Tag: fly box

A traveling note for fly fishing folks

During fly fishing travels I’ve always checked my bags. The last couple of times I flew I found TSA inspection tags on or in my multi-rod tube, and in one case my duffle (which contained fly boxes and reels) was completely ransacked. My rods are too much for carry-on (all three-piece), but during this trip I decided to avoid the reel rumble by toting everything else with me.big fly box

I knew I wouldn’t have a problem with reels and lines, but with my fly box containing slightly more than #20 Griffith’s Gnats I pinged Pete McDonald (figuring he knows salty travel pretty well) to see if there was any risk of my box getting bounced at the X-ray machine. I got a mixed response (i.e. carrying them is no problem but I check mine regardless), so I decided to take the chance that TSA understood big hooks are dangerous to nothing other than big fish. It turned out to be smooth sailing.

I wasn’t planning on seeing any bonefish or permit, but I left the crystal shrimp, Charlies, and other assorted small goodies in the box, hoping I might find a carp or two in one of the twenty-seven-point-nine million retention ponds located in the southern suburban sprawl. That bet didn’t pay off – it turns out you have to jump through hoops to get even triploid clean-up crews into the Sunshine State – despite tromping around a half-dozen developments I only saw one grassie, and it was tucked under the safest of cover.

No need to worry, fans of the crappiest luckiest fly fisherman on the Third Rock from the Sun, a blow by blow of my backcountry adventure is coming forthwith.

MG signing off (to pole around a salty creek)

What do fly boxes say about a person?

The other day, I was standing by a clear river tying on a fly when a colleague commented that I was carrying two fly boxes. Yes, I used to be a one-box fisherman. It was all about being minimalist – carrying as little gear as possible – and it extended to flies and boxes as well.

Unfortunately, I’ve grown older, and despite not feeling all that much wiser I’ve at least figured out that trout do not need to be handed any advantages whatsover. Now I carry two boxes…sometimes three. Gotta assume the weather might change, or that I will get lost and be forced to strip big streamers until sun-up (darn, that would suck, eh?).

My primary below deck box, usually found lashed to my lanyard and stuffed in a front shirt pocket:



Yea, there are a few dries in that one, but you get the idea.

Now, half dry, and half big and fast (but generally big):


People look at me funny when I tell them I have dries and streamers in the same box – they also carry like 12 boxes with them everywhere they go.

This one doesn’t follow me everywhere, but you must be prepared for monsters lurking in the shadows:


The latter two are handled carefully, as I don’t have them secured around my neck like the first, and I’ve been known to drop full boxes in Class 4 rapids.

Sometime down the road, I’ll open up my salty set, but meanwhile the question remains…what do fly boxes say about a person?

In my case, self-analysis says I’m a neat freak, in need of glasses, and broke!

Are your boxes talking to you?