Thursday, December 6, 2012

MRO Holiday News

Happy Holidays from all of us at Mad River Outfitters!

Holiday News 2012

Plenty of time for Holiday Shopping at MRO!

1-4 day shipping standard on all orders and 2-day and overnight shipping available as we get down to the wire. Never too late to shop at

FREE Shipping on most Domestic Orders over $25.00 and International Orders over $400.00!!

CLICK HERE- for some Great Gift Ideas

  • NEW!

Sub-Zero Waders

World's 1st Hybrid.....Neoprene AND Breathable Waders

These are gonna be killer for steelheaders!

Click Here to check them out!


Our 2013 Schedule of Fly Fishing Trips has been posted. Click Here to check them out but here's a few highlights:

  • NEW!

8000 Pro Series Fly Reels

Double Drag Systems!!!

Fly Reels for big fish.......really big fish.

Click Here to check them out.

  • NEW!
Senyo's Steelhead Shanks

Hot items for "Swingers" in the region!

Click Here to get some

  • NEW!

The Second Coming!

The New Helios 2 Fly Rods from Orvis

Check them out HERE

  • Winter Classes Announced!
See our full schedule HERE

  • NEW!

Orvis Ohio 2-Day Fly Fishing Schools

hosted by Mad River Outfitters

Click Here for dates and details

  • NEW to the Shop

We are proud to be a dealer for the Mountain Khakis line of rugged outdoor clothing.

Thanks for reading and please have a safe, happy and healthy Holiday Season!

Be sure to keep up with us on Facebook and Twitter and be sure that you are on our mailing list to keep up with all of the exciting things going on around Mad River Outfitters.

Mad River Outfitters
813 Bethel Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214

Friday, November 2, 2012

Andros Island Bonefish Club

We made our 1st trip to the Andros Island Bonefish Club in 1999. Earlier that year I had spent some time with Lefty Kreh and I had asked him where I should take my clients for the "best bonefishing in the world?". Without hesitation, Lefty replied..."Call Rupert".

Jim Teeny and I were hosting a trip there just a few months after that and we were greeted by the owner and founder, Rupert Leadon. Just as I got out of the taxi, Rupert was there with a firm handshake, and he said..."Welcome Home!". Little did I know, he was right. I have since made 16 trips to the lodge, hosting hundreds of clients and showing them the best bonefishing on planet earth. Mad River Outfitters will be making it's 25th hosted trip to the lodge this February. It has been an honor and Rupert and his family are to blame. This next trip will be different though....

Captain Rupert Leadon- 1946-2012

We lost Captain Rupert on June 26th of this year. He died suddenly, a victim of his 2nd heart attack. I actually read the news on Facebook the morning after, his son and head guide Shawn posted "A legend is gone". I was shocked, and deeply saddened. Rupert will be missed by many. A true Icon in the world of saltwater fly fishing! He used to throw a party every time that we arrived for our annual February trip. He made me and our groups feel special. 

I had the pleasure of fishing with Rupert a time or two. He had mostly retired from guiding by the time we started running trips but I was lucky on a few occasions. I know that I felt honored to be fishing with a true saltwater fishing legend. I remember one day it was just he and I.....the day I hooked the largest bonefish of my life, that Rupert claimed would have gone 14lbs. I didn't land the fish, and he always reminded me of that when I saw him....with a smile.

Truer words couldn't have been posted on Facebook by Shawn...."A legend is gone". Lefty wrote a great Eulogy that was printed in Fly Fishing Saltwater Magazine. He and Rupert were great friends and Lefty did him justice. 

I will be back at the lodge in February....our bi-annual trip is February 16th- 23rd this year.....and it won't be the same. But his legend lives on.....

Captain Shawn Leadon

Captain Shawn Leadon will be running the show and we know that "Everything's Gonna Be Allright". Shawn and I have been fishing together and friends now, for a long time. He is a great man and as good a bonefish guide as you will ever find. I have been assured, and can assure my clients, that they are in good hands. Mad River Outfitters will continue to run two trips a year and also confidently book folks outside of those trips as well. Nothing has changed......we just have a new "Captain".....and we believe in him!!!

Brian Flechsig and Shawn Leadon- circa 2001?

For those that don't know, the Andros Island Bonefish Club is truly the finest bonefshing destination on the planet. Yes, the accommodations are nice, the food is good, the service is excellent.....but what really does it is the LOCATION. It cannot be beat and there is no place like it on planet earth.

"A hidden treasure for all who seek bonefish"- Lefty Kreh

The club is located in Cargill Creek on Andros, just a few minutes boat ride from the opening of the North Bight. You can head right out of the lodge and be back into the Bights, North, Middle and South within minutes. There is truly more flats and shoreline here than any place in the world. You can head left out of the lodge and find flats that go on for miles and miles...good wading water. The other great thing is that although a 40 minute ride or so, the lodge provides easy access to the famed "West Side" of Andros, also known as the "Land of Giants". There is no other lodge that can offer what Andros Island Bonefish Club offers.

The other part of the equation, that often gets overlooked, is the guides. Shawn and his crew are simply some of the finest, most educated saltwater fishing guides that you will ever find. Most of them family, and have been guiding for the lodge for many years. Shawn, Nick, Chris, David, Brian, Rambo...they are all excellent bonefish guides and excellent captains. As anybody who fishes the salt knows, you are only as good as your guide and these guys are the best!

As you can tell...I really can't say enough good about the Andros Island Bonefish Club. They have all become like family to me...and I know that they feel that way also. The relationship has become a cornerstone of Mad River Outfitters Travel and that isn't going to change. The place has become "home" for me and I am always looking forward to my next trip. Just like Rupert always said...."Welcome Home".

Thanks for reading and I hope that you will consider joining Mad River Outfitters on one of our hosted trips to AIBC! If you can't make our dates....let us help you put a trip together. Any questions feel free to contact me at the shop.....we are here to help and LOVE talking bonefish!


Brian Flechsig
November 2012

Mad River Outfitters

Full service booking agent and outfitter for the Andros Island Bonefish Club

813 Bethel Rd. 
Columbus, Ohio 43214

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

MRO and The Muskegon River Lodge

Mad River Outfitters serves as a full booking agent for the Muskegon River Lodge!

Hosted trips and individual bookings!

Mad River Outfitters Fall Steelhead Trips

October 28th- 31st

November 11th- 14th

Imagine your own private, full-log walkout chalet nestled on 12.5 acres of secluded woodlands with 400 feet of Muskegon River frontage, replete with brown and rainbow trout, Pacific salmon, and steelhead holding right out front. It's the Muskegon River Lodge on western Michigan's Muskegon River. Offering world-class fly fishing year round, the Muskegon River- with it's runs of anadramous steelhead and salmon, resident bron and rainbow trout, and smallmouth bass- is a substantial western style river with prolific caddisfly and mayfly hatches and tremendous numbers of salmon and steelhead fry supporting the fishery. Technical nymphing, dry-fly fishing, sink-tip streamer stripping, and two-handed spey-casting presentations all produce in season. The Muskegon is a remarkable river, and best of all, it's yours to enjoy......and Mad River Outfitters can help!

Whether you're a party of two or a group of eight, the Muskegon River Lodge is reserved exclusively for you and your guests (or for Mad River Outfitters groups). Slip into the hot tub, settle into the sauna, kick back in the lounge, or scan the river for rises from the deck overlooking the river. Walk into the water's edge and board large, comfortable jet boats expressly designed for fly fishing and piloted by RiverQuest Charters fly-fishing guides, licensed by the State of Michigan and the United States Coast Guard. 

Steelhead on the Muskegon!

At the days end, refresh and kick back with the extraordinary culinary creations of chef Heather Allen. The Muskegon River Lodge, intimate and beautiful- perfect for your next fly-fishing adventure, couples get-away, or corporate retreat.

Sleep and eat well on your Michigan Fly Fishing Trip
Muskegon River now Orvis Endorsed!

Mad River Outfitters can help you put together a trip to the Muskegon River Lodge! 

Mad River Outfitters Fall Group Steelhead Trips- 2012

October 28th- 31st

November 11th- 14th

Click Here for details and pricing on these trips!

Mad River Outfitters
813 Bethel Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

New! Orvis Silver Sonic Waders


Orvis developed and patented the technology to construct waders using sonic welds, which are stronger than stitched seams, and are inherently waterproof as opposed to seams where threads are stitched through fabric. Their original Pack and Travel SonicSeam Waders were of minimalist design- no bells and whistles, just lightweight, durable waders- in fact so durable that original field testers are still wearing four-year old waders that have not developed a single leak.

To construct these waders, Orvis developed a proprietary nylon fabric that is extremely strong and abrasion resistant. (The polyester fabric used on conventional waders turns to ash when subjected to the sonic welding process.) In conventional waders, fabric is overlapped and sewn with thread, and the seam holes must then be covered with waterproof seam tape. Seams on Orvis SonicSeam Waders are edge welded with an ultrasonic proceses producing a slim, totally waterproof seam that is stronger than a conventional sewn seam. (Although the seams of the Orvis Sonic Waders are already 100% waterproof, they still use seam tape for added insurance.)

In fall 2012, Orvis will introduce their Silver Sonic Convertible Top Waders, with added features requested by guides and anglers who had grown to love the originals. The new Silver Sonics offer true ergonomically sculpted feet for more comfort and better fit, and more pockets, including a double airlock waterproof pocket for cell phones and compact cameras. A roll-down feature for the uppers transforms chest waders into waist waders instantly, without removing the suspenders. Seam strength has been improved even more, with a new process that offers 50% stronger seams.

"Ok, I will admit that I have not been a big fan of Orvis waders. However, the sonic welded waders have been impressive. I will guide well over 200 days a year, these waders have held up to the severe thrashing of sliding over rocks, willows, beaver sticks, slamming in a car door, etc. This is the first wader that I would recommend without hesitation. Love the suspender system."

Bubba Smith
Head Guide
Fisheads of the San Juan

"The sizing is right on the money, I can't believe the difference in the size change, these are great! They are very light feeling on the body, breathe quite nicely and so far have not had any leaks. I also like the sizing down by the calf and the ankle which makes getting in and out of them very easy unlike some other popular brands. I am tickled to have the extra pockets as well- I use them all. These are a winner!

Wayne Aldridge
River Of Life Outdoor Adventures

The new Orvis Silver Sonic Waders are available now through Mad River Outfitters and the retail price is $259.00

Mad River Outfitters
813 Bethel Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214


Saturday, August 18, 2012

New- Sage CIRCA Fly Rods

Introducing the new SAGE Circa Collection

If you're a devotee of the casting nuances of the slow-action rod, a student of it's historic ties to our sport, or just like the thrill of moving in close to actively feeding fish, consider the new CIRCA 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, thatnks to Konnetic technology's ability to compact and align more carbon fibers into a smaller diameter blank, Sage was able to design a radically narrow taper throughout the length of the rod, resulting in a consistently slow, yet responsive action from butt to tip. The new CIRCA is a technologically advanced slow-action rod that honors your slower, more deliberate casting style, yet is still every bit Sage.

Some people confuse fast-action rods with casting proficiency. Fact is, it takes more skill and proper technique to master a slower action, a truth many venerable dry fly purists are only too happy to confirm. IN the hands of a seasoned caster, the CIRCA simply comes alive. Casts are methodically smooth and graceful, yet pleasantly crisp and purposeful. The CIRCA's wider loop and telltale sensitivity gives you the precision control needed for delicate presentations. When you first pick up a CIRCA, you'll swear your hands and eyes are playing tricks on you; it simply can't be this slender and light. This little rod is the definition of "fishy", and if you're not a slow-action fan yet, you soon will be.

For those wondering why a company renowned for making high-performance fast-action rods has opted to focus their considerable expertise on the creation of an all-new, advanced slow-action trout rod, the answer might surprise you: Thanks to the development of Konnetic technology, they can now do "slow" the way it's truly meant to be done. You've waited long enough!

In 2012, Sage introduced the most significant evolution in fly rod development since their Generation 5 technology (the proven platform of their top performance rod families). Sage's new Konnetic technology combines proprietary aerospace materials with innovative manufacturing methods and processes. The impossibly lighter rods built utilizing this technique provide ultimate line control and accuracy due to enhanced "tip-to-hand" sensitivity and feedback, yet still retain Sage's renowned power and durability.

Konnetic technology incorporates a new composite material that was developed using an optimized ratio of Sage's proprietary resin to high modulus carbon fiber. Their Advanced Modulus Positioning System (AMPS) is a process that places the carbon materials to exacting tolerances for the greatest blank strength and efficient energy transfer throughout the shaft. Using their High Compression Molding (HCM) process, the blank's carbon fibers are compacted for optiumum density and precise alignment, simultaneously fusing the 50% lighter all-carbon inner core. From Konnetic technology, Sage has created a highly responsive and robust blank with significantly enhanced torsional stability and minimal vibration for casts that track effortlessly and accurately.

For 2013, Sage offers three rod families born of Konnetic technology: the all-new, advanced slow-action CIRCA trout rod, the revolutionary ONE rod (now including the new ONE Elite plus new Two-Hand offerings) and the ESN.

CIRCA Collection

* Fresh Water rods

* Advanced Slow Action

* Konnetic Technology Construction

* Green Tea Shaft Color

* Olive Primary Thread Wraps with Slate Trip Wraps

* Black Aluminum Winding Check

* Fuji Ceramic Stripper Guides

* Hard Chrome Snake Guides and Tip-Top

* Custom SAGE Snub-Nose, Half-Wells Cork Handle

* Vera Wood Insert and Black Aluminum Reel Seat

* Black Rod Bag with Iridescent Black Hills Gold Silkscreen

* 1 5/8" Desert Gold Colored Rod Tube with Black End Cap and Screw Cap

The new CIRCA rods come in the following models:

279-4  7'9" 2wt 4pc

379-4  7'9" 3wt 4pc

389-4  8'9" 3wt 4pc

479-4  7'9" 4wt 4pc

489-4  8'9" 4wt 4pc

589-4  8'9" 4wt 4pc

              CLICK HERE to view the new CIRCA Fly Rods from SAGE

Mad River Outfitters
813 Bethel Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214

Friday, July 27, 2012

Florida Backcountry Trip

          Florida Backcountry Trip 2012

A great time was had in Florida despite some crappy weather and poor water conditions! Bottom line....3 out of 4 clients caught their 1st Tarpon and several other species of fish were caught including redfish and snook!

I hadn't done this trip since 2009 for a variety of reasons but started getting the "Florida Itch" round about February of this year. I called my buddy and guide Mark Giacobba and he had some dates I booked it!

I was joined by Hal Goodrich from Springfield, Ohio, Larry Longerbeam from Tennesee, Howie Tracy from Texas and our old buddy Steve Ford who recently moved from Columbus to Cleveland. I can't say enough about this group of guys and they really made the trip special. Hal and Steve I have known and traveled with for years but Howie and Larry were newbies and I'm sure glad that I got to know them. Howie signed up for the Andros Bonefish trip this Fall and Larry will surely be back as well.

 The 2012 Florida Backcountry Group

This trip was 1st put together by Flip Pallot and I back in 2007. We originally booked it as a Florida Sampler trip and wandered around a bit.....but this year I took a new approach....and I like how it worked!

The Original Florida Sampler Trip- 2007

I began fishing in the Everglades in the early eighties. Long story but my Uncle Bill moved from St. Louis to Miami to attend the U of M in the Jazz Program. I started spending time there in the Summers and we fished the Glades and surrounding waters. His friend and saltwater legend Vince Maggio became like family to me also and between the two....I had flats boats and room and board almost any time I wanted. I feel like I grew up saltwater fly fishing in Flamingo! It was only natural that I included this magical place as part of Mad River Outfitters trip offerings.

I have now streamlined the trip and we fish 4 days out of the Flamingo boat launch in the Everglades National Park. We can head right and go out to Florida Bay and chase reds, snook and migrating tarpon and/or we can head left and go into the backcountry for the multitude of species found there including the resident tarpon that are always around. Each day I drive the group back to the launch to meet the guides and  then drive back to the hotel after the day of fishing. We stay at a really nice hotel in Homestead and all get together to go out to some great restaurants for dinner. Usually a couple of evenings we hang out and tie up a few leaders and talk about the day of fishing. Pretty laid back...and tons of fun!

  The boat launch at Flamingo

  One of my favorite views.....the Florida Backcountry

   This year we found some really great local restaurants that will be on the bill for 2013

I picked the group up at the Miami airport on Monday, April 30th this year and the prognosis was not good. It had been raining for days and the wind was blowing. I had talked to Mark and he wasn't optimistic. We went out for dinner and discussed our options.

1st day was a bust.....saltwater wise. The weather and water just wouldn't allow us to fish the salt.....but the day wasn't ruined! I trucked the guys up to Ft. Lauderdale and Mark and Dave Hunt took the guys to Sawgrass and they did some largemouth bass fishing. Turns out that the fishing was great and several of the guys caught the biggest largemouth bass that they ever had! Tons of bass and bluegill were caught and everybody had a great time. This is always a cool any saltwater angler knows....the weather doesn't always cooperate!

Larry Longerbeam and a nice Largemouth on the 1st day      

Over the next three days, the weather and water did improve and fish were caught. As stated, three out of 4 clients landed tarpon....a few snook, a redfish or two and a variety of other species like ladyfish, blue runners and more.

Hal Goodrich and his 1st Tarpon

Yours truly and a decent redfish

I have been running trips like this since 1989 and something happened on this trip that had never happened before.....I will share it here.

The 4th day was definitely shaping up to be "the day". The weather was looking good and the wind had laid down. Driving out, we were all excited and could feel that this was our big tarpon day. Howie Tracy nor Steve Ford had caught a tarpon yet and I had high hopes.

One of our guides, Dave Hunt had a conflict and we had to bring in another guide for the day......I won't mention his name.

Long story short but this "other guide" had what seemed to be a battery problem at the dock. He brought his truck down and tried to jump the battery to get the boat started. That didn't work. He then banged around on the motor for a bit and then decided that his starter was bad. He informed us that he had been having problems with it for a while.....and that he wouldn't be able to fish. He packed up his stuff and headed home.

I was stunned! Never in my nearly 24 years of conducting trips have I been in this situation.

Standing at the dock in the middle of the Everglades with two clients and nowhere to go. Man I felt bad for my guys and knew I had to do SOMETHING.....but what?

Long story short, Hal and Howie and I walked over to the marina and wound up renting a small boat for the day. They took it into the backcountry and wound up having a decent day.....and Howie got a tarpon! Albeit as tiny a tarpon I have ever seen...but it was a tarpon.

I tell this story not to rip on the guide.....although I didn't like the way he handled the situation I did find out that he felt really bad (as he should have). I tell this story because Hal and Howie helped to make a REALLY BAD situation for me into something that worked out ok. They were very gracious and understanding and didn't totally bust my balls. They knew it was not my fault and appreciated my efforts to make the most of the day. I can't say enough about these two guys and how they handled the situation. As Howie said: "We made lemonade from lemons".

Thanks Howie and Hal!

Needless to say I quickly re-imbursed them for the full day of guided fishing and the boat rental was on Mad River Outfitters.

I also want to thank Mark Giacobba and Dave Hunt...our guides. They are both really great guides and do a great job with our clients. I have worked with Mark before on the Flip trips and have sent him quite a bit of business over the years. Dave Hunt was new to me but got rave reviews from the clients and my dealings with him were excellent. They are both secured as guides for the 2013 trip!!!

Captain Mark Giacobba of Glades Outfitters

Captain Dave Hunt and Larry Longerbeam's safe to say that the new and improved "Florida Backcountry" Trip is back in the rotation!!

A good time was had by all, some good food was eaten and a few fish were caught. I really enjoyed the trip and I know that all of the guys did as well.....they told me so!

2013 dates and info posted here! Thanks for reading and if you might be interested in joining me in South Florida....give me a call or shoot an e-mail to the shop. If you can't wait until then for a dose of salt....I'll also be hosting the Andros Island Bonefish Trip in November. to visit Kelly Galloup in Montana for some of that easy fishing with a group of 10 anglers. Pics and story upon my return.

Brian Flechsig
July 2012

Click Here for details on this trip

Click Here for photos of Florida Trips

Click Here for details on our Andros Island Bonefish Trips

Click Here for photos from previous Bonefish Trips

Mad River Outfitters
813 Bethel Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

MRO and Ohio Musky

For those that don't already know......Ohio is one of the top producing Musky states in the country. Huge populations of wild muskies exist in a variety of watersheds throughout the state and we have been doing extensive research (fishing) for a number of years now! There are Musky all over the place, and MRO is your source for catching this fish on the fly!

Our very own Pat Kelly is guiding folks for these fantasic gamefish in a few select locations in Southern and Central Ohio. He guides out of his "Clacka" driftboat and can accomodate 1 or 2 anglers although he prefers one as it allows for a better chance for folks to land the fish of a lifetime.

MRO's Patrick Kelly and his "Unofficial" World Record Musky caught on a Fly in Ohio

Pat charges $425.00 for one angler and $500.00 for two for a float trip. All equipment and flies can be provided and you need to bring your own lunch. He will meet you at a designated location which will be determined a day or so before the trip depending on current conditions. He will not tell or advertise the names of the rivers that he fishes...and he shouldn't. He won't even tell us and we appreciate that...if you know what we mean.

You won't find a ton of information on this service on our website and this is on purpose. We are looking for a small, select group of dedicated Musky anglers and he only guides 1 day per week during the prime seasons....if that much. We are not looking to overfish or take advantage of this incredible fishery here in Ohio. If you are interested, please give us a call at the shop, 614-451-0363 and we'll be  happy to answer any questions.

Below is a short story written by our friend and customer Don Gregory. Don has been out with Pat three times now and this is an account of his trip on Monday, May 21st:

"The musky, fish of 10,000 casts, fish of dreams--- mine anyway.
While sliding the drift boat into a small Appalachian creek barely ankle deep at the put-in, I find it hard to believe that the piscatorial predator at the apex of the food chain could actually be living here. But always trust the hunch of Musky Pat, particularly when he guided you into your first musky on the fly.

Well… 10 minutes later, and within sight of the truck, a musky t-boned my oversized fly and I actually remembered to strip set. A musky caught, the pressure off. Did I sleep through my alarm?
A few dozen casts later, a second take. The hook set led to a series of gill rattling jumps and ferocious headshakes. A thick female well over 3 feet long eventually yielded to my sage 10 weight, and my personal best landed in the oversized net. Should we stop with perfection having only fished the length of a football field or simply sip a cold one to calm down before pressing on? Not a hard decision.

Another vicious strike and a THIRD musky fought with attitude all the way into the net. 3 for 3. A perfect day—right here in the Buckeye State.

My daddy taught me that it is sometimes better to be lucky than good. Well with Pat Kelly as your musky guide, you are lucky indeed."

Don Gregory- Columbus, Ohio

Don Gregory on a guide trip with Pat on 5/21/12

Please remember that we also feature Musky fishing up on Lake St. Clair with Captain Brian Meszaros. He is a Musky "Guru" in his own right and St. Clair is regarded as one of the top Musky destinations in the country.

Captain Brian and a Happy client on a St. Clair guide trip.

Musky season opens June 1st on Lake St. Clair and trips are booking now!!!

Click Here for information on Fly Fishing Lake St. Clair with MRO
Mad River Outfitters
Your source for Musky on the Fly!
813 Bethel Rd.
Columbus, Ohio 43214