June’s HCFT Tie One Off Challenge

Jun 4, 2016

Welcome to June’s Tie One Off challenge. Remember, in order to be eligible for the prize you must be signed up for our SWC Newsletter. You can sign up under the Newsletter heading on this page half way down on the right hand side of the screen.
Post it on Instagram with the hashtags #tieoneoff #hcft #skinnywaterculture. Or post it directly to our Tie One Off posts on the SWC or HCFT Facebook pages. The winner will be selected at random, quality of the fly does not matter as long as you put forth the effort. Winner of this months challenge will win a new, not for sale yet SWC SS tee.

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May’s HCFT Tie One Off Challenge

May 6, 2016

Welcome to May’s Tie One Off challenge. Remember, in order to be eligible for the prize you must be signed up for our SWC Newsletter. You can sign up under the Newsletter heading on this page half way down on the right hand side of the screen.
Post it on Instagram with the hashtags #tieoneoff #hcft #skinnywaterculture. Or post it directly to our Tie One Off posts on the SWC or HCFT Facebook pages. The winner will be selected at random, quality of the fly does not matter as long as you put forth the effort. Winner of this months challenge will win a HCFT hat and a SWC Candy short sleeve tee.

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ENP or Bust

Mar 20, 2016

While timing and planning is always an important consideration, it often weighs too heavily on the mind and soul. Places and activities we have set apart for enjoyment are often overshadowed by possibility and “what-ifs”. Being positive helps dilute the reality, however it can be dangerous. You’ll eventually have to accept what you’re capable of and the limitations of your knowledge and craftiness. Too many times I’ve sat and thought about the physical aspects of events and trips leading to these moments I enjoy and never the mental calamities that follow.

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February’s HCFT Tie One Off Challenge

Feb 5, 2016

Welcome to February’s Tie One Off challenge. Remember, in order to be eligible for the prize you must be signed up for our SWC Newsletter. You can sign up under the Newsletter heading on this page half way down on the right hand side of the screen.
Post it on Instagram with the hashtags #tieoneoff #hcft #skinnywaterculture. Or post it directly to our Tie One Off posts on the SWC or HCFT Facebook pages. The winner will be selected at random, quality of the fly does not matter as long as you put forth the effort. Winner of this months challenge will win a HCFT hat and a SWC Candy long sleeve tee.

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January’s HCFT Tie One Off Challenge

Jan 8, 2016

Welcome to January’s Tie One Off challenge. Remember, in order to be eligible for the prize you must be signed up for our SWC Newsletter. You can sign up under the Newsletter heading on this page half way down on the right hand side of the screen.
Post it on Instagram with the hashtags #tieoneoff #hcft #skinnywaterculture. Or post it directly to our Tie One Off posts on the SWC or HCFT Facebook pages. The winner will be selected at random, quality of the fly does not matter as long as you put forth the effort. Winner of this months challenge will win a HCFT hat and a brand new HCFT Bobbinhead Vintage S/S tee.

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Decembers HCFT Tie One Off Challenge

Dec 4, 2015

Welcome to Decembers HCFT Tie One Off challenge. We are changing things up a bit this month. Due to the overwhelming response we’ve had to this little giveaway we’ve been doing for over a year now we wanted to up the prize for the last one of the year.

Decembers challenge winner will receive a HCFT stripping mat. There hasn’t been to many of these made and they aren’t for sale (at the moment). These things are great for maintaining line control when the wind is kicking you and your lines butt on the bow of the boat.

This month we will not be supplying you with step by step directions for this fly. We will give you the photo and the recipe, but it is your job to use the skills you’ve learned over the past year of this challenge and apply them to this fly.

This months fly was tied by HCFT good friend Capt. Rob Kramarz of Chaos Theory Charters in Summerland Key, FL . Rob is an insanely talented angler and fly tyer, one of the best we know and is a great friend. A lot of his flys are kept under wraps and only his clients are able to see most of his creations. We’ve seen them and seen first hand how productive they are. We were lucky enough to be able to share one of his great crab patterns called “The Soft Shell” for this months challenge.

So here it is, be sure to post your fly on IG with #tieoneoff or direct on our Facebook page. Also, you must be signed up for the SWC Newsletter to be eligible to win. Good luck, Happy tying.

Recipe

  • Hook: #2 Mustad 34007
  • Thread: Fire Orange
  • Body: Best Buy Supreme Hair Tan
  • Blonde Hackle
  • Crystal Flash
  • Orange Bunny
  • Rootbeer Orange Tipped Legs
  • Mono Eyes
  • Medium Dumbbells

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Wednesdays Are For Wondering Pt. 1

Nov 30, 2015

A dry boat meets the water and the day’s worries are left behind. The trailer creeks and clunks every mile until its rest. The screech of metal taught friction from my right foot as I apply force to the brake petal. The vehicle slows and comes to a brief stop. For only seconds I wish for it to continue its mechanical existence. With the boat residing in the current, I park my vehicle in its resting place for several hours as I submerge myself amongst all things foreign to most. Those that keep themselves at home away from interaction with nature and the wild unknown, need not apply for friendship. If you are looking for a greater porpouse in life, grab a cold one and come aboard.

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Casting for Cats 2015

Nov 11, 2015

16x20 PRESSI haven’t posted anything in a very long time but, I really wanted to share my incredible experience and hopefully encourage other lady anglers to participate in Casting for Cats; a back country tournament in Islamorada, Florida next year.

A few years ago, Sug and I found out about Casting for Cats, a non-profit charity benefiting the feral cats in the upper Keys, through their Director Sharon Mahoney Ellenwood. The proceeds pay for the spay/neutering, fostering, adoption process, and clinical care through Upper Keys Veterinary Hospital. Along with providing much needed equipment to the Upper Keys Veterinary Hospital like a top of the line x-ray machine and kennels.

This ladies only tournament is held at the beautiful Guy Harvey Outpost in Islamorada. The tournament has a bait, artificial, and fly division that awards points for each species you catch out of Tarpon, Bonefish, Permit, Snook, Redfish, Trout, Jack Crevalle, and Catfish. Any lady angler that can catch all of the species has the potential to win a Hells Bay Professional Skiff. It hasn’t happened yet but, really I’m just getting started (wink wink). The first night kickoff party is how this event gets started and it is a blast! Sharon and her wonderful volunteers set up a huge a silent auction and a large display of all of the trophy paintings that many skilled lady anglers will be winning; not to mention the hilarious “Kitty Litter Dig” giving every attendee the chance to win some fun prizes!

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The next morning all the anglers checked in across the street at the Lorelei Cabana Bar. The horn was blown and we were all off! Last year was my first time participating with Captain Mike O’Dell of Salt Water Experience, who so graciously offered his wisdom and experience for the event. This year we partnered up again and rounded out Team “Show Me Your Kitties” with a great friend Jason Fernandez who wanted to capture photographs of what was sure to be an incredible day!

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I didn’t know it at the time but, I was about to have many first and a new personal best! Captain Mike decided Tarpon would be our first species, so off we went, and of course they were out and very hungry. I really wanted to attempt to fish this tournament on fly. I had been practicing my casting skills with a handy practice rod on loan from Captain Derek Rust. Unfortunately, the wind and rain had other ideas and we went for live bait. The tarpon were rolling all around us and at one point I had one chasing my line like he was a clumsy kid throwing popcorn in his mouth, he rolled over and over trying to eat. I flew a silver kite so close to the boat I thought Jason might have to brace himself for impact. The experiences play back in my head as I type this and I can’t stop smiling. I went one for six on Tarpon that morning and if that wasn’t enough I actually caught my personal best Jack Crevalle at 40 inches.FullSizeRender

My life felt complete! I had accomplished something I didn’t think possible with the weather conditions so I suggested lunch and a beer to celebrate! Captain Mike had other plans though and we went for our next species, a Redfish, but they eluded us and time was running short so we hit one last spot to try for a Bonefish. With a half hour till my line had to be out of the water the unthinkable happens. A beautiful Bonefish! (Excuse the silly yikes face but, my RCI Sunglasses are on point!)

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After successfully hooking two Bonefish the 3:00 o’clock bell rung and that was it! Our windy, rainy, incredible adventure on the most beautiful water Florida has to offer was over and back to the Lorelei we went to for check in. After a quick shower, I headed out to the Outpost pool to find my family laughing and playing in the water with skies that seemed to clear just in time for them to play.

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Next came the awards ceremony and delicious prime rib dinner also held at the Outpost. All of the lady anglers being in one room, laughing and sharing stories about their day, made it the perfect ending. Read More…

November’s HCFT Tie One Off Challenge

Nov 6, 2015

Welcome to November”s Tie One Off challenge. Remember, in order to be eligible for the prize you must be signed up for our SWC Newsletter. You can sign up under the Newsletter heading on this page half way down on the right hand side of the screen.
Post it on Instagram with the hashtags #tieoneoff #hcft #skinnywaterculture. Or post it directly to our Tie One Off posts on the SWC or HCFT Facebook pages. The winner will be selected at random, quality of the fly does not matter as long as you put forth the effort. Winner of this months challenge will win a HCFT hat and a brand new HCFT Bobbinhead Vintage S/S tee.

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Steinhatchee Pumpkin Patch

Oct 6, 2015

Most bachelor parties include strippers swinging on poles and an absurd amount of alcohol, followed by a head banging hangover the following morning.  With J.C. getting married later this month, his idea of a bachelor party was a little less mainstream.   Instead of strippers we were in search of schooling redfish on the beautiful grass flats of Steinhatchee, FL.

We set off on Thursday from Vero Beach after working a half day and arrived later that evening.  Anticipation was high as we knew (or thought we knew) what was in store for us the following morning on our first day of fishing.  We awoke to the smell of coffee and immediately noticed that the cold front had arrived and the wind was blowing more than we expected.

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We launched at Hagen’s cove which is only possible on a high tide which was fine since we planned on returning the following high tide.  Fishing was decent in the morning but high winds and cloud cover kept fly fishing to a minimum.  A few decent reds and trout were caught before a storm coming in from the Gulf caught up to us.

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Launching the boats at Hagen’s turned out to be a bad idea as the rain came early and we had nowhere to go.  Dry land for about 300 yards from us to the ramp meant that we were going nowhere anytime soon.  We rode out the storm and after about four hours of getting rained on we finally got in.

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When we woke up on day two we checked the weather and to our surprise the rain chances had dropped and the outcome was looking pretty good.  Gusty winds were still present so fly fishing was still tough as clouds made sight fishing nonexistent.  “Drift sock deployed” became a common quote on the skiff as this was probably our most valued item aboard. It slowed us down perfectly to present soft plastics where as without it we would not have been able to cover as much ground with a jig.

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As our last day of fishing was coming to an end, we heard a yell coming from the distance and we knew somebody had hooked a pig.  We idled over to see J.C. holding a 38″ redfish which he caught in about three feet of water on a DOA jerk bait.  An awesome way to end an amazing trip!

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After a long day on the water nothing is better than some drinks and playing Kan Jam.

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Accommodations were provided by Steinhatchee River Inn.  If you are going to stay in this area, this is definitely the place to do so.  Julie in the front office is the best!  She had fresh brewed coffee for us every morning and always made sure we had everything we needed.

Some more pics…

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