Category Archives: Industry

Another One Bites the Dust.

 

To all our loyal fans: The editors of Fly Fishing in Salt Waters are charting a new course and on January 15th, this Facebook page will be closed. 

We invite you to “like” our new home at Salt Water Sportsman, where we’ll continue to share our top tips for stalking your favorite species, the best gear and the hottest salt water fly fishing locations available anywhere.

 

I had high hopes for this publication. Great photography, a very informative and interesting article on striped bass fishing, a great article on playing tides, and I was only two issues in. 
I found this magazine on a shelf at a local grocery store, which was a surprise, because fly fishing magazines of any type are endangered species in my piece of the shore. I purchased one issue, then two, then subscribed. I had yet to see my next issue in the mail when this message came across my Facebook feed today. The title change foreshadows the future – I can almost smell the gaffed 700lb Tuna and other deep sea charter stories already. 

There are still some great publications. The inimitable Drake continues to lead the pack, and regional publications follow. Print is in trouble as it is, niche print more so. It’s hard to tell what the future holds for writers, photographers, publishers and employees of all those folks in the world of fly fishing. The only thing I know for sure is that the field is getting narrower. Perhaps this means that the writing at the few remaining publications will benefit, as the best work is filtered through the few remaining vehicles. One can only hope the remaining publications are able to hang on. 

On some days, our game seems to be getting bigger. Entry level, cheaper rods and equipment, more books being written, increased online media, blogs, etc. And yet, on other days, small manufacturers are eaten up by the big dogs, another fly shop closes, another magazine bites the dust.

In the state of Delaware there is exactly one fly shop, and about 20 miles from their front door, a big-box Cabelas is set to open in the spring. It’s getting hard to tell what’s good and what’s bad for the sport. One less publication in promotion of fly fishing, however, can never be a good thing. One less fly shop would be equally as damaging. Mine would then be a state without a “real” fly shop. As someone who would love to work in the fly fishing industry, I’m given every indication that I’d be crazy to attempt to fill that void, despite being surrounded by bays, marshes, rivers, lakes, ponds and ocean. There are no customers here, and I can’t afford to make them. For that you need fly fishing magazines, media, fly shops, …..and the cycle continues. 

 

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Blue River Fly Company Closeout Sale.

Sad news from the good folks at Blue River.  As of December 31st, they will be closing their doors for good.

As such, if you head over there now, you can scoop up some gear at 40% off of sticker price. They have a bunch of good flies, fly boxes, and other gear. If that weren’t enough, 10% of closeout purchased will be donated to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation.

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Filed under Gear, Industry

In Print.

While I’m a daily reader, I don’t get my hands on too many fly fishing magazines. For one, all too frequently the stories between the covers relate to fishing in wild and foreign destinations that, for now, remain slightly out of reach. I devour the local publications that cater to the water I fish, but the glossy covered mags are often take me half way around the globe. While these stories are interesting, it appears that many of the magazines are in the same places at the same time. Most recently, for example, everyone seems to be fishing in Cuba, and writing about it.

That said, I’ve read some good stuff recently, and happy to see some local love.

Camera 360

Eastern Fly Fishing always has some good information and great photography and writing, and since it;s a regional publication, I pick Camera 360it up every chance I get. In this particular issue, fly fishing writer Beau Beasley came to my neck of the woods and fished the same beaches as I do, with Terry Peach, owner of A Marblehead Flyfisher in northern Delaware. It was great seeing familiar locations and fisherman in glossy photographs. Now I know what it’s like to live in Montana. (Not really.)

 

 

 

 

Camera 360

Sticking with the somewhat local scene, Fly Rod & Reel Magazine has a great article on fishing the Delaware River with dry flies. It’s not so much a how-to as it is a memoir, or a travelogue, but like all good fly fishing writing, there is fishing knowledge to be found in the words. Rod & Reel always has some of the best outdoor photography. Also in this edition, an excellent article on the problem of man-made global warming.  Many publications are hiding from this issue. It’s bad for business, and there seems to be an opinion that many readers will find it a political issue, and one they disagree with. Ted Williams does a great job of presenting a fair overview of the problem, backs it up with data and statistics, and explains why this is a problem for those of us that love fishing and the outdoors. A worthy read on an important issue from a good source.

Camera 360

My Dad recently visited our native England, and came back with a fly fishing magazine he’d seen on a newsstand shelf. I was interested to compare this publication to it’s American counterparts, because when I was last in England, I visited several tackle shops, and all of them appeared to suggest that England had one fish, and one fish only. Carp. The shelves of the stores were loaded with boilies and carp rod holders and all the gear associated with chasing golden ghosts. Even though I went trout fishing in England myself, and knew that trout were available and commonly fished for, I saw no evidence of it in tackle shops, and fly shops were nonexistent. But, in the pages of Total Flyfisher, trout is the main event. There is truly not a great deal of difference. The fly anglers int he pages could be the same guys you see in American publications, and while the names of the companies are different, the same gadgets and gizmos are up for sale between articles. One significant difference I noticed was an article on the possibility and viability of using float tubes to catch fish, a practice employed often by stateside fly anglers for years.

Camera 360

 

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Filed under England, Foreign Fish, Industry, Writers

*Not a Fly Shop.

When I discovered that Gander Mountain’s Salisbury, MD store had a “Complete Fly Fishing Shop”, I got excited. The nearest fly shop to me is just shy of two hours away, and while I’d always prefer the local guy over a big box store, the prospect of a convenient location to pick up some flies, replace some gear in a pinch or check out some goodies in-person instead of in pictures was welcome. I pictured something like a Bass Pro setup – A small section of the store lined with fly rods, lines and reels, all kinds of flies, hooks, tying materials and whatever accessories we just can’t live without this year, despite the sport surviving centuries without them. What I found, however, was, ….well, hilarious.

Yes, just beyond the Snow White, Mickey Mouse and Sponge Bob fishing outfits lies the “Complete Fly Fishing Shop”. I can accurately account for it’s inventory – Three Scientific Anglers starter kits, leader material, backing, some packaged flies, Gink, three identical floating lines and some line clippers and forceps.

To be fair, the beginner can go here and be outfitted for their local urban waters. You can buy an 8 weight and some poppers and go fish for bass. But ….a “Complete Fly Fishing Shop”? Hardly! Half of a small shop aisle does not a fly shop make.

Does this qualify as false advertising?

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Filed under Gear, Industry

Popular Guy.

I’m rustling through a stack of magazines in the fishing section of a big box store. A magazine I’m unfamiliar with called FlyFusion grabs my attention. Where have I seen that image before? I immediately suspect I saw it in the pages of an Orvis catalog – the distinctive red shirt, beard and longer hair of a two-handed angler who appears to ripping line off of the surface of the water.

Returning home, I realize I’m only partially right. I did see it before with Orvis, but it was not inside. It was a cover….

 

 

Who is this bearded angler, and how did he get so damn popular?

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Filed under Industry, Nonsense, Photography

Sad News in the Fly Fishing Community

Jose Wejebe, aviator, fisherman and television host died yesterday when his Comp Air 8 airplane crashed shortly after takeoff in Florida. He was a father of one.

Jose’s show, Spanish Fly, played a roll in my becoming a fly fisherman. Long before I had even seen a fly rod, but had a budding interest in the sport, I was trying to soak up all the books, movies and TV shows on the subject that I could. It’s no secret that I find most Sunday morning fishing shows to be a combination of ridiculous, boring and even kind of revolting. Watching the same silly, overweight guy dressed in his sponsor-laden shirt that makes him look like a NASCAR driver plunking lures to the same fish in the same ponds and releasing them by throwing them over his shoulder, all in-between long winded ads for something like a boat engine lubricant? Not my cup of tea. But Jose’s Spanish Fly and the Pirates of the Flats series were different. There was a lot of fishing, a lot of seemingly natural conversation and they simply pointed the camera at the action and let it roll. Jose’s show was notable, and personally influential, because he traveled far and wide, catching a host of different fish and giving tips and advice. Jose himself was very likable on screen – the complete opposite of his contemporaries – always charming and quick with a smile or a joke, but always very relaxed and enjoying the moment. He clearly loved fishing. And with his help, and the help of others like him, I love it now, too. He’ll be missed.

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Filed under Fisherman, Industry, TV

Bloodknot

The good folks over at Bloodknot magazine have just released their annual Blogger issue, and  you can find a snippet of this very blog on it’s pages.  You can read the issue here. 

 

I’ve also been asked aboard as a contributing writer for Bloodknot, which I  accepted, so you can expect to see me there in the near future.

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