Don’t take life for granted, Go chase your dreams now!

Where do you want to go this year fishing for fish? Where would you want to live, that way you could chase trout when you get off work?

Do you really need that TRD 4 runner or that 6 bedroom house in that secluded neighborhood?

My wife live in a modest house, drive cars with over 100k miles on it, we don’t eat out all the time but what we do have is tons of memories. In the last year we have traveled to Florida to hang out with our good friends, the “Hicks Family” where we fished in the everglades for a week, traveled to see my brother in Hawaii where we caught large bonefish, went to Idaho to chase big cutthroat, went to Wyoming to fish some of my favorite lakes and rivers, and of course have already been all over Montana including Whitefish, Missoula, Glacier National Park, Craig, Butte, Bozeman, Fort Smith, White Sulphur Springs and many more… fishing the most popular rivers and also hidden rivers and streams that one might not even glance twice at.

Don’t let life pass you by and wait…. We are nor guaranteed tomorrow but what we do have is today and today is a good day to live your dreams.

My brother is a master of this philosophy and has lived in some of the most expensive places in the United States. He currently lives in Hawaii pursuing his dream of catching the perfect waves. He takes jobs where he works to get by and then surfs every chance he gets. He is so happy and the whole town has fallen in love with his spirit and contagious personality.

Where do you want to go?? Where will your heart take you?? Don’t take life for granted or your passions… God gives us dreams and passions and its up to us to go through the open doors that present themselves everyday.

I hope to see you pursuing your passions someday sooner than laterūüôā.

 

Road Trip To Montana

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Matt if you didn’t live in Montana, what would you include in your¬†ultimate¬†road trip¬†to the Big Sky State?

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Mine would include lots and lots of rivers and fly fishing. If it was my ultimate road trip I wouldn’t do anything less than two weeks. Way too much to fish in this state!!

*Here’s a breakdown of what I would do day by day. I hope this helps you in planning your ultimate dream vacation to Montana.*

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Day 1 thru 3: Fly into Billings, MT. This is my hometown and it’s a great place to start your journey. Stop in at the Burger Dive¬†and get yourself one of the best burgers before you start your road trip. Then head west to Billings best fly shop and one of the best fly shops in the state East Rosebud Fly Shop. Rich is an entertaining and¬†genuine¬†guy that will¬†help you¬†with your¬†fly selection¬†and give you a good taste of Montana hospitality.¬†

Big Horn River, Fort Smith MT

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End your day 1 with ending up at the Big Horn River in Montana. There are lots of places to choose from when picking lodging. You can camp at the many campsites or if you want a lodge you can do that as well. I guide out of The Big Horn Trout Shop and they can help you with anything you might need and our some of the greatest people you’ll meet.

The Big Horn River is one of the best tail waters in Montana and the world. Your looking at an average fish population of 5,000 fish per mile on the upper stretches of the Big Horn. I would suggest floating the upper 3 miles the first day and then the second day do Bighorn access to 13 mile. 

Make sure you check out Garrisons Stroker Resort after your day of fishing for great food and great people. Just remember to bring your own beer or wine because this area is in a dry community.

 

Stillwater River, Columbus MT

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Day 4: Let’s start heading west and go to the river I grew up on with my dad. I have fished this river since I was 10 and has a very special place in my heart. You get great fly fishing plus rapidsūüôā. You’ll head to Columbus, MT to find this gem. Go into the local fly shop Stillwater Anglers¬†and the owner Chris will help you with everything you need for your day on the stillwater. I would suggest hiring a guide on this river unless you plan to wade it. This is a freestone river with lots of big bugs for fun top water action. Lot’s of public access and loads of fun.¬†

As far as lodging: There are campgrounds and hotels in the area. 

 

Yellowstone River, Livingston MT

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Day 5-6: Let’s keep going west and fish one of the most famous and the largest freestone river in the united states. You will be fishing for big browns, cutthroats, and rainbows while being surrounded by the paradise valley that makes every picture you take a perfect picture. Stop in at the Sweetwater Fly Shop near Livingston and go visit Dan¬†Vermilion. Dan is an amazing guy that is very passionate about the rivers here in Montana. He has done so much for the fishing community and will help you in your journey big time.¬†

You can wade the Yellowstone but to get the full effect, I would highly suggest floating it in a drift boat. You’ll be glad you did. There are so many unique beautiful floats you can do here is this valley. I suggest fishing in for at least two days.¬†

After your tired from a hard day of fishing be sure to check out the rib and chop house in the town of Livingston. Best steaks ever!! You will be planning your next trip here just for that steak. 

 

Madison River, Ennis Montana

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Day 7-8: No Montana trip is complete without checking out the Madison river near Ennis, MT. This river is a fly fishing dream. Tons of riffles, big bugs, and so much beauty. There are many amazing fly shops in the area. I would suggest stopping at any one of them to get you flies for the day and just to check in. Make sure you fill your cooler with my favorite beer, Salmon Fly Honey Rye! Soooo Good!!  

This is another place you’ll want to stay a couple days to get the full effect. Floating this river is my favorite thing to do but you can also have plenty of fun wading it and tons of great¬†opportunities. Make sure to check out the Slide Inn when you are there. This is Kelly Galloup’s place and he has done so much for streamer fishing and fishing in general for us in the fly fishing industry.¬†

 

Beaver head River, Dillon MT

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Day 9: This is one of my favorite tail waters in all of Montana. It’s a mini Big Horn and has more of a spring creek feel to it. This is where Tracy and I have caught some of our biggest fish in the state.¬†

This is a great river to wade with lots of public access but of course my favorite way to explore it is in my drift boat. Something about being able to float down a whole section of river and stopping wherever I want is kind of nice. 

Stop in at the Frontier Anglers in Dillon, Montana to go get your bugs and a plan of where to go for the day. They are great there and will give you lots of insight. While your in Dillon make sure to check out the biggest Patagonia outlet store. 

 

Big Hole River, Melrose MT

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Day 10: You can come to Montana without experience the big hole river. Don’t let the tea color water detour you from fishing this river because that is just the norm here. Go check out Sun Rise Fly Shop in Melrose and get the scoop on what’s going on with the Big Hole that day. Fish big dries, streamers, or even nymph. Sit back and enjoy the beauty of one of the best rivers in the state.¬†

 

Blackfoot River, Bonner MT

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Day 11: Go check out the river that is referenced to in the famous book “The River Runs Through It”. It’s a technical row but doesn’t disappoint. Lots of fish and they are looking up for bugs on the top. One of my favorite floats in Montana for sure. Give Montana Troutaholics a call to float down this section of river. You’ll need the local knowledge plus Joel the guy is a great dude to float down the river with.¬†

 

Flathead River, Whitefish MT

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Day 12: This is truly as Montana as you can get!! One of the prettiest floats you can ever go on. Talk with my friend Rich at Northern Rockies Outfitters to book your trip. You will float down pristine fiji water clear waters while targeting beautiful trout in water that you can see down to the bottom almost anywhere.  This is a must as well on your road trip. 

 

Missouri River, Craig MT

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Day 13 and 14: Head on over to Craig Montana to fish the mighty MO for a couple of days. I would check in to Head Hunters Fly Shop¬†and see what’s the scoop for those days you are there. This river is one of my favorites and for a lot of people. It’s a great way to end your Montana road trip and also will make you want to come back for some more.¬†

 

I hope this helps you on your adventure to the Big Sky State. There is so much to do and see here, so make sure you leave yourself with plenty of time to explore. 

Have a great summer and¬†catch a few fishūüôā.¬†

 

 

 

 

 

TOP 10 CHRISTMAS GIFTS FOR THE OUTDOORS MAN OR WOMAN IN YOUR FAMILY (best 2015 outdoor presents)

TOP 10 Christmas Gifts for the Outdoors Man or Woman in your family!!!!!

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Before I go through a list of great gifts for your loved ones this Christmas, I just want to wish everybody a very beautiful and blessed holiday season this year. I hope you find lots of joy and happiness in this beautiful time of year. I’m sorry if you’re going through hard times and pray things get better and that a little miracle awakens this holiday season to bring you cheer!¬†

Love, 

Montana Matt

These items are in no particular order. They are just things that I know your loved ones will love to open this holiday seasonūüôā.

#1- Everybody has a certain fly they caught that one fish they love to tell stories about. Why not make them a gift that will always remind them of that fish. 

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Click this link to get one made: Christmas Fishing Ornament or try making your own.

#2- My friend Jesse from White Oak Hammocks gifted my wife and I a Hammock when he came to visit me in Montana this year. One of the best outdoor gifts I have ever received! My dad and I every afternoon during our elk hunts would take a nap in one of these and it was amazing!! Your loved ones with fall in love with these as they’re are super light weight, easy to set up¬†and amazing to relax in.

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Go to the White Oak Hammocks website to see all your options and order yours today. You can also visit their facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/whiteoakhammocks/.

#3- Patagonia is one of my favorite companies in the fishing industry and they have my favorite cold weather jacket¬†I’ve¬†ever seen. It’s called the Patagonia 3-in-1 River Salt Jacket and it’s outstanding. Below is a slideshow of the Jacket and also a video.¬†

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If you want to order this jacket go click this link Patagonia 3-in-1 River Salt Jacket or I would highly suggest going to the general Patagonia site and look at all their great products by clicking this link: Patagonia Home

#4- I’m in love with Korkers boots and especially the Devil’s Canyon boot. A lot of the places I like to fish on my spare time include some pretty¬†technical¬†hiking to get to some good spots.¬†This boot will do that and give you lots of support. Korkers has boots for every budget and in my opinion some of the best boots for the money in the fishing industry.¬†

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Order these boots by clicking this link: Devil’s Canyon Boot¬†or look at everything Korkers has to offer by clicking this link:¬†http://www.korkers.com/

#5- Every fisherman and especially guide needs a great net!! The people at Fishpond have outdone themselves with the Nomad series nets. They are absolutely the best nets in the industry and I love the new rep your state nets. Check out the slideshow below and even if your state isn’t included, don’t worry, there are general nets for you as well. They also have additional accessories that protect your net and a quick release system that works great.

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Here is the link to order your net today: Nomad Nets. Fishpond is an absolutely amazing company with so many great products so please check out there other products by clicking this link and seeing everything they have to offer: http://fishpondusa.com/

#6- This is the ultimate present but one that will be a game changer for your life and your weekend plans. Go all out and purchase a drift boat from Clacka Craft. They are absolutely the best boats in the industry and it is a purchase you will never regret. The time on the river with your family is something you will cherish forever and ever. My favorite boat in the Clacka Craft series is the Clacka Craft 16′ low profile fly pod because I love bringing lots of streamers and tons of flies. This boat gives you tons of storage and is amazing. My suggestion is to go to Clacka Craft’s website and customize a boat that will fit your needs and no one else’sūüôā.¬†

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Check out all your Clacka Craft options at this link: ClackaCraft.com. I hope you enjoy yours as much as our family enjoys ours.

#7- So we just had a beautiful baby boy named Wesleyūüôā. I can’t stop thinking about all the adventures I want to take him on already and I found the perfect accessory for usūüôā. It’s a backpacking bag from my favorite backpacking company. It’s the Osprey Poco series. It’s the perfect backpack to include your little one¬†on all your adventures. Their are many different options and what I love most about it is how fast you can change the settings on it that way you can be the one carrying your kid or your wife can.¬†

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Click this link to view all the different carriers Osprey have to offer: Child Carriers. Also, if you don’t have kids but just love backpacking check out all the backpacking bags Osprey has to offer by clicking this link:¬†http://www.ospreypacks.com/

#8- If you are series about fishing you need a great pair of waders. Simms Fishing has the most durable, best warranty, and a wader that most guides in the industry use. They are inexpensive but the reason why is because they work and work the best. Here is a slideshow of all the different ones to choose from. 

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Order your Simms waders by clicking this link: Simms Waders. Simms also has so many other great products and I highly suggest you go check out their website at: http://www.simmsfishing.com/

#9- One of my favorite things to buy is hats. Hats are a really fun accessory and one of the best companies out their right now for hats is Rep Your Water. They have all sorts of hats that will recognize the places you fish and live in. Here is a slideshow of a few hats of many that you can select from. 

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I highly recommend clicking the this link: http://www.repyourwater.com/. They have way more than just hats and you will fall in love with something for your loved one.

#10- Every fly fisherman needs accessories, fly lines, tippet, leaders and everything that goes with fly fishing. Go to RIO Products and look at everything they have to offer. They have everything you need to give your loved one what they need for the upcoming fishing season. Here is a slideshow of some of the things you can order on the RIO Website. 

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To check out everything RIO has to offer click this link: RIO Products. There is so many things that you can find for presents and stocking stuffers.

I hope you enjoyed my TOP 10 Presents for 2015.

The problem doing a post like this is that there are so many other amazing things to purchase for your outdoor enthusiast in your family but I hope this helps you out this Christmas season.

 

Have a blessed Christmas and God Bless you and your family!!! 

Who is Matt (Montana Matt)

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The internet is a great thing and also a horrible thing. It can show you so many great things with a single click but it can also steer you to believe false things about people because of one persons opinion.

Who is Montana Matt?

I am just a normal guy. I am 32 years old and I have a fly fishing addiction. I have had my addictions since I was very young and can’t seem to kick it.

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I have a beautiful family that I love so much. My wife Tracy is the best wife a husband could ask for. She is loving, caring and a great mother. I have a son named Wesley that is only 1 week old but is all I can think about lately.

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I love to fish and be outdoors but what I love even more is to be friendly to everyone I meet. That person could be a random clerk at a gas station or a vice president of a Billion dollar company. It just doesn’t matter. I was born with a heart to love all people. That’s why it hurts so bad when I hear people don’t like me with out even knowing me personally.

 

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One of my favorite things is to teach people to enjoy the outdoors. That might include fishing, hunting, hiking, biking, shooting, or even Frisbee golf. There is just something about being outside that is so good for the soul and for the human spirit.

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My heart is very soft and I care for people so much. Even though I might act strong it hurts so bad when I hear people talking bad about me. I try so hard to be a positive influence in this industry and I sure hope you see that. If you don’t, let me tell you, I only want the best for everybody in the fly fishing industry and hope all their dreams come true. I don’t have a jealous bone in my body unless you are always catching huge fish but then I just want to know your secretūüôā.

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My wife and I bought this hat when we were in California on a business trip. It’s describes my personality perfectly. I love being in a good mood and it’s hard for me not to be always in a good mood. Even when things are going horribly wrong in my life I always try and think of the good things. I hope you can do the same in your life. It makes a huge difference because dwelling on the bad will only make things worse. It also helps having an adorable baby and a beautiful wife always by my sideūüôā.

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I have been so lucky to fish in some amazing places and to fish with some of the people I look up to in this fishing world. The only reason I think this has been possible is because of my constant good attitude and always trying to help people first before I help myself. It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you stop thinking about yourself all the time and think, how can I help someone else?

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I sure hope you enjoy my blog post and I sure hope you never think I am full of myself. I really only try to post about things that will help you to succeed and help you have more success and fun on the river. If you ever feel like I’m doing something wrong please email me and I will try to change the best I can.

I love all of you, even the people that are quick to judge and think I’m a jerk. I promise if we ever get to fish together you will quickly change your mind and realize I am in this profession to love people and help people fall in love with a sport that will forever change their lives for the better.

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Thanks for following our adventures and even though I’m not the best at getting back to people quickly, know that I truly appreciate you and hope I can help you in your ¬†journey by being an inspiration in your life to live out your passions.

Lastly I want to thanks Jesus for the love I have for people and fly fishing and how I am able to experience it both as a guide or whatever I do in my life.

Go for your dreams and don’t let anybody detour you from what God wants for you and your life. Lastly, get rid of jealousy and hate in you heart. It will be such a blessing in your life¬†to only hope the best for people and help them get there. By you helping them you will also help yourself, trust me!

Thanks for reading my post and I hope many blessing in your life!!

How things can change fast

This picture was taken on Saturday the 14th of November. I was doing what I love most. I was spending time with people I love and having fun in the wild outdoors. At this time, I knew my wife was pregnant with our beautiful baby with a due date of Decwmber 7th, 2015.

My mind was filled with things like “how do I install that car seat?”, “I should put together that swing soon”, “I wonder if it’s going to be a boy or a girl”. I had no idea what was about to happen…..

 On November 17, 2015 our world would change for the better because of a baby boy entering into this world and into our loving arms. Wesley Arnett Thompson, 8lbs and 21 inches presented himself to us and my life is forever changed. I still want to fish, hunt, hike and be outside but now I want my best new friend to be with me. I know it will be a while but I can’t help to think of the future and how much brighter it will be with both him and Tracy in my life.

  Westley has already watched the Broncos beat the Bears on my lap, scared to death every time I yelled at the TV with excitement on every great play. 
I always wanted a great life for Tracy and I but looking at Wesley I would sacrifice all my dreams for him to have his dreams come true. There’s just something about being a dad that changes your heart and soul.

  I don’t let the little things bother me near as much. I see other people as kids even if they are old. I see their parents hoping the same for them and now, more than ever, I want to help them reach there goals more than I want to reach mine.

There isn’t enough time for jealousy and hate. That time is just wasted and you will never get it back.   

What can you do today, tomorrow, or the next day to help someone instead of creating a road block for them? I guarantee more success for you and your loved ones if you care just as much for someone else’s dreams as much as yours.

My heart is forever changed with my boy Wesley being born and knowing how much I want his dreams to come true by people loving him like I do… that way, doors will always open for him.

  
Treat others the way you would want to be treated. Let’s help this future generation be a generation of kids that are so loved and nourished from good role models they don’t have a chance of not succeeding. 

With lots of love comes hope and with lots of hope comes joy and with lots of joy comes happiness for yourself and others.

Thank you lord for blessing my wife and I with this little miracle. We promise to show him unconditional love throughout his days on this earth. We love you, God with all of our hearts and souls and can’t thank you enough for our baby boy, friends, families, and complete strangers we get to love on everyday. 

Amen!

  

Top 10 things not to say to pregnant women (Men don’t do this!!)

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As you may or may not know my wife Tracy and I are expecting our first baby in December. We couldn’t be more excited about this new adventure in our life but at the same time there are so many things that I have learned the hard way in these 8 months.

So with that said here are my TOP 10 THINGS NOT TO SAY TO YOUR LADY WHEN SHE IS PREGNANT, that I might or might not of saidūüėČ.

#1:¬†This pregnancy has flown by. It seems like just yesterday we told everybody we were expecting. (You will get the look of death or if you decide to say this just make sure she doesn’t have anything sharp in her hands)

#2:¬†I’m so excited to take off two weeks for hunting season. I really need a relaxing trip with my dad before this baby is born. (Just rephrase it a little and don’t say anything about how you need some relaxing time)

#3: Let me just finish typing this text before I help you with your compression socks. (Big mistake boys!!! If she says jump, you say how high! Drop everything when she needs something. I still need help with this one)

#4:¬†You’re acting like a baby! (Say everything in your head first before you say it out loud to your spouse….. trust me!)

#5:¬†John Doe’s wife went fishing with him when she was 8 months pregnant. (Every pregnancy and girl is different. Never compare another girl to your lady….never….. unless¬†your telling how much more bad ass she is than someone else)

#6: To save money you should just where my sweatshirts and sweats. (What was I thinking!!! You go let her buy stuff that makes her feel cute because in turn a happy wife equals a happy husband)

#7:¬†I’m really thinking we should only have 1 kid because i’m not sure if I can handle¬†these mood swings another go around. (OMG… it’s so easy now looking back to see why I shouldn’t of said that but guys just don’t go there)

#8:¬†Don’t laugh at her newly developed kankles and say “well now we¬†don’t have to worry about you falling off the boat and sinking because you have your own personalized floating devices now” ¬†(No jokes about anything to do with swelling! It’s just not that funny to them……ever!!)

#9:¬†I need a nap. I couldn’t sleep at all last night because of you moving around so much. (If you didn’t sleep than she definitely didn’t sleep! She will remind you of that for the next hour or so :)…. ha ha)

#10:¬†Why do you lose everything it’s so annoying (Pregnancy brain does exist! Whatever you do, don’t get to frustrated at them for losing things because they are probably just as or more annoyed than you are)

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I hope you enjoyed my top 10 things not to say to your pregnant wife. With all that being said it is such an amazing experience and we have truly loved so many things about it.

Have a great day!ūüôā

Top 10 streamers you need to have this fall!! (Time for big streamers for big trout!!)

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I hope this post helps you out in your search of big trout this fall. There is nothing like getting a tug from a streamer eating trout and then realizing it is your biggest fish to date.

Here are my top 10 favorite streamers for big trout. I hope you enjoy it and remember to fish a river between two lakes. For some weird reason big fish love it thereūüėČ.

All flies are from Catch Fly Fishing “They Just Taste Better”

#1 streamer to have in your collection is:

Beebe’s Candyman 

This streamer has so much action and I love the heavy head on it. I like to use a strip strip pause technique with the tip of my rod in the water to make sure it is swimming back to you in different water columns by how deep or shallow your tip is in the water.

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# 2 streamer to have in your collection is:

Bjorn’s Mr. Creepo

This streamer has so much action and I have caught so many nice fish with this pattern. Very good pattern when dealing with picky streamer eating fish.

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# 3 Streamer to have in your collection is: 

CATCH’s Peanut Candy

I believe lots of movement and natural movement is the name of this game. That’s why some of my favorite streamers have lots of movement and action. Here is another great streamer to add to your collection.

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# 4 Streamer to have in your collection is: 

Eric’s Jealousy

This pattern is light weight and is great for those shallow areas with deep troughs where the fish are holding. Strip, Strip, Strip and then pause that bad boy where you think the trout are holding and then strip, strip, strip again really fast and then pause. Get ready!

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# 5 Streamer to have in your collection is: 

SS Sculpin Leech

This sculpin pattern is one of my favorites. I like to play around with the weight on this fly. I’ll add weight to this fly by pinching different size weights to the hook line that runs from the hook to the head of the fly. Sometimes just a little more weight is all it takes to get that picky trout to eat that fly. It changes the movement and depth and I hope it works for you as well.

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#6 Streamer to have in your collection is: 

Gizzard Shad

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This is one of the most simple but effective patterns. I like to experiment with different size barbell weights for the eyes. This pattern gives the fly a very effective jigging like action when stripped back correctly. Have fun with this pattern and get ready for some big hits!

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# 7 Streamer to have in your collection is: 

The Grinch

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If you love fishing the Stillwater river in Montana and the Yellowstone River in Montana. Let me tell you about a pattern that is a day in day out fish smasher. The grinch was first introduced to me by Kory at the Otters Den (now Stillwater Anglers) Kory taught me how to fish this pattern on the stillwater and the Yellowstone and has been one of my favorite streamers ever since. Thanks Kory!

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Kory past owner and fellow Grinch streamer lover.

# 8 Streamer to have in your collection is: 

Belly Dancer Zonker

What can I say about this streamer?? The belly dancer attracts big fish and works great all year but especially in the fall and winter.

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# 9 Streamer to have in your collection is: 

Schlappen Bugger

Every streamer box needs Buggers in it. It’s one of the most basic but best streamers out there. I have caught more fish on buggers than probably any other streamer out there.

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#10 Streamer to have in your collection is: 

Zukowski’s Sculpin Soup

Talk about a realistic sculpin with some weight! This is a great streamer to get down and dirty in dark places where the big boys live!

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I hope this post helps you this fall!! Go out there and catch a big boy trout!!

Some of my favorite memories of this summer so far….

#1 thing of 2015: Has been the announcement of our little one that is due on December 7thūüôā. Things are going to get crazy but I am so ready for this adventure. It will be a lot of fun to share the love I have with him or her everyday.

# 2 Was seeing my brother for the first time in 3 years. Family means so much to me and to have my surf crazy brother come all the way from Hawaii to see us meant so much to me. We will be visiting him in March in Maui and he can’t wait to be an uncle. I wish he lived closer! I love this guy so much and he can make me smile and laugh the most out of anybody I know. Love you Shawn!

# 3 Has to be hanging out with my wife and all the adventures we have together. She is always my # 1 supporter and she has taught me so much about life and how to love people unconditionally. Plus she is one of the best fly fishers out there.

# 4 My cousin is in New Zealand right now for the next 6 months or so chasing big trout. It has been so much fun teaching him how to fly fish and now seeing him pursue his own fly fishing dreams. He is a very special guy and I hope he catches a big one out there! If you haven’t taught someone to fly fish that has never experienced it, I highly recommend it. It is so rewarding and fun to see someone else gain a passion for something so beautiful.

# 5 Birthday fishing trip was another huge success! Great new people on the trip that now are friends. Great fishing, great food, and most of all lot’s of laughsūüôā. I highly suggest you make an annual fishing trip with friends and family. It’s something you will always look forward to year after yearūüôā.

# 6 Experiencing new places and getting the chance to fish while you are there. Most of Tracy and I’s trip are focused on where we can fish. This one was in Mexico and it was amazing. Fly Fishing for salt water fish is something every angler needs to experience!

#7 Getting to guide at Monster Lake Ranch for huge trout! It’s so nice to get away from the crowds and be able to fish in solitude. People are great but it’s always nice to be somewhere so peaceful and tranquil that you can get lost in your thoughts. Thanks Monster Lake for the great year so far.

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#8 Being filmed by Trout TV was a huge privilege! I look up to those guys and gals a lot. It’s hard being in a career where people hate you for sharing rivers and spots that are unbelievable places to fish. I know many people might not agree with me but I really love to share special places with people that love the sport. Everybody needs to find their own special place and Trout TV helps people find great spots!

# 9 Finding time to fish alone to clear my mind and just be in my own thoughts. Everybody needs alone time and the outdoors is my favorite place to do it. If you find yourself stressed out and feel sad, make it a point to go hike or do something where you are away from the busyness of life and can just think clearly.

#10 Last but not least by any means is finding time to fish and hang out with your favorite people in life.  I am so busy that it is always impossible to hang and fish with everyone I love in my life.When I do get the chance to do it, it is some of my most amazing experiences. My 2016 goal is to spend way more time with the people that matter most in my life.

I hope you are having a great 2015 so far!

Love hearing your life stories and your fishing stories :)!!

What is the biggest secret to catching more fish? 

There is only one way to catch more fish than everybody else on the river and the secret is……….. to respect and listen to the oldest guides on the river. 

There is something about that accumulation of knowledge thing that is very true and accurate. 

Some of my favorite guides on the Big Horn are the ones that have been doing it forever. There wisdom and confidence is something I all hope we achieve in our lifetime. 

I just want to give a huge thanks to all the guides and outfitters before my time for doing such a great job in protecting such a valuable resource :)!! 

Getting off the Beaten Path and away from the normal. (Get Lost in Montana)

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There is nothing more than I like to do than jump in my car with my drift boat attached and head to the local rivers, that I know so well. So when my cousin asked me to go on the Beaten Path in Montana for a 4 day backpacking adventure, I couldn’t help to think about going somewhere else. 4 days is a long time, I was thinking! We could go to the Beaver Head, Madison, Missouri, Big Hole, or any big fish producing river in Montana but he was dead set on going on a 26 mile backpacking adventure in Grizzly bear country with just the two of us.

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What the heck, let’s do it Steven! So we were off the next day to Cook City to start our 4 day 26 mile adventure into the Beartooth Wilderness area.

The first two miles with a heavy backpack and ambitions of catching beautiful pink meated cutthroat trout were on both of our minds. There is nothing better than catching trout on a backpacking trip and eating them with garlic, onion, salt and of course butter. Those happy thoughts sure went away fast when we were met by the mosquito hatch of the year!!

I don’t think we have ever been bitten so much in our life! Steven forgot to bring pants and let’s just say his legs still look like he has chicken poxūüôā. Poor guy. Luckily for us the mosquitoes were only bad for 20 of the 26 miles…. .ha ha ha.

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One of the first places we were able to find refuge on our trip was Dewey Lake. Dewey lake is known for its pink meated cutthroats. We keptt 2 a piece and cooked them for lunch and I am still craving that unbelievable taste.

It was so much fun catching them too. We were on a high rock behind a tree waiting for the trout to cruise the shoreline. When we would see them coming we would cast our line about fifeteen to 20 feet in front of them. I was using a black streamer with a pheasant tail nymph behind about 3 feet.

It was so fun seeing the cutthroat in the crystal clear water. They would come fast to check out our flies but then would start to turn away. Right when they started to turn away you would give your flies a little bit of a twitch and they would come back around and attack them like crazy. We had lots of fish in just a little bit of time. It was some of the most visually fun fishing you can have.

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One of my favorite things about backpacking is that your normal stresses of everyday life tend to disappear and all you are concentrated on is what truly matters. For me that is thinking of being a dad here soon and thanking God for this amazing opportunity. Also, having really fun and good conversations with my cousin about life and his new adventure of going to New Zealand. Man am I Jealousūüôā.

I hope you all have a great summer and get to enjoy the outdoors. Don’t forget bug spray like we did….. ha ha ha okay it really wasn’t that funny. Remember to have lots of fun and take lots of picturesūüôā.

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