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Showing posts from February, 2016

Rutabaga Paddlesports at the WI Fishing Expo

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This work week has been brutal, but the weekend is finally here.  So what am I doing?  Working in the Rutabaga Paddlesports booth at the WI Fishing Expo.  My Slayer Propel from Native Watercraft is on display and fully rigged up.  Rutabaga also has many other kayaks setup from Jackson, Old Towne, and Wilderness.

Some of the new gear highlights include:
The Yeti 40 HopperNative Watercraft Hawg Trough ScabbardAngler Optimus from Bending BranchesAstral Designs Ronny Fisher PFDThe Jackson Kayak Skipper Youth kayakSwing by the booth this weekend and check out all the latest in fishing specific paddle sports gear.  I'll be on hand to talk Native Watercraft kayaks, answer your kayak fishing and rigging questions, and to share my knowledge of fishing the Madison Chain of Lakes.  Rutabaga and Jackson kayaks are giving away a new Cuda and this Saturday Vibrations Tackle is having a lure coloring contest for the kids in attendance.  It's always a great family friendly event and 2016 doesn&…

Your Life...It's Inspiring.

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Tight Lines.

Southern Wisconsn Kayak Anglers

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For the last year or so some of us in the Madison area have been tossing around the idea of starting a kayak fishing club.  The only issue is none of us wanted to have to join anything.  We were actually looking for a way to get local kayak fishing enthusiasts together on the water.  No pressure, no hype, and none of the normal bulls*#t.  We just want to get together once a week or maybe once a month and chase some fish, drink some beer swap some stories, and connect with other anglers that are just as passionate as we are.
Well we've finally gotten the ball rolling (only took a year) and have a Facebook Community Page setup for people to join so that they can talk boats, post fish pics, and setup times to meet other anglers on the water.  Their is even preliminary talk about a possible 6 week bass league over the summer with prizes for the top finishers and maybe offering a sticker at some point to rock on your kayak.  I can't stress enough the "preliminary" part of …

Wading Lakes

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I've been wading in lakes since I started fishing.  In fact, I did it with such regularity that it never occurred to me that other anglers don't do it.  This is never more apparent than during expo season.  I constantly get asked what is involved with my guided shore fishing trips.  When I tell them that will probably do some wading in the Madison Chain of Lakes the looks I get are priceless.  "You wade in the lake" they ask, "Like people do in the Driftless?"  You can watch the light bulb turn on above their heads.  "Same concept" I tell them, "You can access and cover a lot more fishable water than you can standing on the shoreline.  You can access lakes at a boat ramp or public park, then wade out past the docks and fish almost anywhere so long as your feet are wet.  It opens up tons of water for public fishing and here is a short rambling on how to do it.
My wading career started with a free set of hip waders a buddy gave me.  Then I made …

Noah's Guide to Chasing Winter Walleye

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I openly admit to not being much of a walleye fisherman.  It's not that I have anything against fishing for them, they just don't get me all fired up.  However that doesn't stop people from emailing me with questions about how to catch walleyes through the ice each winter.  Luckily for me I just happen to know a guy that can't get enough of these finicky fish.  His name is Noah Humfeld, and he's a fellow pro-staffer with Vibrations Tackle.  He absolutely lives to catch walleyes, whether it's through the ice, from the shore, or in a tournament, Noah is my go to guy for everything walleye related.  He recently wrote a nice piece for the Fishidy Blog about catching winter walleyes.  You can read the post in its entirety by following the link here.
Tight Lines.

Badger Fly Fishers Spring Opener 2016

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Today I had the opportunity to setup a "booth" at the 2016 Badger Fly Fishers Spring Opener event.  I wanted to use this event as another building block in my master plan for Midwest kayak angling domination, but it was my fly carpin' trip donation that stole the show.  Although my Slayer did its job and got people into the booth, those "trash fish" were the talk of the town.  Lots of people picked my little brain about flies, casting, urban angling techniques, and every other imaginable topic related to what I believe to be the pinnacle of freshwater fly fishing.  I did manage to get a couple of kayak angling trips on the tentative books, but since arriving home tonight I've fielded at least a dozen emails regarding the best times to book a land based carp fishing trip.
I had a wonderful time today and met some amazing people.  I'd like to give a big THANK YOU to the fine members of the Badgers Fly Fishers for putting on this event and allowing me and m…

Saltwater Fly Fishing Basics Seminar at Orvis of Madison

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Earlier this week I had the chance to attend a free fly fishing seminar at Orvis of Madison.  This seminar was billed as an introduction to the basics of saltwater fly fishing.  Specifically it was about the rigging and pursuit of bonefish, permit, and tarpon.  The speaker for this event was Mike Goeser an employee of Orvis and a professional Alaskan fly fishing guide.  Mike is a well traveled angler and has made many trips to the salt.  His approach was refreshing because he explained how to set realistic goals and was honest with his triumphs and his failures.
Mike's seminar was well laid out and covered everything an aspiring saltwater angler would need to know to have success.  He covered basic rigging, casting, and line management.  We were even given advice on the top travel destinations to catch each species of fish.  I learned a lot and would like to thank Mike and the crew at Orvis of Madison for hosting this free event.
     Tight Lines.

MadFlyCasters February 2016 Event Recap

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This weekend I attended the MadFlyCasters event at the Keva Sports Center.  Last year I was able to make it to a few of their events and I had a blast each and every time.  The events exist for one purpose, casting.  They organize these outings to allow us fly anglers in the frozen north the ability to stretch out our arms even though the lakes are currently covered in ice.  They encourage attendees to bring the new gear they got over the winter and if willing, pass it around so others can try it out.  They also contact local fly shops and ask them to bring out models for us to demo.  The folks over at Fontana Sports didn't disappoint this year and brought out a great selection of rods and reels from Sage, and Redington.  They even brought out some of the Salt rods and I finally got the chance to cast a true bonefish setup.  It was a fly flinging beast!  I will never again make the mistake of comparing carp gear to bonefish gear.  I can now honestly say that they are totally diffe…

Walking Between 2 Worlds

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In many ways I consider myself lucky to have not spent a lifetime fishing.  Since I came to fishing later in life I'm not bogged down by the dogma associated with different forms of angling.  I don't believe that there is any advantage to being a one trick pony when it comes to pursuing my favorite species of fish.  In fact I often feel sorry for the people that I meet at expos that says things like, "No I don't fish with chicken feathers" or, "There is no art in chucking wood and treble hooks at fish."  I believe that how an angler chooses to fish is irrelevant.  The fact that anybody would judge how another person goes about catching fish is just ridiculous in my book.
It's been my experience in life that most people are looking for an identity.  A group that they can belong to.  I forget sometimes that some people only fly fish.  They even talk down about those who fish any other way.  That somehow the other person is less of an "angler."…

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