April 1, 2015

Amazon Dash - Oh, The Possibilities!

So yesterday, Amazon.com unleashed a new concept in shopping for "consumable" items onto the e-tailing landscape.  Dubbed "Amazon Dash," it's a physical button you place pretty much wherever, that allows you to instantly re-order things like laundry detergent, diapers, coffee, trash bags, and razor blades with a simple click. Crazy...lazy..probably both.


The fact that it was announced the day before April Fools', makes many think it's a joke. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't, I guess we'll find out today.

Anyway, where there's smoke, there's fire, and how awesome of a service would this potentially be for fishermen? I mean think of all of the items you either run out of, lose, or simply forget to bring with you. Pair a "dash" button with Amazon's drone copter air force, and you could have immediate, on the river delivery of pretty much anything...

Fear not, Troutrageous! Dash will have you covered!

"Those trout wont take with a 5x tippet today...I think I need 7x..."


"Crap, lost another one of my nymphs on a rock dragging bottom..."


"Uhh...ummm...hey TJ, I need a new rod tip..."


And most importantly...

"That friggin' YETI is a pain in the ass to drag around everywhere, BEER ME!"


Seriously, note to Perk Perkins...I'm spoon feeding you genius here. Incremental revenue streams galore. I hope you're taking notice before Jeff Bezos does, trout season is upon us.

March 30, 2015

Dink Bass - Tenkara Edition

In lieu of a good post, check out this video of a little dink bass I caught yesterday.
Still trying to get a feel of where to position the GoPro when I'm wearing it...

One of these days I'll actually make a worthwhile edit. Or not.

Oh, and I guess while you're just clicking on random things, check out Fishlicker tees on Teespring... because who doesn't need a new fishing tee? I'm partial to this one, although there are a few others that are pretty sweet too...


March 23, 2015

Who Says You Can't Go Home Again?

...must have been the Valley Creek trout.

When presented with the need to be in Philadelphia for a few business meetings, I jumped at the chance to head up and get back on my "home" trout water, Valley Creek.


From 2009 to 2013, I probably fished Valley Creek at least every other weekend.  It was a 15 minute drive from my front door. It was where I caught my first trout on the fly. It was where I first fished tenkara. It was also a place that I knew like the back of my hand, and wasn't afraid to show others where to find the fish.

Ever since I moved to Florida, Valley hasn't been to kind to me during my sporadic returns. I had an underwhelming outing a year and a half ago...and this time...well, I went 0 for 2 again. 

Saturday just wasn't a good day. While it was tropical by Philadelphia standards (low 50s), it was the day after an early-Spring snowfall. The banks were a slurry of melting snow and mud, the sun refused to come out for the majority of the day, and it was just downright dreary. The scenery wasn't bad though.


I saw a few fish, honestly not many, but they just weren't active. They were all holding low in deep pools, not moving a muscle to any of my offerings. I even broke out some of the "break glass in emergency" nymphs, but they just weren't budging. I suppose it's somewhat symptomatic of this time of year, as looking back at fishing reports of years' past, February & March were always tough months to fish Valley, things never really picked up much until April.

Spring is trying to...spring...

On Sunday, the original plan was to meet up with Steven Smith from The Silent Pursuit blog around noon and give Valley a shot. We had worked this out ahead of my Saturday outing. It was actually to be about 10 degrees colder than Saturday, so I texted him to let him know that the prior day wasn't all that epic.  Basically I wanted to spare him a 40 minute drive for fishing I knew was going to be less than stellar.

I almost bailed on fishing completely, spending most of the afternoon in the King of Prussia Mall instead, but I did pop over for an hour or so around 3:30 PM, just to see if with the sun still relatively high in the sky, if there were any sort of bugs in the air or fish rising. Again, no dice. I wet a line in some of the spots that used to be tried and true producers, but no luck. Not even a nibble. I drowned my sorrows in a Wawa hoagie afterward.

A failed catch & release

I have to admit that it's a little disheartening to visit a place you miss so much, wish was closer to (your new) home, and never took for granted.  I know it's not really the creek or the trout's fault, it just would have been nice to have some success, even if only minimal.

A book of witchcraft found creekside?
Maybe that's why the fish weren't biting...

If one can take solace in something, I was really pleased to see a lot of twenty-somethings also fly fishing at Valley over the past two days. In all the years of me fishing Valley, I'd say the overwhelming majority of anglers I'd pass on the water appeared to either be guys like me in their 30s or 40s or anglers that were even more seasoned than that. 

It was extremely rare to see younger anglers at Valley, but this weekend I'd say 6 of the 8 anglers I hopscotched on the banks were decidedly younger than me. The few I chatted with seemed knowledgeable about fly fishing and very personable (which can be rare trait among anglers). One even knew what my tenkara rod was and asked a few questions about it. 

As a flight back to Florida awaits on Tuesday, Valley Creek is their creek now. I'm happy it appears to be in good hands.

March 19, 2015

Quick Trip, Quick Ties

Headed back to Philly this weekend. Well, the suburbs of King of Prussia & Conshohocken to be exact. (Those are city names, can't make that up).

Have a meeting up there on Monday morning, so figured I'd spend the few days prior preparing by loading up on hoagies, "whiz wit" cheesesteaks, & soft pretzels. Weather looks nice on Saturday and Sunday...I'm sure folks up in the Delaware Valley will be wearing tank tops and shorts.

I'm going to try and do a little fishing while I'm up there. Hope the creeks don't get blown out from rain the night before, I'm sure they're high and dirty to begin with (just like I like my women). I suppose I'll hit Valley Creek, since many of the other waters are closed for the month for trout stocking. We'll see. 

Did work on tying up some beadhead "road kone" kebari last night to fill some holes in my fly box...I have about a half dozen more to tie before I'll be happy with my assortment for the trip.

tenkara road kone cone kebari fishing fly

Anyway, that's pretty much it from here. Hope your neck of the woods is finally springing into Spring and you're focusing on fishy pursuits this weekend too. 

March 15, 2015

Exploring Florida - Kennedy Space Center & Ft. Walton Beach

It's been a fast & furious past four days...

Was lucky enough to play hooky from work on Thursday & Friday to make for a long weekend, which was also the start of Lilly's spring break.

However, before the kids got off from school, they had their "big" class trip of the year to Kennedy Space Center which is about 2 hours south of Jacksonville. I volunteered to chaperone, and totally geeked out big time and turned into a 9 year old again instantly. I mean a real freakin' space shuttle!

After that we headed across the Florida panhandle as a family for a few days. I brought the fly rod, but didn't end up fishing at all. We were busy. Spent some time at the beach, then the "Gulfarium" (where the sea lion show is a can't miss), and finally watching the wife's roller derby team beat down the locals (the reason why we headed 5ish hours west in the first place)...

Man, what a weekend. Absoultely no fishing...so much driving...but so much fun. 
Maybe I can play hooky from work tomorrow too...

March 11, 2015

Video - Fly Fishing for Shad on the Upper St. Johns River

Look Mom, your son's in a video!

Captain Rich Santos just uploaded a video edit of our outing in February that I highlighted last month HERE on the blog .

If you're curious what Florida's "Shad Alley" is all about, check it out!
(Thanks for the video Rich!)

If you happen to be in the Jacksonville area and want to get a rod bent, a full list of Captain Rich's guide services (as well as many other resources) are available on his website flyfishjax.com.

March 10, 2015

Tenkara Tuesday - Brazilian Tenkara Koi

Welcome to Tenkara Tuesday.

Carlos Andre Blatt, a tenkara angler from Brazil, had a run in with a koi recently and posted this great video to the Tenkara Florida Facebook group.

What makes this even better, (and you have to pay close attention to really notice this in the video) is that he's not fishing with a short tenkara rod, his rod actually broke when initially fighting the fish, leaving him with only the top section to bring the fish to hand!
"...I thought it was ready to surrender and I pulled the rod backwards to bring it closer to grab the line. Then he suddenly swam away in a last power sprint. I wasn't able to react properly and forgot to bring rod back to its power position...."
Photo Courtesy - Carlos Andre Blatt

All I can say is great catch!


Are you a tenkara angler? Do you have a story, pictures, video, fly recipe, or simply a fishing report from one of your recent tenkara adventures? If so, I'd really enjoy hearing from you for an upcoming Tenkara Tuesday post! Feel free to send an email HERE, I'd love to publish your original contribution.