Showing posts from 2015

My Favorite Native Watercraft Accessories Part 2

Gadgets and accessories are a big part of the angling experience.  We all love them and happily hand over our money in exchange for an item that promises to improve our time on the water.  Kayak fishing is no different, so here is a couple more Native Watercraft accessories that I can't live without on the water.
First up is the Cam-Lok Double Paddle Rest.  This handy little device holds your paddle when on the water.  It mounts to your kayaks groove track system and allows you to securely rest your paddle across your lap.  Just set the paddle down in the soft rubber cam strap and you're fishing hands free.  Need to paddle again?  Just lift the paddle and the Cam-Lok Double Paddle Rest will release and your back in motion.  No more fumbling around trying to cast while balancing your paddle at the same time.  This little tool makes fishing from a kayak a breeze and since it's made of rubber it won't scratch or mar your carbon fiber paddle shaft.  As a sweet bonus, it fit…

Merry Christmas!!!

Been crazy busy tying flies, booking booths at Expos, and fielding emails lately.  Hopefully next season is just as busy as this has one has been.  Hoping to get out for a few more days next week to close out the musky season here in Wisconsin.  Right now I'm enjoying the holidays with my family and am hoping all of you are able to do the same.  So as the title implies, Merry Christmas!!!  I'll see you out on the water, or ice, should we ever get any.
Tight Lines.

A New Jersey for a New Season

This year I ordered my tournament jersey with a change of mindset.  In the past I have always ordered my jersey with the goal of using it to get others attention.  I wear my jersey for guiding, speaking engagements, fishing expos, and at various tournaments around the Midwest.  The design and layout of my jersey has always been to attract others with big logos and bright colors.  I wanted to make sure that everybody that saw it knew exactly what Shorebound Hero was, so naturally that logo was the primary focus.  As I've gotten more comfortable in my own skin over the last year or so I noticed that those jerseys didn't really fit what I was trying to accomplish as an angler.  I'm not a professional bass angler, I'm a kayak angler and fishing guide.  So this year I've laid out my tournament jersey very differently than in the past.
One of the first things you'll notice is that the color pattern isn't the standard bold and bright "look at me" patterns…

2016 Upcoming Expos and Events

Expo season is coming fast and I'll be out and about supporting my sponsors, sharing the blog, and preparing for the 2016 guide and tournament season.  I've gotten a few emails asking what events I will be attending, so here is a short list of the places I am certain I will be traveling to.  Some are speaking engagements, some are for advertising, and all of them seem like they'll be a lot of fun.
First up after the new year is the SWTU Icebreaker on January 16th.  This is their 33rd annual event and promises to be a great time with local anglers.  I will be in attendance for the event and am donating an 8 weight fly rod and reel combo as well as a collection of carp flies that are proven producers in the Madison area.  As an added bonus a 4 hour guided fly fishing trip will also be auctioned off.  This will be a you CHOOSE trip, so you can pick what we pursue and how we do it if you're the winning bidder.  We can shorefish, wade, kayak, canoe, whatever you want.  You g…

First Ice Perch Fishing Primer

As fall turns to winter here in southern Wisconsin my focus slowly shifts towards the upcoming ice fishing season.  I start to dream of large wandering expanses of frozen water and of the giant schools of panfish that exist beneath them.  When first ice arrives I watch as photos start showing up on social media sites.  Monster pike, slab size crappies, and huge walleyes start to fill the screens of my mobile devices.  However the real early ice fishing prize for myself and a select few anglers is the yellow perch.  In this post I will go over some of the basic information you'll need in order to track down and catch this little gem in our Midwest lakes.
Some of you maybe thinking, "Aren't perch more of a late ice species?"  The answer to that question is a resounding YES!  Perch schools are much easier to find and catch in deep water during stable weather patterns under 2 feet of ice.  However if you know where to look, you can find perch, specifically big perch durin…

When Things Don't Go Right 2015

Last year I did a quick look back at the times when things didn't work out right while on the water.  It got a lot response and I've decided to keep this going as an annual post.  I've picked my favorite pictures from the 2015 season.  Because we can all relate to the times when things just don't go right. 

I Actually Only Want to Catch Fish

I know it sounds bad, but somebody had to say it eventually.  I am not one of those, "I love the experience" type of anglers.  I don't relish the calm and tranquility of the outdoors.  I don't enjoy driving hours to chase fish, only to come home empty handed.  I want results!!!  Lots of results, in the form of selfies, selfies with large fish.  I can't think of anything worse than coming home with my tail between my legs after planning a fishing trip.  I realize that this isn't the popular thing to say...but hear me out.

"There is a fine line between fishing and just standing on the shore like an idiot." -Steven Wright

Every angler I know actually wants to catch to fish.  Don't believe me?  What's the first thing you get asked by other anglers on the water?  "Having any luck?"  Maybe, "Seen anything today?"  Why do we ask?  Because we want to catch fish!  Of course we would never admit that to other people.  If we get skunk…

Orvis Mirage Reel Review

I've learned over time that quality gear can really make a difference in your fishing.  It used to be that I bought whatever was cheapest and might be able to get the job done.  Once I wandered into the world of musky fishing I quickly found that cheap usually meant lost fish.  When I started fly fishing last season I decided that I wouldn't allow history to repeat itself.  I bought what I thought was a good middle of the line reel and soon found that when pursuing larger fish the drag just couldn't keep up.  That's when I noticed the gold reels in the videos I watched on YouTube.  The same reel kept showing up in video after video.  All of these videos had one thing in common, big fish.  I just had to own that gold fly reel.
It didn't take me long to figure out what the reel was called.  What did take me a while was raising the funds to purchase it.  I must admit that I had a little bit of sticker shock when I first saw the price of the Mirage reel.  At $515.00 for…

SBH Egg Sucking Leech

I openly admit that I don't enjoy tying flies, but lately I've spent a lot of time fishing different patterns for various Salmonids on the Great Lakes.  I've been using time tested and proven Egg Sucking Leech patterns that I've purchased from Orvis of Madison and have had some success.  However, I have also found a few things that I would like the fly to do differently.
The first issue I had was with the weight of the patterns.  I really need my flies to sink faster.  Using Tenkara rods (fixed line) doesn't allow me to fire off a long cast and let the fly slowly sink down to the strike zone.  I need the flies to drop like a subtle rock through the water column.  I've also had issues with the bead color and size on many of the patterns.  My past experiences fishing with spawn sacks along the harbor walls and through the ice have proven that smaller eggs seem to get picked up more readily.  So in my mind the large beads on many patterns just didn't make sense…

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