“It Takes a Lot of Country”

Sage Fly Fishing - Mark Rutherford - Bristol Bay

Photo credit: (Mark Rutherford via Atlantic Magazine)

Paul Greenberg, author of the New York Times best seller Four Fish and writer for the renowned Atlantic magazine, spent the last few weeks writing an article via satellite from Bristol Bay, Alaska. While Greenberg’s article is undeniably pertinent with the EPA’s comment period closing on July 23rd, the article seems to explore a larger relationship between the web of man-made infrastructure and the health of our rivers.

People who would seek to tame Alaska say that the place lacks infrastructure. That it needs the trappings of modern life to become civilized. But for the people who depend on salmon and relish the region’s wildness, no better infrastructure need be created. For them the best infrastructure of all is unbounded, salmon-choked rivers.

Bristol Bay is an incredibly vibrant system of bio diversity and production above ground, yet its true mystique lies in the unground labyrinth of water and nutrients. The vast subsurface waterway emerges from time to time creating lakes, which Greenberg refers to as “pockmarks” or “pimples” popping up throughout the Alaskan tundra. Supporters of Pebble Mine claim that pollution from the mine will not escape into this underground system or damage the fishery, yet to every onlooker (including the EPA) that result seems inevitable.

With just a handful of days between now and the EPA’s July 23rd deadline, take a moment to read Greenberg’s thoughtful piece and take action at SaveBristolBay.com.

Greenberg writes “it takes a lot of country to grow a lot of salmon.” Be apart of ensuring the salmon keep what little country they have left, and keep in mind what type of country we’d like to live in ourselves.

Breaking Records on a Sage Reel

Sage Fly Fishing - Peter Morse - Sage Reels

Our friend and phenomenal fisherman Peter Morse broke a world record the other day. On a Sage 6012 reel, Peter managed to land a 19kg Southern Bluefin Tuna on 8kg tippet!! While Peter is one of the few with the skill, and the knots to pull something like this off, he was quick to give credit to the Sage 6000 reel.

These are really great reels, I have fished them hard and extensively over the last few years, I mean punished them fishing maximum drag a lot of the time. I was permit fishing earlier this year when some big golden trevally swam into range. The guide said “I’m not chasing them if you hook one” and I said “You won’t have to” and cranked the drag around to 10 so the fish went nowhere, didn’t even pull the fly line off the reel. That was a lot of pressure, of course good knots help too!!

Check out these wonderful photos from Peter’s adventures and get inspired to set some of your own world records on Sage gear!

Sage Fly Fishing - Peter Morse - Sage Reels
Sage Fly Fishing - Peter Morse - Sage Reels
Sage Fly Fishing - Peter Morse - Sage Reels

Job Openings at Far Bank

Sage Fly Fishing - Far Bank - Job Openings

Winter time in Washington offers the steelhead angler a plethora of opportunities – enough to last a lifetime, let alone a season. During these winter months, it’s hard not to think about steelhead and spend most of your free time in pursuit of them. For those of us working in the Product Development department at Sage, winter time is also when a lot of strides are made in regards to new products for the upcoming summer months. “Winter” can mean a number of different things depending on your location, so when the call came in from the opposite corner of the country and the guy on the other end of the line was talking about redfish, snook and tarpon fishing in 80 degree weather, we considered the 40 degree water and snow forecasts on the Olympic Peninsula then jumped on the opportunity.

Sage’s Product Development team is made up of a group of scientists, engineers, artists, analysts and anglers. We are very passionate about our work and our time on the water. Fortunately for us, the two are not mutually exclusive. It’s in the lab and on the manufacturing floor on Bainbridge Island that our ideas come to life and prototypes are tested to our rigorous standards, but it’s on the water that the Sage rods and reels we all love are tested for what we like to call their “fishability,” a trait we pride ourselves in including in all our products. This is that feel of a rod that brings confidence to your cast, that perfectly balanced outfit that you forget you’re holding or that feeling of a big fish taking line on a perfectly tuned, super smooth drag. It’s the fishability of our products that make them lifelong fishing companions.

Accompanied by an arsenal of a dozen rods, a reel or two for each and two or three lines for each reel, we left Seattle-Tacoma International Airport and headed southeast. By nightfall we had met up with Capt. Andy Lee of Grassroots Guiding in Chokoloskee, Florida and were rigging rods for the next day. Zigzagging our skiff through the oyster bottomed bay surrounding Chokoloskee, we entered the Everglades backcountry. The channels that connect the bays of the Everglades are a maze of mangrove-lined rivers, each nearly identical at first glance yet dynamic, complex and beautiful. Each backcountry bay provoked a sense of deja-vu. I was comforted by the presence of the GPS unit on our boat, even though our Captain hardly used it.

Over the course of the next three days, we found backcountry redfish, snook and black drum amongst the mangroves. Accuracy and stealth were critical for these fish. Large snook lay in ambush underneath mangroves; redfish cruised backcountry bays and oyster-lined islands on the prowl; black drum slowly worked the edges of mangrove islands. When the pieces came together, the fish were agreeable. On our final day, after a morning warm-up of redfish on the outside, we elected to try our luck on some newly arrived tarpon. We were greeted by fins at our first bay and soon we started seeing long shadows of laid up tarpon in the murky water. Our first good shot resulted in an eat and we were in the game. A few picky fish later and then we found ourselves lined up on another shadow within range. On our third cast to the fish the water erupted with a wide open mouth the size of a garbage can. The hook held, the line cleared and we were still tight. A half hour later and the tired fish was leadered, admired and set free. It would be our last fish of the trip and one we will not soon forget.

Sage’s Product Development team uses resources from around the globe in our pursuit of performance. Occasionally there are open positions in the department at our offices on Bainbridge Island. We look for candidates who are not only avid anglers but experienced professionals in engineering, industrial design or material science. Use the link below to search our current openings.

Interested in Employment with SAGE and our Far Bank Enterprise brands?
 Visit our on-line job board at http://farbank.iapplicants.com/

To contact Andy Lee at Grassroots Guiding in Chokoloskee, Florida, visit: http://evergladesflyfishingguides.com

Sage Fly Fishing - Far Bank - Job Openings

Sage Fly Fishing - Far Bank - Job Openings

CEO Travis Campbell on Bristol Bay

Sage Fly Fishing - Travis Campbell - Bristol Bay

As a fly fishing company we are a natural resource dependent business and, as such, it is in our best interest to help foster healthy fisheries, clean water, and abundant access. Simply stated, no fish, no fishing, no us. The fly fishing industry is relatively small, yet we believe our shared passion and action can help determine the fate of causes. Sometimes we champion causes in familiar home waters, however, there are times when we need to protect resources in some far off part of the world.

Bristol Bay in Alaska is one of those far off places that deserve our protection. It holds a special place in my heart because one of my brothers guided in the region for nine years and I have been lucky enough to fish there a time or two. As I typed this I got chills down my spine as I thought about a day salmon fishing in the region with my Dad and brother. It’s that special of a place.

Bristol Bay is currently under threat from an effort to develop one of the largest open pit mines ever conceived. The Pebble mine would be developed at the headwaters of the Kvichak and Nushagak rivers – two world class salmon and trout producing rivers. An excellent description of the mine and its scale is provided by Trout Unlimited at the following link – www.SaveBristolBay.org.

Our organization first got involved with the effort to oppose the Pebble mine in 2006 and we now find ourselves at another critical juncture in the process. The EPA recently completed a major watershed assessment of the region and the research came out overwhelmingly supporting the belief that the mine would pose a major threat to the fish and wildlife of the region. The comment period for the watershed assessment is open until July 23rd and I encourage you to take a moment to write to President Obama and your congressional delegation to let them know you support the EPA and its assessment. Click here to take action – www.SaveBristolBay.org/TakeAction.

Thank you from all of us that care about this amazing place.

Felt Soul Media’s Damnation

Sage Fly Fishing - Conservation - FSM DamNation

For those of us who have seen Felt Soul Media’s Red Gold or Eastern Rises, we are familiar with the tingly feeling the Colorado based production duo are capable of leaving an audience with. Eastern Rises, which received a handful of awards including “Best Film on Mountain Sport” at the 2010 Banff Mountain Film Festival, is a fly fishermen’s dream. Massive rainbows gulping at mouse patterns on untouched Kamchatka rivers with a pinch of bigfoot humor and some close calls with Grizzly Bears. Between the fishing fantasies and deft touch behind the camera and computer of Ben Knight and Travis Rummel, Eastern Rises will certainly jump to the top of the fly fishing and adventure film hierarchy.

Felt Soul Media’s newest project is titled DamNation, which focuses on dam removal across the country including the Elwha River in Western Washington. The trailer was recently released and it appears the men of Felt Soul Media are continuing to raise the bar. Ideally, DamNation and Mark Titus’s The Breach will be a catalyst and ultimately a foundation for the movement towards sustainable dam removal across the country. Keep an eye out for the release of DamNation in early 2013 and check out the trailer here!

Sage Introduces CIRCA Fly Rod for 2013 [Video]

CIRCA - Fly Fishing - Performance Fly Rods - Slow Action - New for 2013

If you’re a devotee of the casting nuances of the slow action fly rod, a student of its historic ties to our sport, or just like the thrill of moving in close to actively feeding fish, consider our new CIRCA rod a reward for your years of dedication.

But be warned: the CIRCA does not mimic the type of slow action that has so far defined the category – overly soft, willowy and flat. Instead, thanks to Konnetic technology’s ability to compact and align more carbon fibers into a smaller diameter blank, we were able to design a radically narrow taper throughout the length of the rod, resulting in consistently slow, yet responsive action from butt to tip. Our new CIRCA rod is a technologically advanced slow-action fly rod that honors your slower, more deliberate casting style, yet is every bit a Sage.

“My goal for this rod was to apply the performance advantages of modern materials on a very sleek, slender shaft that would load down in the hand for a fishing tempo like glass, or bamboo while providing the crucial need for accuracy.” Notes Sage Chief Fly Rod Designer, Jerry Siem. “The CIRCA is a rod that, once it’s in your hands, enables you to improve as an angler by identifying where, why and how you can put a fly on the water. The CIRCA is definitely going to bring new life into the sport of trout fishing.”

Jerry is featured in Sage’s newly produced CIRCA video which elaborates the CIRCA story. Beautifully shot in Central Washington, sit back and enjoy the new CIRCA video.

Excited? So are we! The CIRCA rod collection will be available through Sage specialty dealers in August and September in the following models:
279-4, 379-4, 389-4, 479-4, 489-4, and 589-4.

Here are some key features of the CIRCA:
Low-Profile Ferrules. The inherent strength of Konnetic technology allows us to reduce the weight of our all-graphite ferrule connections by nearly 70%. Improved aerodynamics plus lighter weight contribute to lighter blanks.

Green Tea Color. The CIRCA’s elegant and inviting green finish is accented by Olive primary thread wraps with Slate colored trim wraps.

Vera wood insert with black aluminum reel seat and winding check pattern create a perfect combination.

Custom Cork Handle. Snub-nose, half-Wells grip. The cork is custom formed to match the exact taper of the CIRCA rod, providing a snug fit that helps communicate casting feedback for utmost accuracy.

Round Tip Eye. This Sage-designed tip-top never pinches or binds the line, allowing the caster to make mends and cast in any direction with full control.

Slim Profile Rod Tube. Only 1 5/8” in Desert Gold color, plus a unique rod bag: like a chameleon, its gold silk-screened colors flash between gold and green in the light.

The CIRCA will be available for $745 to $775 depending on model.

For more information on this new, award-winning fly rod, read the official press release here:

Sage Introduces Advanced Slow Action Fly Rods with the CIRCA Collection

June 28, 2012 (Bainbridge Island, Wash.) – Sage Manufacturing, fly-fishing industry leader, delivers advanced technology to the world of slow action rods. The CIRCA collection reinvents the slow action rod category with a deliberately more relaxed casting tempo combined with a fast recovery, pinpoint accuracy and extraordinary overall performance. The CIRCA is the ultimate dry fly rod that will enable anglers to maximize the dry fly fishing experience with all of the performance expected from a Sage rod.

“The CIRCA collection debuted at the EFTTEX show in Paris earlier this month and won the Best Fly Rod award for 2012, which is our second such award within the past two years,” says Sage Marketing Manager, Eric Gewiss. “Given the competition for the award, the CIRCA is clearly a pioneering product that will cause the industry to take notice. This is unlike any collection that Sage has ever offered and is the ideal rod to add to any dry fly angler’s collection. I am extremely excited about this new and unique rod family. Konnetic™ technology is what has made it all possible.”

Using Konnetic technology, the CIRCA collection packs more carbon fiber into a smaller diameter resulting in a radically narrow taper through the length of the rod. This technology creates a consistently slow yet responsive action from butt to tip. Casts are methodically smooth and graceful yet pleasantly crisp and purposeful. Enhanced sensitivity gives anglers the precision and control needed for delicate presentations making ‘match-the-hatch’ fisheries ideal for these fly rods.

“My goal for this rod was to apply the performance advantages of modern materials on a very sleek, slender shaft that would load down in the hand for a fishing tempo like glass, or bamboo while providing the crucial need for accuracy,” notes Sage Chief Fly Rod Designer, Jerry Siem. “The CIRCA is a rod that once it’s in your hands, enables you to improve as an angler by identifying where, why and how you can put a fly on the water. The CIRCA is definitely going to bring new life into the sport of trout fishing.”

With six different four-piece models in the collection from 2-weight through 5-weight, the CIRCA fly rods feature a Green Tea shaft color with Olive and Slate color trim wraps. The Vera wood insert with black aluminum reel seat and winding check pattern create an aesthetically pleasing combination. A custom Sage snub nose half-wells grip completes the rod that comes in a black rod bag with iridescent Black Hills Gold silkscreen in a 1 5/8” Desert Gold rod tube with a black cap.

The CIRCA rod collection will be available through Sage specialty dealers in August and September for a retail price ranging from $745 to $775.

About Konnetic™ Technology:
Konnetic technology, the most recent and significant evolution in fly rod innovation, uses new materials combined with pioneering manufacturing methods and processes. This technology incorporates an optimized ratio of Sage’s proprietary resin to exclusive high modulus aerospace-grade carbon fiber.

The latest construction methods include Sage’s Advanced Modulus Positioning System (AMPS); a process that precisely aligns and positions carbon fiber materials to exacting tolerances for the greatest blank strength delivering extremely efficient energy transfer throughout the shaft. Using Sage’s High Compression Molding process, carbon fibers are compacted for optimum density and precise alignment while simultaneously fusing the 50% lighter all-carbon fiber inner core.

About Sage:
Founded in 1980, Sage was created with one idea in mind – to build the world’s finest performance fly rods. Passionate about creating fly fishing products that continually exceed expectations, Sage strives to seek performance advantages through new materials and designs based on a foundation of research and innovation. Sage also offers fly reels, fly lines, apparel, accessories and luggage for avid anglers. For more information, please visit http://www.sageflyfish.com