Restock My Box Contest Winner

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Somebody’s getting a whole bunch of trout candy!

The winner of the Restock My Box Instagram contest gets 120 primo trout magnets courtesy of Badass Bob Reece of Thin Air Angler. I have to admit, I’m a little jealous when I think about all of the fish that are going to taste these babies!

Quadesherwood, fear not. Help is on the way! That squirmy worm wont be alone for long. Shoot us an email at with your shipping address and we’ll get a care package on the way. When you catch those hogs, we expect to see them on Instagram with #ginkandgasoline!

A big thanks to all of you who participated and especially to Bob Reece for making it possible. Check out Thin Air Angler for the best trout flies money can buy and great guided fishing in Wyoming.

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Give ‘Em A Rest

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By Justin Pickett

It’s Summer.

What that means for most of the country is low water and high temps. And while those two factors will vary from year to year, and region to region, one thing should stay the same…

We need to be keeping a close eye on water temps.

Just about every year in the Southeast, you can count on most trout streams rising well above sixty-five degrees. Here in Georgia, when June rolls around, the state-run trophy waters and privately held waters begin either shutting down, or limiting the fishing to the early morning hours when the water temps are at their coolest.

We all know trout are extremely susceptible to succumbing to the rigors of a fight in warm water conditions. It can be impossible to recover a trout once those water temps start creeping closer to seventy degrees. There is just not enough oxygen contained within that warmer water to revive them. And even if that trout does swim off initially, it’s more likely to go “belly up” in the minutes that follow.

That is why I typically switch to warm water species, such as largemouth bass and carp once the hot temps of summer settle in. There are a couple north-facing streams here in Georgia that can offer year ‘round trout fishing, but even then I will cut it off around 11 o’ clock. Past that, I don’t want to be out there anyways. It’s hot and muggy as hell! Fishing in high elevations can be a great alternative option. These headwater streams and alpine lakes offer up cooler temps and don’t warm as quickly during the summer months. And there is some great fishing that can be had if you’re willing to put forth a little effort to get there.

Aside from that, it’s just a good idea to give trout a rest this time of year. I know, it’s hard to get up on a beautiful morning and resist the urge to toss a few bugs, but the trout will thank you and the fishery will be better for it. Be sure to carry

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Drift Boat & Car Renting Tips Abroad

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When you’re traveling abroad on a fly fishing trip that you’ve meticulously planned out for months in advance, the last thing you want to deal with is equipment problems. That was exactly the case Louis and I ran into several years ago heading out to Wyoming for a week long fly fishing trip with our good friend Bruce Wayne, a.k.a “Batman”.

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A Beginner’s Guide to Catching Bonefish

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John Byron

Yup, I’m a real bonefish beginner.

Been chasing bonefish for just 3 years. Half-dozen trips. Lifetime of fly fishing and fly tying, couple decades in Florida saltwater, but new to bonefish. Thanks to some patient guides, I’ve caught a fair number. But not as many as I want and not as big as some I’ve lost. You’ll see me on the flats.

As a buddy says, “when you’re fishing, you’re learning.” These are some of the things I think I’ve learned.

The Fish

Bonefish prove evolution. Their entire genome is built around two imperatives:
Find lunch.
Don’t become lunch.
A year and a half ago I was in the room with the late great Lefty Kreh as he held forth in a day-long session at our fly-fishing club.
One of the members asked this question: “Lefty, you’ve fished the whole world, for just about every gamefish there is. If you could only fish for one species, what would it be?”

Lefty paused a few seconds and then gave his answer. “Bonefish!”


Beginners catch fish! Go to any good lodge (nearly all are) with any decent guide (nearly all are) and you will get shots and you will catch fish. On a decent first day with typical luck fishing, you will see backing flying through the guides.
Get the right fly in front of them the right way and bonefish will hoover it up with no hesitation. Chase it, even. Fight to see which fish gets the fly.
Or … splash too much wading, line the fish, false cast once too often, hit the fish on the head with your fly, and the fish won’t wait around to see if you’re a barracuda or an osprey … it’s gone.
Your learning efforts should go to getting more shots and blowing less of them.
Catching bonefish is easy.
Catching bonefish is hard.
The flats give you time to think. And yes, you will see barracudas and sharks. Turtles. Rays. And if you squint hard enough, more different kinds of little critters than you ever knew existed. Bonefish flats teem with life.
The right books will improve your luck:
The basics: Dick Brown’s Fly Fishing for Bonefish; Chico Fernandez’s Fly-fishing for Bonefish.
Best for fly patterns: Dick Brown’s Bonefish Fly Patterns.
Best for seeing life through a bonefish’s eyes: Aaron Adams Fly Fisherman’s Guide to Saltwater Prey (noting that Chico has some good stuff from Aaron in his book too).
There’s a ton of good writing and videos online too, on every aspect of bonefishing.
Check out for the likely conditions where you’re going. You’ll learn the weather and wind patterns if you look at the website daily in the weeks before your trip.
You’re likely to catch more fish wading than from a boat.
But you can’t wade everywhere.
Soft bottom is treacherous. Be careful.
And the farther you wade, the farther it is back to the boat.
You’ll prefer sun to cloud shadows. Watch the clouds for breaks and really scan hard when the sun comes out. Morning and afternoon, looking with the sun at your back is ideal (lunchtime most places, it’s pretty much overhead).
Look for dark shapes, shadows, flashes, tails, nervous water, a push ahead of fish, a big troubled patch of water in the distance.
Look for fish close, mid-distance, and way out there. I’ve seen schools at a quarter mile … and missed fish ten feet away. Ghost of the flats? You betcha.
Take a 360-degree scan fairly often.
The fish will often be coming towards you. Think about it: if they were going away, you’d never see ‘em.
Should you move or let the fish come to you?

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Sunday Classic / The cutthroat and the sweet sixteen

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My friend Gary Lacey did me a disservice while shooting clays one day. I fell one shell short for the round and he handed me his beautiful Beretta SO3 EELL to finish the round. I wish I had never touched that gun.

What a beautiful sensation it was when that elegant little side lock fell into place against my shoulder and the bright orange disk disappeared in a puff of black powder. How could I not covet this gun that I would never be able to afford? As pleasant to look at as to shoot the Beretta, with its lavish engraving and gold inlayed pheasant and duck, was a far cry from my clunky old Browning automatic.

Square jawed and utilitarian, it’s a poor gun for the job. The Browning A-5 Sweet Sixteen was never made for shooting clays, not that it matters, I’m not very good at it. Still, I enjoy shooting my Sweet Sixteen. Of all the guns I own, it is the most dear to me.

The gun belonged to my maternal Grandfather. He wasn’t, I suppose, what you would call a sportsman. He fished and hunted but when he did it was for food, not for sport. He taught me to shoot squirrels and catch sunfish. He taught me to

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Saturday Shoutout / Atonement 

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Southern Culture on the Fly is back.

I’m honored to have a piece in this issue of S.C.O.F.. This true story of atonement fits perfectly in the issue, titled “Doubling Down On A Bad Decision.” S.C.O.F. is still one of the shining lights in the fly fishing media, in spite of my contribution. Slide on over and check it out. It’s still free.


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Scott F Series Fiberglass Fly Rods: Video

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The new Scott F series is fiberglass with a big difference.

The new F Series rids from Scott are striking in every way. Feather light, ultra-deep loading, and fast recovering, these rods are not like any glass rods I’ve cast before. All of the feel and buttery smooth action you expect from fiberglass but with a precision you don’t see coming. It’s the highest teach fiberglass rod I’ve cast.

With most of the push in fiberglass rods focused either on nostalgia or beast building, it’s really nice to see a rod company take on making a glass rods that’s simply the best it can be. these are small stream rods made for super accurate presentations at short distance. The 4 weight is the heaviest in the order.

“When fifteen feet is a long bomb…” Jim tells me.

These rods have a lot more than fifteen feet in them, but they excel at making beautiful loops with little or no line out of the rod. The video is worth watching just for Jim’s thoughts on small stream fishing.


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Fishing Mud Lines For Big Fish

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By: Garner Reid


I split my guiding year in half, targeting trout from fall to spring and the rest of the year pursuing summer run striped bass in my local river systems. River run stripers offer their own unique set of challenges for the angler, and definitely for the guide.
When someone gets in my boat for a day of striper fishing, one of the first things I try to explain is where these fish like to hold. I tell them to start out like they are streamer fishing for a big brown trout. When someone is pursuing a new species of fish, like stripers in a river, finding that common thread is the key to angling success.
Just the other week I had the pleasure of guiding a new client who was quite an accomplished angler. Having caught many fish in all the exotic locations that are on my personal bucket list. As we floated down the river it quickly became evident this guy knew how to fish. He was ripping big streamers accurately into all the nasty stuff that a big fish ought to hold in.
This was producing a few nice schoolie sized stripes but nothing huge. Halfway through our float we approached a small feeder creek quartering in at a 45 degree angle to the left of the boat. Heavy rains the night before had the creek dumping chocolate milk into the river. Typically not what a fly fisherman likes to see.
The muddy creek water was thick like oil, being pushed up against the clean water by the current, which carried a defined wall of muddy water down the left side of the river for hundreds of yards.
I rowed the boat into position perpendicular to the creek mouth and dropped anchor, told the guy to make a big cast across the creek mouth and let his fly sink, followed with an aggressive retrieve. A few strips later

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Fly Fishing Stillwater

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by Gareth Jones


Mention to any flyfisher that you’re heading for Island Park, Idaho and they’ll immediately think you’ll be packing a selection of CDC and biot creations intended to deceive the wonderfully selective leviathans of the Henry’s Fork.

However, my latest visit to see Rene Harrop and the boys at the TroutHunter, was all about fly fishing the incredible Stillwater’s of the region, and more specifically, Henry’s Lake. The plan was to see how fishing UK flies and techniques would work on the great Cutthroat and Hybrids that inhabit the lake. This wasn’t the first time I fished the lake. I’d visited it ten years earlier, and I remembered enjoying some wonderful sport-fishing from a float tube, fishing damsels through the gaps in the summer weeds. Needless to say, I was fairly confident that some of my own fly patterns and techniques would produce on this trip, and I was excited to hit the water.

Being mid-October, It’s always a little risky with the weather, but the fishing gods were in a kind mood and when I arrived at the county boat dock on the eastern side of the lake, I was greeted by a gentle breeze and mild temperatures. This certainly put the fish in the mood to eat.

Starting from the shore, I waded carefully into the water, and immediately saw a fish swim right by me. It was a nice cutthroat trout of about 18 inches, a prime target for settling me into the swing of things. I quickly made a short cast to the fish, then paused for the fly to sink, and like clock work, the cutthroat took my ‘Minkie” streamer on the drop. One cast, one fish–I really couldn’t ask for anything better than that.

With Henry’s being such a shallow lake, a good cast was only putting my flies in about six feet of water. Add to this, the extensive remains of summer weed growth, and my set up needed to have my flies fishing just over the weeds. This would put them right into the path of any cruising trout between them.

I chose to fish a 10’ 7 weight fly rod matched with a 7 weight intermediate fly line for two reasons. First, it gave me the ability to

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Maxine McCormick Interview, August 2018

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Now fourteen years old, Maxine McCormick is headed back to the world fly casting championship.

On the 17th of this month the World Casting Championship will be held in the UK. Maxine who, at age eleven, dominated the trout accuracy competition in the last world championship, will be competing on the USA team in all categories, including spey distance.

I took some time to sit down for an interview with Maxine and her coach, Chris Korich. Have a listen and see what’s on the mind of one of the worlds best fly casters going into the competition.

You can follow the results here.

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