When I first came to the pond, I was probably four or five years old. A ball of bread on a large hook dangling from a bit of string tied to a branch allowed me to catch what the locals called Horned Pout, bullheads to the rest of you. I don't recall catching these ugly brown fish but I've seen faded black and whites of catfish swinging from a tentatively held stick.
Photo: Chad Shmukler
Years later I returned to the pond as the indentured servant to a great uncle's fantastical home improvement projects. The one solace was the adventures that could be had with an old fishing pole, worms and a row boat. Most evenings I could get away and do some fishing though it was more for solitude than sport. It was my first introduction to trout and largemouth.
My great uncle's neighbor, Bob, sometimes took pity on me and took me out on his motorboat. It was an unremarkable dinghy with a fifteen horsepower motor that managed to get us around the hundred acre pond quickly and efficiently. Bob showed me the way through the rock garden on the western bank so that we could access water shaded from the late afternoon sun. Largemouth congregated in those shoals. Back across time I can recall seeing rising fish. Of course at the time those were just bullseyes for lures to hit. You could do well with a Rapala or a Mepps.
At this year's IFTD (International Fly Tackle Dealers) show in Orlando, Florida, Orvis debuted a number of additions to its rod lineup. One of these additions was the new Orvis Recon, a rod that Orvis and others expect will find its way into the hands of many an angler. The Recon series will replace the well-liked Access series of rods in the mid-price range of Orvis' rod lineup.
The new Orvis Recon fly rod.
Like the Access, the Recon is a what most anglers would classify as a high-performance, fast action fly rod. However, the Recon rods will come in only one "flavor", unlike the Access before it and Orvis' Helios 2 rods which both come in what Orvis calls "mid-flex" and "tip-flex" varieties.
The fourth annual Tenkara Summit will be held this year in Boulder, Colorado. The two-day event will be held at the Millenium Hotel on the banks of Boulder Creek and will include a variety of presentations, clinics and lots of tenkara anglers hitting the water in search of feisty trout.
Clinics and talks at the summit will cover general tenkara topics, tenkara casting, fly tying and more. This year's Tenkara Summit will also feature a presentation by Dr. Hisao Ishigaki, who is widely recognized as the world's foremost authority on tenkara fishing.
I hate waders. Well, no, that’s not exactly true. I hate wearing waders. Actually, I suspect that it’s most accurate to say that I hate having to wear waders.
You see, I cut my fly fishing teeth chasing North Carolina shoals largemouths – wet wading steamy Piedmont rivers with water temperatures in the 80s and air temps and humidity percentages way beyond that. Air so thick that you wish you had gills. All I needed, all I wanted, was a pair of light, quick drying pants to protect my legs during the bushwhack to the water and a pair of sturdy boots. Waders? You’ve got to be kidding.
But, as most fly fishermen do, I eventually expanded my fishing horizons, turning to the fairer species - those delicate rainbows, browns and brookies - and in the South that means tailwaters for a good portion of the year. And that means waders. But while the water coming from the bases of Fontana and Philpott and the mighty South Holston might be as cold as sweet iced tea, the air remains pig cooker hot. It doesn’t take long to get steamed like a Cajun crawdad.
Ethan Kiburz has the tiger by the tail, and he knows it.
As he piloted two visiting trout bums across Tampa Bay on a recent sultry night, the young man -- just 23 years old -- explained that he’d been guiding on the bay for about a year and that he worked in a local fly shop part time, efforts to pad the bank account of a single fly fisherman with a passion for salty critters on the business end of an 8-weight.
“Married?” he responded to a poorly timed query, with an exasperated gas. “No. No way.”