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Painful reality sets in – I don’t have a single salmonfly pattern in my box, and suddenly my meager caddis feels like trying to pawn off a puny cocktail weiner at an all-you-can-eat bratwurst fest…
Excerpt from the new Fall 2007 Issue How did I get here? I’m lying on my back in a sticky, soaking, sagging, zero-degree, goose-down mummy bag, shivering like a dog shitting a peach pit. The canvas ceiling above our heads has reached total saturation while the frame creaks and sways through 40mph winds. The canvas…Details
Bacchus, the Roman god of feasting and excess, would be proud – the orgy is in full swing and the sheer visual gluttony of the event makes focusing on the details of trying to get everything right even harder. Separating the continuous splashy grabs of over-eager young‘uns from the confident, rolling takes of the big…Details
I’m fried. Fighting butt buried deep in my belly, my left hand bends backwards on the foregrip of a 12-weight while my right hand palms the bottom of a Tibor, trying desperately to slow the spinning. The 80-pound blue shark at the end of my line is heading deep for another run (again), and I…Details
Contest: 60 Words on Saltwater Contest Winners A salty mix of sweat and the Gulf of Mexico crawls down the side of my face, leaving a crusty trail as it dries. My finger is bloody from the relentless abrasion of salty fly line drawn over sunburned skin, yet I continue to cast. Time and again…Details
Runoff. Somehow the word is far too mild, not gutteral enough, to express my loathing.Can we just agree to call it turd soup? The riparian version of a south of the border bout of Montezuma’s Revenge?
by Tom Bie Blue-winged olives are sometimes called “drab” – defined by Webster as “monotonous” or “dull”. But I think that’s a wholly inappropriate term. Winter is monotonous. Waiting for bugs is monotonous. Frozen lakes and rivers are monotonous. Bluewings are the bridge leading away from monotony, not toward it – they’re almost alwaysDetails
When I first moved to Ketchum, ID and the hallowed Wood River Valley, I was drawn like most to the more wide open spaces in the drainage. Multi-million dollar Hollywood alpine retreats, and lodges with over-the-top “great rooms” tended to dot the “up-valley” rivers and detract, I felt, from the experience. Trying to determine the…Details
I grew up under the roof of a fly fisherman, a well-respected guide whose father – a guide himself – was a pioneer on his native Snake River. I remember him as a skilled caster who could throw a line more that 90 feet and make it seem effortless. I remember him, too, as a…Details
What to do when a fish morphs from gills and guts into something larger – a memory that splashes across three generations of anglers, alternating between dream and reality? Born to my grandfather, this fish swam through my father Charles and landed with me. Even before I hooked her one cool April morning on Georgia’s…Details
The ancient Mako 17 lounged beside an Indian River fishing camp. Amid the rusted trailer and decaying leafy interior clutter was her magical and somehow readable stern message merrily announcing, “Reds R Us.” I chuckled at the irony of that sun-bleached clunker’s name as I wheeled a friend’s sleek, carbon-and-fiberglass Maverick down the ramp. Almost…Details
“A brook trout wouldn’t last five minutes in this water,” I say to Haroldo as he leans over the gunwale and washes the slime off his knife. “Never mind the water temperature he’d be dead before he ever felt the heat.” Haroldo looked up, smiled, and nodded like he understood. “You believe in natural selection?”…Details
The sun is high overhead as I step out of the trees, drop my pack and flop down on the grass, watching the wind send long ripples across the lake. Bear, my grey-muzzled companion, quenches his thirst in the cool water We’ve been hiking all day and while my legs and lungs feel the mileage,…Details
See them coming, swimming toward you like ducks across the sky at dawn. It’s hard for a Northern Rockies trout chaser to fathom: no hatch to match, no current seam to aim for, just you and a couple dozen bonefish headed your direction. Throw it too late and you’ll spook ’em. Too early and your…Details
“It’s been a grand tournament so far – don’t you think?” asked the prideful chairman to the leather-tanned skiff guide approaching the trophy table. “Grand, perhaps, in the sense of fine weather,” the guide scoffed with a sidewise glance toward the competitors gathered on the dock. The chairman set down his Styrofoam cup with the…Details