Sunday, November 30, 2008

09 fly fishing film tour

Hey, any film makers out there? Me neither. I have a hard enough time getting still shots. But the film tour will be in Charlotte,Thurs,Feb 5th, at the Ballantyne Village Theater. Jesse Brown's is the sponsor and will hold an event at the store located next to the theater. If your not familiar with the tour it is certainly not "how to" stuff but pure inspired entertainment. I will keep you all posted and let me know if your going.You can Google it for a ton of info. Capt.Paul

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours from the anglers at After the football has ended and the turkey is relegated to leftover status, we have some exciting features planned for our readers. These include the launch of the new International Fly fishing section of our website. If you have always wondered what its like to fly fish for everything from brown trout in an English chalk stream to salmon in a Russian river, you will want to check this out. We are also putting the finishing touches on an excellent reader contributed article about fishing "Trash Flies" and, as it is our custom this time of year, the editorial staff is hard at work on our annual holiday gift guide. Sounds like a busy holiday season. Hopefully yours will include some encounters with fish on the fly.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Orvis to be Carbon Neutral by 2020

You probably already know that outdoor outfitter, Orvis is a major benefactor in the world of conservation. You may not however be aware of their efforts to lessen their own impact on the environment. A recent article via The Roanoke Times outlines some of those efforts.
Orvis has cut kilowatt-hour consumption of electricity by 39 percent, Rigney said, after shifting to more energy-efficient lighting.
And, its partnership with the Rescue Mission has reduced Orvis' landfill loads by "as much as 50 percent," he said.

"We have high standards for returning items to stock," he said.

Joy Sylvester-Johnson, the mission's chief executive officer, said the Orvis partnership has helped boost sales in the nonprofit's thrift store and provide clothes for its giveaway program. Donations from Orvis include clothes, fishing waders, dog beds and other products, she said.
If a clothing item is too far gone to wear, it becomes part of the mission's rags recycling business, she said.
James Hathaway, Manager of Communications and Conservation for Orvis is quoted as saying, "Our goal is carbon neutral by the year 2020."
A video about the story offers a glimpse into the Orvis shipping facility located in Roanoke.

Bling for the Oceans

Put some nautical bling in your loved one's stocking this Christmas.
Jewelry That Makes a Difference
Nautora Presents the Guy Harvey Signature Jewelry Collection

Guy Harvey is well-known for his artwork in all its various forms. His art adorns everything from T-Shirts, mugs, & license plates to giant wall murals at the Fort Lauderdale Airport; not to mention his famous framed paintings and tiles. His underwater Photography/Cinematography images have been published via many media forms including a 13 episode TV series entitled “Portraits from the Deep”. Through a lifetime of interaction with nature and the oceans, Guy Harvey is able to capture a variety of marine wildlife in their natural habitat with extraordinary detail. Sea creatures literally seem to come to life through his brush. Guy Harvey merchandise can be found in stores across the globe and has proven quite marketable; because of its magnificent beauty, but also because he devotes part of the income from those sales towards ocean conservation.

Now, Guy Harvey’s art has been rendered in precious metals and gemstones, to create a singular blend of fine art and designer jewelry. The new Guy Harvey Signature Jewelry Collection by Nautora transfers scenes that are alive on canvas, into sculpted pieces of exquisite personal fine jewelry. Blue Marlins, dolphin, sailfish, sea turtles and many other species including hummingbirds are depicted with realistic action.

A percentage of sales will be donated to The Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation, a non-profit organization that seeks to educate all about the importance of preserving our oceans through tools such as The Guy Harvey Ocean Laboratory as it visits classrooms and community centers globally nurturing the next generation of marine scientists and guardians of our seas. Dr. Harvey dedicates much of his talent, time, and resources to this and other programs that protect the oceans, fish populations, and reef systems. He participated in the formation of the Guy Harvey Research Institute in 1999 collaborating with the Oceanographic Center of Nova Southeastern University & helped with Florida’s artificial reef system. Visit for more information.

Retail prices for the pieces range from $99.95 for sterling silver to $30,000 for limited edition platinum and diamond pieces. The copyrighted designs include necklaces, earrings, bracelets, charms, and rings made of 18K gold, sterling silver, diamonds and gemstones in a variety of combinations and eye catching styles for both men and women.

Visit for more information and to preview the jewelry.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Looking Behind the Counter: Unicoi Outfitters

In a new feature here at we are bringing you a look "behind the counter" at successful fly shops. Jimmy Harris is the co-owner of Unicoi Outfitters, a successful fly shop with locations in Helen and Blue Ridge, Georgia. I met Jimmy while being crammed into an airport shuttle as we were leaving the retailer show in Denver a few years back. We managed to stay in touch and have found Jimmy and Unicoi Outfitters to be unique in their approach to running a group of fly shops that manage to compete and even thrive in direct competition with the big box sporting retailers. I jumped at the chance to ask some nosey direct questions about how he does this and Jimmy answered candidly on all counts. Here is my interview which I think gives a lot of insight into the world of folks who make a living through fly fishing:

Name: Jimmy Harris
Owner of: Uncoi Outfitters of Helen & Blue Ridge, GA
Number of years as a fly fisherman: 30+
Number of years as a fly shop owner: 11
Favorite species to fish for: Trout
Favorite place to fish: The Madison and Soda Butte

How did you get started in fly fishing?
I became enamored with the idea in the mid-70's, checked out a book at the library, bought a cheap fiberglass rod with Martin reel and taught myself how to cast. Became pretty decent at casting but not catching. I literally fished the Chattooga River for two years before landing a fish on my fly rod. Was just too hardheaded to quit.

How did you get into the fly shop business?
It was providential. My partner, David Dockery had started the shop in Helen in 1994 with another partner who was then moving to Houston, TX for a new job. David called me one evening to ask if I were interested in buying the shop since his regular day job prevented him from running the store except on weekends. I knew the shop was a hobby for David and his partner and didn't have much interest in a hobby business. However, within 12 hours of his call to me, I received a call from another friend whose company had just purchased 386 acres south of Helen and it had a mile and a half of the Chattahoochee River on it. I knew exactly where he was talking about since I had coveted this stretch of river since I had moved to north Georgia in the early 70's. He invited me to come fish it with him and I, of course accepted. It was goofy fishing! The previous landowners had not allowed anyone to fish on it since they bought it in 1910. Big, dumb fish; just what I like! At the end of our fishing trip, my friend, who had described what his company planned to do with the property (it later became Nacoochee Village with the grist mill, winery, restaurants, home furnishing stores and antique shops) asked me if I had any ideas as to how they could incorporate the river into their master plan. My response was that I thought they should lease it to someone who could manage it for trophy fly fishing and that I thought I knew someone who may be interested. The rest is history.

Your shops successfully compete, even coexist well, with the big box stores and their fly fishing departments. How do you do that?
First of all, when Unicoi Outfitters opened, there were no other shops outside of metro Atlanta in north Georgia. Honestly, if it were not for the good graces of Gary Merriman at the Fish Hawk in Buckhead, we would probably not be in business. As strong as they are in this market, we would have had a very tough time getting any quality lines in our shop if they had decided to oppose it. As it was, the shop opened with the best of tackle, Sage, Simms, T&T, Orvis, Ross, St. Croix, Abel and other top shelf products. Our mission statement has been to be the best small market fly shop in the country and every decision we make we try to make it to that end. Over the years, we've added Winston, Chota, Action Optics, Lamson, Scientific Anglers, Fishpond, Wm. Joseph, Renzetti, Tibor and others to our lines. But back to living among the giants, we acknowledged from the get go that we could not compete with them directly. Bass Pro's advertising budget for their fly shop alone is more than our entire annual revenue. What we did realize, however, was that, generally speaking, they do not typically have the expertise our staff has, nor are they in such close proximity to good fishing as we are that they can give up to the minute fishing advice. Orvis then opened two company stores in Atlanta and another private store that was, at the time, an exclusive Orvis dealer. So we made it a point to go down and meet everyone, invite them up to fish with us, help them out any way we could and, in general, take the first steps toward establishing a partnership with them rather than take an adversarial approach. Now, we get calls from customers who are standing in the Orvis shop or Bass Pro, using the store phones asking about current fishing conditions, which gear is appropriate, or do we have a specific piece of gear in stock, and will we hold it for them until they can drive up and get it. We also have them book guided trips with us from the stores in Atlanta. It has always been our philosophy that all the shops can benefit from working together much more than if we all take an adversarial position in regards to the small community of fly fishers. We have also done seminars in Bass Pro Shop and the Orvis stores for their special event days. Most of the time we do it without advertising ourselves but simply helping them to create more interest in the sport. If they create more fly anglers, we're confident that we'll see them in Unicoi Outfitters at some point.

Given the current economy, how important is price to the average fly fisher? Has this changed the way you do business?

The world of retail fly shops has been warped dramatically in the past few months. What we offer is something that is totally financed with disposable income and there's much less of that today than there was even three months ago. We'll still carry the top of the line gear, but we're also planning to zero in on more moderately priced equipment that we think is the best quality for the dollar. Unfortunately, fly fishing has already been hung with this image of being elitist long before the current economic situation. While we have never thought this argument held much water (those who argue this point haven't spent much time around Unicoi Outfitters!), it has been perpetuated by some television shows and magazines. When you consider that you can get into fly fishing with all the gear you need to step on-stream for less money than one high tech golf club will cost you, and it will last you a lifetime if taken care of, then it seems like a no-brainer to us. Now we've just got to convince the recreating public. And that task will be more important going forward than it has ever been in the past.

Why is selling flies so important to the local fly shop?
Profit margins and inventory turns. It's a simple as that. Those margins allow us to stock rods and reels that may take 12 - 18 months or more to sell. Without flies, we couldn't carry the slow moving inventory which customers expect to see when they come in our shop.

How many different flies do you carry and may we be so bold to ask how
many you sell in a year?

We carry about 1200 patterns/sizes in each shop and we sold about 100,000 flies in 2007.

How do you compete with the Internet discounters on flies? The big boxes?

We really can't compete on price on most of the Internet suppliers. They have no overhead, they're buying straight from the manufacturers so there's no middle man in there like Orvis, Umpqua or the other major wholesale suppliers. The advantage we do have is local knowledge, including which flies to use and where and we guarantee a quality fly tied on a quality hook. That isn't always the case with the online guys. The big box stores, in our experience, don't carry the top end flies so we again compete on quality and expertise. At $1.95, our trout flies are competitively priced with most other brick and mortar shops.

What is your top seller?
Y2K Bug. It has been our best seller for 5 years in a row now. Interestingly, a lot of anglers won't fish with it because they have this idea that it's only for dumb stockers. However, our guides have fished it all over the country and it's caught fish on spring creeks in Idaho, the Green River in Utah and numerous other wild trout fisheries. No one understands it but the thing sure catches fish. Our best selling "non-junk food fly is a Tungsten Rainbow Warrior.

How does the sale of flies impact the sale of big ticket (slower turning) items in your shop (Rod and reels etc).

As I mentioned earlier, it is the only way we can justify stocking tens of thousands of dollars worth of rods, reels, waders, etc.

What is your top seller?
On rods, Sage is number one but Winston made some serious inroads when they came out with the Boron series of rods. Our best selling reel by far is the Orvis Barstock Battenkill series. Great reels for the money.

Most shop owners say guided trips are a big part of their business. Would you agree? How big a part of your business are they?

I've always been of the opinion that I wouldn't want a shop without a guide service and wouldn't want a guide service without a shop. I can't see either option being sustainable. The guided trips generate about 50% of our revenue but a lot of that goes right back out to the guides and our landowners who have the private streams we provide access to.

How hard is it to find and keep quality guides?
We've been very fortunate in that we have always had a close group of folks around us that we've fished with long before we got into the fly fishing business. I would guess that the average number of years our guide staff has as fly fishermen is somewhere around twenty five, and that includes the young guys we've got on staff because most of them started fly fishing before they were ten years old. We've got, without a doubt, the most experienced guide staff in the region.

You mentioned access to private water?

We've got five different private pieces of water which total almost 9 miles here in north Georgia. We are very particular about how these streams are managed and how much fishing pressure we put on them. We will not fish a stream if water conditions are not good. We also will not try to book as many trips as possible just so we can pocket the revenue. We are more concerned that our guests have the trip of a lifetime than we are about ringing up a sale. There are no guarantees in the fishing business but we do our best to put the odds on the client's side.

How important (or unimportant) is access to private water to your success?

Private water has been integral to our success. Not only has it given us the opportunity to offer an experience not commonly found in the southeast but it has also given us unbelievable exposure on national television, national fly fishing periodicals and local Internet outlets. We've been fortunate to have been featured on ESPN, ESPN2, The Outdoor Channel, Outdoor Life Network, Turner South, Georgia Public Television and some local access cable shows. And we haven't spent any time going out and trying to get that exposure, it's all come to us because of what we have to offer.

Thanks for answering my questions so candidly. Do you ever have need of Internet magazine Editorial types to come and fish these private waters thoroughly and provide a report to you of the quality of your fishery? We don't charge for this.

You bet, if you know of anyone. I must warn you that most of those guys don't know how to fish.

Jimmy Harris and the knowledgeable staff at Unicoi Outfitters offer some excellent access to fine fly fishing and competitive prices on fly fishing gear. You won't go wrong if you contact him for your all your fly fishing needs or questions.

Manager: John Cross
Telephone 706-878-3083

Blue Ridge
Manager: David Hulsey
Telephone 706-632-1880

Saturday, November 22, 2008

kids and fishing

My last post showed a father heading down to the stream with his three children.Well this is the follow-up to that post. I actually saw this fish that day under a bridge sipping BWO's but I could only spook him. This superior angler waited til dusk, casted a black woolly bugger and wham! My reply only asked if  I could come along next time. Wonder what kind of sandwiches to bring?Capt. Paul Rose  

Friday, November 21, 2008

Sea Dek

Sea Dek is the best stuff for covering the deck of a boat. It absorbs sounds so it's great for a shallow water boat, and also provides a nice cushion for your feet so it's also really great for helm stations (as well as on a poling platform). They are running a special right now so check it out:
Deck the Hulls With SeaDek

The holidays are upon us and in getting with the spirit of the season SeaDek®, the leader in marine non-skid traction, would like to announce two great holiday specials.

First, all SeaDek products will be 20% off standard retail pricing from now until December 17, 2008. Everything found in the on-line store including helm station pads, coaming bolsters, step kits and raw sheets will be marked down. It’s a perfect gift for someone on your holiday gift list or even a special treat for yourself. Click on to take advantage of this limited time offer today.

Do you have a boater in your life and are not exactly sure which SeaDek product is right for them? A SeaDek eGift Certificate is just what you need. Available in $25.00 increments, they make perfect presents or stocking stuffers for the holidays. They can easily be purchased at our on-line store at:

Want to learn more about SeaDek? Check out our website and our blog, for the latest products and events.

SeaDek is a product of Hyperform, Inc.
485 Gus Hipp Blvd. Rockledge, FL 32955
ph: 321.632.4466 fax: 321.632.7019 email: &

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Buff Headwear

Our friend Kate from Original Buff has been kind enough to let some members of the staff field test the Winter version of their popular Buff headwear. I will be heading to East Tn. next week with my bride for a long weekend on the shores of beautiful Watauga Lake. If the weather will cooperate, we plan to get in some fishing. The forecast is for cold weather and it will be a great oportunity to test my new Buff. Those of you that know me understand that I need something on my head to take the place of hair that has long since left me. There are three types of Winter Buffs that are available and they each offer different features.
The Cyclone Buff incorporates three different fabrics: CoolMax, Gore Windstopper, and PolarTec fleece. The CoolMax fabric wicks sweat and is extremely breathable to keep you warm and dry in the winter.The Gore Windstopper protects you form the bitter-cold wind and the PolarTec is incredibly flexible, breathable and soft against yor skin. $38.00 MSRP
The Polar Buff has the super soft PolarTec fleece and CoolMax fabric that provide the warmth, butnot the weight. The best use for skiing and riding is as the fleece gaiter and the CoolMax hat that fits comfortably under any helmet. $27.00 MSRP
The Polar Buff Thermal Pro provides twice the warmth of the Polar Buff with its PolarTec Thermal Pro fleece and CoolMax fabric. Its soft and cozy to the touch. $30.00 MSRP
I will report back after Thanksgiving and let you know how the products performed.

Found in the hotel gift shop

The shampoo for the angling elite

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Fantastic shallow water boat!

This is the boat I ran this past season. It floats in 5 1/2 inches. Runs 28 - 30 mph with a 25 hp Yamaha. Gets up on plane in any water that I can lower the motor all the way and is quiet as can be. Did I mention that rigged with a 25 and a tiller it retails for under $10,000? Can't beat that with a stick.

My absolute best catch ever...

Six years ago I managed to reel in my best catch ever. Since then she has been circled by 9 foot sharks in the Florida Keys, had face to face encounters with grizzly bears, ridden in teeny tiny float planes, and watched as I spent loads of money and time on a sport she could really care less about. All the while her only complaint has been the lack of restroom facilities. I am a very lucky man to have a trophy wife such as Larissa.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

fishing with the family

On a recent trip to a delayed harvest area, I had the pleasure of this encounter. One energetic father rigging while his 3 children patiently wait to head down to the creek. A casting lesson followed soon after the picture was taken. We exchanged info and I gave him a productive BWO that was working all while surrounded by organized chaos and excitement. Being a father of three anglers myself I understand how much effort these excursions take. Kudos to all who take a kid fishing! Wonder who did the stickers for this great fly fishing buggy?

Friday, November 14, 2008

Road Trip Points West

Road trip celebrating my wedding anniversary. The Trophy Wife says that one glance at my Crackberry will get it thrown out of the window of our suite. She is serious about that.
Messrs. Moore, Gordon, and Rose, the floor is yours!

Gill net news

They issued a proclamation to require attendance of some nets in some areas for some parts of the year. This will help some but not enough to stop scenes like this:

MOREHEAD CITY – Commercial gillnet fishermen in North Carolina should note that regulations will take effect this week impacting times and places they are required to stay within 100 feet of and ready to work their small mesh gill nets.
N.C. Division of Marine Fisheries Director Louis Daniel issued a proclamation today that implements attendance requirements passed by the Marine Fisheries Commission last week in conjunction with the adoption of an updated Red Drum Fishery Management Plan. The new attendance requirements become effective Thursday.
The new regulations will:
-- Require year-round attendance in the lower Neuse River for nets smaller than 5-inches stretch mesh set within 200 yards of shore from the N.C. 17 bridge to the mouth of the river;
-- Lengthen a small mesh gill net attendance season so that it runs from May 1 through Nov. 30 in all primary and permanent secondary nursery areas and modified no-trawl areas;
-- Implement a May 1 through Nov. 30 attendance requirement for small mesh nets set within 200 yards of the shore in the Pamlico, Pungo, Neuse and Bay rivers and bays;
-- Require May 1 through Nov. 30 attendance of small mesh gill nets set within 50 yards of shore in Pamlico and Core sounds and in waters south to the South Carolina state line, except for Core Sound and waters south during October and November;
-- Modify the small mesh gill net attendance line in the area between Rodanthe and Gull Island to straighten a line and allow for non-attended nets in areas of deeper water;
-- Modify the attendance line in the area of Oliver Reef near Cape Hatteras to allow for non-attended nets in deeper water.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Fly Fishing Quote of the Week

From an article about winter fly fishing in middle Tennesee, written by Owen Schroeder and found at of Clarksville, Tennessee:

"When thinking of trout fishing, most people picture an angler with a fly rod and that is probably the traditional way of fishing for trout in most areas. There are a great number of fly rod anglers in Middle Tennessee and it seems that every one of them are fishing the Caney Fork River below Center Hill Dam right now."

No doubt one of them is Tennesee Editor, Jay Moore.

Cold Weather Week: Survival

What would any self respecting cold weather week be without a gratuitous snow survival clip? We couldn't afford Les so we got the next best guy.

(Editor's note: My own survival tips for tonight would include the fact that 50 minutes is not enough time for a connection through Philadelphia's airport and that when you rent a car and get the GPS, check to see if the last goober to rent it set it to avoid interstates at all cost. )

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Cold Weather Week: Discounts for you

Sierra Trading Post

Let's start Cold Weather Week off on the right foot by passing along an extra 30% off on over 6500 items on sale at Sierra Trading Post. Use the banner above and enter coupon code: AC118A

COUPON DEAL: 30% off coupon on over 6,500 items
Cannot be combined with any other offers.
COUPON TERM: Now through December 3, 2008.

Cold Weather Week: The Base Layer

Staying warm and dry in winter is all about dressing in layers. One of the most important pieces of gear you can wear during cold weather fly fishing operations is a quality base layer. What was previously known to outdoors men and women as a "Union Suit" or "long handles" has evolved into a technical garment designed to keep your core both warm and dry even when exerting yourself in cold weather.

Anglers can choose to gird their loins with natural materials such as Cotton, Merino Wool, or even Silk. However, advances in textile science have evolved some excellent synthetic materials such as Patagonia's Capilene (pictured above) which is known for its excellent wicking properties during aerobic activity. Patagonia's website has an excellent page discussing the differences between each fabrication that they offer.

Friday, November 07, 2008

Weekend Prep for "Cold Weather Week"

Next week has been dubbed "Cold Weather Week" here at and that makes a big pot of our "non-award winning" Chili a necessity. The Saranac Pale is due to the fact that the coming week will also find us spending a few days North of the Mason Dixon in New York State, although we won't be going as far as Saranac. (we couldn't find a Middletown lager in our ice box).

Stay tuned next week as we focus on things to warm the innards (and outtards) of the angler who is not afraid to let a little cold and snow get in the way of their fishing. Feel free to leave your ice cold gear recommendations in the comments.

Sure we'll replace your lake...

Scott Hed, Director of the Sportsman's Alliance for Alaska points us towards this article via that tells of one mining company's plan to replace fish habitat lost due to mining operations by building a lake.

Taseko Mines presented a new $10 to $12-million fish compensation plan for its Prosperity project to the provincial and federal governments late last week.
It calls for a brand new lake, similar in size and depth to Fish Lake, to offer fish habitat and improved fish spawning channels.

Prosperity Lake would be created using a dam, and sit roughly eight kilometres east of Fish Lake, and would be 113 hectares in size and 17 metres deep. Fish Lake is 111 hectares and 14 metres deep.

The plan is to compensate for the loss of fish habitat if the copper and gold mine is built, and Fish Lake, 125 kilometres southwest of Williams Lake, is drained. A dam would be built to create a tailings pond upstream of Fish Lake.

From Scott's email:

Hopefully you guys will appreciate this…especially the part where citizens of the area will get to vote on whether this newly created lake will be home to big fish or little fish.

Taseko, the mining company in this article, is a sister company to Northern Dynasty with the Pebble project. Maybe if this is successful in Canada, we’ll get to choose what kind of fish we’d like to have in Bristol Bay. I vote for really big rainbow trout and lots and lots of wild salmon. Oh yeah, that’s what is already there.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Bass Pro Shops Announces Web Site Relaunch

From today's press release.
New Features Make Navigating and Purchasing Much Easier
Springfield, MO---November 6, 2008---It’s out with the old and in with the new at Bass Pro Shops, America’s #1 Outdoor Retailer. The popular outdoors company has completely re-vamped to make it much easier for customers to shop and search for information.

The home page has been redesigned to make it easier to find information about stores, restaurants and boat centers in a centralized location. Updates to the Outdoor Library provide for easy access to expert tips, outdoor articles, product reviews, and buying guides.
It is now much easier for customers to find and purchase products. New departments have been added to better represent the full assortment of products available and product groupings appropriate to a selected item may be viewed to remind customers of other items needed.
Departments are now highlighted by different colors making it easier to see what area they are in. In addition, users can narrow products by brand, price range, size, and more. They can also choose to sort by price or relevance. Even the checkout process has been simplified and streamlined – a must for today’s online shopper.

“Our objective was to create an online experience equal to our retail stores,” stated Tim Scott Director-Direct Sales and Operations for Bass Pro Shops. “The new combines the best design, outdoor content, and user-friendly online shopping.” was launched in 1996 and is visited by millions of outdoor enthusiasts every month.
*As ranked by Sporting Goods Business Magazine

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

On the Web: Hardcore Kayak Fishing Team

My little brother called today ( he benches about 400 so I probably should refer to him as my younger brother) and put me in touch with Tim "stew-rat" Stewart. Tim is one of the founding fathers of the Hardcore Kayak Fishing Team. Team Kayak Hardcore are a group of "Plastic Pirates" who menace the lakes and rivers here in North Carolina, paddling and making sore mouthed fish in the process. If you see a kayak flying their version of the Jolly Roger, you might as well strike your colors and heave to! One look at their manifesto website tells us that they are our sort of people.

We are Hardcore. We are kayak fishermen. We are a brotherhood of dedicated and experienced anglers continually honing our skills. We are united to pursue and promote the sport of kayak fishing. We are stewards of nature and fishery management advocates. For over 10 years Team Hardcore has been among the vanguard, blazing a path for the ever expanding Plastic Armada. Paddling silently past convention into uncharted waters while teaching and bringing others to the sport we love.

We are Hardcore. There is no off-season. Hardcore is all year, all conditions. We are wherever and whenever the bite is. Hardcore is 125 plus outings a year. It`s 4:30 a.m. roll-outs. Hardcore is adaptability to wind, rain, current, drought, fog, scorching sun, and frozen equipment. Hardcore is not a hobby. It is a lifestyle. Hardcore is not wanting to kayak fish. It is needing to kayak fish. Hardcore is knowing in your soul that you will never quit.

So grab a paddle, but leave your problems at home. Bring your rod, but leave your reservations on the dock. Anybody can help us but nobody is gonna stop us. Push, pull, or get out of the way, cause we`re gonna bring it .
Why these boys are almost family. Sidebar links added. Be sure to check out their video slideshow and watch for more news of their exploits here at

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Top Ten best fly fishing stuff I like

This is my own very subjective list in no particular order:
1. Fly rods- Temple Fork Outfitters- I know that Orvis has reinvented the fly rod with the Helios but even on the guide program I am looking several hundred dollars. TFO has made a great rod at a price point that will still let you get the GI Joe with the King Fu Grip for your kids for Christmas.
2. Fly tying material- Rabbit Fur strips. Zonker or cross cut. You can't beat the magic of bunny in the water.
3. Fly lines- Scientific Anglers Mastery Series. Best lines ever made.
4. All Round Inshore Fly- Seaducer. If you look at most of the flies in a saltwater pattern book they are derivatives of this simple pattern. Put a bunny fur tail on it and watch out.
5. Boat- Anything that honest to goodness draws less than 6 inches weighs less than 500 lbs and retails for under $15,000. Oh yeah there's only one- The Copperhead.
6. Push poles- Stiffy. Rules.
7. Outboards- Yamaha.
8. Fish- Anything that swims in shallow water that will eat a fly and take off like a shot.
9. Place- Home. There's no place like it.
10. Another Fish- The one at the end of my line.

Discount fly tying materials

This one is for all the tyers out there looking for a deal.You can find this unique place at the Renaissance Festival.The feathers are cheap, innovative to say the least and the owner loves fly fisherman. It is just east of the belly-dancers show and north of the green person. Capt.Paul Rose,

Tuesday Photo Zen: One in the hand...

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Chasing Specs and Reds

To quote Jimmy Buffet, "The weather was here..."

That's the plan

Hopping wakes in the Captain's Copperhead Skiff. On the way out it looked like someone was having a parade of million dollar yachts. The Captain's substantial skill at the wheel kept us from being swamped.
Vernon and Gordon checking out the nets of some commercial fishermen who were working the beach. These aren't the gill nets Gordon is fighting against (these were ocean nets) but I did get a dose of the ones in the creeks first hand later in the day.

Some of the by catch that gets tossed in to the sea (too late for this one). Vernon did manage to toss a few drum back in but it was probably too late for them as well.
Either the Captain is camera shy or this is the gang sign for, "I hope to hell you can cast!"

Here are few photos from the weekend trip to the coast to hang out with FlyfishMagazine's saltwater fly fishing Guru, Captain Gordon Chruchill. The speckled trout bite was a bust but Gordon made up for it by loading me up in his skiff to chase reds in the shallow water.
The first fish we sighted withing minutes of arriving in the spartina grass, ate my fly only to find me trout striking it right out of its mouth. We saw tons of fish but, in addition to my casting challenges, the water was just dingy enough that the fish only appeared when they were about 10 feet from the boat. Believe it or not, it seemed easier for me to hit the 40 foot cast than the 10 foot one. I am guessing this was because I only had about a second or two to react to the short shot. The good Captain (kindly) said that I had maybe five good shots at fish and that we saw around 75. He was being generous. I probably had five shots within my marginal skill level but there were many more catchable fish swimming that day.

Anyway, I am off to Wally World to buy some hula hoops and will be enlisting the trophy wife's aid to shout out "10 O'clock 20 feet out" and "30 feet 3 O'clock" over and over again until I get it right.