Michael Gracie

Probably Zombie Proof Too: The Fishpond Nimbus Guide Pack

gear bagYears ago I decided I didn’t want anything hanging off my shoulders besides the dreadful burden of catching fish. So I shed the vest in favor of a waist pack, caught more fish, and consumed more 7-11 Big Bites (which are a great dawn patrol breakfast treat, until you try wiping the dribbled mustard off your shirt while hauling down an elk-strewn road in the pitch black). Soon after I wondered why my pack’s waist straps started shrinking.

Back and forth I went, vest to pack, pack to vest, until I found what I thought was the ultimate fly-fishing accoutrement storage, the ole’ Mountainsmith Tour. I ran with it, touting its utility, relishing in its capacity…while secretly pissing and moaning about all the straps dangling from it, and finally settling on it being perpetually slung over my shoulder because it was so difficult to spin around for access when lashed over my hips. Yes, purpose defeated.

Fishpond Nimbus Guide PackWhat did I really want in a fly-fishing waist pack? Lots of capacity…lots! And the fewer compartments the better – one biggie accessible from the top would be supreme. Ace the custom features otherwise designed for holding floatant, dry shake, and pliers – all the things that either wind up in a shirt pocket or don’t get carried in at all. Easy in/out access for big C&F boxes, and wide hip padding so I didn’t have to split myself in two to keep the loaded pack from hitting my ankles. Go minimal “strappage” (otherwise designed for Everest expedition participants). Let’s also throw in excess room, after the stones, terrestrials, dries, nymphs and beads extra dries, for a can of bear spray Guinness.

I queried the innermost reaches of my feeble mind for clues as to why the fly-fishing industry couldn’t produce such an accessory, and concluded they just didn’t listen, just didn’t care, were focused on the almighty dollar, and that I was the sole anal retentive in a world of magnanimous, wholly satisfied anglers. Then one day early last fall I woke up a package arrived on my doorstep. Contained within was suspension of disbelief, and I immediately checked the gear closet for electronic surveillance devices. Would this thing actually go to market, or was it just a cruel joke? My suspicions were unfounded – it was real, and the answer to my prayers – the zombie antidote I ordered online after watching Resident Evil too many times Fishpond Nimbus Guide Pack.


Waist Pack Shootout: Simms Headwaters Waist Pack versus Mountainsmith Tour Pack

gear bagI’ve been a lover of waist packs for years, and have gone through several, alternately switching back to vests now and again, but always winding up back where I started. I’ve been using one exclusively for the past year, the Mountainsmith Tour, but another (the Simms Headwaters Waist Pack) recently came my way and I thought it worth doing a little comparison/contrast. So let’s go…


Winding up the month of July

The next couple of weeks are going to be fun…

  • Alex Landeen hits Colorado today. We’re going to be fishing like madmen, and probably drinking with similar fury. Scouts were sent out to check conditions, and the report back was good-to-go. Some of the Primal Fly gang are going to be in on the mayhem.
  • Going to hack together an internal RSS parser, as subcontractor to a real engineer. It’ll be a novel use of RSS, and I can’t believe that knowing a little PHP actually led to doing some coding on the side for real compensation. I find coding fun, but don’t think I’d want to do it full time – the entire internet would crash and burn if I did.
  • I’m hitting the carp water the first of next week with someone who needs convincing that they should compete in the Carp Slam. I consider it a done deal already.
  • Over the next few weeks I’ll be reviewing the buy-sell agreement for small business client. They’re concerned that either the agreement is weak or that the amount of insurance they have doesn’t fit the bill for the business size. Valuation may be in order, and since the entity itself is light on hard assets, I’ll probably be playing the discounted cash flow game.
  • By month’s end I hope to have the operating plan done for a direct sales plus lead generation concept. It’s in the green energy space, and the crew we’re assembling is A #1 top notch. Creating a sales and marketing organization from the ground up – entity, people, technology – means my hands get very dirty. I like that a lot.
  • And it may leak into August, but I’ll be tearing to pieces reviewing two pieces of fly fishing gear, an overlooked pair of rubber soled wading boots and a waist pack by someone with big name recognition. This means I’ll have to do some fishing, and while it is beginning to feel like work that in and of itself may be the best excuse ever.
  • Adieu.