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Tom J

Tom J

, Employee

Park City, UT

Tom J's Passions

Fly Fishing

Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 28, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I love Fishpond products and this one is no exception. This is an outstanding, tough as nails duffle, that absolutely stands out on the dock in the bright orange as you get ready to board your float plane to Mystery Lake. The bag is 100% water proof and will withstand waves as you run the boat in salt water or a downpour out on the dock. This bag has perfectly designed straps to convert from duffle to back pack making it a great overnight and airport bag as well.

Finally, the rubber pad on the bottom of the completes the package and allows it to stand in water without soaking the insides. Can't ask for more!

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 28, 2019

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Ideal for steelheading when you are up for more casting than actually catching and landing fish. I take my gloves off when landing and handling fish so if you have your hands out for long periods of time or if you have a guide handling and releasing your fish, no need to take them off.

The gloves are nice but not quite as wind proof as I had hoped given they are fingerless gloves. Still, I would buy these again for trips where I will have my hands exposed for long periods of time. Not ideal for rowing but more than adequate for cool days where you will make a thousand casts before landing a fish.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 9, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

The drake hatches, if you have them, can't be beat. In the right river system and during a hatch, fishing a dry drake can produce big fish on top and make your whole day! Love the MFC flies for their attention to detail, great construction and color match. I usually fish these on a Tenkara skating them across big pools and during hatches I can get a strike almost every time. The fish seem to like it!

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 9, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I use my JetBoil just to boil water. But I use that water for coffee and freeze dried food. Love the speed and efficiency and "take-it-anywhere" convenience of the JetBoil. I've had it on the tailgate of my truck and on camping trips in camp. When I am done with it, I let it cool down and then I pack it up into my pack. Nothing better for speed, convenience, and the value of having a hot meal can't be understated.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 9, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Necessary for full day or longer outings where you want to keep things cold! This is an outstanding way to keep food and drink cold without finding your food all wet at the end of the day from ice melt. More importantly, the fact that they are reusable also makes them infinitely more convenient in that you aren't looking for ice the next day. Over the Summer, all of my local stores are constantly out of ice so having these packs makes for a reliable solution.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 9, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These Simms pliers replace pliers that were sold up until last year. The previous generation pliers worked for heavier test 50 lbs. and above but did not work as well for manipulating lighter tippet given a slight gap between the teeth.

These new Simms pliers are perfect for tippet down to 20 lbs. test making it for me a constant salt-water and pike fly fishing companion when I am tying on shock tippet up to 80 lbs. test and tying braided wire on.

The mid placed wire cutters are sharp enough to cut through 30 lbs. wire and almost any heavy shock tippet I have used thus far. The hole in the center of the pliers are missing in other plier designs but is welcome here given you can put your index finger through it to pull down on and tighten knots for heavier tippet setups.

This is a must have for the serious fly fisherman!

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 9, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

This PFD is perfect for Summer fly fishing. Great freedom of movement and a close fit make for a perfect fly fishing PFD you can use in big water. Love the big pockets up front for fly boxes and tippet and the stowaway hood is the real secret here. The hood is great for the heavier shower on warmer days when you don't want to change out but just want your head dry.

Finally, the lightweight back makes this an incredibly comfortable PFD you can wear all day. Having a few other PFDs with heavier padded backs, this PFD is much more comfortable and thus much more likely to be worn. Nice work by Astral!

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 9, 2019

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Like other reviews note, this is definitely not just a side pocket.
If you have a Hopper, this is a great addition if you need a place to put keys, a wallet or phone. I do worry that the magnets are too strong and may affect credit cards and my phone but this will attach to the side of the Hopper series of soft coolers reliably. This is a pretty logical accessory for every Hopper cooler and you have a day on the river planned.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on January 9, 2019

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Fit: True to size

Outstanding jacket custom built for the worst wet weather conditions. Recently wore this jacket on a salmon fishing trip in British Columbia in heavy seas and a downpour. When the rain is coming at all angles, this is the jacket to have.

The high collar is perfect for keeping your face dry and keeping the rain out. Pair it with a hat, pull the hood over and you will be covered for almost anything except a wave crashing right over you.

This is definitely monsoon-proof but it comes at the cost of a little more bulk so if you are not aggressively casting or moving about quite a bit, this jacket is ideal. Perfect for ocean fishing, steel heading, and other trips where you don't need a more flexible and less rigid packable jacket!

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I take my headlamp with me everywhere. From night fly fishing trips, night hikes to shoveling snow in an overnight blizzard, this headlamp is the absolute best I've ever owned. I've taken this on Florida night fly fishing trips and fished with this in a rainstorm in the Rockies, this headlamp is a dream.

After owning many smaller, less functional, and less powerful headlamps, this headlamp will last years if not forever.

There is a switchable broad lamp to a focused beam as well as different levels of light intensity so you can control the amount of light you need for virtually any situation.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

These are a must have for any wading conditions to keep out gravel, rocks, grass, other vegetation, and other debris!

The gravel guards go on easily with a strong velcro attachment and a clasp in front that hooks into the front laces.

I have a pair for my back up waders and summer wet wading when I just have a pair of wading boots and gravel guards on along with my Tropic II flats pants.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Love these lower profile (no big fish print on the back) sun shirts that you can wear on the flats in the Tropics or under another shirt on a cooler evening.

The shirt is well cut with good finished seams, a printed label instead of a fabric label, and thumbholes that make sure that space between your wrist and your arm is always covered especially when casting. The thumbholes keep the sleeve from creeping up.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

When you just can't be bothered to blood knot another tippet extension and the rest of the leader is too kinked, knicked up, or otherwise needs to be replaced, reach for one of these and you are set. I always have a 3 pack in my fishing pack at the start of every season and a few rolls of 5X, 6X and 7X to get me through the spring, summer and fall.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Doesn't get better than this tool to remove and add split shot, cramp down barbs as well as cutting tippet and trimming flies. These simple forceps are a must have for trout fishermen!

I use surgical forceps which are too delicate for removing and adding split shot. These forceps are perfect and have just the right amount of heft. Perfect gift for yourself or a fellow fly fisherman!

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

The green mirror 580Gs are perfect for flats fly fishing and scanning the flats on a sunny day in the Tropics.

The G stands for glass lenses and the P stands for plastic lenses. Get the glass lenses. They are worth the premium for visual acuity and have greater abrasion resistance to salt, sand and general wear and tear. My plastic lenses tend to not only scratch easier but they also tend to delaminate as well.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

As others have noted, this is a big net for those catching big trout. I've caught big browns out of the Frying Pan river and this net is a perfect size for the big 28" to 32" brown trout in the Frying Pan running up to the Ruedi Reservoir...thus the net being named after the Frying Pan River in Colorado.

You can get away with a much smaller net if you aren't chasing big trout. If your average fish is under 20", the Frying Pan net is overkill for sure.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Fished with an intermediate or sinking line, I've used this fly on pike and big lake trout with regular strikes. This is another perfectly balanced, great profile, and very fishy fly for big fish. Galloup flies are a must have for big fish waters where streamers are the optimal fly.

The color balance on the olive and white pattern is particularly good at imitating a freshwater baitfish or small trout. These are a must have for ice out fishing and to start the year.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 18, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This jig fly is a true jig with the bass-style floppy tail and the swivel head to give it the fluttering motion on its way down as you jig the fly.

I use this stillwater fishing when I have marked fish or know generally where they will be. Jigs are effective for a reason so if you have the right set up (must have a heavy weight in my opinion), you can effectively jig on a fly rod. I've done this on Pyramid Lake and offshore over a reef where I can see the bottom.

If you are not familiar with jigging, it brings up the fly then lets it flutter back down as the weight points the fly downwards and brings it back down. This is effective for fish cruising by or otherwise sitting on the bottom.

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Tom J

Tom Jwrote a review of on November 17, 2018

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

This is expensive but absolutely necessary for long haul trips into the backcountry or otherwise remote destinations where fresh water is not readily accessible and/or you have to travel light.

Haven't gotten sick once but have seen plenty of friends get giardia and get knocked out from the symptoms.

There are critics who don't like the long tube or the big handle. I like both because the long tube gives you some latitude in placing the water suction in a particular place in a lake or river (ideally a cleaner area with less debris), and the larger handle makes it a lot easier to pump multiple gallons of water if you are trying to get clean water for storage or cooking.

The longer tube is also helpful for preventing cross-contamination where the smaller self-contained units can get cross contamination since the filtered vs. non-filtered water are often right next to each other or an errant splash can contaminate the filtered water.

This is expensive but it is worth every penny if you know how to use it and need to pump more than just a couple sips or a personal water supply.

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