Thursday, June 1, 2023

Improve Your Fly Casting with this Simple Musical Approach

Welcome to the latest in our series on fly casting! In this latest episode, Brian Flechsig from Mad River Outfitters introduces a unique concept that we've developed over the years, which will greatly enhance your fly casting skills. But before we dive into that, let's recap some essential fundamentals that lay the foundation for successful casting.

Fundamental Principles

During our fly casting classes, one crucial point we emphasize is the starting and ending position of your rod. Always remember to begin and conclude each cast with your rod tip positioned below your belt and as close to the surface of the water as possible. To illustrate its significance, imagine a runway for an airplane. Starting your cast from a higher position means you're only utilizing half the available runway. For a full and efficient cast, start low and make use of the entire runway. Similarly, when fishing, aim to have your rod tip as close to the water's surface as possible, ensuring a smooth initiation of your fly cast.

Thumb Placement

Another vital aspect that often goes overlooked is the placement of your thumb on the cork grip. It is crucial to position your thumb at the end of the cork grip, just as you would in Little League baseball or softball when choking up on the bat. This seemingly small adjustment offers enhanced control over the rod tip and increases the speed of your cast. Even shifting your thumb a mere half inch towards the end of the cork can make a significant difference in your casting performance.

Brian illustrating the correct placement of the thumb on fly casts

A Musical Approach

Now, let's delve into the innovative concept that we're excited to introduce — a musical approach to fly casting. Drawing inspiration from my background in jazz guitar, Brian realized that fly casting follows a rhythmic pattern akin to music written in 4/4 time signature. 

Understanding this rhythm will help you grasp the different components of a cast and improve your overall technique.

In a standard 4/4 time, there are four beats per measure. Similarly, a fly cast can be broken down into four beats: (1) stop, (2) drop, (3) stop, and (4) drop. Visualize these beats as you cast: one, two, three, four. Each beat corresponds to a specific action in your cast. The first beat is when you stop the rod tip and form the loop, followed by relaxing your wrist and dropping the rod tip back on beat two. Beat three involves pushing the rod tip forward (with your thumb), stopping the tip to form the loop, and finally, on beat four, lowering the rod to the fishing position.

By adopting this musical framework, you'll develop a better sense of timing and coordination in your fly casting. Just like tapping your foot to a song's rhythm, internalizing the four-beat sequence will help you execute each cast with precision. I encourage you to watch the full video that inspired this concept by Jim Green, a renowned rod designer. Additionally, make sure to explore our complete fly casting series, featuring insights from other experts like Flip Pallot. To stay up-to-date with new episodes, subscribe to our channel and remember, practice is key to mastering the art of fly casting.

Watch the full Fly Casting Video here

So, grab your fly rod, head outdoors, and embark on an exciting journey to improve your fly casting skills. The rhythm awaits you!

Friday, May 26, 2023

Father's Day: Fly Fishing with Dad

Father's Day is just around the corner, a time when we celebrate the dads who have played a significant role in our lives. This year, on Sunday, June 18, 2023, we have the perfect opportunity to honor our fathers and indulge in their favorite pastime: fly fishing. At Mad River Outfitters, we understand the importance of quality gear, memorable experiences, and spending time with family. Join us as we delve into the joys of fly fishing with dad, escaping the confines of everyday life, and exploring the vibrant world of angling on both Father's Day and World Fishing Day (funny how they’re on the same day)!

Fly Fishing with Dad

There's something special about bonding with your father over a shared passion, and fly fishing provides the perfect backdrop for those memorable moments. Imagine standing knee-deep in a gently flowing river, casting your line alongside your dad, and relishing the tranquility of nature. As you patiently wait for that elusive fish to strike, you not only learn the art of fly fishing but also absorb valuable life lessons and create lasting memories.

Getting Dad Out of the House

Let's face it; dads often find comfort in their favorite armchair. However, Father's Day presents an opportunity to inspire them to trade their couch for the great outdoors. Encourage your dad to immerse himself in the world of fly fishing, where he can enjoy the beauty of nature, soak in the sunshine, and experience the thrill of reeling in a catch. At Mad River Outfitters, we offer a range of products that cater to the needs of angler dads, ensuring their comfort, safety, and success on the water.

When it comes to selecting the perfect gift for your angler dad, Mad River Outfitters has you covered. From essential items to fly fishing gear you maybe haven’t heard about, we have carefully curated a selection of products that will definitely impress. Here are a few standout items and remember, you can see the whole selection here:

Blane Chocklett's Hybrid Game Changer

This Father's Day, give your father the gift of Blane Chocklett's Hybrid Game Changer. As one of the greatest contributions to the big fly game, this fly embodies the spirit of adventure and the thrill of landing large predatory game fish. Blane's favorite platform, the 8" Hybrid, is a go-to choice for targeting Northern Pike, Musky, Stripers, and even the mighty Peacock Bass and Dorado. With its impressive size, intricate design featuring three 20mm shanks and a Kona Big Game Hunter hook, and mesmerizing movement, this fly is sure to make Father's Day fishing trips unforgettable.Take dad’s arsenal to the next level with Blane Chocklett's Hybrid Game Changer.

The Game Changer himself, Blane Chocklett

Lefty's Top 5 Fly Box

This Father's Day, honor your dad with Lefty Kreh's Top 5 Fly Box, a collection of flies that pays homage to the legendary Lefty Kreh. These flies represent the top favorites that Lefty always kept in his box, making them an essential addition to any father's fly fishing pack. The assortment includes renowned patterns such as the Adams, Hare's Ear, Glo Bug (steelhead orange), San Juan Worm (red), and Wooly Bugger (olive). These flies, perfect for casting on 4wt and 5wt rods, come housed in a specially designed box, creating a thoughtful and practical gift for Father's Day. Let your father carry Lefty's legacy and experience the joy of fishing with these timeless flies.

The legendary Lefty Kreh, doing what he does best

Tactics for Bass and other Warmwater Species by Tim Jacobs

On this Father's Day, encourage your dad to explore new horizons with Tactics for Bass and other Warmwater Species by Tim Jacobs. This comprehensive guide dives into the techniques, rigs, and fly patterns specifically tailored for warmwater fishing. Covering species like bass, panfish, pike, and more, this book equips fathers with the knowledge they need to conquer lakes and rivers across the country. With clear and engaging writing, Tim Jacobs shares his insights and experiences, making it an ideal companion for Father's Day fishing adventures. Let your father embark on exciting warmwater fly fishing journeys, armed with the wisdom and tactics from this remarkable book.

Mad River Outfitters Merch Float Tee

This Father's Day, give your dad the gift of drip with the Mad River Outfitters Merch Float Tee. Crafted with premium materials, this sand-colored tee features the iconic Mad River Outfitters logo on the front chest. On the back, a delightful design showcases Flip Pallot & Brian Flechsig floating down the river, capturing the spirit of adventure and the love for fishing. Designed and printed in Columbus, Ohio, this tee allows your father to showcase his passion for fly fishing with every wear. 

Unforgettable Father's Day Gifts

Father's Day is a time to celebrate the unforgettable bond between fathers and their children. Make this day truly special with unforgettable gifts that reflect his passions and make lasting memories. Whether it's an incredible fly fishing trip, a one-of-a-kind fly tying weekend with angling legends, or a personalized guide trip, these gifts will create cherished experiences that he will treasure forever. Show your dad how much he means to you with a gift that goes beyond material possessions and captures the essence of your relationship.

Andros Island Bonefish Club

This Father's Day, give your dad the gift of a lifetime — a truly remarkable fly fishing experience at the Andros Island Bonefish Club in the Bahamas. Mad River Outfitters invites you to join us for an absolutely phenomenal saltwater fly fishing adventure. We have established a longstanding partnership with the Andros Island Bonefish Club, and we are thrilled to continue this tradition.

Renowned angler Lefty Kreh once proclaimed that Andros offers the best bonefishing on the planet, and we wholeheartedly agree. Prepare to be amazed by the size and quantity of bonefish you'll encounter during this trip. This journey will create unforgettable memories for you and your dad. Secure your spot today and give your dad an experience he will cherish forever.

Brian Flechsig and Shawn from the Andros Island Bonefish Club

Flip Pallot and Bob Clouser Fly Tying Weekend

For the angling enthusiasts and fly tying aficionados, we present the Flip Pallot and Bob Clouser Fly Tying Weekend. Join these legendary figures in the world of fishing, along with our very own Brian Flechsig, for a truly special weekend. This exclusive event will take place from June 30th to July 2nd, 2023, and it is limited to only 14 students. Spots are filling up fast, so act quickly to secure your place in this unforgettable gathering.

Bob Clouser (left) and Flip Pallot (right) goofing off

Beginner Guide Trips

If you're looking to introduce your dad to a new hobby or get him out of the house for some outdoor adventure, consider our Beginner Guide Trips. We have handpicked multiple fisheries that are perfect for beginners taking their first steps in the world of fly fishing.

Our one-on-one beginner trips provide a customized experience tailored to your preferences and goals in the sport. Let our experienced guides take care of the details while you enjoy learning the basics and honing your skills. Our Clear Fork location in Columbus, Ohio, offers an excellent opportunity to catch Rainbow Trout without the need for extensive travel. With year-round opportunities and peak season from November to May, there's no better time to start your fly fishing journey.

To book your guided fly fishing trip, simply purchase the trip package, and our dedicated team will reach out to you to schedule and confirm a date. Our expert guides, including Josh Trammell, Ryan Ratliff, Katie Johnstone, Ben Phipps, and Steve Pileski, will ensure you have an unforgettable experience on the water.

Take dad out on an awesome Ohio Fly Fishing Guides Trip

A Heartfelt Thank You to Fathers from the Mad River Outfitters Team

On this Father's Day, the entire Mad River Outfitters team would like to express our deepest gratitude to all the incredible fathers out there. Thank you for your unwavering love, guidance, and support. You have shaped our lives and instilled in us a love for the outdoors and the joy of fly fishing.

We also extend our heartfelt appreciation to all those who have supported our local fly shop. Your support enables us to pursue our passion for fly fishing, share our knowledge, and provide exceptional service to the angling community.

As we celebrate the bond between fathers and their love for the great outdoors, we invite you to visit Mad River Outfitters and explore our wide range of fly fishing gear, tackle, and supplies. Whether you're an experienced angler or just starting your journey, our team is here to assist you in finding the perfect equipment and sharing valuable insights into the world of fly fishing.

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Embark on an Epic Adventure: Fly Fishing for Monster Peacock Bass in the Amazon Jungle

Mad River Outfitters is thrilled to announce its upcoming trip to the Amazon Jungle in Brazil, where adventure-seeking anglers will have the opportunity to fly fish for the monster peacock bass. Partnering with the renowned River Plate Anglers as our guides, this expedition promises to be an unforgettable experience. Prepare yourself for the trip of a lifetime as we delve into the heart of the Amazon, exploring exclusive private waters and utilizing an innovative floating cabin system to access unparalleled fishing opportunities.

The Ultimate Fishing System

With years of expertise in the Amazon, River Plate Outfitters has perfected a unique and highly effective fishing system that combines mobility, comfort, and luxury. The Fly-In Cabin Barges, acting as floating camps, provide the ideal solution for navigating shallow waters and reaching untouched fishing grounds. Unlike traditional lodges and houseboats that are limited by natural barriers, these barges enable us to explore remote and unfished river segments, maximizing our chances of encountering the mighty peacock bass. If we mentioned the numbers of peacock bass we catch on these trips, you wouldn’t believe us!

The floating cabins of River Plate Anglers

Unparalleled Peacock Bass Fishing

Peacock bass, belonging to the highly evolved Cichlids group, are formidable predators that have evolved to dominate the Amazon's waters. With their strength, speed, and enormous bucket-mouths, these fish prey on a wide range of species, making them the ultimate challenge for avid anglers. The Amazon basin is home to fifteen recognized species of peacock bass, each displaying distinctive color patterns and morphological characteristics. During our expedition, we will have the opportunity to witness their vibrant spawning color phase and experience the thrill of targeting these powerful creatures.

The beautiful color of giant Peacock Bass

The Itapera River: A Dream Destination

After a long-awaited anticipation, Mad River Outfitters is delighted to announce that our January 2024 trip, hosted by our very own Brian Flechsig, will take place on the Itapera River. Located approximately 2.5 hours northeast of Manaus, Brazil, this remote and captivating river offers exceptional fishing opportunities. With high numbers and an impressive size average, the Itapera River is known for producing over 2500 peacock bass per week for a group of eight anglers, with an average weight of 8 pounds. The river's clear waters, tinged with a distinctive orange hue, offer a unique fishing experience amidst stunning natural surroundings and abundant wildlife.

Join the Adventure

Mad River Outfitters, in collaboration with River Plate Anglers, wants to invite you to be a part of this extraordinary fishing expedition. With our hosted trips limited to just seven anglers, accompanied by a representative from Mad River Outfitters, we ensure personalized attention and a trip that lives up to our promises. Even if you are unable to make our scheduled trip dates, we can help you arrange a custom trip with the same exceptional outfitters at any time, with our booking services being completely free.

Brian with one of many peacock bass!

Check out our Latest Video

To get a taste of the incredible adventure that awaits you! Brian Flechsig has filmed a fun tour of the upcoming trip lodging and staff. Head over to the Mad River Outfitters YouTube channel to witness the breathtaking beauty of the Amazon Jungle, get a glimpse of the remarkable fishing action, and hear firsthand accounts from anglers who have embarked on this remarkable journey.

Book Your Spot Today

Spaces for this extraordinary trip are filling up fast, and you don't want to miss out on this unparalleled fly fishing adventure. Secure your place now to join Mad River Outfitters and River Plate Anglers as we venture into the Amazon Jungle to pursue the monster peacock bass. Whether you are an experienced angler seeking a new challenge or a passionate adventurer longing for an unforgettable experience, this trip promises to exceed your expectations.

Tuesday, May 23, 2023

Exploring the New Redington Wrangler Fly Rods and Outfits

Calling all fly fishing anglers! We’re super excited to introduce the latest addition to the angler's arsenal: the Redington Wrangler Fly Rods and Wrangler Fly Rod Outfits. Whether you're a seasoned pro or just starting out, these remarkable fly rods are designed to elevate your fly fishing experience. In this blog, we want to dive into the features and benefits of these exceptional fly rods and outfits, and why they deserve a place in your fly fishing kit.

Introducing the Wrangler Fly Rods from Redington

The Redington Wrangler Fly Rods offer versatility with seven different sizes, ranging from 4wt to 8wt, including specialized models such as 6wts with or without a fighting butt, and a 10’ 7wt for improved mending control. These 4-piece rods cater to anglers of all skill levels, providing a medium-fast action blank that responds beautifully (we can’t understate this) during casting. It’s clear that each rod is thoughtfully designed to take on a variety of species and applications.

The Redington Wrangler Fly Rod in action!

Portability and Protection

We’re first to understand the importance of convenience when it comes to angling gear. That's why the Redington Wrangler Fly Rods come with a protective nylon carrying tube featuring divided liners. Ensuring safety and security of your rod during storage and travel. With its durability and easy portability, this rod becomes your trusted companion, ready for new fishing explorations at a moment's notice. Best part is, when you inevitably break your rod (it happens to us all!) Redington has one of the best warranties in the fly fishing industry!

Complete Outfit, Complete Adventure

For those seeking a hassle-free fly fishing experience, the Redington Wrangler Fly Rod Outfits are a total game-changer. Each kit includes the super popular Crosswater reel, durable dacron backing, RIO Mainstream fly line, and a RIO tapered leader. With six different sizes available, from The Pond (4wt) to Saltwater (8wt), these outfits are tailored to meet diverse angling needs. Simply add your preferred fly, and you're set for unforgettable fishing adventures. Best part is, the fly line has a welded loop on the end so you can loop on your leader. This is perfect for the beginner angler!

The Mad River Outfitters team are big fans of the Redington Wrangler Outfits


One standout from the Wrangler series is the 5wt Trout Wrangler Kit, an incredibly versatile trout rod. With its medium-fast action, this rod allows for precise presentations of dry flies, while still handling nymphs, buggers, and indicators with ease. It's a go-to choice for trout fishing, showcasing adaptability and reliability that anglers appreciate meanwhile being super versatile for other applications.

Brian’s Favorite

Don't just take our word for it! Brian highly recommends the Redington Wrangler Fly Rods, taking up the 10’ 7wt Wrangler Fly Rod as his new steelhead fly rod. These fly rods have earned praise for their versatility and ability to perform across different fishing environments and species. They come with the stamp of approval from Brian Flechsig, Pat Kelly and Ryan Ratliff and the whole Mad River Outfitters team.

Ultimate Value

To gain a deeper understanding of the Redington Wrangler Fly Rods and Outfits, make sure to check out our recent YouTube review. Brian explains some honest insights into the craftsmanship, performance, and value that these fly rods and outfits offer. We want you to make an informed decision that aligns with your fly fishing aspirations.

Are you ready to enhance your fly fishing experience? Head over to our website and explore the Redington Wrangler Fly Rods and Outfits. Select the setup that best suits your angling preferences and embark on a journey filled with joy and excitement. Don't miss out on the opportunity to elevate your fishing adventures with these exceptional fly fishing tools.

The Redington Wrangler Fly Rods and Outfits represent a new chapter in fly fishing excellence. With their versatile design, portability, and comprehensive outfit options, they are the best value we’ve seen in a long, long time.

Always remember to reach out if you have any questions! (614) 451-0363 or send us an email at and we can help. That’s what we’re here for!

Monday, May 22, 2023

Unleash Your Fly Fishing Skills with Mad River Outfitters' June Class and School Offerings

Are you ready to dive into the world of fly fishing or enhance your existing skills? Look no further than Mad River Outfitters and their exciting lineup of June fly fishing classes and schools. 

Whether you're a beginner or an intermediate angler, these programs are designed to demystify the art of fly fishing and help you become a confident angler. Let's explore the offerings and get you hooked on this exhilarating sport!

June Classes and Schools

Entomology 101 Class - Wednesday, June 14th, 2023

Fly selection can be a daunting task, but Mad River Outfitters has got you covered with their Entomology 101 Class. Discover the secrets behind what fish are eating and how it relates to the flies you should be using. 

Exploring the food fish eat with Katie and Brian

This class takes you on a journey into the world of bugs, their life cycles, and the other food organisms that fish crave. You'll gain in-depth knowledge simplified into easy-to-understand concepts. No equipment or experience is necessary, so come prepared to absorb valuable insights. Don't forget to bring a pen to take notes!

Check out our YouTube video Fly Fishing the Mad River with Katie Johnstone where we discuss entomology in a little more detail!

Sign up for Entomology 101

2-Day Fly Fishing School at Briarwood Sporting Club - Saturday and Sunday, June 17th and 18th

Brian teaching the basics at Briarwood Sporting Club

For a comprehensive introduction to the sport, Mad River Outfitters proudly sponsors the official Midwest Fly Fishing Schools 2-day fly fishing schools at either Sunnybrook Trout Club or Briarwood Sporting Club. In June, we’re proud to host our 2-Day school at Briarwood Sporting Club!

Conveniently located for students from Ohio and the surrounding States, these schools offer a well-rounded fly fishing course. From learning about rods, reels, and lines to mastering basic fly casting techniques, you'll be equipped with all of the essential skills. The schools cover topics such as knots, leaders, entomology, rigging, and fishing techniques. Plus, you'll have the opportunity to put your newfound knowledge to the test and catch your first fish on a fly!

Brian helping with the fly cast at Briarwood Sporting Club

Sign up for 2-Day Fly Fishing Schools

1-Day Fly Fishing School at Sunnybrook Trout Club - Sunday, June 25th

If you're looking for a condensed and impactful introduction to fly fishing, Mad River Outfitters' 1-day school at Sunnybrook Trout Club is the perfect choice. This school combines classroom lectures with hands-on practice, allowing you to gain confidence quickly. 

Learn about basic equipment, knots, leaders, rigging, casting, entomology, and fly selection. The highlight of the day is the chance to experience the thrill of catching and landing your first fish on a fly. All equipment, flies, and gear can be provided, making it a hassle-free way to get started.

An awesome time is always had at Sunnybrook Trout Club!

Sign up for 1-Day Fly Fishing School

Women's Fly Fishing Outing with Katie Johnstone - Monday, June 26th

Calling all female anglers! Join Mad River Outfitters' guide and instructor, Katie Johnstone, for a fun and educational fishing outing at the picturesque Briarwood Sporting Club. This afternoon and evening excursion is designed to enhance your fishing skills while enjoying the camaraderie of fellow female anglers. 

Participate in quick seminars, including a casting class, and embark on an exciting fishing adventure. Delicious sandwiches and fixings will be provided, ensuring a memorable experience in the company of one of Ohio's best fishing guides.

Sign up for Women's Fly Fishing Outing

Knots and Leaders Class - Wednesday, June 28th

Are knots and leaders giving you a headache? Put your worries to rest by attending the Knots and Leaders Class with Brian Flechsig. In this two-hour intensive class, Brian will explain these two vital and sometimes confusing aspects of fly fishing. Learn proper leader design and selection!

Explaining and demystifying fly fishing knots and leaders 

Sign up for Knots & Leaders Class

About our Classes & Schools

Mad River Outfitters and the Midwest Fly Fishing Schools are dedicated to providing exceptional education and support for anglers of all levels. With their experienced instructors and a diverse range of classes, we have created a learning environment that takes the complexity out of fly fishing. Whether you're looking to understand bug life cycles, improve your casting technique, or unravel the mysteries of knots and leaders, Mad River Outfitters' June class and school offerings have something for every angler.

Don't miss out on the opportunity to enhance your fly fishing skills with us. Spaces are filling up quickly, so secure your spot today by visiting our website or contacting their knowledgeable team at (614) 451-0363 or emailing the shop at

Whether you're a complete beginner or a seasoned angler, these classes and schools will provide you with the tools and confidence to excel on the water. Embark on a journey of discovery, make new fishing friends, and create memories that will last a lifetime. Join Mad River Outfitters this June and unlock the wonders of fly fishing like never before!