Chasing winter steelhead can be more than a challenge as anglers fight changing water levels, punishing rain, and low returns of wild fish. A little hope can go a long way when it comes to the pursuit. Wherever you can find a glimmer of confidence swinging a fly, anglers grab at it. Tying beautiful flies in unique color patterns not only inspire confidence, but also help to enhance the experience. Decompressing from a day out in the elements in the cabin, sipping on an aged reserve, while chatter fills the small space is a perfect opportunity to tie something special. So, pack along your vise and materials for your next adventure into the wild as the days are short and the nights long. Continue reading “Cabin Fever Fly Tying”
Fishing is one of the great American pastimes as a poll has revealed that as many as 33 million people aged 16 or older participate in the activity. Recreational fishing ranks even higher than playing basketball, soccer, softball or bowling, and more Americans fish than play golf and tennis combined. Apart from the satisfaction of catching your own fish, fly fishing has many health benefits, and it also has been shown to improve one’s quality of life. If you’ve never tried fly fishing before, you may want to try it out sometime to see how it can impact your entire well-being. Continue reading “5 Reasons Why Fly Fishing is Good For You”
Are you an avid hiker and nature lover? There are tons of trails that lead to beautiful scenery and off the beaten paths to enjoy. Did you know there are trails that allow dogs? Many people already enjoy walking their dogs at some point during the day, but they can accompany you on dog-friendly trails too. Continue reading “Furry Trail Buddies Make Hiking More Enjoyable”
If you’re anything like me, walking into the local fly shop and throwing down $3.00 for a fly is just painful. I remember purchasing a big hopper in Eastern Idaho for a specific stretch of water. Given the cost, I “wisely” opted to buy only one. Three casts later, a large brown took it off the surface as soon as the bug hit. After what seemed like a few seconds he broke me off, and my hopper was never seen again, at least, not by me. It is experiences like this that have led me to tie my own flies, as well as times I’ve fished waters with zero luck, only to notice the hatches and make mental notes. After some time at the vise and a little creativity, I’ve come back with my own fly and left with success. But, if your Grandpa didn’t teach you to tie and you’re new to the sport, where should you start? Below are a few of the essential tools of the fly tying trade. All recommendations are items that I personally own and tie flies with. Continue reading “Fly Tying Tools Of The Trade”
To state the obvious: there are many ways to get to Yellowstone National Park. It is a huge tract of land (over 3,472 square miles) lying at an odd-shaped joining of Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana. Most guide books recommend that if you have time, and trust me, you will want to set aside a bit of time, then plan to spend a few days in the different parts of the park with accommodation nearby. This will cut down on travel time and allow you to immerse yourself in the experience a whole lot more. Continue reading “The Road Less Travelled”
I have a friend who makes beautiful time-lapse videos of New York Harbor. He takes them from his tugboat with his GoPro action camera, and we have all probably seen what a dedicated skier or surfer can do with one of those.
What about the angler who wants to document his or her experience? Continue reading “Photos On The Fly”
I stand knee-deep in moderate current, eyeing the grassy bank across and slightly downstream from me. I’ve walked to the end of my street to access a shallow, rocky reach of the river that runs through my backyard.
I strip some line and make a false cast; strip some more and make another. I surprise myself when the size 12 foam spider I tied 30 minutes before lands softly in an eddy. I am delighted when it disappears in a boil of water.
I slow the line with my rod hand and begin retrieving with my stripping hand. My rod bends nearly double as the fish at the end of my line makes a run for a submerged tree branch.
I’m grinning like a kid on Christmas morning by now. I’ll admit, I may even have let out a little “whoop!”
I bring the fish to hand and crouch to admire the brightly-colored 8 inches of fury that I have captured.
As warm temperatures fade like the autumn leaves, so do thoughts of your next hammock camping trip. But while saying goodbye to summer is inevitable, saying goodbye to hammock camping isn’t. Say hello to winter hammock camping.
After all, camping in colder temperatures does have its advantages. You’ll encounter fewer people, making your excursion more peaceful, and you won’t have to worry about snakes or bears. Additionally, you’ll see nature in its winter coat, which is quite beautiful, while hanging in a hammock.
So here are 5 ways to stay warm while winter hammock camping, or anytime you want to stay snug as a bug sleeping in a hammock. Continue reading “5 Ways to Stay Warm While Winter Hammock Camping”
Getting your first fly rod is an intensely personal moment. Mine was a one-piece fiberglass model handmade with care and patience by my grandfather.
It was a beautiful thing – a tawny blank of indeterminate weight with black wraps or maybe brown and a wooden handle. Matched to a 7 weight floating line, it seemed to do a great job of casting. I was just getting into fly fishing and was being tutored by one of my best friends.
Although it was undoubtedly a great rod, I remember most of all being embarrassed that my friends all had two-piece rods that could fit easily in the trunk of the car – mine stuck out the window! To their credit, not one of them made any comments – those were good friends.
I went on to own many other rods but I don’t think I will ever forget that first fly rod. Continue reading “That First Fly Rod & A Boy’s Journey To Fly Fishing”
I have been showing my three dogs, Ripp, Dash, and Flynn, in the sporting world of Flyball and Agility (yes, I am a dog “soccer mom”). They are pretty good at everything they do, and I am impressed with the working ethic my three beautiful boys have and the desire to achieve more and outperform my expectations.
However, all work and no play makes for bored dogs… Continue reading “Adventuring with My Fur-Kids”