grave deep silence dwells;
    Be the story false or true, I have told it unto you
    As I heard it from the folklore all life long,
    And I hope all strife shall cease and our people dwell in peace,
    Where Renous and deep Dungarvon sweeps along.

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