Techniques

Stone Cold: How to Fish Winter's Big-Bug Hatch

For many fly anglers, winter is a time to tie flies, watch fishing videos, and prep gear while they wait for spring to arrive. They sit curled up on the couch and look gloomily out the window like a dog waiting for their owner to come home while the seemingly endless white cold of winter scratches and claws at the walls trying to get in. Even when they...

Micro-Managing: How to Fish a Winter Midge Hatch

Good things really do come in small packages. Whether we’re talking about microbrews, angry chihuahuas, or even that little dude from Game of Thrones, it’s been proven time and time again that things don’t actually have to be big to make a big impression. This is especially true in the world of fly fishing where some anglers can become completely...

Down and Dirty: Deep Water Nymphing for Winter Trout

Cold weather sends trout into hiding. Like rabbits scurrying into thick cover when a hawk passes overhead, trout will flee before a sweeping a cold front and head into the deepest darkest water they can find. During these times, the fish become extremely sluggish, hugging the bottom and only feeding on prey that drifts right by their noses. Most trout...

Late Fall Steelhead Tactics

Late fall brings with it a tidal wave of activity. The upcoming holidays sends people out in a mad rush of shopping, decorating, and preparing food. The kids are out of school, the relatives are on their way, and if you aren’t careful, you can be swept away in in a hurried frenzy of unbridled chaos. Yet if you’re a fly angler, there is another autumn...

How to Become an Expert Saltwater Fly Angler

Getting out on the water frequently to gain experience is fundamental, but there are other things you must do to improve your overall saltwater skills. Here are the most likely to shorten your learning curve and turn you into a complete and accomplished saltwater fly angler. Find a Mentor Whether you are a newbie or seasoned, salty fly rodder, you can...

Bahamas Winter Bonefish: Prime Time for Monster Bones

Have you experienced bonefishing at its finest? No, not plucking two- to four-pounders nonstop from massive schools you can spot from a mile away. I mean stalking hogs—cruise missiles of eight, 10 pounds or better, the sort that usually travels alone or accompanied by an equally gargantuan sidekick. If your answer is "no,"then you probably haven’t yet...

How to Choose the Right Streamer

There’s no such thing as one tool for the job. Even the most basic toolbox will have a hammer, a couple of screwdrivers, wrenches, and a decent set of pliers. The idea of trying to frame a house with just a hammer or rebuild a carburetor with just a screwdriver seems ludicrous to most people. Yet so many of these same folks will go out and chase trout...

Fly Fishing the Sailfish Capital of the World

The aerial ballet performed by a group of spinner dolphins had us all mesmerized when a warning from the bridge alerted everyone to assume battle stations. “Left rigger, left rigger!” shouted Capt. Chico Alvarenga. From his vantage point, he was the first to spot the shadow lurking behind the bait. An instant later, the dorsal of a big Pacific sailfish...

Early Autumn Trout Tactics

As the first cold nights of autumn leave their first frosty kisses on the grass and leaves begin to change from green to fluorescent oranges, reds, and yellows, we trout anglers begin to get excited. Cooling water temperatures bring new life to the river. Trout become more active as they feed heavily preparing for winter or, depending on the species, as...

Stealthy Tactics for Skittish Saltwater Fish

It was a May Saturday morning in Big Pine Key, and tarpon were our intended target. As anyone who has chased silver kings in the Florida Keys during peak season would imagine, we were not alone. Five other skiffs were keeping us company on the same oceanside flat hoping for a score. And the start of the daily jet ski hatch, which inevitably happens shortly...