July 31st 08
When I opened the site this morning I was surprised to see a new one up there.Â Thanks Sean for all your effort and good work.Â I have hopes for an easier site to work with and one that is more user friendly and easy to edit and change.Â I am sure that this one will be exactly that.
I plan to create a separate site connected to this one that will have more in depth articles and videoâ€™s showing many hard to describe techniques like mending in the surf and deep
drift fishing both with salt water flies and with fresh.Â I hope to do some steelhead trips this coming fall and winter and perhaps make some videoâ€™s that are helpful to others who want to try that kind of fishing for themselves rather than ones focused on catching fish alone. A bit of how too mixed with practical approaches to the situations we all run across. I am wide open to suggestions by the way and appreciate all ideas however small or large.Â Perhaps this addition to the mix will be a password site - I am not sure right now but I would like to keep it free of emotional debris.
I am pleased that the store is up and working and with the rod orders that many of you have made.Â I plan on designing several more new rods in the future for both fresh and salt based on practical fishing needs and I appreciate all of your support.Â It has been soothing to my spirit to know that people are willing to look at old problems with new insights to find solutions that are outside of the box of what everybody says or does.Â Â That is where the good ideas are always found not through mimicking the Status Quo but by discovering them and trying them out for yourself.Â
An asideâ€¦ not a rant.
I have been reading European web sites of late and I find them to be quite different in terms of content from the ones we have here.Â They are fishermen focused not manufacturer focused and the innovations and new ideas are always from the fishermen themselves. I was reading one from Wales and I was surprised by one paragraph that was a part of a story about Spanish nymphing techniques.Â It said words to this effect.
(Unlike the Americans we are not led by what is sold in the shops or by what the manufactures put out for us to buy.) I found that interesting to read coming from a source so far away because it does put a focus on what we do here to a large extent, which is look to the manufactures to tell us what flies to use, what rods to use, how to cast and where to go and what techniques are popular and must be used. We look to the experts.
He went on to say that most of the flies being used over there and he includes all of Europe, are not sold at all in the shops and are designed and created outside of the industry by fishermen themselves
I find that to be true here in New England also.Â The best flies are not manufactured overseas in mass and sold in the fly shops. The popular ones are but not the cutting edge ones.Â It is a catch 22 situation.Â Â People trust that the manufacturers are giving them the very best choices that money can buy and they are right.Â They are but the innovation in fly design is always grass roots in origin and based on practical solutions to particular fishing problems not general solutions or generic solutions.Â Manufacturers cannot be that diverse or specific and so must sell what is popular of lose money.Â The whole product line of the fly fishing industry in America is manufacturer generated as of now and that is one of the reasons why everything is so similar in all the shops around the country. I find it interesting to be aware that the flies one chooses to use; if based solely on what everybody says are the best flies are in fact the only ones that are sold in shops.Â There is no room for new ideas in that scenario.Â Only the flies that get the most press in the advertisements will be carried because they are the ones people will buy.Â Same is true with rods and sundries.Â This if fine and normal - but - it is interesting to think about why certain flies are popular from a marketing perspective alone - if you want to think about it at all.Â Â New ideas are not welcomed by the industry if they upset the fixed and predictable mass marketing apple cart.Â They have to move the stock in house or â€¦Give it away.Â Â They stock what already sells.Â Why take a risk if you are controlling the market already? Â It just doesnâ€™t make good business sense to take risks with no certain monetary outcome.. It is timid at best and opposes and suppresses new innovative ideas being offered in the marketplace at worst. There is a fundamental truth in what the Europeans are saying about the way things work over here.Â I donâ€™t like hearing it but I recognize it even so.
I like what the grass roots fishermen come up with.Â I am always amazed by how creative and innovative they are when faced with difficult fish. I like the internet because it gives the ordinary fisherman a forum to express ideas and it is not controlled by the internet police. It is a boon to all and I hope it continues to grow in importance as it truly is of the fisherman by the fisherman and for the fisherman and - that is a good idea.
Freedom of expression - an American birthright.