Dehumidifiers Keep My Fly Fishing Gear Fresh & Dry

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It used to be an ongoing battle all season long to keep my fly fishing gear dry and odor free.

There’s nothing worse than having to slide into a pair of stinky, sweaty waders that are still damp from the day before, struggle to slide your feet into a frozen solid pair of wading boots during the winter, or head out fishing on a rainy day with a rain jacket that’s already soaked to the bone. A couple years ago, I finally got smart and bought a dehumidifier, and now all I have to do is drop my gear on the floor next to the dehumidifier in the evening, and it’s waiting for me the next morning 100% dry and odor free. I’m telling you, it’s like heaven on earth, and I guarantee, you’ll find a whole new appreciation and respect for dehumidifiers when you take the leap of faith and put one to work.

Dehumidifiers are also great for

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4 Questions You Should Ask Yourself Before Chasing Musky on the Fly

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Today’s guest post was provided by Charlie Murphy, a long time member of Gink & Gasoline and musky devotee.

For those of you who don’t know Charlie, he’s as laid back as they come, he eats, sleeps and breaths fishing 365 days a year, and he’s always got your back when you need him. Another thing we love about Charlie is he’s constantly finding ways to add humor into every situation. All these qualities make Charlie a great travel and fishing partner and if you ever have the chance to fish with him, we highly recommend it. That’s enough introduction, read below Charlie’s humorous but true correlation between the old school movie The Karate Kid, the character Mr. Miyagi, and fly fishing for musky.

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The Snap-T Cast With 2-Hand Rod: Video

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The Snap-T cast is an essential for any 2-hand angler.

You really only need to know a couple of casts to be an effective angler with spey or switch rods. One of the casts you just can’t live without is the Snap-T. This easy and powerful cast lets you launch the fly when the current is off your casting shoulder. It generates the power needed to cast heavy sink tips but works equally as well with light dry lines.

WATCH THIS VIDEO TO LEARN THE SNAP-T CAST FOR 2-HAND RODS.

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Reece’s Clearwater Crawler

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The Clearwater Crawler provides an anatomically accurate imitation of the prevalent gills found on the abdomen of this class of mayfly nymphs.

In addition to this the thorax of this pattern displays a translucent quality seen in the naturals as they carry out their lives on the stream bottom. The reflective base of the thorax displays a trait seen in crawlers on the verge of emergence. The vast majority of nymphs employ dubbing in the thorax of the pattern. This allows them to display reflectivity, or dull mottled coloration but not translucence. My choice of materials and processes allows this pattern to present both of these attributes simultaneously. This vastly increases effectiveness in term of fish brought to net.

During the summer and fall I guide on the freestone portion of the North Platte River. The latter half of our season is usually defined by increasingly low water conditions that result in easily spooked, picky trout. As with the vast majority of free stones, crawler type mayfly nymphs are a common food item for trout in our waters. I needed a crawler nymph pattern that could be carefully analyzed by trout in clear slow water and still be accepted as the real deal. After countless tweaks and changes I found a design that was taken without hesitation. Throughout the second half of summer and into the latest reaches of fall this pattern produces fish as at high level of consistency. The pattern shown in the video is a size 12 which I most commonly use during the summer months. However, as summer fades and fall progresses I drop in size down to the smaller size 16s in this pattern.

HERE’S A VIDEO.

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Little Things Matter: On The Water Tippet

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By Bob Reece

Successful anglers are built out of sounds habits. 

Those habits focus not only on the large aspects of fly fishing but also on the small.  Within the realm of those petite practices is being aware of the status of your tippet when you’re on the water. 

Your tippet is often the weakest link between a fly that hooks fish and the line that runs through your rod.  Due to this fact, it is critical to check the state of that material as you move through a day of fly fishing.   A lack of due diligence often results in frustration and sometimes heart breaking experiences.  

On a summer adventure with friends, we had been working through an isolated drainage known for its larger than average brown trout.  While fairly open, the typical stream side vegetation of willow and alder were very much present.  During the morning I watched my friend pop his tippet and fly loose from several different alder bushes.  As we arrived at a large run below a waterfall, I asked him if he wanted to tie on a new section of tippet.  My offer was declined.  

After one round of rock, paper, scissors; he won the first cast into the run.  On his second drift a large brown, over two feet long, happily ate his foam offering.  My friend paused and set the hook perfectly.  Sadness and open mouths followed seconds later when his tippet snapped a few feet up from the fly.  With a little inspection, it was easy to see the abrasion to the material that had built up over the course of the morning.

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Game of Bones, 5 Common Bonefish Behaviors and Successful Strategies

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By Louis Cahill

Understanding these 5 common bonefish behaviors will help you catch a lot more fish.

I love bonefishing! There’s a shocker. Every species has unique characteristics which make them fun or challenging to catch. The chess game of feeding a sipping brown trout, the mix of finesse and raw power required to boat a tarpon and the zen of swinging a fly to a fresh steelhead are the parts of the game that hold the reward. One of my favorite games to play is the one we play with bonefish.

They don’t have the power of a tarpon or the mystique of a permit, the romance of a steelhead or the selectiveness of an educated trout, but they remain a challenging and rewarding species. More than the pursuit of any other fish, bonefishing is a game of strategy and tactics. Their vigilance and behavior require the perfect presentation at the exact right time. For me, it never gets old.

I had a day on my last trip to the Bahamas that was just about perfect. We were fishing deep in the backcountry on a high tide. Our guide poled the boat way back onto a flat that was sprinkled with mangroves. Single mangroves, clumps and mangrove islands, sometimes with just enough space to push the boat through. Puffy clouds blew over our heads.

We’d use the mangroves for cover and take sniper-like shots at fish as they approached open areas. The fish would appear and disappear with the sunlight. Everything had to be timed perfectly to get the hookup, and once you did you’d better be ready for a fight. Keeping those fish out of the mangroves takes skill.

That’s just one of the endless scenarios you’ll find when bonefishing. The beauty of the game is that anything can happen. Bonefish can exhibit bizarre behavior and a wise angler expects the unexpected. That said, there are five very common behaviors you will see from bonefish and knowing how to present the fly in these situations will catch you a lot of fish. I’ll give you some guidelines but remember, it’s all about reading the fish’s behavior and adapting. Don’t be afraid to improvise. That’s what makes it fun.

5 COMMON BONEFISH BEHAVIORS AND SOME SUCCESSFUL PRESENTATIONS.

Schooling
It’s very likely that you caught, or will catch, your first bonefish from a school. I’m not talking about small schools that you see roaming the flats but big schools of hundreds or even thousands of fish milling around using their numbers for safety. As you progress in your bonefish education, you get bored with fishing schools but for anglers new to bonefishing they are a golden opportunity. Fishing schools gives you the opportunity to develop skills like the strip set and fish fighting by hooking a lot of fish in a short time.

When they are schooled up, bonefish become more confident. They also become competitive, which gives you big edge. When presenting the fly to big schools

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You May Be Killing Steelhead And Not Even Know It

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STEELHEADERS ARE GENERALLY PRETTY SERIOUS ABOUT CATCH-AND-RELEASE, BUT IT’S LIKELY THAT MANY ARE MORTALLY WOUNDING FISH WITHOUT EVER KNOWING IT.

There are few species of fish as vulnerable as wild steelhead. These fish are beset on all sides by threats both natural and man-made. With their numbers dwindling, it’s safe to say, every steelhead counts. It’s vital that those of us who fish for them practice the best catch-and-release practices.

However, common landing practices can kill fish without the angler ever knowing. A team of biologists studying steelhead in British Columbia discovered this problem, quite by accident. These scientists were tagging steelhead with GPS trackers. They determined that the least intrusive way to capture the fish was, well, the same way we do it. With a fly rod. They landed the fish, tagged them with the GPS device and released them. When they went to their computer to track the fish’s progress they discovered something alarming.

Within two hours many of the fish they had tagged, and released in good health, were dead. They collected the fish and performed autopsies to determine what had gone wrong. In every case the cause of death was

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Small Stream, Big Reward

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By Jason Tucker

Spring has sprung, and if you listen closely you can hear the rumble of fly anglers prepping their gear for trout fishing.

Trout seasons will be opening very soon if not already. We’re all looking forward to warmer temps, fly hatches, and trout looking up. While a lot of anglers will be hitting the main streams, I personally can’t wait to do some small-stream fishing. You should do some too.

There’s a lot of good reasons to skip the mainstream and fish the headwaters or tributaries. For instance, Michigan has somewhere between 14,000 and 20,000 miles of trout stream depending on what day of the week it is. While there are certainly several hundred miles of mainstream, the vast majority of trout holding water is typically in the headwaters and tributary streams. This translates to several advantages for you the angler.

Elbow Room. I’m quite fond of fishing Michigan’s Au Sable River. It’s one of the finest trout streams in the world. But never have I fished that river without seeing at least one other party, and if the hatches are on you’re probably fishing within sight of other anglers. It is a great river, with copious fly hatches and large numbers of trout that can support the pressure. But constantly bumping into others and being bumped into gets tiresome. If you simply go fish one of its many tributaries you can eliminate this problem entirely. As a matter of fact, I can say that most of the days I’ve spent on Michigan’s small streams, I’ve never seen another person.

An even greater surprise was when I moved to Georgia. I figured being this close to major population centers it would be even harder to find empty water. Nope. There’s some streams that receive a lot of pressure, but head up almost any ravine with a stream in it and you will have it to yourself, and quite frequently the fishing will be spectacular.

Wild Fish. While many a mainstem gets stocked on a regular basis, quite frequently the headwaters and tributaries are not stocked at all, either due to a lack of angler effort or lack of access for stocking trucks. This translates into

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Buying A Fly Rod For The Young Beginner

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By Justin Pickett

Bicycles, Red Ryders, footballs, and Barbie dolls.

These are among the many things that get scribbled onto Christmas lists this time of year in hopes of finding them beneath the tree on the 25th morning of December. Easy enough. A trip to the local department or sporting goods store can handle those requests.

But what about when a fly rod makes the list? Or maybe it didn’t, and you are just a super awesome parent that wants to introduce their kid to fly fishing?!

My first fly rod was a Christmas gift from my parents. It was a Scientific Anglers starter kit that I had seen in a Bass Pro magazine. I didn’t have a fly shop close by, and the internet was in its infancy, so finding options and checking things out first-hand just wasn’t an option. I remember showing it to my parents and just jotting it down at the top of my wish list. I knew nothing about what I wanted, or needed, and neither did my parents. I just wanted something, anything, to get me started… and then to figure out what the heck tippet was???

Luckily for today’s kiddos, things aren’t quite as vague. A quick internet search can pull up a handful of options for the beginning angler interested in getting their feet wet. Whether you’re looking for a first rod for your little tike, or maybe the next teenage protige, several companies have you covered for just about every fly fishing scenario. You won’t find many bells or whistles on these rigs, but as an initial investment into fly fishing, these kits are perfect for getting a young angler on the water without breaking the bank.

So, if a fly rod has found its way onto a Christmas list in your family, make sure you give these kits a look-see!

Echo Gecko

With a modest, forgiving action and kid/hippy-friendly cosmetics, the Gecko is ready for action. Featuring a small lower grip for two-handed casting, the Gecko can be fished with one or two hands. With a comfy EVA grip and Echo’s lifetime warranty, the Gecko will keep your kid fishing through the learning curve.

Redington Minnow

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Surviving The Worst In Cold Weather

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With brutal cold weather pounding much of the trout water in the US, it’s worth taking a minute to think about safety.

Living in the south, life threatening cold weather conditions are not often a concern, but even here in Georgia, you can find yourself in trouble very quickly. In fact, the most dangerous situations are the ones you didn’t expect to go badly, and didn’t prepare. Something as simple as a stone rolling under foot can turn a pleasant winter outing into a survival situation. Some years ago I found myself in exactly that situation.

Fishing a fairly remote spot along the Appalachian Trail one winter, I took a fall and injured my knee. It was bad enough that I couldn’t walk on it. I was miles from the truck and there was no trail. I had about an hour of light. The temperature was about thirty degrees Fahrenheit and falling. I had three options. I could make my way out along the river. It was the longest route and there were some tough crossings. I could hike over a couple of ridges. A shorter route but I was not sure I could find my way, even in the light. Lastly, I could spend the night out in the cold without the first piece of survival gear.

I made a crutch from a forked tree limb and decided to make my way along the river. I fell a couple of more times but I did finally make it to the truck about ten that night. It was the first time I found myself in that kind of spot and it changed the way I thought about planing a fishing trip. I made some good decisions that day, and maybe some bad ones, but I took the time to learn a bit about surviving in cold weather and I recommend that everyone who fishes do the same.

I am a southerner, which makes me apprehensive about giving advice on cold weather. As our best trout fishing is in the winter, I do spend a lot of cold days on the river and I’m not a survival expert but I do take some common sense precautions. With that in mind, here are some tips on staying safe while fishing in cold weather.

Tips for fishing safety in cold weather.

Be prepared

By far the best way to survive a dangerous situation is not to find yourself in one to start with. That means starting with a good plan. You should know what to expect from the weather and be prepared for the worst. Know the area you’re fishing. Know all of your options for getting in and out, both on foot and by vehicle. If for example, you access your spot by driving in on a forest road, it might be smart to

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