How To


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Video Your Cast for Better Results

Recently, an expert from a national outdoors company came to Tampa to teach fly casting. He used a video camera on a tripod to show casters their mistakes. The novelty was showing casters their errors, hoping they’d be motivated and capable of correcting them.

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Sighting for Success

Sighting in a deer rifle is simple, if you do it right. The preseason “sight in session” is ritual for many hunters. For some, it’s a quick, simple, and inexpensive affair. For others, it can be a lengthy and frustrating process that burns up a lot of expensive ammunition.

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Fly Line Backing

Since fly line backing can cost only pennies per foot, the function of taking up space is cheaper with backing. Most importantly, backing helps you catch fish. In Florida, we grow fish that require long casts and that run when struck with the hook. They will bring your backing to hand and make you glad that you paid attention to it.

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Bow Mount Sonar

Now, every boat has sonar, and a lot of flats and bass rigs have sonar at both ends. In fact, for those who fish with a trolling motor, a sonar system up front has become pretty much standard equipment—and some of the bass guys even have a couple of big-screens mounted on the front deck.

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Preparing a Lionfish

WTVJ’s (NBC 6) Jennifer Reeves speaks with Guy Harvey’s Dave Chafin, who demonstrates the art of cleaning/preparing lionfish. With the right preparation, lionfish make for a delicious meal.

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Counter-Current Casting

This “current-countering” cast is ideal whether you’re casting from the opposite bank on a narrow creek, or from a stationary boat on bigger water. It helps around docks, and is useful when surf fly fishing, too, where waves or longshore current tends to sweep your fly down the beach too quickly.

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Top Tips for Sight Fishing

During this FS Seminar, Florida Sportsman editor Jeff Weakley gives indispensable tips on searching for fish while sight fishing. At the heart of sight fishing, he explains the importance of recognizing the aspects of shape, motion, and color while scanning for fish.

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Three Tricks With Spinnerbaits for Bass

You can do a lot more with this lure than just cast and reel it. There are a lot of ways to use a spinnerbait, and a number of different retrieves that can make it more effective. Here are three retrieve methods that can increase your catch.

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DIY Kayak

Build a wooden boat for fishing. Catching a fish on a homemade lure or rod is a real thrill. How about catching a fish from a boat you’ve built for yourself?

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Fiddler Crabs for Bait

Remember chasing fiddler crabs when you were a kid? Fiddlers are probably my all-around best bait, especially if kids are along. Catching the crabs can involve action, yelps of joy, lots of bending over, and a great lesson in biology. They’re also an irresistible bait for hungry fish.

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Renting a Private Boat

Buy a boat. Join a boat club. Pay a charter company. Or, why not rent a boat from a private owner?

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Tips for Towing Big Boats

Tips for hauling a maxed-out fishing machine safely on the highway. A center console boat over 32 feet used to be an oddity, but now you see them at the boat ramp more and more. The biggest concerns about trailering an oversized boat are dealing with state requirements and having the right size tow vehicle.

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Frog Modifications

A big, protein-rich mouthful — that’s what frogs mean to bass. Anglers mimick this top-tier forage with topwater frogs that tempt fish hiding under mats or lurking in open water. Here’s a rundown of tips for maximizing your frog success.

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After the Cast

Basic tips on how to move the food. What’s the ideal stripping cadence? Mostly, it depends on the species you’re seeking and the fly pattern you’re using. First, the basics: Learn to use both your stripping hand and rod hand correctly.

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Keeping Your Dock Lines Shipshape

Most anglers are fairly casual about their seamanship, and that’s understandable. But that shouldn’t stop you from keeping your dock lines shipshape.

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Blind Casting with a Fly Rod

If conditions aren’t suitable for sight-fishing, you can improve your odds of catching fish by limiting the search area and, like a good chess player, thinking a few moves ahead.