December 19, 2014

Win Costas For Christmas...

That was what the subject line of the email said.


Is it strange that I was scared to death to open it?

Fearing that I'd find this...

Frames ideal for sight casting toward pinkeye salmon....

Okay, so I just trotted out a 10 month old sight gag...(get it, sight gag?)...but seriously...I found it funny.
I do miss all of the Sochi hi-jinks...and also truly do have a phobia of sportscasters in miniature.

Oh, and by the way, you really can win Costas (del Mar, not Bob) for Christmas, the details are HERE.

December 11, 2014

Sharks, Feathers, and Fish Planes

Thought I'd break the silence around here with a new post.  Yeah, it's been a while.
Here are some quick hitters of things I've found of interest somewhat recently...perhaps you will too...

1.  Reverse Tauntaun

I'm sure most of you have seen this on Facebook (or other social network of choice by now).  Pretty crazy right?  I mean who holds their phone vertically when they take video...what the heck?  That's like the worst...


Anyway...this guy is kinda crazy for cutting open a dead shark with a big belly.  Had he never seen the video of what happened to the guys who cut open the busting-at-the-seams whale?


2.  Tenkara Tying Videos

Those crazies at Tenkara USA are up to no good again...posting a series of instructional videos of folks that tied flies at the Tenkara Summit a few months back.  Here's the first in the series...from Mark Bolson, who I happened to watch tie in person.  Good stuff.


Oh, and and is it a coincidence these videos come out at the same time they introduce complete fly tying kits?...damn that Daniel Galhardo is one savvy businessman.


3.  I Need A Vacation

Work takes a lot out of me this time of year.  It's go, go, go 24/7...and the next 2 months (December included) sadly are what validate pretty much all of my worth as an employee.  Anyway...once March comes, I need to go on vacation badly, or at least get things lined up to make that happen.


So help me figure out where to go on a mini fishing vacation escape.  Thinking long weekend, to allow 2 full days of fishing (preferably trout).  Only criteria, travel time from Jacksonville, FL should be no more than 5 hours (driving or flying)...including connections.  You can't get many places directly from JAX International.   Don't want to waste full days on planes, trains, or automobiles.

Any and all suggestions are welcomed in the comments below...

November 29, 2014

OMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMGOMG STAR WARS!!!!

Let's put fishing aside and talk about something important for a second.


Actually, make that 88 seconds that have suddenly made the next 12 months seemingly insufferable...

I have to wait how long?

I mean Holy sh*t...X-Wings!!!!


THE MOTHERF*CKIN' MILLENNIUM FALCON!!!!  


I'm suddenly more than moist...

Only some sort of cynical, nitpick can't be excited about this...you know, the type of wet blanket that trolls the internet belittling nymphing as being beneath fly fishing....or insists tenkara is dapping.  Simply put, anybody who isn't psyched by this, isn't a Star Wars fan.  Even if there is some strange R2-D2 / adidas Tango lovechild bopping around...

GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!

Oh...and I've said this before, but speaking of tenkara...the first company that makes a blue (or red) tenkara rod with a bad-ass lightsaber looking handle...just take my money now.  And yes, I will make sound effects with my mouth while I fish.

See you on the dark side of the stream...

November 28, 2014

Black Friday Fishing?

Anybody getting up early this morning to go to your stream, lake, or ocean...rather than running head-first into the retail orgy that is "Black Friday?"

Like are those $150 40" no-name TVs really any good anyway?

I'm actually working (from home) today, as I work in internet retail...so I'm somewhat fortunate that I don't have a physical store I need to present at...taser in hand to keep rowdy shoppers in check.  (P.S., if you want to help put Lilly through college AND skip the crowds, shop HERE for all of your favorite team gear).

Anyway, I hope some of you are going out fishing.  I might try to make it out to one of the neighborhood ponds later today, once the chaos of the morning's shopping frenzy calms down a bit and emails stop popping into my Inbox like Jiffy Pop.  When I used to live in Pennsylvania, my local trout club would do an annual Black Friday morning stocking, so it was fun blowing off some steam tossing spinners or casting buggers at brain dead naive stockers...

Stocker.  Check out its biceps...

I guess if you have to do some shopping, and choose not to shop with my employer, there are a ton of fishing deals to be had online too - one only has to check their favorite brands on Facebook, Twitter, or other social media to see what coupons or %s off they might be offering.  There's usually more than a few deals to be had, so don't feel guilty about sprucing up the gear collection.

Or...just wait for Small Business Saturday...or Cyber Monday...or whatever...

So what are you up to today?  Whatever it is, I hope it's AWESOME!
Fishing...Shopping...Working...Napping...Eating Leftovers?

November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving 2014

Image Courtesy of Steve Cobb
Hope he can tie a Stove Top Stuffing fly too...

Just wanted to wish all of my readers a Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope all of you are enjoying the holiday with friends and family (and maybe a river if you're lucky).
Thanks for all of the support over the past few years.

Now where's that can of cranberry sauce...?

November 23, 2014

A Pocket Sized Fishing Camper

I don't know if this is considered "glamping," but these little hitch campers from 30 Seconds To Camp are pretty slick.

30 Seconds To Camp EPS (Expandable Pod System)

I've always had a fondness for teardrop campers.  I've casually shopped them more than once over the years, thinking they'd be a great way to extend a day of fishing into a weekend.  I mean is this Camp-Inn Teardrop pictured below not a thing of beauty?  It will also run you $5,000, $10,000, or much, much more, depending on options.

A sweet teardrop trailer from Camp-Inn

On the flip side, the 30 Seconds To Camp is a teardrop-esque camper, but rather than being trailer based, it's hitch based...compatible with a Class III hitch.  And since there are no wheels, there's no need to have the camper tagged or licensed.  

Once at camp, you just extend the legs, unfold the cabin, and you've got a micro-camper that sleeps 2.  Not too much different from one of those campers or tents you can get for the bed of a pickup truck, but this one won't take up the storage room your truck bed provides.  More room for toys!  Pretty slick.


The company's evidently based in DeLand, FL (about an hour and a half from my house), so may be worth checking out the next time I'm down in the Daytona Beach area...

Rad or Lame?  
Your thoughts are welcomed in the comments below...

November 19, 2014

An Ode To The Underground

Well...actually not technically an "ode"...because an ode is a poem.  And I don't write poetry.  If anything I lay down white boy rhymez...like B-Rabbit vs. Papa Doc in 8-Mile.  Ugh...not really...and totally off topic already...what the heck is going on again?  OK...deep breath...let's call this a "tribute post" and leave it at that.


So as I was trying to say...a few days ago Tom Chandler fired off what could be the final post at The Trout Underground for the foreseeable future...and in doing so, a little piece of me died inside.

Now I can't blame Tom.  He's been writing The Underground for almost 10 years...which might as well be 1000 in blogger years.  I think most blogs probably last 2 or 3 posts, and that may be generous.  Plus, if you read his goodbye post, his motivations are clear and sincere.

When I first started reading blogs about fly fishing...there were two that were a constant theme within everybody else's blogrolls...Moldy Chum & The Trout Underground.  Therefore when I started writing my own blog...it took a while to find my own style...and well, I'm going to be totally honest...I eventually tried to blatantly rip off emulate both of those blogs by sort of squishing them together.  Unfortunately, my writing skills are nowhere up to par with TC/TU, so this blog has evolved more into an affair of sight gags and pop culture references...somewhat of a long-form Moldy Chum, with a far more haphazard blogging cadence.  That said, I've always enjoyed (and envied) the Trout Underground from afar...in the shadows...like a fanboy.

Mmmm....bacon.

See, it's rare to find a fishing blog that can balance actual writing skill, topical references, and entertainment value so well...with just enough snark to not be over the top obnoxious and/or douchey.  Don't get me wrong, there are many good writers out in the blogosphere (I hate the phrase 'blogosphere' BTW)...but let's be honest, how many get caught up with using superfluous vocabulary words (like superfluous) that come instinctively to few for the sake of "reading" smart?  Or they ramble on and on and on and on, jibber jabbering away about something or another...far surpassing the attention span of the typical internet content consumer.  Sort of like this post is now.  Are you still there?

Those of you that have read this blog for a while also may know that I've included references to what I've called "Subterranean Trout" in some posts over time.  Whether it was in support of the campaign for inclusion of OwlJones.com in its blogroll, to the mention of the bromance with Singlebarbed, to the time on April Fool's Day when I altered the entire visual theme and layout of Troutrageous! to match that of Trout Underground in satirical tribute...  Why?  Because the Underground was and is relevant in our little fly fishing community...and more importantly seems to transcend demographics.  Like Denzel Washington.

Heck, I think the high point of this blog was when I wrote a post that Tom actually commented on in a complimentary fashion.  It was akin to having Obi Wan tell you that he was impressed by the way you swing your lightsaber.  Thanks 'ol Ben.


(And I'd be lying if I said I didn't geostalk my Google Analytics for about a month afterward to see if any traffic came in from a certain town in Northern California after I wrote what I though might have been a subsequent good post).

Anyway, I guess my point of all this is that if it's truly riding off into the sunset, I'm gonna miss the quirky Trout Underground.  The humor...such as the escapades of Wally the Wonderdog...and fish falling from the sky.  (May he rest in peace).  The practicality...such as the ultimate fishing hat.  The causes and actual serious topics...things like internet & blogging freedoms...and the evils of Nestle Water?  I mean, who knew...I thought they made Crunch bars...which are soooo tasty by the way.  And the human touch...Tom has a beautiful family that he is rightfully proud of.

Heck Tom, I even gave Ubuntu a try because I read about it on your blog.

So I wish the former Mr. Underground luck on all of his future endeavors.  Please don't be a stranger.

See you around, (hopefully when you write just one more post...), Troutrageous! Mike.