Skip with 34 Pound Barracuda
Exceeded all time world record on fly and
Exceeded 20# heavy world record on fly
Key West, Florida

        I was fortunate to grow up in a family where fishing was everything and money no object (boy how time changes things).  That meant that anything that was called “fishing” was worth the time and money.  When I was still very young my Father and Grandfather would take me along on their weekend jaunts to rivers and lakes in the Ozarks, and I accompanied them on weekly trips to a local stream to catch bait for the next weekend of fishing.  We fished for whatever was in season and with whatever equipment we had at hand . . . and there was no shortage of the various types of fishing equipment of the day. 

Dad with 10# Blue Cat
about 1950 from James River Missouri

        My first fishing outfits were early day baitcasting rigs, before the invention of the Garcia Ambassador.  They were called “baitcasting” back then because for the most part that was how we used them; casting minnows, worms, crawfish, chicken livers, shrimp, catalpa worms, or whatever was available.  On some occasions we took float trips where we would cast so-called “plugs” for bass.  Plugs were wooden lures typically made by Heddon, Arbogast, or some other lure manufacturing company of the day.  Sometime in my early teens my Grandfather gave all the fishermen in the family a new Johnson Century rod and closed-face spinning reel for Christmas.  It was my first experience with spin fishing and my fishing world was never again the same. 

"The Old Man", my grandfather (right)
about 1930's with a "limit" of bass
most likely from the James River in Missouri

        Fly rods were also a part of our arsenal on most weekend trips.  We had the best you could buy at the time and for the most part my Father and Grandfather thought they were new-issue cane poles and primarily amused themselves with these long rods catching crappie, bream, and catfish when possible.  They all had spring loaded line retrieval of course.  I naturally gravitated to them for an occasional bout of throwing popping bugs and streamers for bass and bream even though the grownups never used them that way.  No one cared back then how you fished as long as you were fishing and having fun at it.  And boy was I having fun! 

        So that brings me to today.  I am always amazed that there are conclaves of anglers who think that they can look down their noses at each others choice of equipment in pursing the fabulous pastime of fishing.  I am not just referring to fly fishermen here who discriminate against spin and baitcasting, since I see this same elitism displayed by bass anglers using spin and baitcasting equipment against fly fishermen. 

Spinfly Fishing Lines - Cast a fly with a spinning outfit
as well as can be done with a fly rod
(maybe better!)

        I am writing this in hopes that you will first; understand how a devoted fly fisherman such as me can design, manufacture, and market such a wide variety of items for all types of fishing.  And secondly, and perhaps mostly, I hope you will begin to open your eyes and mind (in case they are closed) to the other parts of the fishing world and all the fun you may be missing.  When the trout in the San Juan are locked onto a Baetis hatch, don’t offer me a spinning rod (unless it has a Spinfly Fishing Line on it), and when the bass are taking a vertically jigged spinner at 30 feet, you won’t see me with a fly rod.  Fishing in all of its many forms is a beautiful pastime and I want to encourage all of you to enjoy it to its fullest. 

If any angler should rightly consider himself an elitist, it is the angler who is comfortable with all of the equipment of the fishing sport whether it is fly, spin, or baitcasting; there are very few of us.  Fortunately however, when you reach the point that you have mastered and love it all, you no longer understand the idea of elitism.

        For more on Spinfly Fishing Lines . . .and to purchase
        go to


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