The Virginia Tribute Video: Virginia is for Fly Fishers

Four years. 
Four years was all I had to fish the heck out of the great state of Virginia. From the mountains to the coast. I paddled, hiked, drove, waded, climbed, crawled, camped, froze and sweat for these fish. I made lifelong friends, ate way too much BBQ Exchange in Gordonsville and indulged in my fair share of Virginia ales. 
It may be true that Virginia is for Lovers… But you know what? It is also for hard core fly fishers with opportunities to scratch any fly fishing itch. 
I didn’t’ even come close to exploring all the Virginia fishery has to offer. Muskies, tarpon, carp, CCBT drum and winter stripers, bass, gar, shad and on, and on, and on… I guess I’ll just have to make an annual pilgrimage. 
Here’s to you, Virginia. 
Music: Josh Ritter “Getting Ready to Get Down”

Spots and Stripes: A Day on the Piankatank River with Capt. Chris Newsome

For my birthday present, I got a day fishing the Chesapeake Bay with Capt. Chris Newsome of Bay Fly Fishing. My good friend Kevin of Sweet and Salt joined me for a day of fantastic fishing. Check out his more thorough recap here
Almost all the photos credit goes to Kevin on this one. Nice work bud. 
Capt. Chris finding us some Peanut Bunker (Menhaden)
Ridiculously gorgeous morning. 
Fish finders. 
A Healthy Striper. 
My fish of the trip.
Just a great fish. 
Look at that snaggletooth. 
Kevin found the only red of the day.
Nice work, Kevin. 
If you are looking to get on the water, now is a great time to do it. If you are looking for a guide, Capt. Chris is one of the best. I’m hoping to get the video up and rolling in the next week or so.  Until then. 

The Coastal Explorer is at it Again with a New Video

Fished in the Lynnhaven this morning in my kayak. I think there were puppy drum on the flats, but there’s SO MUCH algae in there from the spring nutrient loading that every retrieve was a snag. I will have to tie some unweighted flies and add weed guards to fish those waters this summer.
Switched to outside the flat in the main stem of the river, still on the incoming tide. Caught two nice specks while the tide was still moving – the biggest one was 18+. Surprised to see them this early and this big! Should’ve had my tagging gear, but I was traveling light.
From the Coastal Explorer at http://sweeetandsalt.blogspot.com/

Specks in Hand

A day off spent on the water. 


The speckled trout will be leaving us soon making way for the striped bass. 

One thing that made yesterday unique was the company. I fished with a buddy from the local fly fishers club. He works in conservation and participates in the Virginia’s fish tagging program. We made sure to measure, record, and tag several specks including one nice 16.5″ fish at the end. 

I practiced a bit more with the camera experimenting with release shots. Fortunately, the fish cooperated as there were plenty of specks in hand. 

Music is by The Flaming Lips, “Fight Test.”

Enjoy the music. Enjoy the fish. Happy Friday.