Final 2014 Photo Contest Reminder: 1 Week Left

Each year, come October, we start beating the photo contest drums pretty loudly. The reason is simple: each year we offer a list of prizes comprised some of the best fly fishing gear our there -- and this year is our biggest year yet by far -- and we want to make sure we reach as many readers as possible to insure that everyone gets a crack at it. And, there's more in it for us that just getting to give away some truly killer gear. In the process of doing so each year, we get to assemble a great collection of fly fishing photographs for everyone to ogle for years to come.

Hooked for Life
One of last year's honorable mentions (photo: Finestone).

Only one week remains to enter your best fly fishing photographs in our 2014 photo contest for a chance at over $3,000 in prizes from Orvis, Smith Optics, Cheeky Fly Fishing and Scientific Anglers. If you haven't entered yet, or haven't entered your limit of 5 photographs, head to the official contest page to do so.

Rig Up Faster with Loon's New Rigging Foams

We've written plenty about the idea of slowing down while on the water, praising patience, thoughtfulness and observation. And while we stand by these recommendations, the simple fact remains that flies which aren't in the water can't catch fish. Given such, we all still strive to maximize the time we spend fishing. Loon Outdoors' latest product, its new Rigging Foams, is designed with that goal in mind, seeking to help you get more of your flies into the water, more often.

Loon Outdoors Rigging Foams

Rigging Foams are simple accessories that are built to allow you to tote along pre-rigged fly combinations in an organized, easy-to-handle manner. Whether you pre-rig multi-nymph rigs, dry dropper rigs, multi-dry rigs or whatever else your pleasure is, the rigging foams provide a stackable, re-usable organization system to store your pre-rigged fly setups in a tangle-free manner and access them quickly and easy when you're ready to start fishing them.

Hawks and Doves

As the elections of 2014 approach, I have a question for you. Are you a hawk or a dove?

Hawks are vigilant, passionate and protective. They tackle problems head-on and advocate for strong, direct action. That’s true across the board, whether we’re talking about military hawks, fiscal hawks, foreign policy hawks, deficit hawks or conservation hawks.

Fishing with Dad

Doves usually fly in the other direction. They’d rather discuss a problem than do something concrete about it. They want to study a situation, and then, once they’ve studied it, study it some more. They’re worried about the possible consequences of their actions, and they almost always favor a more passive approach.

Tell Your Steelhead Story, Win $1,000

Steelheading isn't for the faint of heart. Merely hooking up with a wild steelhead typically requires healthy does of patience, persistence and possibly a tendency towards obsessive compulsive disorder. These "fish of a thousand casts" don't come easily, but when they do the long hours -- often in lousy conditions -- and hearty effort required to bring a wild steelhead to hand typically breed some good fish tales.

Steelhead Close Up - Photo: Daniel J. Sheets
Photo: Daniel J. Sheets.

Chances are, if you're a steelheader, you've got some good ones to tell. And Trout Unlimited wants to hear and share them as part of an effort to bolster its upcoming campaign that will seek to improve wild steelhead habitat and angling opportunities.

Trout Unlimited is offering $1,000 to the winner of its wild steelhead contest, which it announced yesterday. The winning essay will also be printed in an upcoming issue of TROUT magazine.

La Bomba

Antonio is a tiny man. He might scratch 5 feet 4 inches. And he’s not the shortest fly fishing guide working the flats of Ascension Bay. That honor belongs to Fabian. If Fabian mousses his hair, he’ll tickle 5 feet. Tony’s senior guide, Jonathan, might be an inch taller.

Permit - Palometa Club - Ascension Bay, Mexico

So, as I stood in the green water up to my armpits listening to Tony trying to calm my nerves as a pair of cruising permit approached from 12 o’clock, my mind inadvertently switched from panicked pleas urging myself not to screw up the pending permit shot to wondering how Tony was keeping his head above water.

“Just keep your line clean,” Tony whispered, almost soothingly in his heavily accented English. My bare feet were buried in a foot of soft mud at the bottom of the bay, leaving me to assume Tony was treading water. “Don’t worry. Just cast. Don’t think about it.”

I cast.