Swift Thinking

The look in my wife’s eyes suggested that what she was about to tell me would be a
crushing blow. “I wasn’t able to get a ticket for you,” she said. “I’m so sorry.”
The ticket in question was to Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, which, in the world of our
teen and pre-teen daughters, is serious currency. My wife had secured six such tickets to
the sold-out concert at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa. All of which were allotted to my
daughters, their friends, and their moms.
I put my hands on my wife’s shoulders, looked her straight in the eyes and replied,
“Don’t worry, honey. I’ll try to find something else to do.”

Baja Bait Ball in Magdalena Bay.

Photo: Nick Price

Mag Bay Magic

Survive, is what an angler does the first few minutes after hooking a striped marlin. My friend Nick and I shout with joy, accompanied by excited words in Spanish from our new friends. We watch a reel getting emptied and watch the fish leap, flip, and dive. Thirty minutes later and it’s the post-release chatter,…

A FLY ROD, NOT A GILLNET, IS HOW TO CHASE PERMIT

PHOTO BY COREY KRUITBOSCH

Hoping for a Net Loss

The push to ban gillnets in Belize At a Guatemalan fish-processing plant in spring of 2019, a team of journalists saw something that would make any flats angler cringe: several 80-gallon drums filled with salted permit. The journalists, from the Belizean newspaper The Reporter, were there to examine Guatemala’s shark-fishing trade, and the problems it…

CHICKEE CHECK-IN TIME.

PHOTO BY JEREMY CLARK

Swamped

Revivalists and renegades in South Florida’s Everglades It begins as a subtle unzippering across the surface. Nothing more than shape and motion—forcing the brain to calculate distance to target, direction of movement, and speed of travel. These computations form the basis of what comes next: an attempt to drop a bottlecap-sized fly in the path…

Borski in his studio

48 Hours with Tim Borski

IT’S 3:00 A.M. IN THE EVERGLADES AND TIM BORSKI IS LOOKING FOR SNAKES. I’m riding along with him as we drive very slowly down State Road 9336—the only four-digit road in Florida. It is 34 miles from Florida City to Flamingo, a distance we are currently covering at about 15 miles per hour. “Right up…

Meet the Deke

Meet the Deke

FLOWING WATER, BY DESIGN, HAS A SANCTIMONIOUS way of pre-qualifying its clientele. Gentle riffles and wide gravel bars lure the false-casting masses, and boiling black holes rimmed with mossy ledge rock frighten them away. That said, I suppose there’s really no great mystery why the easy flows produce the fussy little degree-candidate fish, while the…

The danger of development and “shifting baseline syndrome”

Drake Magazine Florida Bay

Water, Florida Bay, and Bonefish

When sight-fishing as a sport debuted in the Upper Keys and Florida Bay, boat-makers modified their hulls, fishing companies developed faster and lighter rods, and tackle shops sprouted up all over the islands. By the 1950s an entire industry was formed around a specific shallow-water grassland habitat dominated by tarpon, redfish, permit, snook, and bonefish.…