Mandatory Reading: A Passion for Permit

The first thing to behold when clutching this new two-volume set called A Passion for Permit is the sheer volume of work: combined, these two oversize and hard-bound books, which weigh about five thousand pounds each, total 1,665 pages.

In reality, their combined weight is nine pounds, which, if bundled effectively and pitched accurately enough, could still take that leaned-back, arm-swinging swagger Continue reading

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Selkirk Caribou On The Brink Of Extinction

This is a true bummer, a unique species trying to make a go of it and getting no love in return. I mean, come on . . . caribou in Idaho and Montana? That’s worth saving. If we can’t save these animals what does that say about us? GT

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First Mountain Bike Ride

It’s early for mountain biking, but I still should have started in on road work a month or more ago. I took the bike out for a first of the year spin and my legs were barking before I got more than a mile from home

I pushed through, made it off the pavement and paths, and started up one of my favorite (albeit brutal) climbs. And how far did I get? About 200 yards. That’s when I hit the ice. And the next corner was worse. A week or two away, I declared.
Today, maybe it’s another trail, this one hopefully
ice-free. Just letting you know that around Continue reading

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Never Be Without Drinking Water: Katadyn’s BeFree Filter

Katadyn BeFree Water Filter 0.6 Liter

On two occasions, one being a backcountry day-hike for wilderness cutthroats and the other being a unique situation on Continue reading

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Review: Cabela’s Guidewear 1/2 Finger Gloves with Coolcore

I got a couple pair of Cabela’s Guidewear 1/2 finger gloves over a year ago and spent all last summer and fall in them. Why? Because owning nasty sun-scorched hands when you hit your 50s and 60s isn’t what I’m looking for. And, because I’m starting to really feel that all that sunblock and mosquito dope we’ve been putting on our bodies for all these years isn’t really that good for us. I blame my recent firing on DEET going straight to my brain.

So these gloves. They are super lightweight, highly durable and they actually do keep your hands cool in the sun, especially if you occasionally dunk them in the water, preferably when releasing a fish. Again, these gloves are built to combat the sun, but I also wear Continue reading

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Just Say No—to Labradors . . . for now

I went to the Great Rockies Sport Show in Missoula a few weeks ago and I didn’t stand a chance—both of my daughters were in tow and the show allowed a vender to sell Labrador puppies right next to the front door. You couldn’t get into the show without seeing those dogs and that at least double the time it took me to get in and out of there. Truth told, I bet we spent 40 minutes with those dogs before we made it through the doors and onto the show floor.

It was the same story on the way out. Both of the girls begged and pleaded and promised to clean up everything from here on until the day they die, Continue reading

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Fly Rod & Reel: End of a Magazine Era

I headed Fly Rod & Reel magazine for about seven years, until 12 days ago when I got the dreaded, but somewhat expected, death sentence. That sentence arrived with a phone call from the owner of Down East Publications who said that I was being terminated immediately, not because he or the board of directors was unhappy with my work or the quality of the publication, but because they didn’t consider the fly-fishing industry’s support of the magazine to be sufficient. I Continue reading

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Thomas Speaks Tonight In Missoula

Travels & Travails in the Pacific Northwest with Greg Thomas

Greg Thomas, editor of Fly Rod & Reel and fellow Missoulian, has fished more days and more places than should be legal. Greg’s presentation will focus on many of the characters he’s met along the rivers chasing rainbows, browns, bull trout, cutthroat, salmon and, of course, steelhead. Expect great photos and Continue reading

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More Sea-Run Cutthroat

One of the Pacific Northwest’s best fish is the sea-run cutthroat, which can be caught in the saltwater and in freshwater streams and rivers. As you probably already know, this is one of my favorite fishes. They are aggressive and live in a world where they are surrounded by predators. Somehow they survive, meaning they are fighters. Continue reading

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Found: Cool Fish Stamps

Found these at my feet in a driveway recently. I think they fell out of a box I was carrying. I’ve been moving quite a bit of “stuff” from my folks house and these must have been mixed in with the lot. I don’t know when they were printed or if they even have any value, but I do think they are pretty cool. Catfish and Atlantic cod? Those don’t really rip at my core. But bluefin Continue reading

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