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  • May 31, 2011

    Simms Contest: Week 5 Winner & Finalist Recap

    By Joe Cermele

    We thought the final topic, "underwater photography," in the ongoing Simms photo contest would be the most challenging, but there were more good views below the surface submitted than expected. Any clear underwater photo is a thing of beauty in our minds considering that they're not always easy to capture, but none quite made the crew at Simms gasp like the shot below from Adam Barbour. “The colors are what stood out the most. The fish is clear and the reflections of the fish make it really pop”, says Nick English, member of the Simms Marketing Team. Congratulations Adam, you've just scored a new pair of Simms Pursuit GORE-TEX shoes. Plus, you squeaked in as the final photographer in the grand-prize running for a pair of Simms G3 Guide waders and your photo displayed on

  • May 26, 2011

    Vintage Tackle Contest: U.S. Lite-Ray Fishing Survival Kit

    By Joe Cermele

    The photo below entered into our ongoing vintage tackle contest by Jim McKee is definitely one of the more unique pieces of old gear we've seen so far. What makes this particular item so cool is its military ties. Jim wrote: 

    I found this item in the bottom of my father’s tackle box....I suspect that this is the civilian version of an item that was placed in survival kits for pilots in the Pacific theatre during WWII .I just finished reading " Unbroken", a novel about a WWII aviator who survived 50 + days in a life raft and years in a Japanese prison camp. The author mentioned that the U.S. Army Air Corps and the U.S Navy began including more items in their life raft survival kits and this looks like a suitable tool for catching fish.

  • May 25, 2011

    Hey Fly Guys, They're Finally Making Powerbait Nymphs

    By Joe Cermele

    The other day a box arrived in my office from Berkley, and I knew right away it was their annual sample of some of the new items they'll release at the ICAST trade show this summer. Opening this box is always exciting, as Berkley comes up with some wild stuff. But of all the cool new baits in the package, none gave me pause quite like the Atomic Mite. I studied it, removed one from the bag to truly understand what a 1/80-oz. jighead feels like in your hand, and thought, my word...Berkley is making nymphs.

  • May 24, 2011

    A Fish Photo I'm Most Proud to Have Taken

    By Joe Cermele

    I was 22 years old when I caught my first striper over 40 pounds. I knew I was into the biggest bass I'd ever hooked, but when it finally came up to the surface, its massive tail sweeping, my heart never beat so fast. In fact, seeing that I'm a Northeast native and stripers are my favorite local target, I can honestly say my heart never beat as fast for any other fish since. This past Saturday, I sort of got to relive that when 9-year-old Alex Dorris, the son of my good friend Darren, landed his first 40-pounder on my boat.

  • May 23, 2011

    Simms Contest: Week 4 Winner & Final Photo Topic

    By Joe Cermele

    Last week we asked for photos of kids fishing in our ongoing Simms photo contest and plenty hit the inbox. Though any photo of a kid on the water is a winner in our book, for contest purposes a favorite had to be chosen, and that favorite is the photo below, shot by Tiffany Beckman. "This photo has everything," says Rich Hohne, one of the judges at Simms. "It's a nice sunny day, it shows camaraderie on the water and there's a pink fishing rod!"  Congrats to Tiffany for winning a new pair of Simms Pursuit GORE-TEX shoes . You are also now in the grand-prize running for a pair of Simms G3 Guide waders and your photo displayed on

  • May 23, 2011

    Deciphering a Bar Decoration From a Stop on the Road

    By John Merwin

    While traveling in the Florida Keys last week and not catching tarpon*, I encountered the signs shown in the photo. They were in a bar (where else?) at a waterfront joint called Wahoo’s where my wife and I stopped for lunch.

    “Ah-ha!” I said to myself at the time. “I can blog about those.” Which is just as well because I had no fish that I might have blogged about otherwise. For example, if you have to “Drink til she’s cute,” as the sign proclaims, I think you have a big problem that drinking won’t solve. And for those of equal-opportunity mindsets, you could also “Drink til he’s cute,” which won’t solve your problem either.

    Then there’s the beer thing. I get the dancing part. There was a time when ample beer consumption helped me on the dance floor, too. But what about 1843?

    As far as I can tell, bottled beer has been around since at least the 16th century in Europe. I have been unable to find the significance of the year 1843 in brewing history. So maybe you can help. Anybody got an answer?

  • May 20, 2011

    Quit Your Job. Grab a Rod. Hit the Road

    By Joe Cermele

    That's one of my best friends since high school, Mark Wizeman, casting on a Smoky Mountain creek in NC last week. You might remember him from the "Montana Experiment" and "Alaska Experiment" articles in the magazine, as he joined me on both assignments. He was also the model holding a big brown trout in the dark on the cover of our June 2010 issue. Anyway, Mark emailed me this shot, along with an update on an adventure we all dream about, but few really make happen. Mark and his girlfriend, Leslie, decided to put their two very good jobs on hold, fill the car with camping gear, and see the U.S.A. over the next 4 months.

  • May 19, 2011

    Vintage Tackle Contest: Actual Lure's Skip Dip Spin-Ster

    By Joe Cermele

    Check out the photo at left, which was recently submitted into our ongoing vintage tackle contest by Timothy Owen. It might be hard to believe, but I guess you could say this is a super-early predecessor of lures with incredibly realistic finishes, such as those made by Live Target and Yo-Zuri today. I know, it doesn't look like much, so I'll let vintage tackle expert Dr. Todd Larson of The Whitefish Press and "Fishing For History" blog explain exactly what Mr. Owen found in an old tackle box he picked up at a flea market:

    "What's more real than an actual minnow? How about one dipped in plastic. Preserved baits had already been around for over 50 years when on August 15, 1939, Englishman F.J. Nevison patented a method for "preserving fish, frogs, etc." in cellulose, an early plastic.

  • May 18, 2011

    Hey Kid, Nice Muskie. Don't Worry, I'm Not Jealous

    By Joe Cermele

    I've written before in this blog that ladies and kids always catch the biggest fish. This includes muskies. Field & Stream editors that travel the country looking for muskies do not catch muskies. See video for further point illustration.

  • May 17, 2011

    Waiting For Tarpon to Not Eat my Fly

    By John Merwin

    Mostly there was lots of waiting. Strip enough line off the fly reel for a long cast. Then hold the line, leader, rod, reel and fly in hand so as to be ready if something happens. Then stand in the bow of the flats skiff and wait. Then wait some more.

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