20 July, 2012


What did the fish say when he swam into the brick wall?  


With one of my favorite jokes out of the way, lets talk about dams. We're finally starting to wake up in this country and realize that altering Mother Nature wasn't such a good idea. I'm a big believer in the movement to remove dams and return river flows to their natural state. In the Western US this movement is gaining momentum rapidly. Recent efforts on the Elwha are an excellent example, and even the once untouchable Snake River dams are now up for discussion.

But then what?

My professional colleagues will know that I'm a big believer in Systems Theory. Nothing happens in a vacuum. Every action has a reaction, and cumulative reactions can sometimes cause unplanned consequences. So, when you take out a dam, what happens next?

Human nature wants to "fix it" by intervening. In this case, that means hatchery fish. But planting with hatchery fish creates its own set of problems - it's basically inbreeding and you lose much of the fish's ability to adapt to the conditions.

The more logical alternative, in my opinion, is better management of the wild population. This is where efforts like gear restrictions, tight creel limits, and other measures begin to make sense. Give the wild fish a fighting chance and you'll see how tough Mother Nature really is.

For more on this topic, here's an excellent video from Dylan Tomine - Patagonia ambassador and legendary fisherman. It's a worthwhile watch.


19 July, 2012

Video Review: Small Mouth; Big Appetite! DVD

If you fish for small mouth on the fly, or want to, there's a great new video out from Michigan guides Jon Ray and Kevin Feenstra. Small Mouth; Big Appetite is now available and it's excellent! Shot on Michigan's Muskegon and Manistee rivers, the video covers three styles of fishing (streamers, poppers, and crayfish hopping). Featured are tips and techniques, as well as equipment recommendations and fly patterns for each. Whether you're a novice or you've put in your time, there are useful tips, tricks, and techniques for everyone to catch these river thugs!

Take a look at the trailer to see more!

The DVD is shipping now - ask your local fly shop, or you can buy it directly from Jon's web site. Enjoy!


05 July, 2012


Spent the 4th Holiday at a friend's lake house in Hillsdale County. On an evening boat ride, I spent some time throwing BIG poppers into the lilly pads. Didn't turn up any fish, but WOW what a confirmation on that Scientific Anglers Titan Taper line. Pardon my French, but that stuff is the SHIZNIT for throwing big bugs long distances easily!!!!

You can really feel the line loading the rod fully. And, the textured finish makes it slicker than snake snot and capable of shooting really long distances, especially when accelerating with a haul. If you need to huck the big stuff on a floating line, definitely check this line out. I have to say I found it to have considerable advantage over my previous favorite, the Rio Clouser. Comparatively, the SA line is like having another gear.

Now, if I'd just picked up any strikes...