Fly Fishing Industry

Drake Magazine 2020 Winter

Photo by Corey Kruitbosch

End-Times Steelhead. Group therapy on the Oregon Coast.

None of us guessed what was coming. Within hours of our leaving the river, the county would close all boat ramps and Oregon’s governor would implement stay-at-home guidelines. We were fishing on the last days of winter steelhead season 2020 and we didn’t even know it.

Photo Courtesy Rep. Simpson's Office. Idaho's 2nd District G.O.P. Rep. Mike Simpson, at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Stanley-to-Redfish Lake Trail. 

The Bold Effort. An Idaho Congressman shares his thoughts.

In April 2019, Congressman Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, gave a somewhat stunning keynote address at an environmental conference hosted by Boise State’s Andrus Center for Public Policy. His comments were thoughtful, educated, and encouraging. But mostly, they were surprising, particularly his thoughts about what might be necessary to save Idaho salmon. Rep. Simpson and I discussed the topic in mid-December, and his quotes below come from his keynote and our conversation. Can Idaho salmon truly be saved? No one knows. But the Congressman has been down a similarly daunting path. In 2015, Mr. Simpson’s 15-year effort to broker a seemingly impossible deal resulted in the creation of Idaho’s Boulder-White Clouds Wilderness. (Which Mark Menlove covered in his 2014 feature, “A Fisherman’s Monument.”) If wild salmon and steelhead can indeed be saved, then Rep. Simpson is providing these essential fish the best shot they’ve had in decades.

Bobby Foster Chrome Winter OP

Commodities and Steelhead. An imperative shift on the Olympic Peninsula.

Wild Steelhead are not corn, wheat, or cattle. They are not oranges, apples, or anything that we can control with expected specific outcomes and pounds delivered to market. Put them in a box and they will swim right out of it.
Even among anadromous fish, steelhead are the least predictable of any salmonid swimming the North Pacific. They are never a species of multitude, like Kings, Coho, or even Pinks, that come home in a rush of biological delivery to the rivers spanning the West Coast. They cruise along the edges, arriving to their natal rivers in fits and spurts, with dozens of life histories across each watershed. In short, there were never that many steelhead to begin with.

March Madness - Finding calm amid coronavirus anxiety

Photo: Hansi Johnson

March Madness – Finding calm amid coronavirus anxiety

It was a brisk and beautiful morning, the sky cloudless, the sunlight sharp. It was the kind of day that under different circumstances would have you looking forward to the coming seasons of warmth and splendor and carefree fun. We began packing the car. I’ll never forget the looks on some of my neighbors’ faces as I took the bags of groceries—canned goods, pasta, rice and yes, even some toilet paper—to the car. Those faces betrayed thoughts. Wait, should I be doing the same thing? Fear may be the only thing more contagious than this virus.

Alaska West Lodge

Photo: Tosh Brown

American Greed, Inc.

riter and historian David T. Courtwright calls them “limbic capitalists”—people or companies that target our limbic system, the part of our brains primarily responsible for emotion, especially as it relates to pleasure, motivation, and survival. Courtwright is author of The Age of Addiction: How Bad Habits Became Big Business. “Biological evolution shaped the limbic system,…

Slow Motion Masterpiece

The film opens with a ten-second zoom toward campfire flames that dance and swirl in the darkness. The viewer’s eyes are drawn to the underbelly of the largest log, crosshatched and ashen from the heat. Jump-cut to a small stream, lit by autumn light, shorelines framed by a blaze of fallen leaves. An angler appears,…

Howler IndyFly Collaboration.

Howler IndyFly

Howler Bros. X IndiFly: Golden Frog Collection

Kaieteur Falls is a superlative 800-foot single-drop waterfall located in the heart of Guyana’s Kaieteur National Park. And although the falls are heavily photographed by gapers from around the globe, the area is also home to another famous inhabitant that is equally quirky, cool. The non-poisonous Golden Frog (Anomaloglossus beebei) is endemic to a 600-hectare…

Pete Soverel works for Salmon Conservation

At the Helm- Salmon Conservation

The status of wild winter-steelhead populations can drive the most committed steelheaders to seek refuge near the fringes of Salmo Mykiss’ geographical range—fewer anglers can mean a few more fish. So, after 19 hours of driving, I pull my truck into the dark driveway descending to a rustic lakefront cabin. Towering cedars block what scant…

Festivarians gather for the Telluride Bluegrass Festival

Bluegrass and Fiberglass

It’s 1 a.m. and we’ve just shuffled out of the Sheridan Opera House, halfway through The Travelin’ McCoury’s NightGrass after-show. Not because they weren’t fantastic. Fronted by the sons of bluegrass legend Del McCoury, they lived up to their pedigree. But we’re exhausted. Ignoring the advice of experienced Festivarians, we have not paced ourselves. It’s…

The beauty of SaraBella goes beyond pretty colors

Rodmaking Rose

BEFORE APRIL ARCHER cofounded Denver-based SaraBella Fishing—makers of women-specific fly rods—she’d already noticed an influx of female flyfishers to the sport. But as an angler herself, fishing since she was a toddler and flyfishing for the past 16 years, she also recognized that there was a distinct lack of women-specific gear.

The best fly fishing books.

Stocking Stuffers – Fishing Books

Smallmouth: Modern Fly-fishing Methods, Tactics & Techniques Tim Landwehr & Dave Karczynski $29.95 Stackpole Books Most of the how-to flyfishing books at your local library come from accomplished anglers that aren’t very good at writing. This book isn’t one of them. Lifelong smallmouth guide Tim Landwehr of Tight Lines Fly Fishing Company in DePere, Wisconsin,…

The real story behind that giant trevally footage

Bird Eaters – Giant Trevally in the Seychelles

Unless you’ve been living under a triggerfish for the past few months, you’re likely one of the millions of viewers who’ve watched those incredible teasers of bird-eating giant trevally in the Seychelles, which hit the Interwebs on Oct. 26. The footage was captured by a four-person crew from the BBC’s Natural History Unit during fall…

New Center Axis Rod and Reel.

A Difference in the Balance

Feelings are part of it. That’s because our cherished fly rods, whether impatient laser throwers or deep-bending noodles, stroke emotions. When they feel right, we’re remarkable anglers. When something’s jacked, it’s a slippery slope from elitist to self-defeatist. Idaho-based Waterworks Lamson, with its new Center Axis Rod/Reel, is banking on recalibrating the way we feel…

Guide Pointer Booking and Reservation Software

Guide Pointer Booking and Reservation Software

Guide Pointer Tech Aims to Boost Your Flyshop Biz

Mike Dawes has a fishing problem. He’s been wading saltwater flats since the impressionable age of seven. He’s a veteran player on the permit tourney circuit. He’s even starred in couple of film tour flicks. But perhaps the biggest struggle he’s had to overcome in his flyfishing career didn’t involve a dour fish or a…