A blue ribbon angler

Craig Matthews helps set the standard
Photo: Patrick Daigle

Some years ago, I had the opportunity to write a profile about Leon Chandler. Leon was known as America’s Ambassador of Fly Fishing and he was one of those rare people who far surpassed his press clippings; supremely talented, yet ever humble, generous and gracious. Spending a few days with Leon was one of the highlights of my angling life.

It's all about the strop

Don't forget this important last step when sharpening a knife
Photo: Cosmo Genova

As the saying goes, there’s more than one way to skin a cat. While its safe to assume that the old adage should be interpreted more figuratively than literally, you won’t be skinning anything unless your blade is sharp enough for the task. Most of us get by with blades that are just sharp enough to get the job done, and inevitably, we find ourselves woefully unprepared for a task that requires some precision.

U.S. Forest Service employees in the Cairbou-Targhee National Forest take fire behavior observations from the safety of a meadow on the West side of the Continental Divide (photo: USFS).

In the early 2000s, as a fly fisher who would rather wander off the beaten path in search of wild, backcountry trout than stand in the bow of a drift boat in hopes of hooking into a big-river behemoth, I wasn’t a big fan of Jim Caswell.

Cutthroats and magpies

A childhood on water
Photo: D. Beck

I grew up outside of Livingston, Montana, three miles up a curvy dirt road. A small creek, teeming with native Yellowstone cutthroats and flanked by bushy willows, paralleled the road, and I started fishing there as a preschooler with my father, planting the seeds of a lifetime obsession. By the time I was 5, I would venture to the stream alone with a rod and jar full of grasshoppers freshly procured from our front yard. On my way out the door, I would tell my parents, “I’m going to get lunch.”

Patagonia and others protest Trump's attacks on public lands with massive countdown clock

America's heritage will be open to mining and drilling in ...
Photo: Sorane Yamahira /

Last night at the opening of the 2018 Outdoor Retailer Show in Denver, Colorado, Patagonia was joined by The Wilderness Society, The Center for American Progress and The Conservation Lands Foundation in protest of Donald Trump's massive rollback of the Bears Ears National Monument in Utah.