From Curiosity to Passion: Women on the Fly

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Claire Topalian Become a fan
Director, PR and Communications at Transpose.

An Interview with Abbie Schuster

A few months ago, I centered on the personal challenge of teaching myself how to fly-fish (with the help and patience of my friends and family). Through this experience, I’ve already had the opportunity to meet a number of inspiring individuals from the fishing community. Their passion for the sport is infectious and has motivated me to continue learning and practicing. Below is an interview with Abbie Schuster, who leads all Women’s Programs at Emerald Water Anglers in Seattle. In her responses, Abbie shares a bit about why she loves the sport, her thoughts on opening up the industry to more women, and tips on how to approach the sport as a beginner.


Share a bit about yourself: where are you from, what do you do now, and why? How did you first start fly-fishing?
I have always had a strong desire for adventure and a deep love for nature. Fly-fishing is the ideal way for me to fulfill my love for outdoor adventure. My dad taught me the art of fly-fishing when I was very young – he was determined to have a life-long fishing partner. We would wake up before sunrise, load up the kayaks and head out to catch stripers and blues in Long Island Sound. Watching sunrises with my father, and stripers in hand, I realized that my dad was giving me a life-long gift. My passion led me to many different rivers and streams throughout the East Coast. I became even more obsessed with fly-fishing while attending the University of Montana, where I guided on a variety of different rivers and creeks. I’ve also been lucky enough to spend time on the serene flats of the Bahamas and Mexico catching bonefish.


While getting more involved in the fly-fishing industry I was baffled that I was not working with more women. Historically, fly-fishing has been a male dominated sport, but I want to help change that. I am currently the Women’s Program Director at Emerald Water Anglers in Seattle, Washington. I run casting clinics, schools, guided trips and, of course, a wine night here and there to talk fishing and to get women anglers together. It’s been an amazing experience to watch women who were curious about fly-fishing come together and have it become their passion.

Click to read the rest of the interview on Huffington Post.

Historic Recored Set on Billy Pate Tarpon Reel

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It’s a official!! The International Gamefish Association (IGFA) has confirmed that Richard Hart from Orlando Florida has made angling history by catching the largest freshwater world record using IGFA compliant fly tackle. Richard caught AND released a 415 lb. 8 oz. Arapamia in the jungles of Guyana this past February using his Billy Pate Anti-Reverse Tarpon Reel. Thank you everyone at Tibor for sharing the news with us.

Deep in the jungles of Guyana – angler Richard Hart made angling history by landing a 188.46 kg (415 lb 8 oz) arapaima (Arapaima gigas) using IGFA compliant fly tackle. Not only has the catch earned Hart the new All-Tackle world record – which previously stood at 154 kg (339 lb 8 oz) – but his catch is also the heaviest freshwater World Record ever taken with fly tackle. Hart needed only 30 minutes to subdue the fish, after it took the streamer pattern fly he was casting. Once landed, Hart and local guides worked quickly to safely document the fish. Utilizing a basic pully system, a sling, heavy rope and a nearby tree, they were able to accurately document the weight on Hart’s certified scale.

Including this new world record, Tibor Reel Corporation holds more than 850 Fly Fishing World Records – more than any other fly fishing reel manufacturer world-wide.

A family-owned business, Tibor (pronounced TEE-bor) Reel Corporation has been the world leader in the design and manufacture of the highest quality fly fishing reels for over 39 years. After escaping Soviet controlled Hungary and immigrating to the U.S. in 1958, master machinist, fisherman and founder, Ted “Tibor” Juracsik developed the legendary Billy Pate Fly Reel in 1976 which established new standards of quality, design, and durability for saltwater fly reels. In 1995, the internationally acclaimed line of Tibor Reels was launched, followed by the Tibor Light, and The Tibor Signature Series.

The Juracsik family is proud their products are 100% “Made and assembled in the USA” and carry a lifetime warranty. With the exception of the ball bearings, every part of every reel is precision machined and hand assembled in their Delray Beach, Florida facility. Ted’s design philosophy is based on simplicity and functionality and goes back to his days as a young apprentice in Hungary. “The old masters always told me the most beautiful machines have the least moving parts,” he says.

Juracsik says, “Making a quality product in an age when American manufacturing is under siege is a great source of pride for us. Although we are extremely proud of our world record achievements, our greatest reward comes from knowing that our reels are built to last and are often passed down from generation to generation.”


Catastrophe on the Animas

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Photo by Jerry McBride/Durango Herald
Kayakers Dan Steaves, Eric Parker and David Farkas find themselves surrounded Thursday by the toxic mine waste that began flowing Wednesday into the Animas River from the Gold King Mine north of Silverton.

By Chase Olivarius-Mcallister , Mary Shinn and Shane Benjamin Herald staff writers

Acidic wastewater from an abandoned mine above Silverton coursed its way through La Plata County on Thursday, turning the Animas River orange-brown, forcing the city of Durango to stop pumping raw water from the river and persuading the sheriff to close the river to public use.

Residents lined the banks of the Animas River on Thursday afternoon to watch the toxic wastewater as it flowed through Durango city limits. But the sludge slowed as it snaked its way through the oxbow in the Animas Valley, and the murk didn’t arrive until after 8 p.m.

The accident occurred about 10:30 a.m. Wednesday at the Gold King Mine in San Juan County. A mining and safety team working on behalf of the Environmental Protection Agency triggered the discharge, according to a news release issued by the EPA.

The EPA’s team was working with heavy equipment to secure and consolidate a safe way to enter the mine and access contaminated water, said Richard Mylott, a spokesman for the EPA in Denver. The project was intended to pump and treat the water and reduce metal pollution flowing out of the mine into Cement Creek, he said.

The disaster released about 1 million gallons of acidic water containing sediment and metals flowing as an orange-colored discharge downstream through Cement Creek and into the Animas River.

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