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FREE

RHODE ISLAND EDITION

Holiday

GIFT GUIDE

Local

Fishing Reports Catch Photos News & Events

VOLUME 22 • ISSUE 263

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SUMMER MIGHT BE WINDING DOWN, BUT THE SUZUKI SAVINGS SEASON IS JUST HEATING UP

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The Suzuki Savings Season 2016 ends soon so see your participating Suzuki Marine dealer today – or visit suzukimarine.com – for details on these special offers.

Gimme Six Extended Protection promo is applicable to new Suzuki outboard motors from 25 to 300 HP in inventory which are sold and delivered to buyer between 10/01/16 and 12/31/16 in accordance with the promotion by a Participating Authorized Suzuki Marine dealer in the continental US and Alaska to a purchasing customer who resides in the continental US or Alaska. Customer should expect to receive an acknowledgement letter and full copy of contract including terms, conditions and wallet card from Suzuki Extended Protection within 90 days of purchase. If an acknowledgement letter is not received in time period stated, contact Suzuki Motor of America, Inc. – Marine Marketing via email: marinepromo@suz.com. The Gimme Six Promotion is available for pleasure use only, and is not redeemable for cash. Cash Rebates apply to qualifying purchases of select Suzuki outboards made between 10/01/16 and 12/31/16. For list of designated models, see participating Dealer or visit www.suzukimarine.com. Customer and participating Dealer must fill out the appropriate rebate form at time of sale. Customer will have the choice to either apply the cash rebate against the original dealer invoice (Suzuki will credit Dealer parts account) or have a check sent directly to the customer. There are no model substitutions, benefit substitutions, rain checks, or extensions. Suzuki reserves the right to change or cancel these promotions at any time without notice or obligation. * Financing offers available through Synchrony Retail Finance. As low as 5.99% APR financing for 60 months on new and unregistered Suzuki marine engines. Subject to credit approval. Not all buyers will qualify. Approval, and any rates and terms provided, are based on credit worthiness. $19.99/month per $1,000 financed for 60 months is based on 5.99% APR. Hypothetical figures used in calculation; your actual monthly payment may differ based on financing terms, credit tier qualification, accessories or other factors such as down payment and fees. Offer effective on new, unregistered Suzuki marine engines purchased from a participating authorized Suzuki dealer between 10/01/16 and 12/31/16.“Gimme Six”, the Suzuki “S” and model names are Suzuki trademarks or ®. Don’t drink and drive. Always wear a USCG-approved life jacket and read your owner’s manual. © 2016 Suzuki Motor of America, Inc.

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More Of A World Traveler’s Top Fishing Destinations By Patrick Sebile

L

ast month in these pages, I laid out what in my opinion are the top-5 fishing destinations in the world. It was a list of the most impressive fisheries I have experienced in a career spent traveling to fish the most renowned waters on this planet. From southern Africa’s Atlantic coast to Scandanavia, Panama, Australia and Venice, Louisiana, those five destinations topped the list among the 64 countries where I have fished. But there are other destinations well worth mention as some of the top fisheries in the world. With this article I will touch on five more destinations I believe to be some of the best on the planet. • Florida, U.S.A: Choosing a whole state and calling it a destination might be a stretch. However, the variety of great fisheries offered by this peninsula is what makes it one of the best places in the world for anglers. With fantastic inshore and offshore fishing, seasonal highlights like the east coast mullet run and some of the best bass fishing anywhere, Florida’s patchwork of options make it a great place for fishing. • South Island, New Zealand: This place is as wild as wilderness can get. Fishing for trout in New Zealand streams with the backdrop that was the set from the “Lord of the Rings” movies has to be one of the most incredible experiences of my life. Also, the north island offers great saltwater fishing for humphead snapper and yellowtail amberjack, which is one of the meanest and most powerful fish that lives in the world’s oceans. • Lake Biwa, Japan: This 259-square-mile lake is surrounded with history as one of the oldest lakes in the world. It is filled with millions of ayu—a small trout-related fish—that turned out to be the major food for a population of largemouth bass. There are consistently more

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Photo Courtesy of Al Stewart Photography

big bass in Lake Biwa than anywhere else I know of. It is where the longtime IGFA All Tackle world record was tied just a few years ago with a bass that weighed 22-pounds, 5-ounces. • Ivory Coast, Africa: Years ago, I ran a lodge on the Ivory Coast, not far from the city of San Pedro, where Stuart Campbell used to come targeting record blue marlin. He succeeded a number of times. From April to June, my average day consisted of three to five fish in the 300- to 600-pound range. • Massachusetts, U.S.A.: I’m a striped bass addict, and fishing the shores of Massachusetts is a pilgrimage I must make on an annual basis, period! There’s nothing like fishing for striped bass when they’re blitzing bait on the shorelines of the northeastern states. Patrick Sebile is the owner and lure designer of Sebile Innovative Fishing (www.sebile.com).

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM


It’s the Honda of Outboards. Literally.

Quality, reliability, technology and fuel-efficiency have made Honda an automotive legend. You’ll find those same strengths in every Honda Marine outboard. Honda outboards deliver best-of-class features in models ranging from 2.3 to 250 hp. Many even share engine technology and components used in Honda vehicles like the Accord, Odyssey, Fit and Pilot — vehicles that have proven themselves over millions of miles. No wonder all Honda outboards are backed by the only 5-year manufacturer’s warranty in the industry. Power your boat with the brand that offers millions of miles of proven performance — Honda Marine.

Take Advantage Of 2.49% APR Financing On All New Honda Outboards Or 4.49% APR Financing On All New Honda Outboard Engines Or Boat/Motor Packages — Going On Now! To Find Your Nearest Authorized Honda Marine Dealer, Visit Our Website Now From Your QR-Enabled Phone, Or Go To ca.hondamarine.com *APR financing available on all new Honda outboard engines through American Honda Finance Corporation upon approved credit. 2.49% APR financing for 24 – 48 months, available to customers who qualify for the AHFC super preferred credit tier. Example for new Honda outboard engines: 2.49% APR for 36 months financing at $28.86 a month for every $1,000 financed. 3.49% APR for 60 months financing at $18.19 a month for every $1,000 financed. 3.49% APR for 84 months financing at $13.44 a month for every $1,000 financed. Offer good on any new and unregistered Honda outboard engine, with a minimum amount financed of $1,000 and a minimum monthly payment of $100. Check with participating dealers for complete details. Dealers set actual sales prices. For well-qualified buyers, not all buyers may qualify. Higher rates apply for different terms and/or buyers with lower credit rating. Lower rates may also be available. Offer valid through 01/03/17, on new and unregistered Honda outboard engines (2hp – 250hp) and only on approved credit by Honda Financial Services through participating dealers. Honda Financial Services’ standard credit criteria apply. **APR financing available on all new Honda outboard engines or packages (boat, motor and trailer, where Honda outboard engine is the main source of power) through American Honda Finance Corporation upon approved credit. 4.49% APR financing for 12 – 180 months (term and rate based on amount financed) available to customers who qualify for the AHFC Super Preferred credit tier. Example for new Honda outboard engines or packages: 4.49% APR for 84 months financing at $13.90 a month for every $1,000 financed. 4.49% APR for 144 months financing at $9.00 a month for every $1,000 financed. 4.49% APR for 180 months financing at $7.64 a month for every $1,000 financed. Offer good on any new and unregistered Honda outboard engine or package, with a minimum amount financed of $1,000 and a minimum monthly payment of $100. Check with participating dealers for complete details. Dealers set actual sales prices. For well-qualified buyers, not all buyers may qualify. Higher rates apply for different terms and/or buyers with lower credit rating. APR may be subject to dealer mark-up. Offer valid through 01/03/17, on new and unregistered Honda outboard engines or packages and only on approved credit by Honda Financial Services through participating dealers. Honda Financial Services’ standard credit criteria apply. ©2016 American Honda Motor Co., Inc. Always wear a personal flotation device while boating and read your owner’s manual. All Honda outboards meet EPA and CARB emission levels. COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM DECEMBER 2016 NATIONAL 7


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WEST MICHIGAN : Phil Belsito • (616) 957-1714 • phil@theanglermagazine.com UPSTATE NEW YORK : Frank Geremski • (518) 898-6484 • frankie@theanglermagazine.com

INTERNATIONAL BAHAMAS : Misti & Gary Guertin • (772) 285-6850 • treasurecoast@coastalanglermagazine.com flahama@coastalanglermagazine.com COSTA RICA : Thomas Hauer, Jr. • (321) 445-1557 • thomash@coastalanglermagazine.com Thomas Hauer • tomh@coastalanglermagazine.com PUERTO RICO/VIRGIN ISLANDS : Ace Bassue • (407) 285-9453 • ace@coastalanglermagazine.com © 2016. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the written consent of the publisher. Disclaimer: Coastal Angler Magazine / The Angler Magazine will not be held liable for injuries incurred while partaking in activities described herein, or for claims made against products or services provided by advertisers.

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Editor’s Note: Each month, Coastal Angler Magazine and The Angler Magazine staff search our vast coverage area for photos that will grace our covers. With well over a million readers in diverse coastal and inland markets, our magazines strive for broad national appeal as well as local-level intelligence to put anglers on fish. The cover is different depending on which edition you, the reader, are holding. The following is a little information about this month’s covers.

COASTAL ANGLER MAGAZINE Eleuthera, Bahamas

FREE

This year’s December holiday editions of Coastal Angler Magazine feature an image Holiday of Gene Dyer and a 30-pound mahi caught GIFT while fishing aboard Uncle Tom Dyer’s GUIDE 55-foot Hatteras off Eleuthera, Bahamas. Dyer is Coastal Angler’s newest franchisee, having recently taken over the Fort Local Lauderdale franchise location. Gene comes to Coastal Angler as a former advertising sales executive for Florida Sport Fishing. Eleuthera is one of the long skinny Out Islands that make up the eastern edge of the Bahamian archipelago. It is a spectacular vacation destination with miles of pink sand beaches, and for anglers it is a renowned bonefish destination, noted for expansive and easily accessible flats. As evidenced by Dyer’s Mahi, Eleuthera is also a fantastic jumpingoff place for the reef, spearfishing and sport fishing the Bahamas are famous for. Excellent reefs such as Devil’s Backbone are teeming with snappers, groupers and amberjack. And with depths of thousands of feet a few miles offshore, anglers can take a quick boat ride and tangle with tuna, marlin, snapper, mahi-mahi, sailfish and some huge wahoo. Fishing Reports Catch Photos News & Events

VOLUME 22 • ISSUE 263

COASTALA NGLERMA G.COM

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THE ANGLER MAGAZINE Southeastern Mountain Trout

WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA EDITION

FREE

There is no better gift for a trout angler than the opportunity to cast to gorgeous fish in the streams of southern Appalachia. The cover image for our holiday editions of The Angler Holiday Magazine comes from the north Georgia GIFT GUIDE mountains, where Tommy Nicodemus caught this big rainbow trout from Noontootla Creek Local while fishing with guide Chuck Head of Unicoi Outfitters. Noontootla Creek is one of the best small trout streams in Georgia, and it feeds the larger Toccoa River, which boasts one the Southeast’s premier tailwater trout fisheries. Noontootla itself flows from high-headwaters through public land on Blue Ridge Wildlife Management Area, where it is a small stream offering wild brown and rainbow trout. For decades it has been managed under special regulations, which have produced a great, if sometimes challenging, fishery. Our cover fish was caught from an extensively managed private trophy stretch of Noontootla Creek called Noontootla Creek Farms. The image was captured by Jason Weldon. PHOTO COURTESY OF JASON WELDON

VOLUME 22 • ISSUE 263

F R A N C H I S E

Fishing Reports Catch Photos News & Events

FISHING WITH UNICOI OUTFITTERS

THEANGLE RMAG.COM O P P O R T U N I T I E S

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inter means giant redfish on the fly. From Florida to Texas and up the east coast of the United States, giant redfish are a prime target species for many saltwater fly anglers. In my opinion, there is no finer wintertime saltwater species to sight fish a fly too. The fishing opportunities are endless, and the chance to hook a true giant heavier than 30 pounds is very likely. However, for the fly angler to be successful he/she must be able to make the cast. First Things First The first thing I suggest to anglers before they jump into saltwater fly fishing is to really learn how to cast a fly line to 40 feet quickly and accurately. We are often led to believe that if the angler can cast a long distance then he or she will be a successful fly angler. There is nothing further from the truth. I’ve seen wonderful fly casters become frustrated when sight casting to redfish. They are so focused on making a long cast that they miss the f ish-catching opportunities within 40 feet of their rod tip. Casting to redfish is more about accuracy and quickness than is distance. Learn The Double Haul Developing a solid double-haul is the foundation of a quick and accurate cast. Not only does the double-haul help with distance, if executed correctly, it reduces the number of backcasts the angler must make. It is well to remember that the more time the fly line is in the air, the less time the fly is on the water. The best way to learn the double haul is to find a grassy area like a park. Next, strip out 40 feet of fly line and make a forward cast, allowing the fly line to lie on the grass in front of you. Next, lower your rod tip to where it is touching the ground in front of you. Then, pick up the fly line and make a back cast, laying the line out behind you. This is the single haul. Next, pull the fly line off the grass behind you with your line hand while the fly rod is moving forward, and with the rod moving forward, pull the line down towards your belt line. As you feel the fly rod load while it bends on the forward cast, release the line from your line hand, allowing the fly line to shoot forward through the guides. This is the second haul of the double haul, an effective cast when long- distance casts are required, but also important for the short, quick accurate cast needed when fishing red fish. The Back Cast Is Important Much of your success in fly casting is dependent upon the development of a smooth back cast, that is the ability to cast 20 to 30 feet of line behind you whenever demanded. Remember the fly fisherman’s adage that “your forward cast is only as good as your back cast,” and a good cast is the “rule-of thumb” when casting flies to redfish. If a redfish appears behind you, simply make a forward cast. With your fly line on the water, simply pick up the line, and shoot it behind you. Retain eye contact with the redfish’s position. In next month’s column, Casting to Redfish Part Two, I will write about the importance of the repositioning cast and quick cast.

FLY FISHING

ON THE COVER

CASTING FOR THE REDFISH GAME: PART ONE

Follow Conway Bowman at www.conwybowman.com, on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

For More Fly Fishing with Bowman, go to

CAMFLYFISHING.COM

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

DECEMBER 2016

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Gift Ideas FOR ANGLERS

C

heck out these great gift ideas for the outdoor enthusiast on your holiday gift list. These local merchants are available to ensure your holiday gift giving satisfaction. We always try to encourage our readers to shop locally. It’s our community and we all benefit from supporting our local businesses. They’re here for us all year long and our personal convenience depends on their sustainability. Tell them Coastal Angler/The Angler Magazine sent you. By the way, if you see something here that you wish could be under the tree with your name on it, just take out a marker and circle it. Then leave this page open for your friends and family to see. Yes, crude but effective.

Happy Holidays from all of us at Coastal Angler/The Angler Magazine.

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LONG ISLAND EDITION MONSTER BLACK FISH NEW CONNECTICUT NEWS HOLIDAY GIFT IDEAS FOR YOUR ANGLER

In This Issue: Fish Focus by Zach Harvey DECEMBER 2016 COVER PHOTO: CAUGHT BY “OUTDOOR” TOM SCHLICTER ABOARD THE NANCY ANN COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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PUBLISHERS’ NOTE MIKE AND LISA DANFORTH

President Trump, monster black fish, counting our blessings and more……

B

e of good cheer, the beginning of the holidays means joy to the world, time with family and the bracing of the body for the inevitable indulgence in great food and drink. World events leave us stunned – I mean, who saw a Republican sweep? This time last week the Clintons were measuring for new drapes for the White House and the Republicans were contemplating the dissolution of their party. Working-class, white America showed up in droves and made history. What will this mean for Magnuson-Stevens and fisheries in general? The RFA (Recreational Fishing Alliance) seems pretty jazzed. Stay tuned. We wish the new President well. And as has been said by others, his success means success for the Nation. As for big news in our area, the bite is still on. Our own Tom Schlichter caught a monster black fish –weighing in at over 15 pounds – a personal best! We are on track to launch Coastal Angler in Connecticut. We have started local distribution at some Connecticut hotspots, like Bass Pro which distributed 1800 copies last month alone! This list will continue to grow. Check out our website for a full list of locations! All this upheaval and hard work definitely puts us in the mood to count our blessings – family, friends and the gift of our beautiful waters that willingly yield everything from food to fun, to a deep sense of belonging and feeling that the world - with all of its warts - is still a wondrous and beautiful place. Whether you sail or surf on it, gather its bounty or just cannon-ball into it, our ocean is a blessing worth being thankful for this holiday season. We continue to get calls from readers who are upset that their favorite outfitter, deli or watering hole is out of free copies by mid-month. We are definitely considering increasing this free circulation, and will probably do it in the spring as fishing season 2017 ramps up, but for now the best suggestion is to subscribe! In addition to the 10,000 free copies we distribute each month in each market, you now have the option to subscribe and beat the crowds, avoiding disappointment at the racks. Get your own subscription at www.coastalanglermag.com/rhodeisland/subscribe . Remember – we are entering all subscribers into a drawing for a Yeti cooler – the cooler of a lifetime and it could be yours, just for subscribing to Coastal Angler Magazine Rhode Island. Thanks to our readers, writers and loyal, growing band of advertisers – we couldn’t do it without you. Merry Christmas, and heartfelt wishes for safe and happy holiday from our family to yours. Tight Lines. Lisa Helme and Mike Danforth Owners and Publishers

Cover: Outdoor Tom Schlichter shows off a monster 15-pound blackfish he caught back in November. The big bulldog ate a green crab aboard Capt. Rich Jensen’s Orient Point charter boat, Nancy Ann IV.

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FISH FOCUS ZACH HARVEY

Back in (the) Gear

Photo by Zach Harvey

F

or all my efforts to extract the last bits of marrow from the fishing months here in the cold north, I am still dumbfounded here at the end of it—the bones of another year’s bounty along the shore. I suspect the protracted autumn warmth of our new climate patterns have a bit to do with it: When I’m standing in 50-some-degree water and the air temps are hanging tough in the 40s, the last thing I’m thinking is winter. Our depleted rations of daylight since the clock fell back a month ago don’t have much effect on those of us who do most of our line-wetting between sundown and false dawn. More than one recent night, I could easily have convinced myself I was fishing early May. Still, it’s December, and even the staunchest advocates of the water-temp theories in migration timing start to have trouble convincing themselves that there’s life swimming beneath the end of each cast. The fishless sessions start to pile up. Fifty degrees or no, the water takes on a different look when the fishing has expired—gray-green and almost alarmingly clear. When I’m standing in an inlet and the trebles on my plugs start coming back wearing maple leaves instead of eel grass or that clingy brown snot-weed, it don’t have much trouble dreaming up compelling reasons to miss nights.

Reels? I don’t want to talk about that. My two pet surf reels both left the line-up in the advanced stages of catastrophic failure: My workhorse Penn 450SS now sounds like a solid-brass pepper grinder loaded with BB’s and bits of aluminum foil. The other, a Daiwa that saw zero grand-total maintenance (barring emergency oiling) now features what I like to call a custom “Slip-‘n-Seize-‘n-Snap” Intermittent Drag System that now really only works in “manual override” mode (i.e. cupping the spool). As I prepare to perform last rites on another year’s rod-and-reeling, I’m pleased to tell you that I’ve found what might be a silver lining beneath this ten-year span of serial neglect. Years ago, after five years learning to play tennis with an unwieldy aluminum racket, I got my first composite model. Point is, in fishing as in any other activity, if you learn to get the job done when every piece of your gear is working against you, coming back at it with top-shelf equipment inevitably delivers exponential improvement in your game. Lucky for me, the rod-building racket has made some quantum improvements since I last wandered among the tackle shop racks with a

That’s been the official story, anyway: That, barring the possibility of some 20-fish schoolie sessions along the ocean beaches, or maybe one more limit of tautog amid diminishing returns on the 90-foot rockpiles, my season is drawing to an unusually abrupt close. Mother Nature’s the boss. Nothing to be done about it.

Fish Focus (Continued on page 4)

The reality is something altogether less reasonable or deliberate or credible. Truth is, for at least a decade, I have treated my gear with all the systematic, loving care I typically extend to my left shoe when my nose reveals a glistening mass of recycled Alpo stuck in the treads. I have never been what you’d call a gear head, spend precious little time combing through tackle catalogs. Some of it I attribute to an attitude I developed over almost two decades working deck (and a common one among seasoned deck apes): You can spend a fortune on gear, but no amount of money will buy you talent. Or, you can turn the idea around: A good fisherman ought to be able to catch fine with any semi-functioning set-up. For quite a few years I kept my three main all-purpose sticks working via all sorts of duct-tape-and-spackle field maintenance. It was the tail end of August when my luck ran out. In the intervening months, my late-night casting sessions involved an alarming amount of time squinting into bail mechanisms, anti-reverse knobs, drag washers. I ruined two full spools of fresh braid to chipped guide liners, then watched an old, badly delaminated back-up surf rod shed an entire guide’s diamond-wrapped thread (followed by the guide itself. I leant a friend one of my other newer St. Croix spinning rods and then watched, stunned, as he thwacked the stick off a piling and removed the top two guides and about 6 inches of the blank. That sawed-off 7-footer is now on standby should I ever decide to test my fish-fighting skills against a 1986 Ford Topaz. COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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Fish Focus (Continued from Page 3)

TOM SCHLICHTER

knot of cash in my back pocket. For one thing, current blank construction materials and techniques now let rod designers deliver unprecedented power and sensitivity in dramatically lighter, thinner sticks that balance off perfectly with ultra-compact reels (the latter engineered to hold staggering yardage of braided line). For a few years now, friends of mine have begun to do everything-jigging (or chunking) for bluefins, eeling for heavyweight bass, wreckhopping for big cod or pollock, drifting for fluke or working on scup—with a single set-up. I’ve long believed that familiarity with your gear (a product of experience) is the best way to refine almost every subset of your technical skills behind the reel. Somewhere between muscle memory, intense focus, and your developing ability to make sense of the cues crackling up the line, you start to catch more, bigger, more often. And when you’re using a single weapon full-time, the experience piles up much faster than it ever could when a serious multispecies fisherman needed a dozen sticks to get through a month of angling opportunities. For what it’s worth, if you’re debating a rod and reel as a present for the incoming holidays, consider the many advantages of uncluttering the arsenal with one weapon to handle most of the fishing you’ll encounter in the next fishing year.

•• MORE ZACH HARVEY AT COASTALANGLERMAG.COM/LONGISLAND ••

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age 3)

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ANGLING FOR THE PERFECT GIFT CAM STAFF

W

hat to buy for the serious angler? It’s an oft-asked question pondered by holiday gift-givers young and old.

Take inventory of an angler’s arsenal and it’s hard to imagine the need for reinforcements. Still, tackle and gear lost or damaged in the heat of battle needs to be replaced, new gifts of comfort and warmth can be put to good use almost immediately as cod action swings into focus, and rods, reels and lines often need upgrading. Books packed full of local fishing information are also welcomed offerings, as are gift certificates for tackle or fishing trips. Although a cruise through the internet and mail order catalogs will help you gather ideas and, perhaps find some true bargains, the best starting place for a gift buying spree is your local tackle shop. The folks there are probably already familiar with your angler’s current gear and fishing preferences. They can help point you in the right direction. One thing I find that works well is to buy your outdoors person something he or she normally wouldn’t buy for themselves. Thus, my gifts tend to be either very simple or a little off the beaten track. I’m happy to report that both approaches seem to be well-received. Take leader wallets, for example. Some anglers carry them everywhere, others would if only they had only been given one for this seems to be a useful item that never tops the “I’ve got to buy one of those for myself,” list. “AquaSkinz (www.aquaskinz.com) makes one of the best leader wallets on the market,” says Paul Graniello at J & J Sports in Patchogue. “It retails for less than $20 and

Good outerwear never goes out of style and makes a perfect holiday gift.

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has a quick attachment clip, several compartments and stainless steel grommets for quick drainage of the main compartment. At 7.5 by 5.5 inches, it’s just the right size. A medium sized surf bag, $89, is another good idea, adds Graniello.” The gifts of warmth and comfort never go out of style, and to look at some of the get-ups I’ve seen on open boat anglers so far this fall, an upgrade in cold-weather outerwear can’t be a bad thing. Grunden’s Windjammer Fleece Jacket ($117) makes a great gift and can be worn from early fall right through early summer. I received one as a gift several years ago. It still looks new and continues to see regular duty on everything from cod and blackfish trips to early fluke and fall stripers. Fishing line is another area that anglers often overlook when it comes to updating their gear. While most anglers have a favorite brand or type of line, a spool of Power Pro braid ($16.95) is pretty much universally welcomed. Choose 20-pound test for fluke fans or 50-pound test for striper mavericks. Yet another bright idea that is sure to catch your angler by surprise is a tidal clock. You can find both online and in tackle shops for as little as $30. Does your Long Island angler like to read? Then consider Falvey’s Guide to Fishing Long Island (www. schifferbooks.com; $19.95). It offers a comprehensive look at species-specific techniques, rigging and Long Island fishing hotspots. John Skinner’s newly released Striper Pursuit, Surf Fishing Beyond The Basics, (www. striperpursuit.com; $18.95) would be another solid addition to any fishing library. This book cuts through the complexity of choosing and presenting various lure styles for linesiders while factoring in weather and water conditions, the impact of baitfish movements and game fish behavior. Both books are jobs very well done. Of course, we’d like to think that a subscription to Coastal Angler Magazine would also make a great gift. Sure, you can get it at the local news stand – that’s what most people do – but for $24 a year, you’re lucky fisherman can have it delivered right to the house. You can send a check to Coastal Angler Magazine, 41 Comstock Hill Avenue, Norwalk, CT 06850, or sign-up online at www.coastalanglermag.com/longisland. We know you love outdoor writer Tom Schlichter’s articles in our magazine. Now you can see your best piscatorial bets for every month in his Long Island’s Best Fishing 2015 Calendar (www.outdoortom.com; $15.95.) Big, beautiful, glossy and printed on the finest paper, this high-quality calendar explores the Long Island fishing scene with a monthly summary of the action, Tom’s Best Bets each month, plus his top tips for finding

fast action and trophy fish. From porgies, sea bass and blackfish to doormats, cow bass, tuna and even freshwater, “Outdoor Tom” points you toward the lunkers. The calendar sells for $15.95 and comes with $30 worth of fishing and cHarissa spice coupons – so you get double-value and fisherman will thank you all year long! Many anglers and outdoorsmen are also secretly wannabee chefs and grill masters. For this crew, there’s no shortage of holiday cheer. Consider, for starters, a simple gift of spice. It’s hard to go wrong with a couple bottles or shakers of cHarissa, “The super spice that’s good on everything! (www.outdoortom.com; $5.59 to $11.95.) From meatballs and steaks to fish and poultry, this spice really brings out the flavor – but it shines brightest on fish and game. Try it on blackfish, cod, salmon, striper, fluke, venison, pheasant or wild turkey, then try it on anything else you like. Delicious. Looking for a big-ticket cooking option that your sportsman will absolutely love? Then the Marinade Express™, (www.marinadeexpress.com; $299) by Creative Culinary Solutions, Inc., is just what you need. The world’s most unique tabletop home marinade system allows users to “vacuum tumble” fish, wild game, meats, poultry and fresh vegetables for faster flavor, superior taste and amazing tenderness while reducing unwanted chemical additives, preservatives and other contaminants – all in 20 minutes or less instead of hours or days. It even eliminates up to 99.5% of bacteria that can cause spoilage and food-borne illness. The system has over 20 marinades from which to choose and – starting early in 2015 – the company will be offering additional marinades that significantly reduce the mercury in seafood! No kidding. Of course, if you simply want to stuff a holiday stocking with some striper lures, you can always go with a Super Strike Needle Fish, eight-inch Tsunami Pencil Popper, a handful of gold, hammered diamond jigs, Tsunami Pro Heavy Swim Shads, or Sebile’s Soft and Hard Magic Swimmers. Fluke fans will enjoy un-wrapping a selection of fluke ball jigs, white, chartreuse and pink teasers, or a bucket of four-inch Berkley Gulp! chartreuse swimming mullets. Each of these retail for less than $20. •• MORE AT COASTALANGLERMAG.COM/RHODEISLAND ••

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WORD ON THE BITE TOM SCHLICHTER

Holiday Gift Guide S

omehow the holiday season is already upon us! It seems like only last week the stripers were still biting like crazy. Heck, blackfish season is still in play. Well, all good things must come to an end and many anglers actually find it a bit refreshing to take a short break over the winter to recharge their piscatorial spirit. Of course, the key word here is “short,” for within just a few weeks most die-hard fishermen will be chomping at the bit to get the 2017 fishing season underway. With just this thought in mind, Coastal Angler has compiled a holiday wish list full of goodies that anglers can slip right into their arsenals and start using as soon as they kick off the new fishing season – some of these items can even be put to use immediately. From small ticket items that any angler will find useful, to mid-range gifts that are sure to bring a smile and a few that will make a great big splash, here’s a line-up that’s sure to please. Most of these gifts are available at your local tackle shop, although a few are more easily found on-line. Enjoy! Fat Cow Trailers: The Uncle Josh Bait Company is no longer making their popular pork rind trailers for bucktails, jig & pigs, etc. Luckily, Fat Cow FishingTM has

Fat Cow Trailer and a Bluefish

stepped up to fill the void with their new synthetic Jig StripsTM. Durable, flexible, scented and inexpensive, they turn the heads of lunkers, stand up to tough predators like stripers, bluefish and pike, and don’t dry out. You can even leave them on the hook overnight and fish them the next day. They work from boat or surf, in freshwater and saltwater, and come in a variety of colors. Choose between 5-1/4-inch skinny tail or 5-inch split tail styles. In addition to Northeast predators, they are also perfect for southern species like redfish, snook and sea trout so you can test them out if heading to Florida this winter. Price: $10.99/jar; Contact: www.fatcowfishing.com. Captain Segull’s Nautical Sportfishing Charts: Here’s a good start toward catching more fish next year. These charts are a guide to the most productive fishing spots in any local area with GPS coordinates noted to the thousandths of a minute. Captain Segull’s has inshore, nearshore, offshore, species, small boat/kayak, and bathymetric

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charts and all are frequently updated. A Moriches Bay kayak chart was just released and includes the new inlet across from Belport. Available on Long Island at B & B Tackle, Dick’s Bait & Tackle, and J & J Sports Centre. Also available online. Contact: www.captainsegullcharts.com; Price: Starting at $11.95.

157 Main St. • Westerly, RI 8 RHODE ISLAND

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urable, nd up t. You xt day. e in a plit tail uthern eading com.

rts are h GPS l’s has metric

sound that calls to fish. Great for trout? You bet, but also a good choice for big bluegills, largemouth bass, perch and crappies. Contact: www. panthermartin.com.; Price: $19.95 Kast King 24 Rod Rack Got a bunch of fishing rods piled up in a corner of your basement or garage? The KastKing® 24 Rod Rack is the perfect solution for neat and complete fishing rod storage. It organizes up to 24 rods (or approximately 12 rod and reel combos) with minimal floor space. Made of lightweight non-corroding aluminum with cushioned holders that protect rod handles and blanks, it takes minutes to assemble with no tools required. An ICAST Best in Show award winner, this is a gift any serious angler is sure to appreciate. Available online only. Contact: www.amazon.com/kastking; Price: $69.98. Boomerang Fishing Snip

Boomerang Fishing Snip: Time was when a simple pocket knife was all you needed to cut some line. These days, with superslick braids, fluorocarbon lines and tough monofiliments, many anglers carry along a sissors or a nail cutter. For ease of use, the Boomerang Tool Company’s Original Fishing Snip is a great bargain. It will cut through just about anything with a little light pressure added to the side compression handles, it fits easily in a pocket and can be worn from a lanyard. I’ve used one all season and it’s passed my test for everyday use. There are also fly-fishing, big game and LED models available. Contact: www.boomerangtool.com; Price: $12.99.

Hobie Soft Cooler/Fish Bag

Panther Martin Deadly 6 Pack: In-line spinners have had quite a rebound in popularity over the past Kast King 24 Rod Rack

few years among local freshwater fans. Some of this is due to a robust trout stocking program and the finetuning of light-tackle that makes casting a breeze. Which spinner to use? Why not try a selection of the best. Panther Martin’s Deadly 6 Pack features a selection of bright, colorful options with plenty of flash and a sonic

Hobie Soft Cooler/Fish Bag: When keeping fish to eat it’s important for kayak anglers to store their catch away from predators and out of the sun. Hobie has added two sizes of soft coolers/fish bags to do just that, all day long. Just add ice or a cold pack so fish, refreshments and food are kept cool. These Soft Cooler/Fish Bags are made of the highest quality materials on the market: half-inch closed cell foam that insulates, vinyl coated polyester for durability and YKK zippers for strength. Carry handles are included as well as D-rings on the sides for attaching to kayaks of any brand, make or model. Available at Hobie retailers nationwide. Contact: hobiecat.com; Price: $129

as just n Long e. Also ting at

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Kast King 24 Rod Rack COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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Word On the Bite (Continued from Page 9)

Sea Tow Gift Membership Sea Tow members know the value of having a team of expert captains at the ready when something unexpected happens on the water. Now you can share that sense of boating security by giving the gift of a Sea Tow Gold Card Membership. This provides the full suite of on-water assistance privileges for every boat you own, rent, charter, lease or borrow, and is extended to anyone operating your boats. It’s the perfect holiday gift for new boat owners and boating friends or someone who has just finished a boating safety course. You don’t have to be a member to give the gift. Contact: www.seatow.com; FLORENCE FABRICANTPrice: $179 Can’t Beat A Good Book Books, of course, always make great holiday gifts and there are a few real good ones to choose from at the moment. Just released and sure to be a big hit is Fishing For Summer Flounder by John Skinner. It covers in great detail every aspect of jigging for the popular flatfish from selecting tackle to presentation techniques for back bay, inlet and ocean waters with tips on catching from shore, kayak or boat, Skinner does a terrific job of breaking things down with clear and insightful instruction - and he’ll be offering video support for many of his chapters at www.FlounderBook.com. You can order direct from this site or pick up the book at most Long Island tackle shops. You can also catch plenty of John Skinner fishing videos on the John Skinner Fishing You Tube channel. Contact: www.FlounderBook.com. Price: $18.95

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For a fun and introspective read, Looking Through Water by Bob Rich is a great choice. Rich, one of the world’s most successful businessmen and the long-time Chairman of the Board of the renowned Cleveland Clinic, is a down-to-earth, highly skilled angler who knows how to tell a great story. Each of these traits come through loud and clear in this novel that explores the raw emotions that make up the intricate tapestry of family structure by pulling at the threads of truth, lies, and misunderstandings. Set against backdrops Rich has always loved: fishing, Adirondack lakes, Manhattan and the Florida Keys, the book is a quick read with a 5-star reader rating on www.Amazon.com. It’s perfect for a little downtime and the proceeds benefit Project Healing Waters to help injured veterans and active duty military heal from physical and emotional wounds through fly fishing. Adults will certainly enjoy Rich’s effort, but the book may have its greatest value as a

Fin & Tonic

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This vessel is the most well equipped 41’ Albemarle Express out there. She’s a 2006, with just over 2000 hours on Cat C-12’s 710hp each, professionally maintained with certified Cat Mechanics, all service records are available from 2012, when this 2nd owner took over. Major extra equipment installed in 2012 is the Flir and All Garmen Electronics, 64 mile radar, transducer that can read up to 6000’, Acer Spotlight, 6 man life raft, 2016, new Oceanic underwater lights.

Aqua-Vu Micro Plus DVR-DT

gift to be shared with sullen teens. Contact: www.BobRichBooks.com; Price: $24.99 Aqua-Vu Micro Plus DVR-DT: The Aqua-Vu® Micro AV Plus with Built-In DVR-DT Underwater Camera System combines live underwater imagery with the addition of a Digital Video Recorder allowing anglers to see, record, rewind, and replay their hot spots and big bites. The color camera with depth and temperature readings delivers the feed to a 3.5”, bright and clear color LCD. The system has a 3x digital zoom to get up close to your targets, and the DVR stores plenty of video on the included 8GB internal SD card. A USB port offers Video Out for playback on TVs, and the IR lighting system ensures better video capture. Contact: www.aquavu.com. Price: $499

Contact Captain/Owner Jock Danforth •• MORE TOM SCHLICHTER AT COASTALANGLERMAG.COM/LONGISLAND ••

617-791-9009

email: finandtonic@mac.com For more details.

COASTALANGLERMAG.COM • THEANGLERMAG.COM

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To our readers, advertisers, contributors and friends, Thanks for an amazing year. We appreciate the time, dollars and effort you have invested in us. Here’s to an outstanding 2017! Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! From our family to yours, Mike and Lisa Danforth Kendall Danforth Hunter Danforth Tom Schlichter Zach Harvey

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New African Surf Rod Design Promises ‘Seven Seas’ Success By Mike Pehanich

T

he landscape is stark off Namibia’s South Atlantic Coast. Sands end in sea, and, well, that’s about all there is to see! But these coastal waters where Jeri Drake and wife Sue fish and train for international surf fishing competition are loaded with game species, including copper sharks (“bronzies”), spotted gully, cow sharks, blue rays, smooth hounds and many more. You might never make it to Africa to fish these waters, but the tackle and techniques that Jeri—a master rod builder, innovator, member of Namibian President’s fishing team, and owner of Excalibur Tackle (www. excalibur-tackle.com ) in the town of Henties Bay—takes to the surf could find application on your coastal waters, too. Fishing is serious sport along the “Skeleton Coast,” particularly for tournament anglers who, armed with long rods and a fighting belt, often wade out several hundred yards to sandbanks, routinely casting 6- to 7-once sinkers and bait 100 to 160 yards or more to reach hard-fighting game fish. Rod design for Jeri Drake, known simply as “Jeri” in southern African fishing circles, has evolved into 14-foot and longer rods. He has developed his own blanks for this style of fishing, with unique handles featuring short butt sections and long fore grips, the latter measuring around 28 inches. The essential difference to U.S. style blanks is a ‘faster’ action, as opposed to the usual ‘through’ action. Jeri employs the same “reel down” design—reel positioned relatively close to the fighting belt—with surf rods he builds for both “fixed spool” (spinning) reels and conventional reels. The long fore grips allow fishermen to change the fulcrum point while fighting the fish. The “reel down” design also makes it easier to master more powerful casting techniques and thus achieve better distances. Wading through troughs and casting and fighting fish in sea spray calls

for a non-slip rod grip material. Jeri crafts his rod handles individually, wrapping Winn Superior Rod Wrap (www.winngrips.com ) directly over the large butt section of the rod blank. The all-weather WinnDry polymer, which also wraps easily over existing cork or EVA grips with its tape-like backing, retains its tacky feel even when he’s immersed in sea spray. In lieu of finishing tape, Jeri terminates the ends of the rod wrap with thread wrap and a finishing coat. This prevents seawater, sand particles and any other substance to undermine the grip material by seeping in between the wrap and blank. It also gives the handle a more finished look. To protect the polymer material from wear and punishment where rod butt meets rod belt, Jeri places a woven carbon sleeve above the butt button. The base of the rod wrap starts above the sleeve. This keeps the polymer from contacting the rod portal of the belt. Adapt some of Jeri’s surf rod tips to the rods in your arsenal. You’ll be tipping your cap to the tackle innovations of the avid anglers of southern Africa!

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PRODUCT SPOTLIGHT NO SHOES NATION GEAR Engel has partnered with Kenny Chesney’s No Shoes Nation to offer you a better way to keep #SeriouslyCool. A complete range of products will keep that “cool factor” alive for hours, days, even weeks. With 2 inches of insulation, a rugged lid that seals tightly, virtually indestructible construction, and the No Shoes Nation logo proudly emblazoned on the front, Engel High-Performance Coolers are exactly what you need when the show goes on the road. Packing your stuff in? Grab an Engel No Shoes Nation Backpack Cooler. It’s tough, easy to carry, and can hold enough food and drinks to keep the party going into the night. New NSN Backpack Coolers are coming soon, so stay tuned. When you’re ready to watch the show, sit back with your Engel No Shoes Nation Tumbler. These vacuum-insulated, stainless steel 30-ounce tumblers have a no-drip lid, and a no-skid bottom, so you can enjoy a drink without worrying about spills. Best of all, proceeds from all these sales go to supporting the CCA’s National Habitat Program so there will be a waterfront for us all to enjoy long into the future. For more information, visit

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No more cork tape! No more bike wrap! Now you can apply the patented WinnDry polymer of the all-weather rod grips from Winn to your own rod handles in minutes with just a pair of scissors and a marking pen for instant comfort and rod control. Available in 96- and 44-inch rolls, Winn Superior Rod Wrap brings bold color, style, elegance and fashion to any rod arsenal with seven solid colors: lime green, dark gray, red, yellow, pink, black and purple—and seven hot and trending camo color patterns: Wildfire, Desert Camo, Blue Camo, Lime Green Camo, Gray Camo, White Blue Camo and Pink Camo. The Saltwater Series (96-inch only) features three solid embossed “Tuna” wraps and an elegant camo-style “Dorado.” This versatile rod wrap, which comes complete with finishing tape, can perform double duty on landing nets, boat handles, gaffs and other surfaces upon which the non-slip properties of Winn polymers offer tactile advantage. Now anyone can put a Winn “skin” over the grips of their favorite rods. Finishing tape included.

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UNDER THE SEA

SPEARFISHING WORLD RECORDS SHERI DAYE

M

ost people have heard of IGFA (International Game Fish Association), which manages world records for fishermen. But have you heard of IUSA (International Underwater Spearfishing Association)? IUSA keeps track of spearfishing world records. Both were founded more than 65 years ago and have a rich history—and both pride themselves for providing a universal code of sporting ethics as well as record keeping. The IUSA rules are fairly simple: the fish must be taken while freediving and using a muscle-powered speargun, sling or polespear. The catch must be legal, unassisted and weighed on a certified scale. The application must include photos of the weighing, dimensions and witness information. The categories are: men and women, saltwater and freshwater, speargun and sling/polespear. In other words, a woman can have a record black grouper taken by polespear in the ocean; a man can have a record walleye taken by a speargun in a lake, and so forth. I was inspired a few years ago to see if I could get a world record yellowfin tuna. That led me to learn to hold my breath, educate myself on equipment, get in better shape, learn all about tunas, save money for trips and make friends with other bluewater hunters. Having that goal set many other activities in motion.

I was fortunate to achieve my goal with a 179-pound tuna in Mexico. While the catch itself was exciting, I now realize that it’s the hunt, not the catch—or as they say, “it’s the journey, not the destination.” The lessons learned, the new friends made along the way, the memories—that is what becomes most precious over time. If you’re interested in pursuing a world record, here’s some quick tips: 1. Go where the fish are! Investigate areas, charters, and recent catches. 2. Use the right tool for the job. For example, Wong guns are known for bluewater hunting, Hammerhead is known for slings/polespears, etc. 3. Know the rules in advance so you don’t unwittingly disqualify a record. They can be found on the IUSA website at www. iusarecords.com. 4. Pack a certified scale and tape measure in your dive bag. You never know when that special catch will take place! Chatillon scales are known for being accurate and “certifiable.” 5. Above all, be safe and have fun. Records are an enjoyable pursuit, but they don’t compare to your health and wellbeing. With a bit of persistence and some luck, you might be able to immortalize the fish of a lifetime by claiming a world record. Life is short, so get out and enjoy it! Follow “Sheri Daye” & “The Blue Wild Ocean Adventure Expo” April 22-23, 2017 – Ft. Lauderdale - Instagram and Facebook.

For more Sheri Daye, go to

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Team MHX finds Success in 2016

H

FLW Photo

ow does a team that collectively won over $425K in 2015 go out and improve? “Maintaining the incredible work ethic of our anglers while working directly with our team to continue to develop the best blanks out there,” said Bob McKamey who is The Man when it comes to rod building and managing the team. FLW Tour pro John Cox started off the year with a bang at Lake Okeechobee with a top-12 cut and valuable AOY points. John narrowly missed the Angler of the Year in 2015 but had and extra spark when starting out the new season. An interesting side note to that Okeechobee event was Brad Hallman from Norman, Oklahoma, who was flipping dense reed heads with a custom-built MHX-FS966. “We didn’t initially know Brad was using our blanks until after the win,” Bob said. Come to find out, one of the MHX Regional Staff members Brandon Mosley, who fishes the COSTA series built Hallman’s rods before the event. So with just one event down in the FLW Tour, MHX Blanks had accounted for over $100k, not a bad start. Less than a month later, the Elite Series was on the St. Johns River in Palatka, Fla., and MHX Pro Brandon Lester found himself in the Day 1 lead and newest Team Member Bradley Roy was not far behind. Although he relinquished the lead over the next few days, Brandon and Bradley finished in the Top 20 to earn valuable AOY Points and nice paydays. Not to be outdone, John Cox and the FLW Tour were on Lake Hartwell in South Carolina the very same weekend, and Cox had the lead in that event. Although he did not win wire to wire, he was at the top when the smoke cleared on Sunday. With a Top-12 in the first event and a win in the second event, it seemed Cox wasted no time getting back to his

2015 form. On the regional event side, team member Brandon Mosley maintained a hot hand through the Costa Series and made two out of three cuts while building his rods as well as Hallman’s out on the FLW Tour. As the FLW Tour and Elite Series went on throughout the year, Cox, Roy and Lester continued to produce all while building their own rods. Cox, the most notable, who builds lake-specific rods in his hotel room during practice also has fellow anglers coming to him to fix a tip-top or a guide in an emergency. As the 2016 Season comes to a close, MHX has had an incredible year with multiple titles, a FLW Cup Championship and even team members headed to the Classic for the first time in their careers. Keep an eye out for the MHX Team as 2017 Season begins in January. If you are looking to build your own fishing rods check out MHX Rods at www.fishmhx.com and Mud Hole Custom Tackle at www.MudHole.com.

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Coastal Angler Magazine-Dec. / Rhode Island  

Coastal Angler Magazine and our interior (freshwater) publication, The Angler Magazine, are monthly editions dedicated to fishing, boating,...