Hardy Fly Fishing Logo

Hardy & Greys Limited, the company behind the Hardy Brothers, Hardy and Grey's brands of fly fishing rods, reels and related tackle, has been acquired by U.S.-based Pure Fishing Inc. Pure Fishing, in turn, is a subsidiary of Jarden Inc, a large corporation that is behind brands that which span the gamut from outdoor brands such K2, Volkl and Coleman to household brands such as Mr. Coffee, Sunbeam and Crock-Pot.

Hardy Fly Fishing Logo

Pure Fishing is one of the largest companies in the fishing and tackle industry and, prior to the recent acquisition, had only limited involvement the fly fishing industry, with most of its brands in the conventional fishing arena. Pure Fishing is behind brands such as Abu Garcia, All Star, Berkley, Fenwick, Hodgman, Johnson, JRC, Mitchell, Penn, Pflueger, SevenStrand, Shakespeare, SpiderWire and Stren.

A Bristol Bay rainbow trout (photo: Alaska Rainbow Adventures

On June 30, the EPA closed its second public comment period regarding the latest draft of its risk assessment of large-scale open-pit mining in the Bristol Bay region of Alaska. Specifically addressed in the assessment are the likely scenarios that would result from the realization of the yet-to-be formally proposed but heavily researched and planned Pebble Mine at the headwaters of the Nushagak and Kvichak Rivers, the two most prolific wild salmon rivers in the world. The assessment was unequivocal in its determination that a mine such as Pebble would have very significant negative impacts on the salmon populations of the Bristol Bay region -- given that mining operations are accident free -- and would have disastrous consequences were an accident to occur. Given that no large-scale open-pit mine has ever operated accident free, rather spills and pipeline failures and other accidents are common with such operations, opponents of mining in Bristol Bay see little ambiguity regarding the outcome for Bristol Bay salmon and the economy that depends on them if mining ever came to the region.

According to a press release by the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development association, 77% of all comments received by the EPA regarding the feasibility of mining in the Bristol Bay region were anti-mine. That figure represents the total percentage of comments received during both this latest and the EPA's previous public comment period (70% of respondents in the latest period were anti-Pebble). In total, 762,979 comments had been received as of June 28, 587,145 of which were in favor of protecting Bristol Bay.

The Angler as a Predator

The latest installment in Gary Borger's "Fly Fishing: The Book Series," The Angler as a Predator should be off the presses and shipping as soon as next week. This latest book is the fourth in a planned series of 21 books. The first three books, entitled Fishing the Film, Reading Waters and Long Flies offer an entertaining, well written and incredibly insightful look into their respective topics. Compiled into each book are lessons learned from Gary Borger's long and highly respected career as a fly fisherman. The books are illustrated by Gary's son and long time fishing partner, Jason Borger.

According to the book's publisher, "In the newest book, Gary Borger explores the angler as predator, discussing the how-to and why-to of the tactics of “pretending,” of hunting and stalking fish, of predatory casting techniques such as the sidearm roll cast, the elliptical stroke, the “C” pickup and many others. There are thorough discussions of the fish’s environment and the way they detect predators with their vision and hearing. Fishing after dark is an excellent predatory tactic, and Gary covers this topic in detail. In addition, understanding the many ways of setting the hook allows the fly fisher to take the fight to the fish in a positive way. There are also discussions of using the tip, the mid-section, and butt of the rod during the fight, using side pressure and vertical pressure, fighting the fish without using the rod, and other highly effective tactics. Throughout the book, the 'how to' is animated with stories that stretch back for more than five decades of Gary’s fly-fishing life."

RIO's new Suppleflex trout leader.

RIO has added to its extensive lineup of fly fishing leaders a new series of leaders built on RIO's Suppleflex material. These new knotless, tapered Suppleflex leaders are designed specifically for trout fishermen who fish small flies in careful, delicate presentations. If you like fishing soft hackles, size 24 blue-winged olives, or impossibly tiny midges, these leaders are for you.

According to RIO, their new Suppleflex trout leaders will appeal to dry fly aficionados not only because of their supple material, but because of several other added features as well. RIO describes their new leaders as "specifically designed for the angler that requires the ultimate in presentation and for fishing with small flies. Each leader is made of the softest, most supple nylon available which allows flies to have the very best drag free drift and the most natural presentation possible, while a hand-tied perfection loop on the butt end permits ultra-quick rigging. The dark olive butt section is a great asset for spooky fish and fits in perfectly when fishing with subtle fly line colors, yet the unique chemistry of the leader ensures the front tippet end is completely clear."

This uncooperative 26" bass refused to pop up his fins.

For many folks, striped bass conjure up images of fishing the surf, tossing long casts off the terminal end of a jetty or cutting through chop on a boat to chase birds out into the swell. Days spent wading or poling the flats, on the other hand, are commonly associated with bonefish, redfish, tarpon and permit, just to name a few. And while stripers in skinny water certainly aren't a secret, there are plenty of folks who have yet to make the acquaintance of the striped bass on the flats.

Count me on that list. Well, that is, until last week. On my second consecutive annual trip to the preposterously fishy waters that surround Martha's Vineyard -- and after failing to find stripers on the flats on my own last year -- I enlisted perhaps the island's best known fly fishing guide, Jaime Boyle, to help with this year's chase. Jaime and another go-to Vineyard guide, Tom Rapone -- who both run flats skiffs in addition to more traditional center console fishing boats -- are the two guides on the island who spend the most time chasing stripers on the flats. And it's easy to see why. As any experienced fly angler knows, taking the blind factor out of the equation ups the adrenaline. Sight fishing is simply more fun.