Spring has arrived and summer is knocking at the proverbial door and I couldn't be more excited. I love this time of the year, giant jacks, cobia, permit, tarpon, need I say more? To make it even better, this is just the beginning of the excitement, there will be months worth of great fishing ahead. Even though Florida is not as cold and dreary as most parts of the country we still get the winter time blues. You have heard me report over the last few months that the fishing is fun and we are catching trout, ladyfish, pompano, some snook and redfish but, it is now time to take your medication. This time of the year is not for the faint of heart, big nasty flies, big rods and the need for a reel with a good drag system.
A month or so ago I was invited to be part of the Hatch fly reels pro staff and without hesitation I jumped on board. I must admit my decision would have been different just a few months earlier. I thought I was "in the know" when it came to anything in the fly fishing industry but man was I wrong. Apparently I have been spending way to much time on the water. You see just a few months ago I had not even heard of a Hatch reel, until my good friend Rob brought one down with him in late January. He had explained to me that they are the newest, greatest thing since sliced bread, and like anyone that hears such high praise of something I was skeptical but yet very curious. At first glance I was very impressed but like so many things in life you can't judge a book by its cover. The next morning Rob and I went out and we had his Hatch reel mounted on a 12 weight ready to go. I thought, "hopefully I can find something that will put this reel to the test!", well it wasn't too long before we found a nice school of tarpon and Rob was hooked up. The reel worked flawlessly even though the fish threw the fly on the second jump. The next day a cold front blew in and that was the end of the fishing, so Rob left the reel behind for me to use. For the next few weeks we were hit with front after front and I had no real opportunity to put this reel to the test. I would fiddle with it in the house and every time I was amazed at how strong the drag could be set but again I thought, "a lot of reels can be set with a heavy drag in the living room, how will it react when it has been heated up by a fish after a 20 minute fight?". Finally, some nice weather hit and I had my morning to hook up with some giant jacks. Wow! this reel rocks was my first response after landing a 28 pound jack. Okay, I'm sold, I have to get my hands on some of these reels. My buddy Rob shared my response with the owner of Hatch and the rest is history. I am now the newest member of the Hatch prostaff and I could not be happier with my decision. Hatch has been making reels for 4 years now and I just wish I hadn't been living under a rock all this time. Take the time to check them out I know you too will be as impressed as I am.
Here is a quick side note. I did not get into the details of their enclosed drag system, which in my opinion make this such a superior reel. For details contact John at Hatch 877-634-4343 or check out their website at http://hatchoutdoors.com/ he can explain it for better then me. I just know I can kick a fish's ass with it.
If the link above does not work it is because you are trying to view it in Internet Explorer, and they are trying to fix the problem. Here is an alternative link that will get you in on another page. http://hatchoutdoors.com/2008/pages/9plus.html
Thanks again for every one's support. The blog is getting almost 100 hits a day and the ticket sales for the fly fishing film tour are looking like we might be heading towards a sell out. I have not done a fishing report lately but I will keep it simple it has been good! I will let some of the photos speak for themselves.