Latest Blog Posts

I don't like the word sportsman

It's a primal thing, not a sport
Photo: Ray Gadd
Bullfrog tadpoles are big, easily fat as my thumb and a little longer. They’re obvious while resting on a pond’s mud flat or among the rocks in a tumbling creek. They wear the typical cryptic olive-brown camouflage you’d expect to see on an aquatic creature that can easily slide down any number of gullets, but their sheer size makes them conspicuous, or at least to me it does. I don’t see how any green heron or kingfisher could ever miss them.They look like plump, lazy little morsels, easily captured by even the sloppiest of attempts.

But they ain’t.

Musky Madness: Big flies, big fish and big smiles

Join the musky hunters in Wisconsin this September
Photo: Mike Dvorak
Legendary guide and respected artist Bob White sure knows how to throw a great party. Bob has learned that if he brings fly fishermen together at the right time and in the right place, they can catch huge muskies on fly rods. With that in mind, he’s arranged for some of the world’s best musky guides to rendezvous in northern Wisconsin on September 22, 23 & 24, where they’ll float 10 lucky anglers down the Chippewa and Flambeau rivers in search of massive water wolves.

The state of Missouri has got to be kidding

There's fishing, and then there's whatever this is
Opening day at Bennett Springs (photo: Missouri Department of Conservation).
I get it. How you fish is not how I fish. And that's swell. Really, it is. I like to fish with a fly rod. You don't? That's fine. I prefer to chase wild fish instead of stocked fish but if you don't care you won't hear any complaints from me. I like to hike away from the parking lots and trailheads and find solitude on the river, but maybe you prefer cajoling with your buddies right by the put in with a cooler of beer. Sometimes, I do too. However you like to fish, by and large, that's how you should fish.

Evening meetings

Government governs whether we show up or not
Photo: Anythony Vinciguerra
My fly tying desk is a mess. I recently painted my home office and that required a reshuffling of furniture and all the oddball things that one acquires in a well-lived life. There’s a desk in the corner where my fly tying stuff lives and even when it’s well organized it can never be described as orderly. In past winters, I’ve been able to slide over there after dinner and tie the handful of patterns that I’ve come to rely upon. I’ve been meaning to get that desk back in the game, I just haven’t gotten around to it. I’ve got lots of excuses, but one reason is evening meetings.

Scott Pruitt doesn't care about our fishing

Donald Trump's pick to run the EPA will spell disaster for our streams, rivers and wetlands
Photo: Chad Shmukler
Anglers are obsessed with water. Freshwater, saltwater, moving water, still water; it matters not. We peer from car windows as we speed across bridges, staring down in wonder at even the most unimpressive of trickles. We yearn not only to see water, but to know and explore it, to discover what quarry swims in it. We’re compelled to protect and preserve it, to stand in the way of those that would harm or endanger it. And now more than perhaps any time in a generation, the waters of our United States, which so often preoccupy our minds, face a grave and serious threat.

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