Saturday Shoutout / Bruce Chard on Fly Lines

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Bruce Chard is more than a pretty face…thanks God! Of course he’s a primo flats guide but did you know he’s a line designer?  In this wonderful Six part breakdown Bruce tells you everything you need to know about fly lines.       Louis Cahill Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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A Closer Look, The Silver King

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Tarpon are the stuff of dreams.  To look at one, it’s hard to believe that they’re not made of metal. It’s even harder to believe when you try to put a hook in one!   Louis Cahill Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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Are You An Extreme Net Man?

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Have any of you seen those Rapala lure commercials with the fisherman in the store pondering over which “Extreme Net Man” to hire for the day. If you haven’t, take the next thirty seconds and watch this short video. I love those commercials because they point out how important a role your net man can play in helping you land fish. A lot of the time props are only given to the angler battling the fish, but many times the experienced net man by your side deserves a good portion of those props. There’s no doubt that when fish and angler are evenly matched in a fierce battle, having an experienced net man can often end up putting the odds in the anglers favor. Many of my big fish have only been landed because I’ve been lucky enough to have a badass with a net backing me up. As a guide, I’ve had lots of time and practice to hone my netting skills over the years. And I’ve picked up on some key characteristics you need to carry with you at all times if you want to become worthy of holding the “Extreme Net Man” status. And for the respect of both female and male anglers out there let’s consider the phrase “Extreme Net Man” to be uni-sex please. 1. An Extreme Net Man has an equally Strong Offense and Defense You not only have to have an offense that’s deadly accurate at scooping up fish, but you also need to have a strong defense as well. A good defense means you’re constantly looking for danger zones during the fight and you do whatever you can to help the angler keep the fish away from them. Examples are blocking a snag with your body to avoid a break off, or … Continue reading

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The Original Eyewear For The Flats

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Bonefish are just cool. They never cease to amaze me. Like all fish, they are perfectly adapted to their environment and in their environment you need a competitive edge. Right in the middle of the food chain, the bonefish has to get in, get fed, and get out in a hurry, before he becomes somebody else’s lunch. To do that, he needs keen eyesight, a hard nose, a turbo charged tail stroke and some high-tech eye wear. I handled hundreds of bones before I ever noticed the eye glass, and a few more before I captured a good photo of it. It’s so clear and flawless that the light and the angle you look at the fish need to be just right to see it. It is a slick outer lens that covers a good portion of the bonefishes face and encapsulates it’s eye. If you study it’s profile you will see that it turns the bonefish’s already sleek profile into a perfectly hydrodynamic projectile. The equivalent of cycle racers shaving their legs. No doubt, this aids in the bone’s remarkable speed, but that’s just part of the story. The eyeglass serves a much larger purpose. The bonefish has a fairly unique style of feeding. When he spots a crab or a shrimp and makes his charge his prey seeks cover in the coral, or deep in the mud or sand bottom. The bonefish gives chase by sucking in water and ramming it’s head into the bottom, sometimes up to it’s pectoral fins and then, blowing the water out of it’s mouth exposing it’s prey for the taking. The eyeglass protects the fishes eyes from damage, saving it’s precious eyesight for spotting predators, and fishermen. It’s a remarkable adaptation and just one of the things that makes bonefish one of … Continue reading

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Pheasant Tail Nymph Attractor

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A while back I posted about a attractor midge pattern that always works well for me during the colder months. I received some really good feedback from the post from G&G followers. One follower even tied some up and landed multiple twenty inch fish with the midge pattern one day on his home waters. It feels good passing on information to our followers, especially when I hear back that they not only appreciate the advice but are actually putting it to work on the water. Since the first post was a success I’ve decided to showcase second cold water nymph pattern of mine. I’m a firm believer in utilizing a bright attractor nymph in my tandem nymph rigs during the winter months.  A couple years back I thought to myself why not take a proven traditional fly patterns and modify them with bright attractor fly tying materials. This way you can bank on both the proven profile characteristics and the flashy appeal. One of the first fly patterns I came up with for this idea was this pheasant tail attractor nymph above. It’s been very successful for me on the water. I generally use it as a dropper in my tandem nymph rig in size 16-20. Try a traditional bead head pheasant tail nymph in a 14-16 with my attractor pheasant tail nymph in a 18-20. It’s a deadly combination for me during the winter months. Try experimenting with modifying other proven traditional nymph patterns into attractor nymphs. I’m a strong believer however in always using one natural (non-attractor) style nymph and one attractor nymph in my tandem rigs. This seems to work the best for me on the water. Pheasant Tail Attractor Nymph Nymph Hook: 14-20 Tail: Natural Pheasant Tail Ribbing: Ultra Wire Small – Blue Abdomen: Flashabou Dubbing … Continue reading

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High Point

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Tim looks like he has swallowed his tongue. He’s pale, eyes dilated, the corners of his mouth twitching. He’s soaked in sea water, eyes burning and red. His fingers digging into his seat bottom, he squints and stiffens like a corpse preparing for the next wave which drops the little skiff hard. It sounds like a car crash and sends another five gallons of water into our faces. Nothing, it appears will stop the next navy blue, six foot wave from hurdling over the bow. It’s a fraction of an inch from doing just that when the bow lifts. The wave seems to ride the bow up, hovering literally an eight of an inch from crashing over into the cockpit for a few seconds. And then the whole thing starts again. Norman Rolle, our guide stands stoic in the back of the boat, a buff bearing the Rio logo pulled up over his face all the way to his Smith wraparound sunglasses. His left hand is on the back of Tim’s seat, his right gently twisting the throttle of the outboard, accelerating up the waves then coasting down, steering us carefully through the cross currents and surf crashing into, and back from the wall of jagged rock that the Bahamians call High Point. High Point is one of the most inhospitable places I’ve ever seen. It juts into the Atlantic like a knife blade for a quarter mile, huge rough hewn boulders guarding it’s coast. It separates the inhabited northeast coast of South Andros Island from the wild and isolated south. It can only be passed on a fairly calm day, and today is not so calm. Tim leans over to me and says nervously, “Jesus, this is bad”. I’m suddenly aware that I’m grinning and quite possibly looking a … Continue reading

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Sunday Classic / Use Side Pressure To Avoid Breaking Off On Snags

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You’ve got a big fish on and it’s making a screaming run straight for a big snag on the far bank. What should you do to decrease your chances of breaking off? Your best bet is to apply low side pressure with your rod while keeping a perpendicular position between you and the fish at all times. Doing so you can put twice as much pressure on the fish than you normally can when your fly rod is in the overhead fighting position. Secondly, it’s much easier for you to steer the fish’s head and turn its direction using low side pressure. Always follow the fish up and down the river during the fight. The closer you stay to the fish the more leverage and power you can apply to steer and control the fish. Lastly, don’t tighten down on the fish trying to stop its run towards a snag, because nine times out of ten you’ll end up breaking the fish off. The harder you pull on a big fish the harder it generally going to pull back. If you find playing the fish aggressively makes the fish fight harder and more difficult to control, try backing off on your power and playing the fish more gently. Sometimes doing this will calm the fish down enough to gain control and win the battle. Keep it Reel, Kent Klewein Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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Saturday Shoutout / Tosh Brown Maashkinoozhe

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Tosh Brown is one of my favorite sporting Photographers and quite possibly the nicest guy in Texas! Check out this post on his blog about Musky fishing in Wisconsin.   Louis Cahill Gink & Gasoline www.ginkandgasoline.com hookups@ginkandgasoline.com   Sign Up For Our Weekly Newsletter!  

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Split-Shot Placement For Your Tandem Nymph Rigs

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Have you ever heard the saying, “The difference between a good nymph fisherman and a poor nymph fisherman is knowing when to add one more split-shot to your rig”? If your nymphs aren’t getting down in the strike zone, you’re going to be missing a lot of bites. I know this sounds super obvious, but I see anglers all the time nymphing water with far too little weight on there nymph rig. Its often the only reason they’re not getting bites, so don’t be afraid to pile the weight on if you think your nymphs aren’t running deep enough. So now that you understand you always need to have enough split-shot on your rig to get your flies down in the strike zone, now let’s talk about split-shot placement? I get asked the question all the time whether anglers should place there split-shot above there tandem nymphs or between them. Both can be the right choice depending on the type of water your fishing and the specific tandem nymph rig (fly patterns) your fishing. Below are a few examples when I place my split-shot in different locations in my tandem nymph rig. Situations Where I Place Split-Shot Between my Tandem Nymphs 1. Big weighted lead fly with unweighted dropper 20-24″ apart. When you’re fishing a trough for example with fast moving water and you see your dropper nymph riding up high above your lead fly during your drift, place split-shot in between the nymphs to ensure both of your fly patterns will be getting down in the strike zone. This especially holds true when your dropper nymph is beadless, lightly weighted with lead wraps, or 100% unweighted. 2. Both Nymphs are beadless or Lightly-weighted 18-24″ apart Believe it or not, I have days where beadless nymphs are the ticket to … Continue reading

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Tarpon On The Four Weight

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Let me be clear on this…I am not a dumb ass. Well, at least not a big enough dumb ass to try and catch a tarpon on a four weight. But I did buy a new four weight reel the other day and a ten weight line. So I sat down to line up the two reels, which is my cat’s favorite thing in the world, and something occurred to me. I rig my four weight for tarpon. What I mean by that is that I use the same system for attaching my fly line to the backing that I learned when I started saltwater fly fishing. Before I started fishing salt I attached my line to the backing with a nail knot, like I learned to as a kid. Now I spend a lot more time whipping a loop on the back of my fly line with tying thread and superglue. Then I spend even more time tying a double Bimini twist in my backing and connecting loop to loop. But why? Well, it’s clearly a stronger connection but do I need that on a four weight trout rod? It sure doesn’t hurt when you find yourself connected to a ten pound trout on your four weight. You will be seeing that backing, I promise. Still, it’s clearly overkill. It comes back through your guides smoother and that’s nice, but still not a big deal. Here’s my reasoning, and this is why I use this method on all my reels. First, it’s just better. Second, and most importantly, I only change that ten weight line once a year, some times not even that. Why let the knot I trust to hold a tarpon be the first knot of it’s kind I have tied in a year? Knot skills are … Continue reading

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