You’ve landed here for a reason. You love to fish and you like all that comes along with that affliction — road trips and tunes; drinks at dive bars; 20-ounce ribeyes at places called The Oasis or The Western; small town shenanigans; waves and weather, sometimes in less than desirable proportions; and all else that makes fishing such an adventuresome life.
Welcome to the redesign of Angler’s Tonic where, like always, you take a seat in the bow and we pull the oars. So let’s shove off. Need anything from the cooler?
It’s not over, but the edge in Alaska’s Pebble Mine controversy has definitely swung toward the side of common sense. Today, the Trump administration shifted its stance on Pebble Mine and delayed a key permit that’s essential to the mine’s future.
The Corps of Engineers, which last month said the mine would have no “measurable effect” on Bristol Bay’s fish runs and that the agency would issue a permit for the mine, now says the Pebble Mine project will not be allowed as currently proposed, as it would be in violation of the Clean Water Act.
To build the mine, Pebble Limited Partnership would have to demonstrate Continue reading →
I haven’t fished the Boundary Waters. Had a chance to last year and opted out. I’ll regret that for a long time, for sure. Like, the rest of my life. Being a fan of adventure, often solo, and the need to be in truly
I’d rather fish than defend fisheries, although the two go hand-in-hand and you can’t have one without the other. That becomes more evident each day. One of the greatest issues in fishing is the proposed Pebble Mine in Alaska. This damn thing has dragged on for many years and, like you, I’m pretty tired of reaching out to organizations and representatives to try and get the mine permit denied.
One of the most troubling elements of this ordeal was the recent decision by the Army Corps of Engineers to recommend that a Canadian Corporation with a sketchy track record get a permit to start building Pebble Mine. It’s pure idiocy and politics but the bottom line is there is no sense to the proposal nor building a mine and all its infrastructure at the headwaters of Bristol Bay, which serves as the world’s greatest source of high-protein salmon and provides livelihoods and cultural heritage for thousands of people.
Now that the Corps has rubber-stamped the proposal, the EPA will take a look at it and they hold power to veto that endorsement. So, here is yet another link to go ahead and let your representatives and the EPA know that you oppose the mine as a senseless, shameful proposal. This is the final hours and this action is important. Please, take minute if you would, today if possible, and digitally sign this letter and join forces with all businesses that rely on Bristol Bay’s abundant salmon runs. If you love Alaskas, you love wild places, you love people who value fish and make honest livings protecting them, join their voices here.
Don’t wait for that invincibility to wear off. Don’t wait for your health to go. Don’t think for a second that everything is going to be all right. At times it won’t be alright. You know now, more than ever, circumstances shift on a dime, and sometimes not in our best interests.
So, if you’re in your teens or twenties, and you’ve got that health, and you love fly fishing more than anything else, brush away those annoying possessions, say your goodbyes, and wipe the slate clean. Then pack up a couple bags, bid adios to your “safe place” (no matter where that might be), and head to tropical waters, or muddy rivers, or brackish lagoons . . . just head anywhere tarpon are found. Sleep in your car if you have to. Pitch a tent in the sand or mud. Eat beans and rice until you’ve got a better routine. Just get there, somehow, and find out what fly fishing can be. Continue reading →
Been laying on my back today for all the wrong reasons. Surgery Monday, pain Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Better today, but I’m bored to hell. I don’t sit well and sitting on my ass is all I’ve done for three days.
Doesn’t help that archery antelope opens tomorrow without me. Oh, I know. Don’t give me any shit, I know. Could be much worse. I get it. But let me moan for just a second, ok. Been laying there glancing at the Drake, and wondering, Are any of the fly-fishing mags worth Continue reading →
I don’t discount the ingenuity and value of sleeping bags with integrated pads, but it’s also nice to have some insulation below your body and the Yock 0 traditional mummy bag provides that. This down bag utilizes high value DownTek insulation and should keep you warm even if you run into the unexpected summer snow Continue reading →
If you haven’t been up in the high country, or far back on a trout stream this summer, you’re running out of time. Realize, some of the best fishing experiences aren’t found while riding down one of the major rivers in the bow of a drift boat. Instead, there are nearly untouched waters and good size trout Continue reading →
Got the new pup in February, right before the virus hit, which means I had good timing. Can’t go anywhere? What better than to hike with a new dog?
Of course, getting a new dog meant getting all the accoutrements one requires. Dog kennel. Leather dog collar. Seat hammock. Memory foam bed. Yea, Rye is spoiled. So spoiled that I actually got him some of fishpond’s solidly built leather travel bowls, which are collapsable for easy storage. One is a food bowl and the other a water bowl. I have Continue reading →
A friends arsenal, always strung in the back of the camper, ready to hit the river and throw. Yes, he’s got issues.
Hatch Gen 2 Finatic Fly Reel
I grew up in an artist’s family, so when we spent on outdoor equipment it was all about the essentials and price point.
I rarely got what I wanted, but I did get the items I needed, meaning the clothing and gear to accomplish a goal, and survive.
This mindset transferred to my tackle as well. When I took up fly fishing in high school, I couldn’t afford the best equipment. So, I rifled through our sporting gear and kept my eyes open at garage sales. Somewhere I attained a Pfleuger Medalist reel and a 444 Cortland fly line, which I placed on a 9’ 6-weight Sage RPL fly rod. And how could I afford what was, at the time, one of the most expensive rods on earth? The answer: I Continue reading →
I was going to wait, and run this post later in July, but I’m starting to hear of some steelhead coming up for skaters on a few Columbia River tributaries and figured, Why not now? Here goes:
A lot of western steelheaders put their flyrods down during the heat of the day, especially in August and early September, choosing instead to pilfer the beer supply and follow their gluttony with a midday nap.
This follows the adage that summer steelhead won’t bite when bright sun is on the water and that the best times to get them are during mornings and evenings, when shadows cover portions of the water. That is only half true, and also throws sand in the face of a classic angling truth: You can’t catch fish if you Continue reading →