I had the pleasure of sitting down with Ashley Saunders during my time in Bimini and I had the good fortune of him showing me around the Dolphin House. Ashley told me about his life and how everything changed after he swam with a group of wild dolphins. Since then he began building this Dolphin House (or Poetry In Stone) 26 years ago and he is still building it. Ashley has dedicated his life to creating the house in honor of the dolphins that he swam with.
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“The statement was refined to ‘perfect practice makes perfect’ and I believe that.”
Last week we talked about fly line management and this one is how to practice so that you are also practicing fly line management. It’s been said that perfect practice makes perfect - we are going to talk about practices to make you a better angler.
No matter where you are (even if you are practicing on the local football field) you are going to use a 15 foot piece of rope and make a shape that looks like a boat bow. You will then step back into the simulated cockpit and pull the line off your reel and you will stretch it and re-strip it into a nice neat pile. Then you are going to roll cast from the ready position into a back cast and forward cast, then you will shoot the line to a target.
Then you will strip in, just like you were fishing, and you are going to try to pay attention to getting the line in the cockpit. Just pretend that you didn’t catch the fish. This happens a lot and now you have a loose, unorganized pile of line all on the deck and your feet. So how can you quickly get this back into a nice, neat orderly pile in the cockpit?
Well, you are going to go right to the reel and you are going to hold rod just like you’ve been stripping and take this little tiny piece of line that is between the reel and your index finger. You are going to start stripping right there and you are going to step back into the cockpit and organize it. Then you are going to step back up and cast, back and forth and shoot to target, then strip back in and organize your pile again.
You are going to do this every time. Some guides like to use a strip basket, you can get a basket and practice on the football field or wherever you are practicing. If the guide has a basket this is the best for organizing your line, but sometimes it isn’t available so that is why I said to just make a pile in the cockpit.
Perfect practice makes perfect. If you practice this then you will have better luck and become better prepared by doing this 10 times, than by just casting to a target 60 times. These are very important skills to have for proper line management and this is the difference between someone who catches a lot of fish and someone show doesn’t….
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See you on the water,
We’ve made it to part 4 of our 10 part series. We are doing great, and this podcast is on parking lot workouts. Honestly, I don’t like hotel gyms, I don’t like working out in any gyms. I like working out outside, so usually I will head out to the parking lot if I can. So let’s check out some good workouts you can do in a hotel parking lot with ZERO equipment.
I am going out on a ledge and saying this is the first podcast in history that there has ever been a podcast done on the water, on a bonefish boat, in Bimini Bahamas. Eagle Eye Fred has been guiding for 47, he is a kind hearted, sweetheart of a guy and he actually has eyes like an eagle. Fred pulls a boat like a man half his age, he gets around like a man half his age and he’s just in great shape. We talked about things Fred has learned over his 47 year career and he taught me a lot about the history of Bimini. Before I recorded this I caught a bunch of bonefish and afterwards I caught a bunch more bonefish.
Today we are going to talk about something that every guide has discussions with their clients about. I am even willing to say that this is the single most important thing to success in fly fishing. Believe it or not, I do not believe that your ability to cast is the most important thing in fly fishing for these fish. I say that, because I will see someone who has a really good cast but has a bad skill set in fly line management in a skiff. What does that mean?
There are 4 tried-and-true pull up bar workouts that you can try. They are benchmark crossfit workouts named after girls: Cindy, Angie, Candy and Mary. They are benchmarks which means you can look them up and compare yourself to how others are doing on these workouts. Or you can see how far you can take the workout, that’s what I like to do; see what the elites are doing and see how far I can push myself.
Captain Bouncer Smith has committed his life to sharing fishing with others through articles, radio shows, seminars, and taking people on his boat, Dusky 33. Bouncer shares stories of how he introduces kids and adults to the excitement of catching bait to catching monster tarpon and marlin. I’ve now had the good fortune of sitting down with Bouncer twice.
I know there are a lot of fly fishermen who listen to this podcast and fly fishing is what started my career in fishing. But a lot of people that haven’t fly fished before have a hard time starting and might even be intimidated by the whole thing (the equipment is expensive and what if you don’t like it? Or buy the wrong equipment?). But also a lot of people who fly fish have a tendency to make it something that it’s not, and make it seem super difficult. It’s not. Its just another way to fish and it’s another tool in your tool box.
Continuing on with our 10 part series of hotel workouts we are going to talk about what happens when there is no gym in the hotel. Or maybe you don’t want to do the dumbbell workouts or the gym is charging you to use the gym. Try out this instead of a gym… There are almost always stairs or a parking garage.